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Lansing Community College targeted in federal lawsuits over data breach

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Lansing Community College

Updated July 14, 2023 at 11:05 a.m. ET

Lansing Community College is being sued after a data breach earlier this year.

Lansing resident Ivory Whitby is identified as the plaintiff in the first of four federal lawsuits against the college following a cybersecurity incident in March.

The school shut down operations for several days after it discovered a “unauthorized actor” may have had access to the school’s internal network for nearly three months. A recent alert from the school said an “unauthorized actor” may have accessed the personal data of students, employees and vendors.

"Although LCC has no evidence of any identity theft or fraud in connection with this incident, LCC is notifying individuals whose information was present in its systems at the time of the incident by letter," the statement said. "This letter includes specific detail as to the data potentially accessible for each person."

The complaints say the school notified more than 750,000 LCC community members that their personally identifiable information may have been accessed, including full names and social security numbers.

Several others are identified as plaintiffs and LCC community members suing the school, including Sameer Shah; Ayden Heinig; Ashton Chapin; Kyashya Richardson; and Gabriel Banish.

The suits argue the school failed to meet a commitment to protect the privacy of its students and employees. They demand a trial by jury to provide relief to those affected by the breach.

A separate law firm, Federman & Sherwood, is also investigating the data breach.

Marilyn Twine, Director of Public Relations for LCC, said the college has not encountered instances of identity theft or fraud connected to the breach. Twine said the school is cooperating with state and federal authorities to investigate the incident.

"We notified those affected and continue to take measures to enhance the security of our systems and processes to avoid any similar events in the future," she said.

Arjun Thakkar is WKAR's politics and civics reporter.
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