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Office of Audit, Compliance & Privacy

Case in Point:
Lessons for the proactive manager

August 2017
Vol. 09 No. 08
“A fool thinks he needs no advice, but a wise man listens to others.”

-- A Proverb of Solomon

Proactive Risk Management Part 2

Proactive (adjective) - serving to prepare for, intervene in, or control an expected occurrence or situation, especially a negative or difficult one; anticipatory. (www.dictionary.com)

Last month we began a discussion of what proactive risk management really means. Proactive risk management has been the goal of Case in Point since we began publication. Managing risk can often get muddied and complicated by tools, techniques, and processes used, yet I believe it is less complicated than many try to make it.

We discussed the first two steps in proactive risk management last month. Step 1: Consider the Objective - What are we trying to accomplish? Step 2: Evaluate Obstacles - What could prevent success?

This month, we look at the remaining steps in the process.

Step 3: Assess the Obstacles - Thinking about what could prevent success is good, but we need to dive deeper and think about which of these obstacles could legitimately derail the successful achievement of our objective. Assessing the obstacles leads to the next step, which is to take action.

Step 4: Take Action - This simply means do something to reduce the chance that high-risk obstacles actually do get in the way of success. The action taken will depend on the nature of the obstacle and what makes the most sense from a cost and effort standpoint.

Step 5: Pay Attention - As we move down the path of achieving objectives, pay attention to what is occurring. Our attention should be on the process, system, or whatever is involved in achieving the objective. It also means paying attention to outside trends and events that can impact our success. This is where Case in Point comes in, as you can see what issues derail other institutions every month here.

We think proactive risk management makes sense and is much less complicated than most people think. We have also observed it is much better to prevent the crisis than spend money in remediation. Remediation expenses direct resources away from our primary (and noble) purpose of changing lives through teaching, research, and outreach.

If you would like any specific guidance or our help in facilitating this type of process for your area of influence, let us know. We would be happy to assist you in formally walking through these steps. Until then, we invite you to review the events occurring throughout higher education over the past month. As always, we welcome your comments and suggestions.

M. Kevin Robinson, CIA, CFE
Associate Vice President
Office of Audit, Compliance & Privacy

Information Security & Technology Events

Aug 23, 2017: Former Ithaca College student Paul Fasy has been arrested and charged with computer tampering in the fourth degree for allegedly hacking the Department of Theatre Arts' Instagram page and changing the profile picture to a Confederate flag during the Spring 2017 semester. The theater department's Instagram page was hacked March 26. In addition to changing the profile picture, the hacker deleted two years' worth of content. (link)

Aug 22, 2017: The University of Cincinnati's online services, including UC Mail, Catalyst, and any other UC related webpage, went down at approximately 10:15 Monday morning, disrupting the first day of classes for students and professors alike. The disruption was caused by a data center emergency shutdown, which was the result of the fire suppression system responding to smoke in the data center cooling system the next morning, according to a campus-wide email from Nelson C. Vincent, Vice President and Chief Information Officer of IT. (link)

Aug 04, 2017: A cyberattack on a UCLA administration server potentially breached the personal information of about 32,000 students earlier this week, UCLA officials said. On Monday, UCLA reported an alleged May 18 cyberattack on a Summer Sessions and International Education Office server. The server contained the personal information of thousands of students, according to an Information Security Office bulletin. (link)

Fraud & Ethics Related Events

Aug 11, 2017: The University of Louisville Foundation cut ties with a financial consultant it had hired on a contract last month after he was charged Wednesday with stealing from the pro-shop at the U of L Golf Club. Robert Mims, 51, "confessed to stealing" three items from the pro-shop when stopped by police at 11:15 a.m. Wednesday upon leaving the shop's parking lot "at a high rate of speed," according to a criminal citation obtained from Shelby County District Court. (link)

Aug 03, 2017: Five people are suspected of stealing technology equipment from the University of Central Florida last week, police said Thursday. UCF police said Justin Reyes, 21, confessed after he tried to sell a camera worth almost $500 on Craigslist. Authorities said they recovered nearly $4,000 in equipment, including an iPad and a projector. (link)

