Confidential information about more than 35,000 students enrolled at community colleges in Riverside County may have been compromised, the district said in a letter Monday.
The records affected belong to students enrolled during the spring 2014 semester at Riverside City, Norco and Moreno Valley colleges.
A database containing information including names, some social security numbers, emails, course schedules and addresses may have been breached when an employee mistyped an email address and sent it to an external email account, district officials said.
"You don't want that in the hands of someone else," Riverside Community College student said. "You don't know what they're going to do with it."
The school district hasn’t been able to contact the account holder, so it’s unclear if the email account is active or inactive.
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"It makes us feel like we’re not safe," student Marco Garcia said.
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A school spokeswoman said while they don’t yet know if the data has actually been exposed, they are responding to it as if a hacker had broken into the system. They will offer a one year free credit monitoring subscription who may have had they social security numbers breached.
"We're human. People make mistakes," Kimberly said. "I'm sure they didn't intend for that to happen."
They will also be implementing new security protocols to ensure the breach remains an isolated incident.