Data Security Notice
Women’s Center & Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh (WC&S) is providing notice of a recent cyber event that may have affected the security of the information that we maintain. We take this matter very seriously because we are committed to the privacy and security of all information in our possession. At this time, we are not aware of any misuse of your information. However, we are providing this notice to tell you about what happened and suggest ways that you can protect your information.
On May 26, 2023, we were the target of a cyber attack on our computer network where we store information. As soon as we detected this, we took immediate steps to securely restore operations, so that we could continue to meet the individual and evolving needs of those affected by domestic violence without significant disruption. We reported this incident to Federal law enforcement. We also started working with nationally recognized third-party cybersecurity consultants to assist us with our investigation, to actively monitor our network to ensure containment, and to determine the scope of the incident. The safety and security of the people we care for was our top priority throughout our investigation.
What Information Was Involved
Shortly after the attack, the cyber criminals provided us with five documents they claim to have removed from our network. We analyzed those records and will be providing notice as required under Pennsylvania law and offering complimentary credit monitoring services where appropriate. Since this incident happened, WC&S has been working to determine what, if any, additional information may have been impacted. Unfortunately, because of the nature of this attack and the lack of data available to our investigators, we are unable to determine whether the cyber criminals accessed and/or acquired any additional information from our network and, if so, whose information was impacted.
What Are We Doing?
Our investigators searched dark web sources and found no indication that any personal information that WC&S maintains had been released or offered for sale as a result of this incident. Additionally, there is no evidence that WC&S information has been used or shared to commit fraud or any other criminal activities. Please be assured that we are closely monitoring our systems, data, and network access as we always do. Additionally, we are making the necessary changes to strengthen our network against any future attacks.
What You Can Do
Out of an abundance of caution, we are posting this notice to alert the people we care about what happened. Although we do not know of any inappropriate use of any of the potentially accessed information, we encourage individuals to remain vigilant and closely monitor financial accounts and credit reports for inaccurate information and to report any unusual activity to law enforcement. If fraudulent or unauthorized use of information is suspected, individuals should contact local law enforcement.
For More Information
If you need more information or have other questions, please call us at (412) 894-2119, Monday through Friday, between 9 AM and 5 PM ET.
We sincerely apologize that this occurred and assure you that our team is working to help prevent data security issues from occurring in the future. The privacy and security of your information is very important to us, and we remain committed to doing everything we can to maintain the confidentiality of your information.
MORE INFORMATION ABOUT IDENTITY THEFT AND WAYS TO PROTECT YOURSELF
Visit https://www.experian.com/blogs/ask-experian/category/fraud-and-identity-theft/ for general information regarding identity protection. You can obtain additional information about fraud alerts, security freezes, and preventing identity theft from the consumer reporting agencies listed below and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) by calling its identity theft hotline: 877-438-4338; TTY: 1-866-653-4261. They also provide information online at https://consumer.ftc.gov/features/identity-theft. The FTC’s address is: Federal Trade Commission, Division of Privacy and Identity Protection, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20580. You have the ability to place a security freeze on your credit reports by contacting the following agencies.
National Credit Reporting Agencies Contact Information
Obtain Your Credit Report
You should also monitor your credit reports. You may periodically obtain your credit reports from each of the national consumer reporting agencies. In addition, under federal law, you are entitled to one free copy of your credit report every 12 months from each of the three nationwide consumer reporting agencies listed above. You may obtain a free copy of your credit report by going to www.AnnualCreditReport.com or by calling (877) 322-8228. You also may complete the Annual Credit Report Request Form available from the FTC at https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/sites/www.consumer.ftc.gov/files/articles/pdf/pdf-0093-annual-report-request-form.pdf and mail it to Annual Credit Report Request Service, P.O. Box 105281, Atlanta, GA 30348-5281. You may also contact any of the three major consumer reporting agencies to request a copy of your credit report. You may be able to obtain one or more (depending on the state) additional copies of your credit report, free of charge. You must contact each of the credit reporting agencies directly.
If you discover inaccurate information or a fraudulent transaction on your credit report, you have the right to request that the consumer reporting agency delete that information from your credit report file.
You may want to consider placing a fraud alert on your credit report. An initial fraud alert is free and will stay on your credit file for one year. The alert informs creditors of possible fraudulent activity within your report and requests that the creditor contact you prior to establishing any new accounts in your name. To place a fraud alert on your credit report, contact any of the three national credit reporting agencies using the contact information listed above. As soon as one credit bureau confirms the fraud alert, they will notify the others. Additional information is available at www.annualcreditreport.com.
You have the ability to place a security freeze on your credit report at no cost to you. A security freeze is intended to prevent credit, loans and services from being approved in your name without your consent. To place a security freeze on your credit report, you may be able to use an online process, an automated telephone line, or a written request to all three of the credit reporting agencies listed above. The following information must be included when requesting a security freeze (note that if you are requesting a credit report for your spouse, this information must be provided for him/her as well): (1) full name, with middle initial and any suffixes; (2) Social Security number; (3) date of birth; (4) current address and any previous addresses for the past five years; (5) a legible copy of a government-issued identification card, (6) proof of current address, such as a legible copy of a recent utility bill or bank or insurance statement, (7) a legible copy of a recent W-2, pay stub, or Social Security card, and (8) if you are a victim of identity theft, a copy of either the police report, investigative report, or complaint to a law enforcement agency concerning identity theft. It is essential that each copy be legible, display your name and current mailing address, and the date of issue. Under federal law, you cannot be charged to place, lift, or remove a security freeze.
After receiving your freeze request, each credit reporting company will send you a confirmation letter containing a unique PIN (personal identification number) or password. Keep the PIN or password in a safe place, you will need it if you choose to lift the freeze.
Additional Helpful Information
Even if you do not find any suspicious activity on your initial credit reports, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recommends that you check your credit reports periodically. Checking your credit report periodically can help you spot problems and address them quickly.
If you find suspicious activity on your credit reports or have reason to believe your information is being misused, call your local law enforcement agency and file a police report. Be sure to obtain a copy of the police report, as many creditors will want the information it contains to absolve you of the fraudulent debts. You may also file a complaint with the FTC by contacting them at the information provided above.
If your personal information has been used to file a false tax return, to open an account or to attempt to open an account in your name, or to commit fraud or other crimes against you, you may file a police report in the city in which you currently reside.