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KCC Students’ Personal Data at Great Risk

A computer system at Kapiolani Community College (KCC) in Hawaii, the US that could access the private data of applicants of financial aid became infected with malware on April 15, 2009, according to officials at KCC. The malware is believed to be capable of capturing users' confidential information and of communicating with certain websites.

Reportedly, the infected computer didn't store the data itself but could connect to a server in the department used for processing financial aid. Accordingly, the server contained information like name, birth date, phone number, address, as well as Social Security number.

Notably, the affected computer was immediately disconnected from the main network and put to a forensic examination.

However, the infection might have resulted in the compromise of the personal data of over 15,000 KCC students. The officials at the University also reveal that those in danger include KCC students who were granted or applied for financial aid during the period from January 1, 2004 to April 15, 2009, as well as previous loan borrowers. In addition, if students gave their parents' information while filling in the forms for financial aid, then those parents too are in danger.

Although there is no evidence from the experts of the forensic investigation that the infected system actually accessed any confidential detail, such a possibility is still not ruled out.

Hence, the University is issuing an alert to every person whose private data is stored in the departmental server and whose privacy might be in danger in case of an unauthorized access. The alert states that KCC is urging every individual, who might be affected to adopt regular protective measures to defeat a possible identity theft.

Further, a detailed examination of the credit statements is also suggested. Accordingly, students need to examine their credit card and bank statements on a regular basis and watch out for any suspicious or unusual transaction. Moreover, if any irregularity is noticed in the statements, then students must get in touch with the related financial institution, officials said.

Besides, anyone suspecting a compromise of his information must visit www.kcc.hawaii.edu/object/idalerts.html or call 734-9522.

Related article: KSA Proves as Worst Malware Inclined Country in EMEA

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