First the oil leak, now the data dump. British Petroleum disclosed to the press yesterday that one of its employees had lost a laptop containing the personal information on approximately 13,000 people who had filed claims related to last year’s disastrous Deepwater Horizon leak.
According to CNN, the laptop contained “names, addresses, phone numbers, dates of birth and Social Security numbers for those who filed claims related to last year’s Deepwater Horizon spill.” While the laptop was password-protected and capable of being remotely disabled, the data was not encrypted.
BP says that the data was lost by an employee during “routine business travel,” and that “there is no evidence that the laptop or data was targeted, or that anyone’s personal data has in fact been compromised or accessed in any way.” BP has offered to pay for credit-monitoring services for the 13,000 people whose personal data was lost, although according to an AP report, some claimants have not yet received the letters BP sent out notifying them of the data breach.
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