A data breach of an Oregon state agency tasked with running foster care and welfare programs could have exposed the social security and personal information of an undetermined number of state residents.
The Oregon Department of Human Services (DHS) said on Thursday it suffered a data breach in January after nine employees clicked on “phishing" emails, exposing their state email accounts to hackers, according to a statement.
Information that may have been exposed "include first and last names, addresses, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, case number and other information used to administer DHS programs," the agency said.
The agency added that it has "no indication that any personal information was copied from its email system or used inappropriately," though it is investigating the matter and will inform affected individuals as needed.
The Oregonian reported that the agency is also checking to see if information involving its programs for children and adults with intellectual or developmental disabilities was affected, citing a DHS spokesman.
According to the newspaper, Oregon's DHS is the state's largest agency, handling programs for foster care, food stamps and welfare.