More than 200 FFD workers warned personal info may be compromised - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

More than 200 FFD workers warned personal info may be compromised

Lt. Cmdr. Justin Pilling Lt. Cmdr. Justin Pilling

By Minna Sugimoto - bio | email

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - More than 200 Federal Fire Department workers are being advised to look for unusual activity on their bank accounts, after allegations that an employee wrongfully accessed their personal information.

Navy officials in Hawaii launched an investigation after receiving an anonymous complaint that personal data was being compromised.

Top brass at the Federal Fire Department headquarters at Navy Region Hawaii are feeling the heat, as copies of a letter regarding a security breach circulate among their workers.

According to the letter, someone in the fire department had unauthorized access to electronic files containing sensitive employee information, such as birth dates and social security numbers.

"As soon as we get any report of the loss or compromise of personally identifiable information, the Navy takes that very seriously," Lt. Cmdr. Justin Pilling, Judge Advocate General's Corps, said.

Sources say a high-ranking firefighter is suspected of not only viewing that personal data, but downloading it onto a flash drive.

"You can't provide further details on what might have happened?" this reporter asked.

"Unfortunately in this case, there's still an investigation pending," Pilling said. "We want to make sure we have all the facts and details in before we make a final determination or release information that may be harmful to another person because we don't want to wrongly accuse someone."

Navy officials say they don't take their duty of safeguarding employee information lightly.

"The Navy has many, many safety protocols in place to protect the information that we're entrusted with," Pilling said. "That goes from the gamut of either just general training for personnel that takes place either hands-on, we also have general online training, both of which are requirements for personnel to do on an annual basis."

At this point, he says there's no evidence to suggest the data has been misused.

The notification letter was sent to 242 workers -- not just firefighters, but anyone related to that command.

"That isn't to say those 242 people were impacted," Pilling said. "They're just the scope of the investigation."

Navy officials say a person found responsible for such a breach will be held accountable through punishment and additional training.

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