A cyberattack at the Penn State University – the third time in six months – has resulted in close to 15,000 social security numbers getting exposed. This comes just two weeks after a similar attack at PSU left close to 9,766 SSNs exposed. According to Geoff Rushton, a spokesperson of PSU, the institution is working with national and regional agencies to investigate the case. The names of these agencies have not been released due to confidentiality agreements.
The exposed individuals are noted to be students at the university prior to 2005. Since 2005, the institution has stopped using SSNs as a personal identifier. While the database of numbers have since then been removed, an archived copy of the same is reported to have remained undetected in the computer cache from where these numbers were exposed.
A similar attack in December last year is reported to have exposed close to 30,000 SSN numbers.[via Pittsburg Live]