Published September 27, 2020

On July 16, 2020, Blackbaud informed some of its clients, including Rutgers University Foundation, of a cybersecurity incident that occurred on Blackbaud’s network.

Dear Members of the Rutgers Community,

Rutgers University Foundation is vigilant in protecting the privacy and security of your information. Out of an abundance of caution, we are notifying the Rutgers community of a data-security incident involving a vendor the foundation uses, Blackbaud, Inc.

What happened?

On July 16, 2020, Blackbaud informed some of its clients, including Rutgers University Foundation, of a cybersecurity incident that occurred on Blackbaud’s network. Blackbaud’s notice reported that some foundation data was involved in the breach. The company has made information about the incident available here: In its notice to the foundation, Blackbaud reported that it has no reason to believe that the data included personal or financial information such as health, credit card, Social Security, or bank account information. Furthermore, it is Rutgers University Foundation policy not to store this information. Since Blackbaud’s notice, we have worked with the company to identify which Rutgers constituent records were involved in the breach—a time-consuming process, as Blackbaud’s association with Rutgers spans more than a decade and a variety of projects.

The company made this information available in September. What information was involved? While Blackbaud has reported that the data did not include sensitive personal or financial information, it did include individual demographic information: name, mailing address, email address, and telephone number. For some individuals, a date of birth was included. Portions of the data included fundraising information. You are receiving this message because your record may have been involved.

What have we done?

The foundation continues to work with Blackbaud and the Rutgers University Risk Assurance team to determine if there are additional measures that we, the company, or our constituents should take.

What can you do?

Based on what Blackbaud has told us to date, we believe the risks to your privacy from the Blackbaud security incident are low. However, it is generally a good idea to monitor and review your personal account and credit information for unauthorized activity and potential identity theft.

Where can I get more information?

Please do not hesitate to contact the foundation at if you have additional questions or concerns, and make sure to consult the resource sheet below and Blackbaud’s statement, here: Our alumni and friends play an essential role in Rutgers’ ability to fulfill its mission, and we take this incident very seriously. Your confidence in our business practices, including our vendor selection, is of critical importance. Please accept our apologies for any concern this incident may cause you.

Nevin E. Kessler
President, Rutgers University Foundation
Executive Vice President for Development and Alumni Engagement
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey


Recommended Steps to Help Protect Your Information

  1. Review your credit reports. We recommend that you remain vigilant by reviewing account statements and monitoring credit reports. Under federal law, you also are entitled every 12 months to one free copy of your credit Report from each of the three major credit reporting companies. To obtain a free annual credit report, go to or call 1-877-322-8228. You may wish to stagger your requests so that you receive a free report by one of the three credit bureaus every four months.You should also know that you have the right to file a police report if you ever experience identity fraud. Please note that in order to file a crime report or incident report with law enforcement for identity theft, you will likely need to provide some kind of proof that you have been a victim. A police report is often required to dispute fraudulent items. You can report suspected incidents of identity theft to local law enforcement or to your state’s Attorney General.
  2. Place Fraud Alerts with the three credit bureaus. You can place a fraud alert at one of the three major credit bureaus by phone and also via Experian’s or Equifax’s website. A fraud alert tells creditors to follow certain procedures, including contacting you, before they open any new accounts or change your existing accounts. For that reason, placing a fraud alert can protect you, but also may delay you when you seek to obtain credit. The contact information for all three bureaus is as follows:

    Credit Bureaus Equifax Fraud Reporting Experian Fraud Reporting TransUnion Fraud Reporting
    Phone Numbers 1-866-349-5191 1-888-397-3742 1-800-680-7289
    Addresses P.O. Box 105069
    Atlanta, GA 30348-5069
    P.O. Box 9554
    Allen, TX 75013
    P.O. Box 2000
    Chester, PA 19022-2000


    It is necessary to contact only ONE of these bureaus and use only ONE of these methods. As soon as one of the three bureaus confirms your fraud alert, the others are notified to place alerts on their records as well. You will receive confirmation letters in the mail and will then be able to order all three credit reports, free of charge, for your review. An initial fraud alert will last for one year.

    Please Note: No one may place a fraud alert on your credit report except you.

  3. Security Freeze: If you’re placing a security freeze on your credit, someone who fraudulently acquires your personal identifying information will not be able to use that information to open new accounts or borrow money in your name. You will need to contact the three national credit reporting bureaus listed above to place the freeze. Keep in mind that when you place the freeze, you will not be able to borrow money, obtain instant credit, or get a new credit card until you contact each credit reporting bureau to temporarily lift or permanently remove the freeze. There is no cost to freeze or unfreeze your credit files.
  4. You can obtain additional information about the steps you can take to avoid identity theft from the law enforcement agencies in your state or county. The Federal Trade Commission also encourages those who discover that their information has been misused to file a complaint with them. All U.S. Residents: Identity Theft Clearinghouse, Federal Trade Commission, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20580,, 1-877-IDTHEFT (438-4338), TTY: 1-866-653-4261.