Press/Journalists

Press Release
July 16, 2009

National Archives Status Update on Loss of Clinton Administration Hard Drive

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Washington, DC…This is a status update on the loss of an external hard drive containing copies of Clinton Administration Executive Office of the President (EOP) data. The external hard drive includes some personally identifying information (PII) of persons who may have worked in the Clinton Executive Office of the President, visited the White House complex, or just submitted PII to the White House (e.g., resumes).

The National Archives recently sent notification letters to approximately 15,750 individuals whose names and social security numbers are on the hard drive that is missing from the National Archives facility in College Park, Maryland. The Archives is offering these individuals one year of free credit monitoring.

The notifications letters were written on National Archives letter head and signed by Adrienne C. Thomas, Acting Archivist of the United States. However, the letters were mailed by Experian, the credit monitoring contractor, who formatted the letters and envelopes in a manner that has raised questions by some recipients about the authenticity of the breach notification letters and the offer of free credit monitoring. NARA would like to assure all individuals affected by this breach that the notification letters are legitimate.

Because of the extremely large volume of data on the drive, we do not know yet the total number of individuals whose privacy has been affected. If more individuals are identified, we will continue to send additional breach notices on a rolling basis. Please note that persons may have received a letter even if they did not work in the Clinton EOP – e.g., because the SSN they submitted in order to visit the White House was found on the hard drive. On the other hand, not everyone who worked in the Clinton EOP will necessarily receive a letter; rather, letters have only been sent to those Clinton staff whose personal information has been found on the hard drive.

Any member of the public who is concerned that his or her personal information may have been compromised as a result of this potential breach should call the National Archives Breach Response Call Line. The Call Line can be reached at 1-877-281-0771 or 301-837-3769 or via e-mail at breach_response@nara.gov. The missing hard drive is a two-terabyte Western Digital MY BOOK external hard drive measured 6.9 x 4.1 x 6.3 inches and weighed 4.25 pounds. The National Archives Inspector General has been actively investigating the loss. At this stage of the investigation, there is no evidence that the missing MY BOOK was targeted for the information contained on the hard drive, nor can it be determined that the loss is the result of theft. In an effort to recover the missing hard drive, the National Archives is offering a reward of up to $50,000 for information that leads to its recovery. If you have information about the missing hard drive, call the United States Secret Service Washington Field Office at 202-406-8800.

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For press information, contact the National Archives Public Affairs staff at 202-357-5300.

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