Three more Manatee County School District employees reported to the Manatee County Sheriff's Office that they were victims of identity theft believed related to a data breach that resulted in the release of employees’ W-2 tax forms to hackers.
Last week, three victims came into the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office to report that they have been victims of identity theft believed to be a result of the breach. Two of the victims reported that an unknown person had filed for a federal income tax refund using their personal information. The third victim said she received a $1,800 refund check but that she had not yet filed her return.
School district officials first learned of the security breach on Feb. 3 that was a result of an email phishing scam. Corporations, school districts, tribal organizations and nonprofits across the nation have been targets of the scam, according to an IRS warning issued a day earlier.
That same evening, the district warned employees of the breach, in an email from school district Superintendent Diana Greene.
An investigation into the breach later reveaedl that someone posing as Greene had sent an email to a district payroll employee requesting all W-2 forms for district employees. That employee, with the help of another employee, complied with the request, sending a PDF file containing all 7,700 W-2s for those who had worked in the district in 2016 to the scammer.
At least three additional employees have reported an identical theft.