Unsecured file leads to data compromise of 12,000 in Wyoming

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Data on nearly 12,000 past and present clients of the Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) may be at risk after an unsecured file was sent to a WIC business partner.

How many victims? Nearly 12,000. 

What type of personal information? Birth dates and medical details, including pregnancy status, are among the information contained in the file. 

What happened? A data file was sent via the internet to a WIC business partner, but was not properly secured before being sent and is at risk of being intercepted.

What was the response? All impacted clients will receive notification letters and are also being offered a free year of identity protection services. WIC is examining security policies and taking measures to ensure a similar incident does not happen again.

Details: The unsecured data file was sent on Oct. 16, 2013. Details of the incident were not made available until December 2013, due to the complicated nature of the incident. WIC has no indication that the information was seen or used by unauthorized individuals.

Quote: “We will work to ensure the same thing does not happen in the future by fully investigating what occurred and examining security policies and procedures,” Wendy Braund, state health officer and Public Health Division senior administrator with WDH, said.

Source: health.wyo.gov, “Potential Exposure of WIC Client Information Described,” Dec. 16, 2013.

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