More than 600 Seattle U students' personal information exposed

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by KING 5 News

KING5.com

Posted on April 17, 2014 at 5:13 PM

Updated Thursday, Apr 17 at 5:15 PM

SEATTLE — Personal information of more than 600 Seattle University students were exposed, made viewable online by thousands. The school says the information is no longer exposed, but what happened and could it happen again?

The personal information includes names, Social Security Numbers and some medical information for 628 current and former students. This information could have been viewed by anyone with a Seattle University email account.

The Seattle University problem was discovered nearly two months ago. The university’s email system had incorrect permission settings, allowing some folders to be viewed by people who were not authorized to gain access.

Students have different views on the university’s cyber security.

“The system is really bad. There’s always something going wrong with it.”

“I have complete confidence is the University’s security.”

We’re told that unauthorized access was available only to people with S.U. email accounts.

Here’s an irony: A majority of those affected had applied for a student worker position in the university’s Department of Public Safety and transportation between 2010 and 2014.

Letters have been sent to students.  Students whose Social Security Numbers were viewable will get one year of free identity protection services. Seattle University hired a firm specializing in digital forensics to investigate and they say they fixed the problem.

The university investigated the breach over the past two months and that’s why they waited to announce it.

So was any personal information misused? No one from the university could do an interview on the issue. A university spokeswoman says they have no evidence of misuse.

 

KING 5's Liza Javier and Linda Brill contributed to this report.

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