Breach, Data Security

30K Penn State records breached due to malware

Penn State University officials are working to notify tens of thousands of individuals whose records may have been compromised.

How many victims? 30,000.

What type of personal information? Social Security numbers.

What happened? The breach was caused by malware.

Details: The breach involves 7,758 records from the Eberly College of Science, 6,827 records from the College of Health and Human Development and approximately 15,000 records from one of Penn State's campuses outside of University Park.

What was the response? School officials notified campus officials and began sending letters to affected individuals on Dec. 23. There is no evidence that anyone's information was accessed.

Quote: "Even when theft is only a remote possibility, we alert anyone who may have been affected and arm them with information and steps to take to mitigate their risk," Sarah Morrow, chief privacy officer for Penn State, said.

Source:, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Records of 30,000 at Penn State hacked,” Dec. 29, 2009.

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