RITA says tax information may be at risk

Staff Report

BRECKSVILLE – The Regional Income Tax Agency of Ohio (RITA) has determined that personal information contained in tax documents supplied by certain individuals may be at risk after an internal investigation revealed a DVD containing this information was missing and cannot be located.

RITA provides tax collection services for municipalities including Swanton, Metamora and Holland.

On Nov. 10, 2015, while in the process of preparing a limited number of DVDs for secure destruction, RITA discovered that one DVD case was empty and the DVD missing. RITA conducted a thorough investigation to locate the DVD and identify what information may have been contained on the missing device.

On Nov. 17, RITA determined that the DVD, which was used as part of its former system back-up process, contained copies of income tax documents submitted on or before June 2012. The DVD may have contained such personal information as name, address, Social Security number, and possibly date of birth of approximately 50,000 individuals, which represents less than 2 percent of the tax accounts handled by RITA.

DVDs used to back-up certain systems had been stored off-site at a third-party vendor’s secure facility, and were recalled by RITA to be securely destroyed. This action was being taken because RITA had moved to a new, more secure backup system which made the DVDs obsolete.

RITA is in the process of providing written notice to affected individuals whose information may have been contained on the DVD. These individuals will be eligible to receive credit monitoring and identity protection for one year at no cost to the individual through Experian.

The privacy and protection of customer information is a top priority for RITA, which deeply regrets any inconvenience or concern this incident may cause. As part of its commitment to protect the privacy and security of taxpayer information, RITA continues to evaluate ways to improve its processes and systems to prevent this type of incident from occurring in the future.

Staff Report