Over 5 million Social Security numbers exposed in Kansas breach: report

Over 5 million Social Security numbers exposed in Kansas breach: report
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A breach of a Kansas Department of Commerce system exposed more than 5 million Social Security numbers to hackers, according to a report from a local news outlet. 

The Kansas News Service obtained information through a public records request that revealed that roughly 5.5 million Social Security numbers from individuals in 10 states were accessed in the data breach in March. 

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The data is managed by a division of the department called America’s Job Link Alliance-TS that helps job seekers across 16 states find employment.

According to the Kansas News Service, the breach exposed more than 800,000 accounts that did not contain Social Security numbers, in addition to the 5.5 million that did include that data.

The department had previously acknowledged that the breach exposed about half a million accounts of Kansas users which included Social Security numbers. 

Officials say they discovered unusual activity in mid-March and sought help from the FBI and a private IT company within days of the discovery. 

The records request was filed by the Kansas News Service, which is a collaboration of a number of local outlets including KCUR and Kansas Public Radio. 

A representative for the Kansas Department of Commerce did not immediately respond to a request for comment.