Rio Grande Valley teachers worried about state security breach
Sun, 17 Apr 2011 03:58:32 GMT —
Thousands of Rio Grande Valley teachers contribute their money to the Teachers Retirement System of Texas as they look out for their future.
However, recently that bright future may have turned bleak, as they got news of a security breach at the state comptroller's office.
It's threatening their identity and personal information.
Joe Ross, president of CS Identity in Austin said, The amount of information that's out there about you as an individual is quite astounding. The fact that these breaches occur is fairly commonplace unfortunately."
A spokesperson for Comptroller Susan Combs confirmed that information from the Teacher Retirement System of Texas, Texas Workforce Commission, and Employees Retirement System of Texas was made public. The information, including social security numbers, birthdays, addresses and license numbers, was not encrypted as it should have been, and was placed in a public folder by human error.
Ross said this information can valuable for identity thieves.
"Identity thieves have gotten smarter now, Ross said. They don't just use your identity to obtain credit, they use it to obtain employment, to commit crimes, to take checking accounts or bank accounts or payday loans out."
The Brownsville Independent School District is one of the largest in South Texas, and teachers there are worried.
One elementary school teacher wrote to Action 4 News and states, "My dad looked into the TRS and apparently the hacking has started back before 2010 and we the teachers are barely hearing about it now.
Apparently all of Brownsville ISD is on this infamous list."
According to the comptroller TMs office, about two-million Texans who filed for unemployment insurance from Dec. 31, 2006 through Dec. 31, 2009 could also be at risk for identity theft.The Attorney General's office and the FBI are now investigating the case.