Wednesday, December 13, 2006

UCLA Means Never Having to Say You're Sorry

Yesterday, The Los Angeles Times covered the massive security breach involving the confidential computer data of UCLA students, faculty, and staff in "UCLA data breach among worst of its kind." According to the form letter being used for notification purposes, hackers also had information about parents whose progeny applied for financial aid.

For years, I've been interested in the mea culpa genre as it appears in pages on university websites, but the official UCLA website about possible identity theft offers no specific apologies anywhere in its text intended for potential victims. At best, there is a lukewarm expression that "UCLA greatly regrets the concern and inconvenience caused by this illegal activity." We are told that they take their "responsibility to safeguard personal data very seriously" and that "data security is one of the most important responsibilities" they have to the campus community, but they never actually address neglecting that stated responsibility for over a year in which intruders had access to the data.

(I was cross-registered at UCLA during graduate school, but hopefully my data isn't included among the 800,000 people affected.)

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Blogger Nedra Weinreich said...

Grrr - as a UCLA lecturer, they got me. :-( At least they sent me the form letter twice, so I feel much better.

9:13 PM  
Blogger Julia Lupton said...

My husband, who teaches at UCLA, received the form letter. I was surprised that it wasn't even addressed to him personally. It just said, as I recall, "Dear Friend."

5:26 AM  

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