Personal data found on surplus Wash. computers

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) -- A Washington state audit has found confidential data, including Social Security numbers and tax information, on some surplus state computers that had been set aside for sale or donation.

The audit released Thursday found private information on 11 computers that were set to be given away or sold last summer. Auditors looked at 177 of about 1,200 computers sent to surplus by more than a dozen state agencies. Based on the findings and a statistical analysis, The Seattle Times says (http://is.gd/pZamFK) auditors estimated that 9 percent of surplus computers contained sensitive information.

The state's chief information officer, Michael Cockrill, says there have been no reports of any compromised information. He says the state addressed the problems before the audit was released, including establishing new rules for erasing data.

The audit found that despite state law requiring computers to be scrubbed before going to surplus, some agency workers either were not following the rules or were being sloppy.

The Times says the state has been getting rid of about 10,000 surplus computers annually.

___

Information from: The Seattle Times, http://www.seattletimes.com

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Top Stories

  • Joining the LOB
    It's never easy being the new guy, but Tharold Simon is already making his mark

  • Smartphone Safety
    Our phones entertain us, inform us and now might protect us

  • Pumpkin Assault
    Pumpkin-flavored items are coming to store shelves whether it's fall or not
ATTENTION COMMENTERS: We've changed our comments, but want to keep you in the conversation.
Please login below with your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Disqus account. Existing MyNorthwest account holders will need to create a new Disqus account or use one of the social logins provided below. Thank you.
comments powered by Disqus
Sign up for breaking news e-mail alerts from MyNorthwest.com
In the community
Do you know an exceptional citizen who has impacted and inspired others?
KIRO Radio and WSECU would like to recognize six oustanding citizens this year. Nominate them to be recognized and to receive a $2,000 charitable grant.