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From: rchick (rchickeretiolated.org)
Date: Mon Apr 28 2008 - 13:26:08 CDT
April 24, 2008
NORTH BEND - The theft of a laptop computer owned by a local
accounting firm has made nearly 500 employees of Coos County and
private organizations concerned about identity theft.
County officials worry the data may have contained employees' names,
Social Security numbers and other personal information, which had been
used in recent audits performed by Hough, MacAdam & Wartnik LLC of
Although, there have been no known reports of identity theft from any
of the 482 employees notified, the computer has not been found and,
according to a letter from the firm, thieves sometimes hold victims'
information for later use.
According to a Coos Bay Police press log, at approximately 7:28 a.m.
on March 5, officers received a report of a woman flagging down
Officer Tony Wetmore, identified as 122 in the log, near Coos Bay City
Hall. Crystal Albiar, 30, told Wetmore a laptop computer had been
stolen from a vehicle, which, Wetmore said, belonged to Albiar. The
victim is listed on the press log as Hough, MacAdam & Wartnik, Albiar
is a senior accountant at the firm.
Later that day, a letter from the company was sent to clients stating
that a "serious data security incident" may have involved clients'
"During the night of Tuesday, March 4, 2008, a notebook computer was
stolen from a locked vehicle. The notebook's hard drive may have
contained your name, Social Security number, and other personal
information," the letter stated. "We have notified law enforcement
about this incident. This notification included a general report
alerting them to the fact that the incident occurred. However, we have
not notified them about the presence of your specific information in
the data breach."
The letter went on to tell recipients to take preventative measures to
avert and detect any misuse of information. These steps included
closely monitoring financial accounts; contacting financial
institutions if unauthorized activity was detected; and placing a
fraud alert on credit files.
Via an e-mail correspondence with The World, Shirley MacAdam said the
March 5 letters were sent to the 482 employees of four clients — only
one of which was a public agency. She demurred from identifying the
clients involved, but further investigation revealed the County and
South Coast Hospice & Palliative Care in Coos Bay are among the four.
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