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USDASite exposed 63,000 individuals' private data

Agriculture.com Staff 04/24/2007 @ 9:17am

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has narrowed to 63,000 the number of people whose private identification information was accessible to the public on a government-wide Web site and who will therefore be eligible to register for free credit monitoring services.

The 63,000 people were awarded funds through the Farm Service Agency (FSA) or USDA Rural Development (RD). The FSA programs involved are limited to:

  • Conservation Security Program
  • Emergency Loan for Seed Producers
  • Emergency Loans
  • Farm Labor Housing Loans and Grants
  • Farm Ownership Loans
  • Special Apple Program
  • Wetlands Reserve Program

The Rural Development programs involved are limited to:

  • Business and Industry Loans
  • Community Facilities Loans and Grants
  • Direct Housing Natural Disaster
  • Direct Housing Natural Disaster Loans and Grants
  • Emergency Loans
  • Lower Income Housing Assistance Program Section 8 Moderate Rehabilitation
  • Physical Disaster Loans
  • Rural Rental Assistance Payments,
  • Rural Rental Housing Loans
  • Very Low to Moderate Income Housing Loans
  • Very Low-Income Housing Repair Loans and Grants

The information was removed from the Web site immediately after USDA learned of the potential exposure. There is no evidence that this information has been misused. However, due to the potential that this information was downloaded prior to being removed, USDA will provide the additional monitoring service.

USDA funding recipients who wish to take advantage of the credit monitoring offer will be provided with instructions for how to register. Any USDA funding recipient with questions may call 800/FED-INFO (800/333-4636) or visit USA.gov. The call center operates from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. (EDT), Monday through Friday.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has narrowed to 63,000 the number of people whose private identification information was accessible to the public on a government-wide Web site and who will therefore be eligible to register for free credit monitoring services.

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