WA jobless data is hacked

By on Wednesday, February 3rd, 2021 in Columbia Basin News More Top Stories

OLYMPIA  — The Washington State Auditor’s Office reports that a data breach may have exposed personal information for 1.6 million residents who filed for unemployment last year, as well as other information from state agencies and local governments. The breach involved third-party software by Accellion that was used by the auditor’s office to transfer files.

The breach occurred in December, but the company didn’t announce the attack occurred until January. The data that could have been compromised includes Social Security information and bank information. The auditors office also said that other personal data with the Department of Children, Youth, and Families was impacted.

The breach began on Dec. 23 and apparently continued into January. The auditor’s office stopped using Accellion on Dec. 31, but that decision was not based on the breach. It didn’t learn of the breach until Jan. 12, according to Auditor Pat McCarthy.

At a news conference, McCarthy said his staff is frustrated and doing everything possible to mitigate the harm. His office will notify those whose personal information is at risk as soon as possible.