CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Bank account numbers and the Social Security numbers of more than 350,000 students and faculty were accidentally exposed at UNC Charlotte earlier this year in an online security breakdown, a school investigation has found.
The investigation was ordered after the exposure was discovered by UNCC staff members in mid-February. Its findings were released Wednesday.
The exposure stemmed partly from incorrect access settings that made electronic data hosted by UNCC accessible on the Internet. The exposed information included names, addresses, Social Security numbers and financial account information provided during transactions with the university.
As a result, data from the university’s general systems was exposed for about three months, and data from the university’s engineering college was exposed for more than a decade, UNCC officials said in a statement.
UNCC doesn’t believe that information was inappropriately accessed or that it was used for identity theft or other crimes.
The exposure has been stopped and UNCC officials are alerting students, staff and faculty who may be affected.
UNCC called in state and federal regulatory and law enforcement investigators to investigate what was exposed and how it happened. The university continues to monitor its systems and has intensified internal review procedures to watch for any unusual activity, the statement said.
Anyone who might find suspicious activity with accounts should call UNCC at 1-855-205-6937 and any financial institution involved. In addition, they should contact the Federal Trade Commission at 1-877-438-4338.