California DMV data breach exposes thousands of drivers' Social Security information

SACRAMENTO —  Already besieged by problems including long wait times, the California Department of Motor Vehicles on Tuesday said it suffered a data breach in which federal agencies, including the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, had improper access to the Social Security information of 3,200 people issued driver’s licenses.

Notices of the data breach went out to those whose Social Security information — including whether or not a license holder had a Social Security number — was accessed during the last four years by seven agencies, including the Internal Revenue Service, the Small Business Administration, and district attorneys in San Diego and Santa Clara counties.

Some of the data were accessed as part of investigations into criminal activity or compliance with tax laws, officials said.
The issue was discovered by the DMV on Aug. 2 and access to the information was cut off, officials said. The disclosure of the information did not involve hacking or sharing information with private individuals, according to DMV spokeswoman Anita Gore.