OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — The Washington state Administrative Office of the Courts was hacked sometime between last fall and February, and up to 160,000 Social Security numbers and 1 million driver’s license numbers may have been accessed during the data breach of its public website, officials said Thursday.
Court officials said they have only confirmed that 94 Social Security numbers were obtained and they don’t believe the larger number was compromised, but they wanted to alert the public to the possibility as a precaution.
The broader information “just happened to be on a server in an area that was accessed,” said Veronica Diseth, director of the courts’ information services division.
The breach happened due to vulnerability in an Adobe Systems Inc. software program, ColdFusion, that has since been patched, court officials said. The hack happened sometime after September but wasn’t caught until February, they said.
In a written statement, Adobe spokeswoman Heather Edell noted that the issue has been resolved.
“Adobe recommends that users follow security best practices by updating software to the latest version available,” she wrote.
Mike Keeling, the courts’ information technology operations and maintenance manager, said officials were alerted to the breach by a business on the East Coast that had a similar intrusion.
“They recognized our information in their breach log,” Keeling said, which led them to install the patch provided by Adobe and start an investigation.