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OPM Awards Contract to Protect Data Theft Victims

By Amaani Lyle DoD News, Defense Media Activity

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WASHINGTON, September 2, 2015 — U.S. Office of Personnel Management officials recently awarded to ID Experts a contract encompassing a comprehensive suite of identity theft and credit monitoring services for compromised victims, agency officials announced yesterday during a media conference call.

Beth Cobert, OPM’s acting director, said the most recent data breach was one of the largest cyber crimes ever carried out against the U.S. government and she pledged to provide impacted parties individualized notices about obtaining additional credit monitoring services at no cost.

All 21.5 million impacted individuals and their minor dependent children “are now covered for identity theft insurance and identity restoration services,” she said.

ID Theft, Fraud Protection Services

“Once notifications have been received,” Cobert added,” I hope people will take advantage of the comprehensive identity theft and fraud protection services we are providing to the victims of these crimes.”

These notifications, she said, will begin by the end of September and continue over the following weeks.

Navy Rear Adm. Allie Coetzee, DoD’s principal deputy for defense procurement and acquisition, said the contract immediately covers individuals with $1 million in insurance, as well as restoration services in cases following discovery of further compromise to information or identity.

“Individuals who elect to can sign up for three years of credit monitoring and identity theft protection through contractor services,” Coetzee said.

OPM has partnered with experts across government to take significant strides in securing IT systems and guarding against future attacks, the admiral explained.

“OPM is … committed to helping those whose personal information was stolen by providing them with high-quality identity theft and credit protection services free of charge,” she said.

Colbert noted that due to the nature of breached information, OPM offers individuals the option to enroll their minor dependent children for credit monitoring and other services.

Commitment to Protect Information

OPM’s acting director noted that she has a personal stake in the matter as part of OPM’s commitment to protecting the security federal employees and contractors’ information.

“As one of the millions of people who had their own personal information stolen, I completely understand and share the concern and frustration people are feeling,” she said. “I'm sorry about the concern this breach has caused and want to assure everyone impacted that we are doing all in our power to support those individuals victimized by this cybercrime.”

Cobert praised the collaboration between the U.S. General Services Administration and the Defense Department in the development and execution of the contract.

“DOD in particular is best positioned to deliver the quality and volume of support to these cybercrime victims,” she said.

(Follow Amaani Lyle on Twitter: @LyleDoDNews)