I can’t think of a clever title because I really don’t know what to say.
Yesterday the public was made aware of a massive security breach affecting 500,000+ people. It is the largest security breach in Canada and the government kept quiet about the situation for two months.
Sadly, I am one of the 500,000+ who has been affected.
On November 5th, HRSDC (Human Resources and Skills Development Canada) became aware that an external hard drive containing Student Loan information was lost. The information contained names, contact information, SIN (Social Insurance Numbers), birth dates, loan amounts and banking information; information that is personal, private and confidential. After taking their sweet time investigating on their own, then contacting “proper” government channels and then finally the police, the public was notified January 11. I didn’t find out until yesterday morning… from the news.
They didn’t call or send me a letter. When I called they said they just mailed out a letter. Why couldn’t they have called back in November to alert us of a possible security breach and for us to take the steps to ensure no one has used our personal information for criminal gain and then follow up once they had more information? Why now?
I am furious.
I spent the entire morning yesterday scrambling to call my bank, credit card companies and credit bureaus. I am getting a credit check/report pulled and now I face a $14/mo fee to have my financial life monitored for the rest of my life. I will have to take additional steps to prove I am who I say I am. My credit cards are cancelled and I will be reissued new ones in a few weeks.
A lawyer in St. John’s, Newfoundland has launched steps to start a Class Action Lawsuit on our behalf. He is waiting for the courts to approve the Lawsuit before we can move on.
I don’t know if I want money. What is the money going to do? Pay off my student loans, take me on a vacation? Even if there was financial compensation, we wouldn’t see much. Here’s the math: Say the courts gave us $5 million in compensation. There’s 583,000 people affected. That works out to $9 per person and it doesn’t cover the $14/mo to monitor my credit file.
I want the government to admit responsibility and do the right thing. I want to not have to worry about my credit and financial future. I don’t want to be forced to pull a credit report (which makes your credit score drop every time an inquiry is made) every other month or pay to have someone to monitor it for me. I don’t want someone doing something illegal with my good name and tearing mine to shambles for their financial gain. I have worked to hard to earn a good credit score so I can own a home, buy a new car, etc. I am working hard to pay debt and ensure that it keeps getting paid and I make no bad hits on my file.
I’ve been told by numerous people to not worry, but how can I not worry? I’m doing everything right and taking the right steps to make sure no one does something horrible.
I don’t know when this horrible icky feeling will go away. I am trying not to let it consume my every day thoughts and actions. It’s in the back of my mind and so hard to get rid of.
In the end I just have to keep on keeping on.