HUD Disclosure of Personally-Identifiable Information of Public Housing Residents
Recently the Everett Housing Authority received notification from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development that, due to HUD error, some resident personal information was made publicly available on the (HUD) website, www.hud.gov. The information included the individual's last name, the public housing building code, and last four of their Social Security Number for approximately 428,828 public housing residents. These residents will be notified by HUD and offered free credit monitoring services for one year. HUD deeply regrets this error.
As a result of this incident HUD has explained that affected residents will begin receiving the official notification by US mail on or around Monday, November 14, 2016. The Everett Housing Authority is here to assist those affected with understanding the notice and to encourage those affected to take advantage of the no-cost credit monitoring services described in the notification.
In addition, HUD has issued the following notice on its website to inform those affected and to provide information on instructions on how those affected can protect themselves:
HUD collects personally-identifiable information (or PII) about people who receive housing assistance or other benefits from HUD. In August and September of 2016, HUD learned that some of this information was temporarily made available to the public through its website. As soon as HUD learned of these incidents, all further access to it was stopped and HUD took steps to prevent future incidents.
What kind of information about me was disclosed?
The information disclosed for public housing residents included last name and partial social security numbers. Information relating to some people who worked for employers that sought HUD/Empowerment Zone-related tax credits, including name, address, and full or partial social security numbers, was also disclosed. HUD does not know if your information was accessed or used during the time it was available on the HUD website.
What should I do?
Take steps to protect yourself from identity theft or other frauds. For this purpose, HUD is providing those affected with no-cost credit monitoring services through TransUnion for one year. To enroll, go to www.transunionmonitoring.com and enter the activation code in the box at the top of the official notification letter you received. In addition, you may register by phone by calling 1-855-288-5422 and entering the telephone passcode issued on the top right corner of your official notification letter. You will be asked to provide or confirm your identity information to enroll. You must enroll by March 31, 2017 to receive these services at no cost to you.
HUD and TransUnion will not contact you by telephone or email to request any personal information. If you are contacted by anyone asking for personal information by telephone or email in relation to this incident, do not provide it. Only submit your information directly to the website or telephone number above. For additional information on ways to protect yourself against identity theft, visit http://www.consumer.gov/idtheft. More information about this incident is available at www.hud.gov/privacy.
HUD sincerely apologizes for any inconvenience this incident may cause you.