Aug 03, 2017: The investigation of possible embezzlement at the University of Missouri is now a federal case, MU announced in a short statement issued Thursday. On July 25, the university issued a news release that the MU Police Department was investigating "suspected misappropriation of funds from student organization accounts affiliated with Greek Life." (link)

Aug 01, 2017: As the financial review of the Idaho State University RISE Complex is nearing its conclusion, university officials say they have found problems related to the spending of research and contract funds. ISU says the law was broken, and university policies weren't followed in the use of public funds and conflicts of interest. Most of their findings pointed to one man, Dr. Eric Burgett, former director of the RISE Complex. (link)

Compliance/Regulatory & Legal Events

Aug 30, 2017: A U.S. appeals court on Wednesday tossed a $1 million award to a nurse who said her due process rights were violated when she was fired from a nurse anesthetist training program for refusing to take a drug test. The 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia reversed a ruling that held Geisinger Medical Center, hospital employee Arthur Richer and Bloomsburg University chair of nursing Michelle Ficca liable in the case. (link)

Aug 27, 2017: Auburn has released another statement following the allegations stemming from an ESPN article where a former Auburn softball player claims members of the Auburn coaching staff committed abuse, sexual harassment as well as a potential cover-up by the school. The statement, released Sunday afternoon: "ESPN has written an important story about our softball team. It's a serious matter. As a university that cares deeply about our student-athletes, we have taken this seriously since the first concerns were raised." (link)

Aug 18, 2017: Clemson University will pay the family of Tucker Hipps $250,000 and Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity must educate others about what happened to him, according to court documents and the terms of settlements made public Thursday that end the civil lawsuits filed after his death. Hipps, a 19-year-old Clemson University sophomore and fraternity pledge, was found dead on Lake Hartwell near the S.C. 93 bridge on Sept. 22, 2014, hours after going on a run with about 30 members of the fraternity. (link)

Aug 16, 2017: The first woman to file a Title IX lawsuit against Baylor, alleging the university failed to adequately respond to her report of being sexually assaulted amid a string of recent cases, has resolved her lawsuit against the school, former head football coach Art Briles and ex-athletic director Ian McCaw. Former Baylor student Jasmin Hernandez reached an undisclosed financial settlement after a daylong mediation Saturday, her attorney, Alexander Zalkin, said Tuesday. (link)

Aug 16, 2017: The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals sided with David Daleiden, represented by Thomas More Society attorneys, in a case against University of Washington research lab employees and abortion facility personnel who wanted heavy redactions in public documents detailing their work "procuring, processing, and transferring the organs and tissue of aborted human fetuses, in connection with the school's taxpayer-funded Birth Defects Research Laboratory." (link)

Aug 16, 2017: The University of Minnesota followed both the law and its own policy when it suspended 10 Gophers football players following allegations of sexual assault last fall, a review by two outside attorneys has found. The report, released Wednesday, blamed much of the turmoil surrounding the high-profile case on "weak leadership" of the coaching staff and the influence of unnamed "third parties." (link)

Aug 15, 2017: When a professor was pulled out of a lecture and suddenly stopped teaching his other classes, Alex Nemec, a student journalist at the University of Wisconsin at Oshkosh, filed records requests to find out why. Nemec has encountered two hurdles to accessing records, the first imposed by the University and the second by the professor himself. (link)

Aug 15, 2017: Earlier this year, a 21-year-old woman claimed she was attacked and raped in a Delta College parking lot. After a lengthy police investigation, the woman confessed to fabricating the incident. Now, she's facing a felony charge. Mary T. Zolkowski on Monday, Aug. 14, voluntarily appeared in Bay County District Court for arraignment on one count of false report of a felony. The charge is punishable by up to four years of imprisonment and a $2,000 fine. (link)

Aug 14, 2017: The parents of the 19-year-old University of Wisconsin student who died in Rome last year filed a federal civil lawsuit against the university where their son was about to take classes there for failing to warn him about recent deaths of young adults that occurred near the campus. The lawsuit's complaint, filed Monday by Nick and Jodi Solomon of Spring Green, claims that John Cabot University was negligent and acted with reckless indifference when it failed to warn their son, or anyone from UW-Madison, that four young adults had died of suspicious circumstances within 350 yards of the campus between 2014-15. (link)

