2.2 Million Active-Duty Personnel in VA Data Theft

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    • #467
      Don Donzal

      WASHINGTON (AP) — Nearly all active-duty military, Guard and Reserve members — about 2.2 million total — may be at risk for identity theft because their personal information was among the data stolen from a Veterans Affairs employee last month.

      In a new disclosure Tuesday, VA Secretary Jim Nicholson said the agency was mistaken when it said over the weekend that up to 50,000 Navy and National Guard personnel were among the 26.5 million veterans whose names, birthdates and Social Security numbers were stolen on May 3.

      The number is actually much higher.

      The VA realized it had records on file for almost all active-duty personnel because they are eligible to receive VA benefits such as GI Bill educational assistance and the home loan guarantee program.

      In a statement, Nicholson said the VA’s latest review found the data included as many as 1.1 million active-duty personnel from all the armed forces, along with 430,000 members of the National Guard, and 645,000 members of the Reserves.

      He noted that the agency has been notifying all affected veterans and that there have been no reports of identity theft in what has become one of the nation’s largest security breaches.

      “VA remains committed to providing updates on this incident as new information is learned,” Nicholson said, explaining that it discovered the larger numbers after the VA and Pentagon compared their electronic files more closely.

      Full story from CNN:


    • #9493
      Don Donzal

      … more from the story that won’t die…

      Two Men Charged with Theft of VA Laptop

      A pair of Maryland men have been charged with taking the laptop computer that contained the personal information of millions of veterans and active duty military personnel, authorities said.

      While the two men have been charged with stealing the laptop from the home of a Department of Veterans Affairs employee on May 3, it did not appear that they were after the information stored on the computer and external hard drive, the Montgomery County Police Department said in a statement.

      The men, Jesus Alex Pineda, 19, and Christian Brian Montano, 19, both of Rockville, Md., have each been charged with burglary and theft of more than $500, police said. Montano faces an additional charge of conspiracy.

      Charges are also pending against a juvenile. His name was not released because of his age, police said.

      The case has caused an uproar with veterans and military groups and led to a scathing report from the VA inspector general. That report found lax oversight of the records and a poor response from Veterans Affairs officials after the initial report of the theft.

      For full story:


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