Stolen backup drive contained personal and health info of Local 693 members

Local 693 Plumbers, Pipefitters & HVACR Technicians has disclosed a breach to those enrolled in its benefit fund. The incident has also been reported to HHS. From its notification to members:

We are writing to notify you that a device containing information regarding participants and beneficiaries of the Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 693 Benefit Funds (“Funds”), as well as members of the Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 693 (“Union”), has been identified as stolen from our offices. While neither the Funds nor the Union (collectively, “we” or “our”) have received any indication that the device (a back-up hard drive) has been used or the information on it accessed, we take the security of personal information seriously and are accordingly writing to inform you of this incident and the steps you can take to further protect your personal information.

The back-up hard drive was first identified as missing on January 23, 2017, following discovery that our offices had been broken into. Based on our internal investigation, it appears that the back-up hard drive was stolen on January 22, 2017. Among the data maintained on the back-up hard drive were individualized records of 1,291 current and former plan participants, beneficiaries and union members. Accordingly, we believe your personal information was contained on the stolen device. Among the information contained on the back-up hard drive was personal information (including personal health information) including full names, addresses, telephone numbers, and social security numbers.

We have reported the incident to the South Burlington Police Department and are cooperating in their investigation of the incident. Thus far, we have found no evidence to suggest that your personal information has been misused. Moreover, a recent review by an independent information technology consultant we retained has concluded that the likelihood of accessing your personal information is “very low.”

In addition to providing this notice to you, we have taken the following steps to protect your, and others’, personal information from further harm or similar circumstances:

  •   filed a police report on January 23, 2017, and initiated a criminal investigation
  •   notified the Vermont Attorney General of this matter
  •   added additional security features to our offices to protect against future break-ins
  •   encrypted all backed-up data including all personal health information
  •   replaced the back-up hard drives with a more secure “cloud” based back-up system

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