Emergency message mistakenly sent to Tarleton, other colleges across the country

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Tarleton State University's Stephenville campus || Tarleton State University photo

FLASH STAFF REPORT

TARLETON (October 6, 2016) – Tarleton State was one of several universities and colleges across the country whose university emergency alerts were hacked overnight.

Just before 9 p.m. Wednesday, students at a number of schools including Tarleton, Baylor, Texas State, LSU, UT, Ole Miss, UT-Arlington, Sam Houston State, Oklahoma University, UT-San Antonio, Bellarmine University in Kentucky, Penn State and the University of Colorado, all received notifications of emergencies on campus.

However, officials were just as quick to send out updates on the hoax and the hack. Tarleton State officials sent out a CODE PURPLE telling students the first notification was a hoax. However, first responders were already dispatched to the scene.

The cause of the message was actually a ‘vendor error’ according to university officials. The original message was intended for Lone Star College (in The Woodlands, near Houston). There was a potential gas leak at one of the on-campus apartments and the small campus needed to be evacuated as a precaution.

However, instead of sending that message to just the LSC students affected, the message system sent vague messages to students across Texas and the nation. University officials in Stephenville and across the country answered confused calls for hours following the incident.


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