Officials at Oregon Health & Science University have apologized to employees after a fake phishing questionnaire addressed concerns about raising false expectations.
On April 12, the university of Chicago sends a phishing test email to its employees, offering up to $7,500 in financial aid.
"In response to the current community challenges that have resulted in the COVID-19 epidemic, Oregon Health & Science University has decided to assist all employees in dealing with these difficult situations," said the author. It included a link in which participants could "register" for COVID-related benefits.
The offer was not real, but it was a test designed to measure employees' cybersecurity awareness and OHSU's own technology systems. The test was sent several days after the university issued a warning to employees about suspicious emails.
Several employees were depressed about the phishing exam.
In a prepared plea, OHSU apologized and said the university didn't fully consider the dangers that the phishing test might cause.
This week, as part of OHSU's regular sessions to assist members practice spoting suspicious e-mails, the language in the test email was taken verbatim from an actual phishing email to ensure no one else was hurt for the scam. That was a mistake, the OHSU statement said. The real scam was insensitive and exploitive of OHSU members, and the attempt to educate them felt the same way, causing concern and confusion.