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Tulane University Reports Stolen Laptop

Jan. 7, 2011

Tulane University Reports Stolen Laptop

On December 29, 2010, a university-owned laptop was stolen.  The computer contained a file with W-2 information, including  name, social security number, address and salary for every person employed by Tulane University in 2010, including student employees and part-time employees, and any individuals that will receive a 2010 W-2 issued by the university.  Students who did not work for the university in 2010 are not affected.

The password-protected laptop was not encrypted and was located in a briefcase in the locked automobile of an employee who was traveling outside New Orleans. The laptop and information were being used to process 2010 tax records during the university’s winter break.

The incident was reported to the appropriate police department and they are conducting an investigation. To date the laptop has not been recovered nor has there been evidence that any information has been accessed. The university has no reason to believe that this was a targeted theft as other personal items were stolen from the employee's car. 

University officials were notified of the crime on Dec. 30, 2010 and immediately consulted with legal and notification experts to ensure that we acted quickly and comprehensively on behalf of our employees and students.   

We have mailed letters notifying the 10,684 affected individuals and have offered a year of credit monitoring.  There is also a call center to answer questions.

Anyone employed by Tulane University in 2010, or who is expecting a university issued 2010 W-2, who has not received a notification letter by January 14 indicating that their information was on the stolen laptop, please call (504) 865-5291 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.  

Tulane University deeply regrets that this event occurred and is committed to fully protecting all of the information entrusted to us by our employees and students.  The university is taking multiple steps to prevent this type of event in the future, including reviewing the policies and procedures concerning the use and protection of confidential information.


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Technology Services, Tulane University, New Orleans, LA 70118 -- TSNOC: 504-862-8888 --