Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Ooops! Government missing hard drive

Imagine my surprise to open a letter and read:

“… we are writing to you because we have determined that personal information identifiable to you, including your social security number, may have been exposed to others …

We are sorry for any inconvenience this incident may cause you…”

“The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) learned in late March 2009 that an external hard drive containing copies of backup tapes from the Clinton Administration is missing …

…The records on the missing hard drive generally contain system and working files from … within the Executive Office of the President ...”
Not only am I now ranting and raving about government record keeping but what was the Clinton Administration doing with my personal information in the first place???

While wailing about being interred on some hard drive with the characters of the Clinton administration, saner members of the household helped me to focus.

Ah yes! There was my involvement with the White House Easter Egg Roll of 1995. Positioned only yards from the Oval Office yeah there was a background check.
Back to the problem at hand, what is the government doing about it?

“launched a full-scale criminal investigation… a reward of $50,000 … (for) recovery of the missing Western Digital MY BOOK external hard drive … Call US Secret Service Washington Field Office 202-406-8800.”
Of course they are not even sure when
“missing hard drive was last seen sometime between October 2008 and the first week of February and was discovered missing on or about March 24, 2009”
and I somehow have problems with this assumption.

“it seems more likely that the thief was interested in using the equipment as a backup drive rather than misusing the information it contained.”
NARA is offering affected individuals free credit monitoring services including fraud resolution and identity theft insurance coverage. If all else fails, “the Social Security Administration may assign you a new number.”

As if life does not have enough challenges, welcome to the era of digital Government!
"We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause you” 

Caregivingly Yours, Patrick Leer


  1. I got the same letter and have been mustering up the energy to do something about it, like check into the credit agency offer, but so far it's not happened. I hope I don't live to regret my tardiness. I share your dismay.

  2. Uh yeah, I can see this being an inconvenience. You don't expect the govt. to be complicit with your identity being stolen. (Hugs)Indigo

  3. we are sorry for any inconvenience, geesh, glad they are being sympathetic about the whole thing. Having recently been helping someone restore credit after identity theft, it is more than an inconvenience but a nightmare for sure. I think I would definitely take advantage of all services they offer you to help get your credit monitored for abuse etc

    loved the pictures of the egg hunt though. Never knew of anyone that had been there before participating in one


  4. Pretty weird. And they keep telling us that putting all your medical, banking and other personal information on-line is the best thing to do.

  5. O man, do you really have to sit still for this Patrick? It's scandalous and scary. I've never heard of a citizen being assigned a "new" SS#, it's worth a civil suit if you feel litigious. But it shouldn't surprise anyone to discover how much data our government keeps on us, covertly. Hope this all turns out right for you!


Blog Archive