Saturday, February 18, 2006

Incident: Laptop containing personal information stolen from University of Northern Iowa

Yet another incident involving a university:

"The University of Northern Iowa has notified about 6,000 of its employees to protect themselves from identity theft by contacting credit reporting agencies and initiating fraud alerts after a security breach was detected last week on a laptop computer at the university, officials said Friday.

The laptop, for UNI's Office of Business Operations in Cedar Rapids, contained Internal Revenue Service W-2 forms for student employees, faculty and staff.

UNI officials said a virus was detected on the laptop, which was being used to review how the forms would appear when printed.

Tom Schellhardt, vice president for administration and finance, said officials found no evidence suggesting that personal information was accessed.

Even so, everyone with data on the computer was sent an advisory letter.

A. Frank Thompson, a professor of finance, said he didn't think the forms should have been on the computer. 'It simply opens up the possibility of that information being inappropriately accessed,' he said."

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