By Elinor Mills
October 20, 2009
ChoicePoint, one of the nation's largest data brokers, has been fined
$275,000 by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission for a data breach that
exposed personal information of 13,750 people last year.
In April 2008, ChoicePoint turned off a key electronic security tool
that it used to monitor access to one of its databases and failed to
notice the problem for four months, according to an FTC statement.
During that period, unauthorized searches were conducted for 30 days on
a ChoicePoint database that contained Social Security numbers and other
sensitive information, the FTC said.
The FTC alleged that ChoicePoint's conduct violated a 2006 court order
requiring the company to institute a comprehensive information security
program following a 2005 breach that compromised the personal
information of more than 163,000 people and resulted in at least 800
cases of identity fraud. The company was ordered to pay $10 million in
civil penalties and $5 million to consumers in that case.
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