TOWSON, Md. (WJZ) — Police say a man stole the personal information of thousands of Baltimore County workers.
Linh Bui explains how he accessed that sensitive data.
Police have not yet identified the man, but we know he worked for a contractor hired by the county.
The man worked on computers in Baltimore County offices. But police say he stole personal information while on the job.
“There’s the potential for misuse. And there’s the potential to cause serious problems for the person whose identity has been stolen,” said Elise Armacost, Baltimore County Police.
He’s accused of printing false checks and using fake IDs in 2012.
While investigating an unrelated identity theft case, police reviewed the man’s hard drive. That’s when they found the county employee data.
He had the personal information of more than 12,000 current and former county workers — including Social Security numbers, home addresses and salaries.
“It’s a sad thing it happened. It does happen, and I just wish it hadn’t happened here in Baltimore County,” said Ray Windisch, Baltimore County employee.
The county notified employees about the breach and made security changes. Effective immediately, employees can no longer download sensitive information to their personal hard drives.
“To make sure that none of that information is on any hard drives, we will now have our employees going through and scanning approximately 5,000 computers,” said Don Mohler, Chief of State, Baltimore County Government.
Fortunately, police say no financial information was stolen and it appears the personal data was not misused.
“It can wreak havoc on a person’s life if someone steals your information and uses it inappropriately,” said Armacost.
Right now, the suspect is in custody in another state, waiting extradition back to Maryland.
Police say this is an open investigation. They’re still reviewing the suspect’s computer.
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