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Hackers access FIU database

Sept. 27, 2011 at 11:11 AM

MIAMI, Sept. 27 (UPI) -- Florida International University says the personal data of 19,500 current and former students may have been accessed by computer hackers.

WTVJ-TV, Miami, said names, Social Security numbers, birth dates and grade point averages of students and alumni who took certain standardized exams may have been accessed through a database school officials discovered was unsecured after someone put a smiley-face emoticon on the university's internal Web site.

Students and alumni whose data was involved were informed of the breach through a letter from the university, advising them to contact a major credit bureau to place a fraud alert on their file and check their accounts for unusual activity.

An FIU spokesman said the university does not know if someone actually took the data but informed students and employees as a precautionary measure, the report said.

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