Skip to content

LINCOLN COUNTY WASHINGTON

WEBSITE NOTICE OF DATA BREACH

January 07, 2021 – Lincoln County, Washington (“the County”) is providing notice of a data privacy incident that may impact the privacy of personal information for certain current or former employees and recipients or potential recipients of County-sponsored addiction counseling.

The County first learned of unusual activity on its computer network on or about November 19, 2020. Since discovering the activity, The County took portions of the network offline and commenced an investigation into the event that included working with computer forensic specialists to determine the nature and scope of the event. While the investigation is ongoing, the investigation confirmed that certain portions of the County’s network were subject to access from someone without authorization on separate occasions between November 13, 2020 and November 19, 2020. The types of personal information relating to employees and counseling participants that could have been accessed includes name, address, Social Security number, driver’s license or state identification card number, date of birth, medical information, and health insurance information including type of health insurance and/or health insurance number.

The County takes this incident and the security of personal information of those entrusted in our care very seriously. Upon discovery of the unusual activity, we immediately took portions of our network offline and commenced an investigation that included working with computer forensic specialists to understand the nature and scope of the event. We also continue to evaluate ways to improve our existing protections to secure the information within our network.

Individuals seeking additional information regarding the event may call our dedicated assistance line at (866) 362-1769, available Monday through Friday, from 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., Pacific Time and Saturday through Sunday, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Pacific Time.

Best Practices

Lincoln County encourages you to remain vigilant against incidents of identity theft and fraud, to review your account statements, medical bills, explanation of benefits (EOBs), and credit reports for suspicious charges or claims. If you see any unauthorized or suspicious activity, promptly contact your financial institution, credit card company, insurance company, or the credit reporting bureaus.

Under U.S. law you are entitled to one free credit report annually from each of the three major credit reporting bureaus. To order your free credit report, visit www.annualcreditreport.com or call, toll-free, 1-877-322-8228.  You may also contact the three major credit bureaus directly to request a free copy of your credit report.

You have the right to place a “security freeze” on your credit report, which will prohibit a consumer reporting agency from releasing information in your credit report without your express authorization.  The security freeze is designed to prevent credit, loans, and services from being approved in your name without your consent. However, you should be aware that using a security freeze to take control over who gets access to the personal and financial information in your credit report may delay, interfere with, or prohibit the timely approval of any subsequent request or application you make regarding a new loan, credit, mortgage, or any other account involving the extension of credit.  Pursuant to federal law, you cannot be charged to place or lift a security freeze on your credit report.  Should you wish to place a security freeze, please contact the major consumer reporting agencies listed below:

Experian
P.O. Box 9554
Allen, TX 75013

1-888-397-3742
www.experian.com/freeze/center.html

TransUnion
P.O. Box 160
Woodlyn, PA 19094

1-888-909-8872
www.transunion.com/credit-freeze

Equifax
P.O. Box 105788
Atlanta, GA 30348-5788

1-800-685-1111
www.equifax.com/personal/credit-report-services

In order to request a security freeze, you will need to provide the following information:

  1. Your full name (including middle initial as well as Jr., Sr., II, III, etc.);
  2. Social Security number;
  3. Date of birth;
  4. If you have moved in the past five (5) years, the addresses where you have lived over the prior five years;
  5. Proof of current address, such as a current utility bill or telephone bill;
  6. A legible photocopy of a government-issued identification card (state driver’s license or ID card, military identification, etc.);
  7. If you are a victim of identity theft, a copy of either the police report, investigative report, or complaint to a law enforcement agency concerning identity theft.

As an alternative to a security freeze, you have the right to place an initial or extended “fraud alert” on your file at no cost.  An initial fraud alert is a 1-year alert that is placed on a consumer’s credit file. Upon seeing a fraud alert display on a consumer’s credit file, a business is required to take steps to verify the consumer’s identity before extending new credit. If you are a victim of identity theft, you are entitled to an extended fraud alert, which is a fraud alert lasting seven years. Should you wish to place a fraud alert, please contact any one of the agencies listed below:

Experian
P.O. Box 9554
Allen, TX 75013

1-888-397-3742
www.experian.com/fraud/center.html

TransUnion
P.O. Box 2000
Chester, PA 19016

1-800-680-7289
www.transunion.com/fraud-alerts

Equifax
P.O. Box 105069
Atlanta, GA 30348

1-888-766-0008
www.equifax.com/personal/credit-report-services

Additional Information

You can further educate yourself regarding identity theft, fraud alerts, security freezes, and the steps you can take to protect yourself by contacting the consumer reporting agencies, the Federal Trade Commission, or your state Attorney General. The Federal Trade Commission can be reached at: 600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20580; www.identitytheft.gov; 1-877-ID-THEFT (1-877-438-4338); and TTY: 1-866-653-4261. The Federal Trade Commission also encourages those who discover that their information has been misused to file a complaint with them.  You can obtain further information on how to file such a complaint by way of the contact information listed above.  You have the right to file a police report if you ever experience identity theft or fraud.  Please note that in order to file a report with law enforcement for identity theft, you will likely need to provide some proof that you have been a victim.  Instances of known or suspected identity theft should also be reported to law enforcement and your state Attorney General.  This notice has not been delayed by law enforcement.