At Penn State, crisis management meant monitoring social media

On Nov. 1, Penn State hosted its second “Social Media Summit” for dozens of employees who oversee university-related Web sites, blogs and social media accounts. It was an event much like those happening at colleges across the country, as schools attempt to control their image and brand online, reports The Washington Post. Four days later, former coach Jerry Sandusky was arrested and charged with sexually molesting young boys. Two university administrators were charged with lying to a grand jury and not properly reporting suspected child abuse. Penn State’s two most public leaders — football coach Joe Paterno and President Graham Spanier — were implicated but not charged. All of the men maintain their innocence. For days, the unfolding scandal dominated news coverage and workplace conversations. It endlessly trended on Twitter and was heavily searched on Google…

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Data breaches slam campuses this summer

More than 19,000 students and faculty had their information compromised at Florida International University this summer.
About 19,000 Florida International University students and faculty had their information compromised this summer.

It’s been a tough summer for college IT officials charged with defending campus servers from hackers who target databases brimming with students’ and faculty’s personal information.

At least three universities—the University of Maine, Penn State University, and Florida International University—reported data breaches in June that compromised Social Security numbers, academic and financial records, and other information for about 40,000 students and faculty across the three institutions.

These universities and others that have scrambled to alert faculty and students of data crimes in recent years are not alone, according to research from the Identity Theft Resource Center, a San Diego-based nonprofit organization.…Read More