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Sensitive Illinois DOC Personnel Records Compromised

The Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) recently mishandled personnel information on ?virtually all? of its 13,500 employees. Additionally, the Department of Transportation lost data on 40 of its employees.

An angry public employees? union demanded to know when the breach occurred, what had been done to correct it, and whether IDOC would take responsibility for any credit losses due to associated identity theft. The union also asked if state law had been followed after the losses. This law requires informing all affected employees and the state?s General Assembly. IDOC replied on September 12, 2006 only that a payroll report containing names, salaries and Social Security numbers of most IDOC employees ?was found at an outside location, where it should not have been.? The union complained that IDOC had so far refused to divulge details so that affected individuals could take steps to protect themselves against identity theft. IDOC said only that it was ?investigating,? and couldn?t comment.

The two incidents occurred 18 months after the Belleville News Democrat found personnel records in unsecured trash bins outside of the Employment Security and Humans Rights offices in 2005. In November, the newspaper found similar documents in the trash outside of the Human Services Department.


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