The family of a retired Ottawa police officer is angry after a hard drive containing his social insurance number and other personal information was stolen in early May.
A hard drive containing the pension data for about 800 former City of Ottawa employees disappeared two months ago from a safe at the Philippines office of New York-based actuarial firm Towers Watson.
The city had hired Towers Watson to evaluate its pension funds, but that was news to Carol Vahey and her husband Dan ” a retired Ottawa police officer ” when they received a letter from the company this month informing them of the theft.
“It really ticks me bloody well off that this happens, and it’s not even in our flipping country, to boot,” said Vahey.
“I took better care of my money when they handed it to me and put it under my mattress,” she said.
Towers Watson was in the process of transferring the unencrypted data to a new computer system where the data would be encrypted when they discovered the hard drive was missing from a safe.
Company spokesman Michael Millns said the hard drive contained names, birthdates, social insurance numbers and pension amounts of about 800 former City of Ottawa staff, police officers, firefighters and their beneficiaries.
He said the company has been unable to recover the hard drive, though the company believes it was stolen for parts, not data.
The company has offered to pay pensioners so they can enrol in a credit-monitoring service.
But the Vahey’s said they refuse to sign up because they’re afraid of sharing more personal information.
The company has promised to have an update on the breach at a meeting in Ottawa in September.