Breach, Threat Management, Data Security

W-2 data breach at Westminster College

A breach of employee information in January at Westminster College in Missouri did not affect student academic records or financial aid information, officials stated this past Saturday, according to a report in the Columbia Daily Tribune.

The breach was first discovered on March 26 after a phishing scam duped a staffer into sending off W-2 statements. The sender of the phishing email was "illegally impersonating another Westminster employee,” said Lana Poole, vice president and chief communications officer at the private undergraduate college located in Fulton, Mo., a community of 13,000 residents about 25 miles from both Columbia and Jefferson City.

Law enforcement was informed and employees were notified of the incident and given “resources and additional support,” which includes a free year-long subscription to an identity protection and credit monitoring service.

“We have apologized to those affected, developed additional protocols to help further protect their confidential information, and also met with employees and students … to discuss identity theft and reinforce the importance of protecting their identities,” Poole said.

The number of those affected was not released.

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