City Of Albert Lea Victim Of Phishing Scam

August 29, 2018 08:56 AM

(ABC 6 News)-- It’s some of our most sensitive personal information.

Now, someone somewhere has it, and a local community is dealing with a cyber-thief.


“The city of Albert Lea does take the security of the private information trusted to us seriously," city attorney Kelly Martinez said.

"On July 11th of 2018, we were notified by the FBI that an unauthorized third party obtained an electronic file containing the 2017 W-2 forms of current and former employees from 2017 via a phishing email.

"Almost always an email would come to your inbox and it would try to trick you into clicking on a link or opening an attachment," said Jeremy Knutson at A+ Computer repair in Albert Lea.

"We have learned the greatest risk for use of this information is for filing for fraudulent tax refunds,” Albert Lea City Attorney Kelly Martinez said.

It's information on about 330 current and former city employees, and while it does not include credit card or banking information

"It does have the name, address and social security number included on it,” Kelly Martinez said.

The city notified those affected by the phishing and has offered credit monitoring and other steps they can take to protect themselves.

"We don't have any information about whether this information has been used inappropriately or if it will be used inappropriately," Kelly Martinez told ABC 6.

"Why they do get some success on these phishing emails is that it looks legitimate," A+ Computer Repair’s Jeremy Knutson added.

"We are going to implement additional training about phishing emails and other steps to avoid this from happening in the future,” Kelly Martinez said.


Dan Conradt

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