The Division of Florida Colleges has reported a hacking case in which a number of Florida college students’ personal information may have been compromised.
An investigation into the incident has been initiated as officials try to determine the extent of the security breach, which occurred at Northwest Florida State College in Niceville.
The personal information of 3,000 university employees and 76,000 Northwest College students was compromised.
Information was also gathered about close to 200,000 students who were eligible for the state’s Bright Futures Scholarship during the 2005-2006 and 2006-2007 school year, including Social Security numbers, date of birth, ethnicity and gender.
As state, local and federal officials try to determine just how many records were compromised, those affected are being contacted. “We want to be sure that we fully understand the situation and provide accurate information to those impacted,” said Florida College System Chancellor Randy Hanna in a statement.
Hanna also said there is a possibility that most of the information is dated. Most students who were eligible during those years may have graduated already, or are nearing the end of their college careers.
More information about the incident can be found at www.nwfsc.edu/security. Students who attend or have attended Northwest Florida State College should contact the university for more information. Students statewide who think their identity may be in jeopardy should contact 1-800-688-0656.