Data Security Update
Orangeburg-Calhoun Technical College has notified local law enforcement officials that a laptop computer was stolen from a staff member’s office earlier this week. The college has spent the last two days verifying personally identifiable information that was on that computer. The computer, which was password protected, contained data files that included the names, birth dates, and social security numbers of former and current students and faculty members. The data was not stored in an easily recognizable format, and the college has no indication that any of this data was accessed or used in any way.
The college is in the process of notifying students and faculty who were included in the files. As a precautionary measure, the college is advising these individuals to closely monitor their credit reports and reminding them that everyone is entitled to a free credit report each year at www.annualcreditreport.com.
“College officials were disappointed to learn that someone entered a staff member’s office on campus and removed a computer,” said Kim Huff, Vice President for Business Affairs. “We are evaluating our security controls to prevent further incidents.”
The South Carolina Department of Consumer Affairs has been notified of this incident.
For further updates, visit www.octech.edu/about/data_security_update.aspx
OCtech Data Security Alert Notification Letter
We are contacting you because we have learned of a potential data security incident that occurred at Orangeburg Calhoun Technical College on Monday, July 7, 2014, which may have involved some of your personal information. The potential exposure involved a laptop that was stolen from the College, possibly containing personally identifiable information. The computer, which was password protected, contained data files that included the names, birth dates, and social security numbers of former and current students and faculty members. The data was not stored in an easily recognizable format, and the college has no indication that any of this data was accessed or used in any way.
We are notifying you in accordance with South Carolina law so you may take action if you desire to do so. As a preventive step, we recommend you closely monitor your financial accounts and, if you find unauthorized activity, promptly contact your financial institution and submit a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) by calling 1-877-ID-THEFT (1877-438-4338). As a second step, you may also want to contact the three U.S. credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion) to obtain a free credit report by calling 1-877-322-8228 or by logging onto www.annualcreditreport.com. Even if you do not find any suspicious activity on your initial credit reports, the FTC recommends checking your credit reports periodically. If you find suspicious activity or become a victim of identity theft, please file a report with your local law enforcement agency.
To protect yourself from the possibility of identity theft, South Carolina law allows you to place a security freeze on your credit files. S.c. Code Ann. § 37-20-160. By placing a freeze on your credit, someone who fraudulently acquires your personal information will not be able to use that information to open new accounts or borrow money in your name. Keep in mind that when you place a freeze on your credit, you will not be able to borrow money, obtain instant credit, or get a new credit card until you temporarily lift or permanently remove the freeze. To place a freeze on your credit, you will need to contact the three U.S. credit reporting agencies listed above.
For further updates, visit www.octech.edulabout/data_security update.aspx
If you have any further questions, please contact the college at 803-535-1245.
Walter A. Tobin