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.
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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.