Kitchener-Waterloo

Names, banking information accidentally shared in emails to University of Waterloo students

The University of Waterloo says it has apologised to students who had their personal information, including banking information and addresses, shared on a mailing list of about 2,000 students.

'We sincerely regret the mistake and have apologized to the people impacted,' university says

The University of Waterloo says private information about some students was accidentally sent to a mailing list of about 2,000 people. (CBC)

Personal information including names, student numbers, addresses and banking information of some University of Waterloo students was accidentally sent to a mailing list of 2,000 students, the school says.

The emails went out Wednesday evening. Of the emails sent to the mailing list, 15 contained some private information like names and student numbers, Matthew Grant, the university's director of media relations, told CBC Kitchener-Waterloo in an interview.

"Three of the emails included some more personal information including one that had some bank information and two that had either a home or a mailing address," he said.

"We quickly became aware of the issue and were able to prevent any future emails from going out," he said, noting some students contacted the school's privacy officer to raise the issue.

"If people receive information they're not supposed to, we're grateful that they would reach out and tell us."

Human error to blame, university says

An email sent to CBC K-W by a student involved said the email was in regards to the online student management portal Quest, which is how students pay tuition.

The university is now advising those students who had their information released on how to get help moving forward to prevent identity theft or other issues.

Grant said the breach was due to human error.

"We sincerely regret the mistake and have apologized to the people impacted and taken several steps to try to ensure it does not happen again," he said, noting the school has also made the Ontario privacy commissioner aware of the data breach.

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.