Aug 14, 2017: Kent State has fired head football strength and conditioning coach Ross Bowsher after determining that he provided the school with false information about certification necessary to hold his position. This was uncovered by the university as part of a review following a CBS Sports investigation that was unable to find certification for Bowsher, who was in charge of a June 13 workout at which 19-year-old football player Tyler Heintz died. (link)

Aug 12, 2017: A jury ruled Friday against two former players on the Pepperdine University women's basketball team who claimed they faced discrimination from their coach in 2014 because they were dating. The jury said there was not enough evidence to determine that the university targeted the plaintiffs, Layana White and Haley Videckis, based on their sexual orientation. But the case marked one of the first times that a discrimination claim based on sexual orientation went to trial under the landmark Title IX law. (link)

Aug 11, 2017: While not conclusive, report says former general counsel may have withheld documents. A University of Florida investigation found evidence that former UF General Counsel Jamie Keith may have altered documents, withheld public records and improperly billed the university for outside legal advice. The investigation by the UF Office of Internal Audit determined it could not draw conclusions in three of the allegations because the probe ended with Keith's resignation in May. (link)

Aug 11, 2017: The city of Sioux Falls and a local university deny allegations that an alleged safety net failure at a battling cage resulted in a former collegiate baseball player being struck in the head with a baseball. According to court documents, Jordan Jeske alleges that the incident occurred on Sept. 22, 2014, when he and another member of the University of Sioux Falls baseball team were practicing at Harmodon Park. (link)

Aug 10, 2017: Brandon Dumas, the recently fired vice chancellor of Southern University, filed suit against his former employers Thursday morning -- less than a month after his termination amid questions about his potential involvement in a sex tape that was widely circulated among campus faculty and alumni. In his suit, Dumas claims that the Southern University Board of Supervisors did not follow proper procedures when it effectively voted to uphold a decision to fire him, and he argues that the board action should be voided. (link)

Aug 08, 2017: A former University of Central Arkansas professor has pleaded guilty to child pornography charges. Professor Noel Campbell pleaded guilty to 186 counts of possession/viewing sexually explicit conduct involving a child. The punishment range is from 3 to 10 years and/or a $10,000 fine for each count. Campbell was suspended April 2015 after an IT person at the college told police she found child pornography on a state-issued computer. (link)

Aug 04, 2017: Two members of the University of Washington men's rowing team have been accused of sharing video and photos of themselves having sex with drunken female students, according to charging papers. John C. Young and Tyler Minney, both 19, were each charged Wednesday with one count of disclosing intimate images for allegedly distributing to classmates a video of both men having sex with a "highly intoxicated" freshman student without her consent. (link)

Aug 03, 2017: A University of Washington researcher who, according to a UW investigation, sexually harassed women who worked in his lab, and asked employees to solicit a prostitute for him, has been fired. Michael Katze was fired by the university for "conduct counter to the core values" of the UW, according to a university statement. (link)

Aug 03, 2017: Louisiana has become the first state to prohibit all public universities from asking applicants about their criminal history. By some estimates, as many as 70 to 100 million Americans have some kind of criminal record. And the proportion is far higher in some minority communities. The so called "ban the box" movement is intended to open opportunities to these Americans by preventing discrimination on the basis of one's past. (link)

Aug 02, 2017: A Roanoke College coach is under investigation after a search warrant finds multiple steroid-related supplies. According to a search warrant from Salem Circuit Court, officers found steroids in Roanoke College strength and conditioning coach David Sampson's home and campus offices. (link)

Aug 02, 2017: A prize-winning orchestral conductor has pleaded no contest to felony crimes involving a 15-year-old. The Lawrence Journal-World reports that Carlos Espinosa-Machado previously worked in Kansas and Missouri but is currently employed by Elizabeth City State University in North Carolina. He pleaded Tuesday in Douglas County Court to indecent liberties with a child and furnishing alcohol to a minor, both felonies. (link)

Aug 02, 2017: A Caltech astrophysics professor found by an internal investigation to have harassed two female graduate students has resigned, the university announced. Christian Ott, who campus officials determined committed "unambiguous gender-based harassment" of the students, will resign effective Dec. 31, Caltech President Thomas F. Rosenbaum and Provost Edward M. Stolper wrote in a letter to students and faculty on Tuesday. (link)

