published Saturday, September 7th, 2013

Thousands of Georgian Social Security numbers released

ATLANTA — Authorities said Social Security numbers and other information about thousands of Georgians have been inadvertently shared by a state agency.

The Georgia Department of Labor said one of its employees mistakenly sent the data on 4,757 unemployed residents to about 1,000 people. The information was sent at 3:58 p.m. Thursday, in the form of an email and attachment.

People whose information was shared are primarily from Cobb and Cherokee counties, and people in those same counties received the information by mistake, officials said.

State officials asked those who received the email to hit the delete button, WSB Radio reported.

"This email and the attachment contained confidential information that must be deleted," labor officials said in a follow-up email to people who received the data. "We request that you please delete the email and attachment immediately."

State labor officials said they will provide free credit monitoring services to all of the people affected.

But some people remained concerned about the potential for identity theft.

Raymond Hickcox said he was worried that everyone who got the email won't be honest and delete the information.

"Clearly, everybody can make a mistake," Hickcox told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. "Now that it's out, what do you do to keep people's information from being compromised?"

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