Website incident

24 June 2020

Dear Customer

I am writing to you personally with regards to a recent, unauthorised, third party intrusion into Warrington & Vale Royal College’s website. Whilst we have no reason to believe that this may be the case, this may have resulted in the compromise of certain personal information. I write to provide you with information about the incident, apprise you of the steps we are taking to remediate the issue and help you protect yourself.

We recently became aware of unusual activity on the college’s website and launched an immediate investigation, with help from our technical partners, taking immediate steps to manage and respond to the incident, closing down the unauthorised access and notifying the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).

The types of personal information that were stored on the website include; names, addresses, emails and telephone numbers but does not include credit card, banking or payment information.

You do not need to take any action in response to this letter and I must stress that there is no evidence that personal information has been misused. However, please be very careful if you receive any unsolicited communications or phishing, particularly if this claims to be from the college. To help you stay safe online, please remember:

– do not open emails or attachments if you have any questions about the source
– make sure you know who you are dealing with before disclosing any personal information online
– always check links before clicking on them – you can do this by hovering over the link to see whether the source is recognisable – do not click on any link if you are unsure.

The ICO has very helpful information on its website, including an article related to phishing posted on 31st March 2020 entitled ‘Stay One Step Ahead of the Scammers’ https://ico.org.uk/your-data-matters/your-data-matters-blog

The college regrets this unauthorised, third party intrusion for which we apologise. We value our relationship with you and take the security of our customers’ information very seriously. The college will continue to take every action to protect itself against any future attacks.

If you have any further questions, please email us at learner.services@wvr.ac.uk

Yours faithfully,

Nichola Newton
Principal & Chief Executive