Officials at Western Connecticut State University said they are in the process of notifying students, staff and others that their personal information, including Social Security numbers, may have been exposed after a computer system problem that has since been fixed.
Western officials said the vulnerability existed from April 2009 to September 2012 and may have exposed information of nearly 235,000 people whose records had been collected by the university in a 13-year period.
University officials said the affected group included students, their families and those who had other associations with the university, as well as high school students whose SAT scores were purchased in lists, a common practice in higher education.
No evidence has been found that any information had actually leaked, Western officials said, but as a precaution Western is offering up to two years of ID theft protection at no cost through AllClearID.
WCSU President James W. Schmotter said when he became aware of the problem Sept. 26, he activated the Board of Regents security incident response plan.
"We are disappointed that the potential existed to have these records exposed, but we will do everything we can to protect our students, their families and others with whom we have worked," Schmotter said. "The steps we are taking and the solutions we are offering to every one of those affected are designed to address any problems this situation may have caused."
Everyone that has been affected is expected to receive a letter in the mail explaining the situation.
In addition, Western has set up a searchable database that contains the names of all affected individuals.
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