The College of the Desert is a community college offered in Palm Desert, California. This public school educates approximately 12,500 students annually, and some of those attendees may have had their information exposed in a recent data breach.
The College of the Desert data breach occurred because one or more hackers were able to infiltrate a small number of the school's systems and access confidential organization files. The network access was limited to a small number of the school's systems, but those systems contained thousands of files, some of which contained confidential student information.
The College of the Desert breach first occurred on July 4, 2022. That's when the network was broken into and data removed. It wasn't until January 16, 2023, that the school's security investigation was complete. Over those months of time, there was no way to know what data was accessed or how the breach would impact any students involved.
This College of the Desert breach impacts students of the school as well as some limited faculty members. These individuals may have had their personal data stolen and distributed. While there's no information that suggests the hackers will use the information in a harmful way, there is no way to guarantee that it won't be used improperly either. If you receive a notice from the school about this breach, you should take immediate steps to safeguard your identity. The school is offering complimentary single-bureau credit monitoring services. Use these services to watch your credit for any suspicious actions and to protect yourself.
The College of the Desert systems accessed contained thousands of files that could have been opened, copied, or modified by hackers. Those files have the potential to impact a large number of individuals and may cause serious problems for users.