Delaware JobLink hack exposes personal data

 

DOVER — More than a quarter million users of a state Labor Department job search online site may be at risk after a hack into the system reached personal information, officials said this week.

Delaware was among 10 states affected by a “malicious third party,” the Labor Department said in an announcement posted online.

The Delaware JobLink site is provided by the America’s Job Link Web-based system, which the Labor Department said was breached for the first time in 50 years.

According to the Department of Labor, approximately 253,420 JobLink users since 2017 may be jeopardized, including 200,201 job seekers providing their name, birthday, and Social Security number.

“We are extremely troubled by this reprehensible act and have begun the process of ensuring the personal information associated with the users of the Delaware JobLink website is secured and protected,” said Patrice Gilliam-Johnson, secretary of the Delaware Department of Labor in the announcement.

“We are working both closely and diligently with AJL to arrange a formal notification of this breach to all those impacted and are in the process of setting up a call center to assist us in remedying this matter.”

The breach has since been eliminated, state officials said.

AJL Software and records were compromised in other states, including Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Maine, Oklahoma and Vermont.

Based on early reports, the Department of Labor did not believe Delaware JobLink was affected. On Wednesday the DOL and Division of Employment & Training were informed otherwise.

According to the Department of Labor in the news release, AJL responded to suspected malicious activity last week by hiring an independent forensic firm and calling on the FBI to begin an investigation.

The breach began roughly a month ago when a hacker created a fraudulent JobLink account and found an electronic path into the Web-based system, the Department of Labor reported.

On Wednesday, the Department of Labor said it was working to notify “JobLink users and help setting up credit monitoring and fraud alerts.” The Delaware Department of Technology and Information is assisting the efforts.

Additionally, AJL plans by next week to create a toll-free number providing information for those concerned about the hack.

Reach staff writer Craig Anderson at canderson@newszap.com

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