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South Carolina taxpayer information lost to hackers

387,000 credit and debit card numbers exposed in cyber attack
Mon Oct 29 2012, 11:44

THE SOUTH CAROLINA Department of Revenue (DoR) is mad as heck after a hacker or hackers broke into its computer systems and made off with credit and debit card numbers.

The Department of Revenue has revealed the intrusion that saw it lose 387,000 credit and debit card numbers and it warned those responsible that it will not be taking this lying down.

"On October 10, the S.C. Division of Information Technology informed the S.C. Department of Revenue of a potential cyber attack involving the personal information of taxpayers. We worked with them throughout that day to determine what may have happened and what steps to take to address the situation. We also immediately began consultations with state and federal law enforcement agencies and briefed the governor's office," said DoR director James Etter.

"From the first moment we learned of this, our top priority has been to protect the taxpayers and the citizens of South Carolina, and every action we've taken has been consistent with that priority. We have an obligation to protect the personal information entrusted to us, and we are redoubling our efforts to meet that obligation."

While the number of credit and debit card numbers taken is headline grabbing, it pales next to the number of social security numbers that were lost, which was 3.6 million.

It appears that the theft was the work of a lone hacker and took a couple of attempts, starting last Summer, to breach the system.

Anyone who has filed a South Carolina state tax return since 1998 might be affected. µ


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