Cyber Attack on UCLA May Have Exposed Personal Data of Students

Media Division | August 7, 2017

We continue to see malicious and detrimental cyber attacks occurring almost every day. Various organizations are targeted for their sensitive and personal information that is stored through digital means. Some organizations are able to defend from these attacks adequately, but others suffer massive breaches as a result. And some hackers may be able to get in, but then are unable to get away with what they were hoping for. Even if this is the case, it is generally always detrimental for an organization to suffer a breach, as it can still damage reputation and customer trust. Recently, the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) suffered a data breach that may have resulted in student data being compromised.

What Student Data was Targeted in the Cyber Attack

Officials of the university are notifying around 32,000 people in regard to a cyber attack upon one of their computer servers that contained some student personal information. Though, they did also say that they do not believe the perpetrator was actually able to obtain any sensitive data. According to the officials, the hacker was targeting a Summer Sessions and International Education office server that held personal data like names, dates of birth, addresses, health insurance IDs, some medical data reported by students, and even Social Security numbers. They said that the forensic evidence does not seem to display that the attackers accessed or obtained any data from the server, but they also said that it cannot be ruled out. No data provided by students on or after April 13, 2016, was affected by the incident. Modifications have been made to prevent future cyber attacks, and they are continuing to strengthen system security. There does not appear to be any reports as to how the hacker was able to get into their systems, but perhaps more data will be provided on this as they further investigate the incident.

The university does seem to be handling the breach quite efficiently. First off, they sent notices to those that were affected in the attack, and they are also offering a free year of identity protection services as well. This is a smart move, as taking care of the public affected by a cyber attack or data breach is one of the most vital necessities. Organizations that neglect this step tend to find themselves suffering much further detriment as a result of the reputational and customer trust damage that will often follow. Of course, this is far from the only aspect that needs to be handled in a cyber incident, as there are many other factors that need to be addressed as well.

Bolstering Security Measures to Properly Prevent Cyber Attacks

Far too many organizations continue to suffer large attacks and breaches as a result of inadequate security. There are numerous tools and services that can help organizations to prevent cyber attacks, and all they need to do is implement them. Intelligence can help to proactively defend and repel attacks, monitoring can assist in immediately identifying and preventing infiltration, and there are also the basics of antivirus and firewalls. Many organizations think that they can rely purely on the basics and stay protected, but this is far from the case. While these will always be necessary, they are unable to adequately defend by themselves. Modern threats are adept and insidious, and it requires prediction and proactive defense to actually stay protected in the current landscape. Massive Alliance offers a wide array of tools, skills, and services to properly prevent cyber attacks from compromising digital information and assets.

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