CNET employees notified after data breach

CNET employees and relatives are being notified after a data breach at the company's health plan administrator.

More than 6,500 CNET Networks employees and relatives are being notified of a possible data breach after burglars stole computer systems from the offices of the company that administers the Internet publisher's benefit plans.

CNET was one of several clients affected when burglars broke into the Walnut Creek, California, offices of Colt Express Outsourcing Services, stealing equipment "which contains the human resources data of several of their clients including CNET networks," CNET Senior Vice President of Human Resources Jose Martin said in a June letter notifying employees of the incident.

The computers contained names, birth dates, Social Security numbers and employment information of the beneficiaries of CNET's health insurance plans.

It was unclear which other Colt Express clients were affected by the breach. Its other customers have included BroadVision, JDS Uniphase and 24 Hour Fitness.

The company's CEO, Samuel Colt III, did not return a call seeking comment Monday, but in a letter to CNET, published on the Web site of the attorney general for the state of Maryland, he said that local police were investigating the matter.

Data breaches such as Colt's must be reported to the Maryland attorney general when they affect state residents. State laws typically require such notification when an unencrypted computer is lost or stolen. According to Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, more than 230 million records have been exposed in this fashion in the U.S. over the past three-and-a-half years.

Four days after the break-in, Colt Express installed an alarm system, and the company is "looking into what additional steps may be taken to provide enhanced security," Colt wrote in his letter.

Customers looking for free credit-monitoring services from Colt Express should not get their hopes up, however.

Colt's letter included some marketing materials for Kroll, a company that helps companies respond to data breaches, but the information was provided "only out of courtesy and to give you an idea of the types of services available," Colt said.

"By this letter and enclosures we are providing you with all the information we believe you need and that we are able to give you," Colt added. "We do not have the resources financial and otherwise to assist you further."

Hurt by a downturn in business late last year, Colt is now in the process of going out of business, he said.

Affected CNET employees can sign up for one year of free credit-monitoring from Equifax, Martin said.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Robert McMillan

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?