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Information Security Office

Social Security Numbers of U. of Maryland Students Exposed

About 24,000 students at the University of Maryland are at risk of having their identities stolen. On July 1, the university's Department of Transportation Services sent all students registered for upcoming fall classes parking brochures. Affixed to the brochures were mailing labels that contained student's Social Security numbers, although the numbers were not identified as such. The numbers were inadvertently put on the mailing labels, according to a university Web site. J. David Allen, director of the transportation department, apologized for the security breach in a Thursday e-mail message to registered students. "We are taking aggressive steps to ensure that this does not happen again," the message read. "We strongly recommend that you take appropriate precautions to mask, black out, or destroy this document after use." The message also recommends that students place a 90-day fraud alert on their consumer credit files and also consider placing a security freeze on the files. The university is offering to foot the bill for students who want a year of credit monitoring from Equifax. No student has had his or her identity stolen as a result of the incident, according to a university spokeswoman.--Andrea L. Foster