UCSC Students Petition for More Protection After Data Breach

After learning in March that a cyber attack in December resulted in private information being posted online, students at UC Santa Cruz are asking the university for a four-year extension on credit-monitoring services.

UC of Santa Cruz
(TNS) — Students at UC Santa Cruz are calling for more protections after the UC system fell victim to a cyber-attack last year.

The UC system was one of more than 100 organizations to experience the attack in December. Hackers managed to access data from a large number of organizations by attacking a shared service. Accellion File Transfers Appliance, which does file transferring for the UC system, was the target of the attack.

The system learned that leaked data was posted online on March 29. Leaked data included the names, addresses, phone numbers, banking information, health information, birthdates and social security numbers of students, faculty and staff within the UC system, according to UCnet.

As a result of the attack and subsequent data leak, all members of the UC system were offered one-year of Experian credit monitoring gratis from the university. However, the severity of the data breach concerned many students at UC Santa Cruz.

UC Santa Cruz student Hannah Stitt started a petition on change.org to call for the university to give free credit monitoring for life to the students, faculty and staff that were affected by the data leak. The petition has collected 6,143 signatures as of Sunday.

The UC Santa Cruz Student Union Assembly responded with a resolution to represent the student body in its effort for further protections. The resolution passed on Tuesday but did not cover lifetime credit monitoring. Instead, SUA pledged to advocate for five years of credit monitoring provided by the university, a four-year extension.

SUA had approached UC Santa Cruz Chancellor Cynthia Larive prior to the resolution to discuss the inclusion of lifetime credit monitoring. Discussion concluded that lifetime monitoring would not be sustainable, but Larive did suggest advocating for an extension, according to the resolution.

The assembly returned to Larive with the resolution requesting a four-year extension. The Chancellor expressed her full support back to the SUA.

"I am happy to advocate on behalf of SUA for this protection and will be sharing your resolution with the Office of the President," she wrote in an email to the assembly.

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