Third-Party Data Breach May Affect SCC and SFCC Community Members
According to national news media reports, numerous organizations, including institutions of higher education, banks and other organizations worldwide, have been impacted by a cybersecurity incident related to a widely used filesharing application known as MOVEit Transfer.
While Community Colleges of Spokane (CCS), Spokane Falls Community College (SFCC) and Spokane Community College (SCC) do not use the MOVEit software, we have received notifications from the third-party service provider that personally identifiable information from some SCC and SFCC students may have been exposed.
It is important to note that no system maintained or operated by CCS, including ctcLink, has been breached.
The third-party service provider that has contacted CCS is the National Student Clearinghouse (NSC).
National Student Clearinghouse
The National Student Clearinghouse is a nonprofit organization that provides educational reporting, data exchange and verification services to more than 3,600 colleges and universities nationwide. We work with the Clearinghouse for a variety of purposes, including enrollment and degree verification services and student loan reporting requirements. Data provided to the National Student Clearinghouse includes personally identifiable information and education records.
The National Student Clearinghouse has posted details about this incident on its website.
What steps can I take to protect myself?
The Federal Trade Commission offers recommendations if you think your personal information has been compromised. These include:
Place a fraud alert and credit freeze on your accounts. https://consumer.ftc.gov/articles/what-know-about-credit-freezes-fraud-alerts
- A credit freeze restricts access to your credit report, which means you — or others — won’t be able to open a new credit account while the freeze is in place. You can temporarily lift the credit freeze if you need to apply for new credit. When the freeze is in place, you will still be able to do things like apply for a job, rent an apartment or buy insurance without lifting or removing it.
If you believe you are the victim of identity theft, file a police report and notify the Federal Trade Commission at www.identitytheft.gov.
Block electronic access to your Social Security information.
Monitor credit cards and bank accounts. Regularly monitor your financial accounts and report any suspicious activity to your financial institutions immediately.
Be wary of suspicious texts, emails and other communications. Refrain from clicking on links in texts and emails from unknown individuals. Scammers are becoming increasingly sophisticated in their tactics and may convincingly impersonate an entity such as a bank or an educational institution. If you're not sure if a communication is authentic, contact the organization by phone or go to the organization's website to login, rather than clicking on an email link. If you believe your SCC or SFCC student email account has been hacked, please contact IT immediately.
Update passwords. Passwords should be 12 characters or more in length, and it is best to use a unique password for each online system you use. When possible, enable Multi-Factor Authentication for additional security.
Community Colleges of Spokane expects that the National Student Clearinghouse will contact impacted individuals directly with additional details where required by law.
CCS will continue to update this webpage as new information becomes available from the service providers.