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Author Topic: SC Dept of Revenue Computer Data Breach  (Read 2121 times)

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Offline DoggyDaddy

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SC Dept of Revenue Computer Data Breach
« on: November 23, 2012, 12:04:11 am »
South Carolina DOR Data Breach:   State and federal officials confirmed to WLTX, The Greenville News, and USA TODAY that one of the South Carolina Department of Revenue's servers was hacked by someone in a foreign country. The agency is responsible for 32 separate state taxes, licenses, and your state income tax returns, and that contains South Carolina residentís information. The first breach occurred on August 27, 2012 in which allegedly no information was taken at that time. On 10 OCT the SC Division of Information Technology informed the Dept. of Revenue of a potential cyber attack. On 16 OCT investigators uncovered two attempts to probe the system from September. In mid-September, two other intrusions occurred, and the hacker got data for the first time. The extent of the breach was massive: an estimated 3.6 million Social Security numbers and 387,000 credit and debit card numbers were exposed . Just 16,000 of these credit card numbers were not encrypted; however, none of the Social Security numbers were.

For perspective, there are almost 4.7 million South Carolinians, according to the 2012 U.S. Census, meaning
three out of four people's Social Security numbers were compromised.
State Law Enforcement Division Chief Mark
Keel told WLTX that this is one of the biggest investigations he has ever been a part of in his career. They have
been working to secure taxpayers information. The state is offering credit counseling to those affected. Anyone who
has paid taxes since 1998 should call 1-866-578-5422. The phone line is busy, but keep trying, you will get through
and the process takes about 10 minutes. Alternately, you can request an access code to use at Mandiant, a top information security company, says they are assisting in the
investigation. They are also helping to secure the state's system, and are installing new equipment and software.
Meanwhile, Governor Nikki Haley promised action against the person responsible. "I want that man just brutalized,"
she said. "I want him slammed against the wall." Haley issued an executive order where she outlines areas where she
wants the state's cyber security to improve. According to the state Inspector General at present there are no
mandatory standards for information security in the state. Only recommended policies which are optional for state
departments to use.   The WLTX news clip can be viewed at
[Source: WLTX News Report 26 Oct 2012 ++]

Editors Note:   The IG and GAO have repeatedly issued similar reports on government agencies warning of
weaknesses in our nationís Data security systems. The public has no control over protecting themselves from
Identity theft occurring in these agencies and little recourse in recouping losses that could result from unauthorized
release of their personal data/financial records. If the government cannot guarantee protection, imagine the
weaknesses that exist in your banking and credit institutionís security systems. Readers who have not yet obtained
identity theft insurance are advised to do so. A number of companies providing this coverage can be found on the
internet. One, ďLifelockĒ offers a 25% discount to the military community.
Joe Kleinsmith
All State VFW Post 1716 Cmdr (1998-2000)
Cpt, VFW Post Honor Guard, Retired (1991-2009)
SC-SB County Council Cmdr (1996-1997)
SFC, US Army, Retired (1971-1991)
Full Time RV'er