Campus Life & Safety Events

Aug 29, 2017: Washington State University police have arrested a WSU student for allegedly making repeated bomb threats at Stimson Hall. Jose A. Tecuatl, 18, is a sophomore at WSU and was a resident adviser in Stimson Hall, according to a WSU news release. A bomb threat and swastikas were found on the walls of Stimson Hall on Aug. 21, prompting a late night evacuation of the residence hall. Stimson Hall was also evacuated around 1 a.m. Thursday after a threat was found scrawled on a whiteboard and again shortly before 2 p.m. Thursday after another threat was found. Nothing was found in any of the searches of the building. (link)

Aug 29, 2017: A tweet suggesting that the devastation of Hurricane Harvey was "instant karma" for the red state of Texas has cost a University of Tampa professor his job -- making him just the latest academic fired for off-duty speech. The University first distanced itself from sociology professor Kenneth L. Storey on Monday. But a tide of online outrage continued. A #FireKenStorey hashtag spread far beyond the university. Angry Facebook comments piled up. (link)

Aug 23, 2017: A student was arrested along with other protesters when about 800 people gathered at McCorkle Place on Tuesday night to demand the removal of the Silent Sam Confederate statue from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill campus. The statue was surrounded by two sets of barricades earlier Tuesday morning in an effort to prevent protesters getting close to it. (link)

Aug 13, 2017: Chaos and violence turned to tragedy Saturday as hundreds of white nationalists, neo-Nazis and Ku Klux Klan members -- planning to stage what they described as their largest rally in decades to "take America back" -- clashed with counterprotesters in the streets and a car plowed into crowds, leaving one person dead and 19 others injured. Hours later, two state police officers died when their helicopter crashed at the outskirts of town. (link)

Aug 09, 2017: A 20-year-old Milledgeville man was sentenced to life in prison Tuesday after he pleaded guilty to raping a woman on the campus of Georgia College on Feb. 25. Jarvis Javion Lawrence pleaded guilty to rape, aggravated sodomy, kidnapping, aggravated assault and two gun charges a day after his trial had begun, said District Attorney Steve Bradley, of the Ocmulgee Judicial Circuit. (link)

Aug 04, 2017: College students and their parents probably don't spend much time worrying about identity theft when they think about navigating the minefields of university life. But as students head back to school this fall, they should take precautions to prevent their identities from being stolen. According to the Federal Trade Commission, there were more than 399,000 complaints about identity theft filed in 2016. (link)

Aug 03, 2017: A Thursday morning fire caused extensive damage to a historic building on the University of Vermont's central campus, but the largest state flora collection remains largely intact. The blaze, which began around 8 a.m. and engulfed the upper floors of Torrey Hall, appeared to be caused by construction workers who were soldering copper while renovating the building, according to Burlington Fire Department Chief Steven Locke. (link)

Aug 03, 2017: College of Charleston officials have shuttered five fraternities on its campus in the last year. The Alpha Chapter of Pi Kappa Phi was closed in July after an investigation into multiple incidents of misconduct, including the alleged beating of a student in April. Officials began their investigation on May 19 and looked at incidents dating back to Feb. 11, according to information provided by Ron Menchaca, a college spokesman. (link)

Aug 03, 2017: Authorities are investigating allegations that someone inappropriately videotaped minors attending a summer camp at Sacred Heart University, a university spokeswoman said Thursday. Deb Noack, director of communications said the allegations involve campers at a program run by U.S. Sports Camps on university property. (link)

Aug 02, 2017: The University of South Alabama's football practice facility -- which was still under construction -- has collapsed, Athletic Director Joel Erdmann said Saturday. Erdmann confirmed the rumors on social media and posted a photo, adding that no one was injured in the collapse. (link)

Other News & Events

If you have any suggestions, questions or feedback, please e-mail me at robinmk@auburn.edu. We hope you find this information useful and would appreciate hearing your thoughts. Feel free to forward this email to your direct reports, colleagues, employees or others who might find it of value. Back issues of this newsletter are available on our web site at https://www.auburn.edu/administration/oacp.

If you have any suggestions for items to include in future newsletters, please e-mail Robert Gottesman at gotterw@auburn.edu.

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Office of Audit, Compliance & Privacy
Auburn University
304 Samford Hall
M. Kevin Robinson, Assoc. VP

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