The personal information of thousands of workers at Sutter Health in Sacramento, Calif. may be at risk after a company laptop inexplicably turned up at a computer repair shop.

How many victims? 6,000.

What type of personal information? Names and Social Security numbers of employees.

What happened? Sutter thought the laptop was in an employee’s possession since 2007. But in May, a computer repair business contacted the health care company saying they had the hard drive and returned it to Sutter.

Details: A forensic analysis revealed the computer repair business opened the sensitive file but the repair shop wrote a certified letter stating it didn't retain any of the information.

Quote: "The repair people did the right thing and told us they had our laptop,"  Kami Lloyd, communication coordinator at Sutter told News 10.

What was the response? In the future, all data on company laptops will be encrypted. In addition, employees were told to save files and documents to network drives instead of on PC hard drives. Finally, Sutter said it will begin to track the disposal of old computers.

Sutter is providing affected individuals with free identity theft protection for one year.

Source:, News 10 ABC, “Missing Laptop Contained Sutter Workers Data,” June 30, 2009.