Breach, Data Security

Info on thousands of Chicago students posted to city website

Roughly 2,000 Chicago Public Schools students who participated in a free vision examination program may have had personal information compromised when the data was inadvertently posted to the city website, where it remained for a few months.

How many victims? About 2,000. 

What type of personal information? Names, dates of birth, genders, identification numbers, vision exam dates, diagnoses and school names.

What happened? The student data was incorrectly configured and was made available on the city website.

What was the response? The city conducted an internal investigation, completed a security risk assessment and instituted new security measures to protect student privacy. Letters are being sent to the parents and guardians of affected students.

Details: The student data was uploaded to the Chicago website sometime between June 18 and July 31. A city resident alerted officials on Oct. 7 that the personal information was available online. An investigation revealed that only 14 people viewed the information.  

Quote: “Upon learning of the misconfiguration, corrective steps were immediately taken to mitigate the problem and remove this information and all cached and archived versions of the data from the Internet,” Shannon Breymaier, a Chicago spokesperson, said. “At this time we have no reason to believe that the information has been used inappropriately.”

Source:, “City: CPS students' health data accidentally posted online,” Dec. 1, 2013

Get daily email updates

SC Media's daily must-read of the most current and pressing daily news

By clicking the Subscribe button below, you agree to SC Media Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.