Nearly 280K Files Affected By Fla. College’s Data Breach

NICEVILLE, Fla. — Northwest Florida State College (NWFSC) has broadened its investigation of the security breach of the college’s computer systems to include data on 76,500 current and past students as well as data on approximately 200,000 Bright Futures scholars across the state of Florida.

The compromised student information contains public directory material, including names, addresses, birth dates and Social Security numbers. The Bright Futures scholars’ data file includes all of the state’s Bright Futures eligible students during the 2005-06 and 2006-07 academic years. The file contains student names, Social Security numbers, dates of birth, ethnicity and gender. No student academic files have been compromised.

The data breach, which occurred between May 21 and Sept. 24, 2012, also includes 3,200 employees. The breach was an unlawful, unauthorized acquisition of computerized data by an entity outside the college that materially compromised the confidentiality of personal information maintained by the college.

NWFSC has teamed up with the Department of Education’s Division of Florida Colleges to notify all students impacted by the data breach. Additionally, the college has contracted with an external consultant to ensure the school’s data remains safe and secure. The Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office cybercrimes unit will continue to investigate the case alongside the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

Affected persons are encouraged to place a free fraud alert on their credit files, which notifies creditors to contact individuals before opening new accounts in their affected party’s name.

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Tagged with: Data Breaches

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