By Todd Weiss
July 26, 2006
A laptop computer containing personal information on more than half a
million New York state workers has been found after it disappeared May 9
from the offices of a third-party data management company.
In a statement today, the company -- Chicago-based CS Stars -- said the
laptop belonging to the New York Special Funds Conservation Committee "has
been found and secured."
Al Modugno, a spokesman for CS Stars, said he was notified today of the
laptop's recovery, though he would not comment further on whether it had
been lost or stolen, adding that the incident is still being probed by law
"That's part of what the FBI is still investigating," Modugno said. "I
can't really give you any more detail on that."
Modugno said the FBI told CS Stars that the agency is reasonably certain
that there was no improper use of any of the data stored on the laptop.
The FBI has the laptop and is still analyzing it, he said.
The laptop contains the names, addresses and Social Security numbers of
about 540,000 state employees.
The New York Special Funds Conservation Committee is a nonprofit
organization that deals with special funds related to the New York State
Workers' Compensation Board.
John Sullivan, a spokesman for the board, today said his agency had been
notified that the laptop was found.
Last week, CS Stars mailed letters to the 540,000 people whose data might
have been affected by the incident, according to the company. Each of the
affected workers was offered credit-monitoring services for 12 months and
$25,000 in identity theft insurance, Modugno said.
The delay between the disappearance of the laptop on May 9 and the mailing
of the letters last week occurred because the CS Stars employee who
determined that the laptop was missing didn't report it to his company
until June 19, Modugno said. An internal investigation verified that the
machine was missing, then the state agency was notified of the problem on
June 29, he said.
The FBI was notified the following day.
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