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Server Theft Exposes Data on 700,000 Consumers

Break-in at debt collection company puts Indiana citizens' personal information at risk

Some 700,000 consumers' personal data is at risk today after the theft of a server and eight PCs from a debt collection company in Indiana last month.

The owner of the company, Central Collection Bureau, revealed the breach this weekend and said it is working with police and the Indiana attorney general's office, according to a report. CCB says it has improved security at its office, but 700,000 names stored on a handful of computers are now in the hands of thieves.

The computers contain the names of hundreds of thousands of people, as well as their addresses, Social Security numbers, and in some cases, medical codes. The collection company was hired by hundreds of doctors and some utility companies to collect on delinquent bills. Every name is a customer or a patient.

"Obviously, we need to be notifying those that could have potentially had information on there. We are recommending that they put credit freezes on or at least monitoring on their credit reports," said Chet Klene, Central Collection Bureau.

"Our server was password protected," Klene said. "We have obviously spoken to some IT people who feel that a good computer hacker could get through those passwords."

— Tim Wilson, Site Editor, Dark Reading