Breach Exposes Info on Pre-'06 Google Hires
A data breach at a California company that administers benefit plans to businesses across the country involved personal information on all Google employees hired prior to Dec. 31, 2005, the search engine giant said.
Google's disclosure came in a letter (PDF) to the New Hampshire Attorney General, which revealed that Google was a victim of a break-in at Colt Express Outsourcing Services Inc.. Last month, Colt warned that the theft of computer equipment from its offices resulted in the loss of the names, birth dates and Social Security numbers of 6,500 CNET Networks employees. Google said that same information from its employees also was included on the missing equipment.
The letter notes that while "the break-in did not occur on Google property, and did not involve any computers, facilities or data associated with Google products," the company has nonetheless engaged Kroll Inc. -- a New York-based risk consulting firm -- to provide its "ID TheftSmart" service at no cost to affected employees for a year.
One again, we learn more about the depth and seriousness of a data breach because of a handful of state laws that require notification not just to affected consumers but to authorities where the affected consumers live.
There are at least two serious proposals circulating on Capitol Hill to enact a federal data breach bill. While consumer groups I spoke with recently say there's very little chance either of these measures will come to a vote anytime this year, it would be nice if -- in addition to requiring businesses to notify consumers of a breach that affects them -- any federal data breach notification law also required companies to report the breach to one central, public database.
Update, 3:37 p.m. ET According to Google's 4th Quarter 2005 financial statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Google had 5,680 employees at the time.
Posted by: Jim | July 2, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: Craig | July 2, 2008 5:18 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: Pete from Arlington | July 3, 2008 11:19 AM | Report abuse
The comments to this entry are closed.