The federal government is warning current and former civil servants, members of the RCMP and Canadian Armed Forces that their personal and financial information may have been accessed in a data breach that occurred on Oct. 19.
The breach affects federal data held by two companies that provide employee relocation assistance: Brookfield Global Relocation Services (BGRS) and SIRVA Worldwide Relocation & Moving Services.
The data breach may have included personal and financial information provided by employees to companies in 1999, according to the Treasury Department of Canada Secretariat. In a press release on Friday.
“Given the vast amount of data being evaluated, we are not yet able to identify the specific individuals affected,” the release states.
The Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat provides credit monitoring or replacement services for valid passports that may have been compromised to current and former employees and members who have transferred to BGRS or SIRVA Canada within the past 24 years. He said it would be provided.
Federal authorities said they were meeting with both relocation services companies to monitor the matter, and the incident was also reported to the Canadian Cyber Security Centre, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner and the RCMP.
For organizations dealing with a cybersecurity breach, the first step is to stop the bleeding, says cyber analyst Ritesh Kotak.
“Maybe they’re going to take the system offline. The federal government has in-house expertise, so I think they’re going to come in and do what’s called a ‘forensic audit.’ Who has access to what?” Could it have been done?” Kotak told CTVNews.ca by phone on Saturday.
The federal government will update affected current and former employees and members with login credentials similar to those used by BGRS or SIRVA Canada and enable multi-factor authentication on accounts used for online transactions. We ask you to monitor your online financial and personal information. Description of unusual activity suggested by the federal government.
If unusual activity is discovered, affected people are asked to immediately notify their financial institution, contact local police and contact the Canadian Fraud Prevention Center via online systems or by phone.
CTVNews.ca has reached out to the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat for comment.