A top US law firm used by Google has confirmed it was hit by a data breach.
Immigration law firm Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy said that the breach saw the personal information of current and former Google employees affected.
The company did not say exactly what data was accessed or how many employees were affected, but the firm looks after a wide range of Google's immigration law cases, meaning hundreds of workers could have had their information stolen.
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Google data breach
When quizzed by TechCrunch, Fragomen spokesperson Michael McNamara declined to say how many Google employees were affected by the breach.
Google has also yet to respond to a request for comment.
Fragomen plays an important role for Google's workforce, offering verification screening services to determine if employees are eligible and authorized to work in the United States.
All companies operating in the United States are required to maintain a Form I-9 file on every employee to ensure that they are legally allowed to work and not subject to more restrictive immigration rules.
However these Form I-9 files contain a lot of sensitive information about the subject, as well as government documents such as passports, ID cards and driver’s licenses.
In its filing (opens in new tab) to the Attorney General, Fragomen said that the breach was caused by an unathorized third party accessing a file that contained such personally identifiable information on a "limited number" of current and former Google employees.
Both companies will hope that the incident is not too serious, as the repurcussions for falling foul of a data breach can be very expensive.
A recent report from IBM found that falling victim to a data breach (opens in new tab) can be devastating for a company's reputation as well as to its bottom line, with each incident costing companies an average of $3.86m per breach.
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Via TechCrunch (opens in new tab)