Wednesday, March 09, 2011

New Jersey nearly creates "identity theft" bonanza

An AP story begins

Taxpayers' Social Security numbers, confidential child abuse reports and personnel reviews of New Jersey workers nearly went to the highest bidder after the state sent surplus computers out for auction.

Nearly 80 percent of surplus computers in a comptroller's office sample had not been scrubbed of data before being shipped to a warehouse, according to an audit released Wednesday, March 9, 2011.

State agencies are supposed to remove data from hard drives before junking computers BUT THEY DIDN"T.

The story also noted:

The data included Social Security numbers of taxpayers and employees; child abuse case files, including a child fatality report; a list of state employees' computer passwords; and a judge's tax returns. A memo from the judge on a lawyer's "personal emotional problems" was also found, as was personal contact information on most members of Corzine's Cabinet.

As noted elsewhere on IPBiz, the New Jersey Supreme Court takes a hard line on protecting things like social security number.
New Jersey Supreme Court protects social security numbers
. However, at the same time, public records remain open under New Jersey's OPRA.


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