The US Department of Agriculture has said the personal information of around 26,000 employees and contractors may have been compromised, following a hacking incident earlier this month.
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Names and social security information were held on the hacked database.
As a result, the Department of Agriculture is contacting all those potentially affected, and offering them free credit monitoring services to help alleviate any potential identity theft threat.
The agency said internet security staff had noticed suspicious network activity on its systems at the beginning of the month, but that they were certain no personal information had been compromised.
At a later date however, network analysis could not be sure whether the information was fully protected, so the agency started to inform staff about the potential threat.
The US Department of Veterans Affairs admitted last month that the personal information of up to 26.5 million military veterans and active service personnel had been compromised, following a computer theft from an employee’s home.