Shostack + Friends Blog Archive


University of Northern Iowa, 6000 W-2 forms, virus-infected laptop

An IT person troubleshoots dodgy printing of US earnings documents by loading 6,000 of them onto a laptop. Hilarity ensues when the laptop later turns out to be infected with malware detected during “routine monitoring”.

The University of Northern Iowa has warned students and faculty to monitor their bank accounts after someone accessed a computer system holding confidential information.
The university detected last week that a laptop computer holding W-2 forms was illegally accessed, though officials said the person likely did not realize he could obtain tax information for about 6,000 student employees and faculty.
“A virus was detected during routine monitoring,” said Tom Schellhardt, vice president for administration and finance. “We immediately took steps to fix the problem and increase security.”
The university sent letters to everyone whose data was on that computer, warning them to protect against identity theft by monitoring their accounts and contacting credit reporting agencies.
Steve Moon, the school’s director of network services, said the person who used the laptop computer did so to review the print jobs for the W2 forms.

3 comments on "University of Northern Iowa, 6000 W-2 forms, virus-infected laptop"

  • Adam says:

    Are you sure that wasn’t WTFCourier? 😉

  • Seth says:

    Actually, the article doesn’t say that it was an IT person. Users print documents too. 🙂

  • Chris Walsh says:

    I guess I figured that troubleshooting a printer onto which you’d spool 6,000 W-2s wouldn’t be a user’s job. Now that you’ve prompted me to think about twice, you may well be right!

Comments are closed.