You may have missed it in the crush of other news this week, but I had noted that Nationwide Retirement Solutions is investigating how the retirement accounts of 91 Chicago municipal employees were breached earlier this month. Today, Karin Price Mueller of NJ.com has an update that suggests this was not a hack, but data theft to obtain loans:
“We believe somebody stole the information. It was not hacked,” said a spokesman for Nationwide Retirement Solutions, the company that administers the plan for the city.
When asked if it was an inside job, the spokesman wouldn’t comment, saying he couldn’t give any more detail because of an ongoing investigation.
A spokeswoman for Chicago’s comptroller would only say the fraud was “undertaken by an individual or group who fraudulently accessed personal information and established a web profile to take out a loan from the retirement account.”
In all, 91 accounts were breached, but only 58 of those had money withdrawn, the spokeswoman said.
Read more on NJ.com.
And if this could happen to Chicago’s employees, is there a wider problem at NRS that could impact other municipalities’ employees? So far, NRS isn’t giving any indication of that, but given that there’s an ongoing investigation, it may be early days.