Accellion Data Security Breach
The Washington State Auditor’s Office has announced a security incident that exposed the personal data of at least 1.4 million Washington residents who filed unemployment claims last year.
If you filed an unemployment claim or were a victim of unemployment fraud in Washington state between January 1, 2020, and December 10, 2020, your information may have been exposed.
In late December 2020, an unauthorized person was able to exploit a software vulnerability using Accellion, a third-party hosted software services provider the state auditor's office uses for transferring files from the Washington State Employment Security Department to the state auditor's office. The stolen files contained unemployment compensation claim information that includes names, Social Security numbers and/or driver's license or state identification numbers, bank information and places of employment.
Who is Affected
At least 1.4 million Washingtonians and some local governments and other state agencies were affected by the breach. The state auditor's office is still reviewing the impacted files to determine the types of data, agencies and individuals involved.
Those whose information was in the compromised database could become targets for phishing and social engineering attempts.
What To Do if You Might Be Impacted
The state auditor has set up a web page for people who think their personal information could have been exposed in the data breach. The page provides updated details about the breach and information about how to access a free credit report, place a fraud alert on your credit report and freeze your credit.
Safeguarding against threats
The following are important steps you can take to protect your accounts and personal information:
- Monitor your accounts at all your financial institutions for fraudulent activity, such as new loans.
- Sign up for alerts for your BECU accounts and credit cards so you can monitor debit and credit transactions.
- Protect your Online Banking account. Take a moment to update your online account security options and add a code word for increased protection.
- Educate yourself: The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) website provides information about current threats to consumers.
- Stay aware: Criminals often use breaking news stories as opportunities to stage attacks. Verify phone calls, do not give out personal or financial information and watch out for phishing emails.
If you become a victim
- Report suspected fraud and identity theft to law enforcement, the state attorney general and the FTC.
- If it happens online, report it to the FBI's Internet Crime Complaint Center.
- Refer to these BECU resources:
ID Theft Checklist