Thousands of Verizon employees at risk following insider breach — but customer data should be safe

Data Breach
Image Credit: Shutterstock (Image credit: Shutterstock)

Verizon has notified the Office of the Maine Attorney General of an incident with sensitive data belonging to its employees, but it doesn’t seem to be a full-blown data breach, or leak.

As reported by BleepingComputer, the company shared a breach notification with the US Government agency in which it stated that an employee gained unauthorized access to a file containing sensitive employee information on September 21, 2023. 

The unnamed employee apparently accessed a database with sensitive information on 63,206 employees, including people’s full names, physical addresses, Social Security Numbers (SSN), national IDs, genders, union affiliations, birth dates, and compensation information. No customer information seems to have been exposed.

Not involving the police

Verizon realized what had happened almost three months later, on December 12, 2023. 

While unauthorized access is always a risk, and proper authorities must be notified, this doesn’t seem to be a full-blown data breach, as there was no malicious intent, Verizon said. 

"At this time, we have no evidence that this information has been misused or shared outside of Verizon as a result of this issue," the breach notification reads. "We are working to ensure our technical controls are enhanced to help prevent this type of situation from reoccurring and are notifying applicable regulators about the matter."

Still, the company isn’t taking any chances and shared instructions on enrolling in a two-year identity theft protection and credit monitoring service with the breach notification email. 

In a statement shared with BleepingComputer, Verizon spokesperson Rich Young said the company did not notify the police as there was no indication of malicious intent. “We don’t believe the information was shared externally,” Young said. 

Verizon is an American telecommunications and mass media company, offering its services to more than 150 million people in the United States. As of 2022, Verizon had more than 110,000 employees, and an annual revenue of $136.8 billion.

More from TechRadar Pro

Sead is a seasoned freelance journalist based in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. He writes about IT (cloud, IoT, 5G, VPN) and cybersecurity (ransomware, data breaches, laws and regulations). In his career, spanning more than a decade, he’s written for numerous media outlets, including Al Jazeera Balkans. He’s also held several modules on content writing for Represent Communications.