34,000 students, staffers and researchers with the University of South Carolina run the risk of having their private data exposed as a result of a breach of the institutionâ€™s system. Their names, addresses and Social Security numbers are in danger of falling into the wrong hands.
This incident appears to be the sixth, and the most ample, security breach against the USC in the past six years, exposing a total of 81,000 records. In this last attack, perpetrators got their hands on records that date as back as 2005.
The State reports thereâ€™s no indication that hackers are using the data stored on the compromised computer server but the university decided nonetheless to send notifications to all people in that database to give those people the opportunity to place fraud alerts to inform them in case of suspicious movement on their credit reports.
And since the breach was dated in June, the University of South Carolina asked Kroll Advisory Solutions to support all possible victims and help them prevent fraud attempts.
When asked why the university decided to wait for 11 weeks before releasing information about the data breach, Bill Hogue, USCâ€™s vice president for information technology, saidÂ â€œWe favored being as accurate and comprehensive as possibleâ€ Â and that he understands the implications of this decision.
Â â€œThe school is hit with an average of 280 attempts a day to hack or infect its computers â€” almost all generated by automated systems known as botsâ€ and no less than â€œ55,000 devices â€” including smartphones, tablets, laptops, desktops and servers â€” are connected to USCâ€™s computer systems daily,â€Â Hogue added. These numbers are significant and call for better security policy as all those people need to have their data protected at all times.