Written by Tim Smith, Greenville Online

COLUMBIA - The director of the University of South Carolina's Center for Information Assurance says the massive records breach at the state Department of Revenue could have been prevented.

Csilla Farkas, director of the Center for Information Assurance, which helps train students in cyber security, said she knows no more about the breach at the state Department of Revenue than anyone else listening to publicly released information. But she said if a breach has occurred it is because of a lack of adequate safeguards.

"This attack, I would say, is a representative example when policies, procedures, existing technologies and awareness were not playing together to provide adequate security," Farkas told

Gov. Nikki Haley has said that the hacking was sophisticated and not the result of an error in the DOR system or by personnel there.

USC, Farkas said, is the only S.C. college or university accredited by the National Security Agency as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education. And the Center has offered its expertise to state agencies, she said, but none have used it.

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