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Florida DEO warns of unemployment data breach affecting nearly 58,000

July 24, 2021 - Nearly 58,000 unemployment accounts have been connected to a Florida Department of Economic Opportunity data breach. The information was stolen through the DEO's online unemployment benefit system, called CONNECT,  between April 27 and July 16. Information that may have been accessed includes a person's social security number, driver’s license number, bank account numbers, claim information and other personal details, according to the DEO. Those affected by the breach are being asked to monitor their financial accounts and report any unauthorized activity. “Florida’s unemployment insurance portal has frustrated some since COVID hit the state in 2020, and this is just the latest issue with the antiquated system," Erich Kron, security awareness advocate at the Tampa-based cybersecurity firm KnowBe4, said in a prepared statement. "Once again, the decision to renew the contract in 2020 for $135 million dollars, despite the unfortunate handling of unemployment claims when people were most in need, is an issue for the users. Now, as the Covid-19 numbers are rising again, almost 58,000 people will be dealing with potential identity theft issues and other financial issues." 

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