A hacker may have gained access to images of checks sent to the University of Notre Dame after the breach of one of the college's servers earlier this month.

The university discovered the hack more than ten days ago and hired a forensics expert in response.

University spokeswoman Hilary Crnkovich said Tuesday that the university had not been told notified of any affected financial information being used improperly.

"The university did experience a breach in a remote server containing, among other things, check information on Jan. 13," she said. "Soon after the intrusion, the server was taken down, and the university immediately hired a forensic expert."

A toll free hotline, (866) 640-7118, and a website, http://www.nd.edu/support, were also set up for donors who may have been affected, she said.

Brandon Hoff, senior vice president at CipherOptics, said the incident illustrates the importance of data security.

"Security breaches, such as the one affecting Notre Dame, illustrate yet again the importance of data security. It's time for organizations to look at where data resides – and where it travels – on their networks to identify vulnerabilities in their data security," he said. "After all, securing the network with perimeter technologies is a good first step, but the ultimate goal is data protection, which should be the first line of defense to prevent such occurrences and to adhere to best practices."