A virus that had infected computers belonging to unemployment offices in Massachusetts may have allowed hackers to steal social security numbers and other private information.
The Massachusetts Labor and Workforce Development agency said in a statement that some 1.500 computer systems were discovered to be infected with the W32.QAKBOT virus, which ultimately caused the massive data breach.
The agency said that computers belonging to the Department of Unemployment Assistance and Career Services and those at One Stop Career Centers, were infected with the virus. The data targeted in the breach includes names, Social Security Numbers, Employer Identification Numbers, email addresses and residential or business addresses.
There is also a possibility that employer bank information may have been stolen as well.
It was found that the virus only affects those users whose profile was accessed manually. Businesses which manually uploaded their quarterly statements have also been affected.
“We are in the process of individually notifying all residents whom we think could be impacted and have advised all relevant and necessary state and federal agencies of the situation. We are doing everything possible to provide assistance in how to protect their identities and credit to those affected,” said Joanne F. Goldstein, Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development, The Sun Chronicle reports.