Press must pursue hacking accountability

info@islandpacket.comNovember 6, 2012 

Some say state governments are better equipped to handle services than the federal government.

To anyone in South Carolina who would entrust the work of Federal Emergency Management Agency, Medicare and Medicaid or Social Security to Gov. Nikki Haley's administration, consider the massive "data breach" of 3.6 million tax returns that has come to light. Seventy-five percent of the entire state's population has had Social Security numbers and bank information hacked. We face years of possible identity theft.

We appreciate the newspaper's daily printing of the toll-free number and website, but that is just a for-profit service (outsourced to a California company) that is only "free" for the first year. Of course, it isn't really free at all -- no doubt essential government services or education funding will be reduced to cover the enormous cost of the state's egregious, irresponsible error.

We are depending on the Fourth Estate, the press, to keep on top of this issue since our state government did not. Please, on behalf of your readers, continue to press for answers, file Freedom of Information Act requests, investigate the chain of command. Someone needs to be held responsible for the decision not to secure and encrypt our personal information.

Teresa Bruce and Gary Geboy


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