NEW YORK – Bank of New York Mellon has lost a box of back-up computer tapes containing the personal information of 4.5 million customers. The unencrypted tapes contained social security numbers, names and addresses, and perhaps account numbers and balances.
The tapes were lost in transit between the bank’s shareowner services division and a storage facility. The box was being transported in a truck belonging to Archive Systems on February 27, according to Connecticut attorney general Richard Blumenthal.
Blumenthal says the bank has informed him that the lock on the vehicle was broken and the truck had been left unattended several times. The bank began notifying affected customers of the data loss six weeks ago and is offering one year of credit monitoring through Equifax.
“Given this extraordinarily serious security breach, this offer of protection is grossly inadequate,” says Blumenthal. He is asking for more details and additional security measures to be put in place.