Stolen Laptop Includes Job Applicants’ Psych Screenings
A laptop computer containing the psychological screenings of 441 California peace officer applicants was stolen in Mexico earlier this month, State Personnel Board officials said yesterday, the Sacramento Bee reports.
The laptop, stolen from the car of a psychologist doing contract work for the state, had "raw data" from interviews with applicants for positions in the California Highway Patrol, the state Department of Corrections and other agencies, according to Personnel Board spokesperson Sherry Evans.
Evans said the completed psychological evaluations were previously erased from the computer and no other personal or financial information was stored on the computer.
The unnamed psychologist notified officials of the theft on Jan. 15, and notifications were mailed out last week after resurrecting the data from another computer to find the affected applicants' addresses.
Evans said the psychologist was probably unaware of a state requirement to encrypt all sensitive personal data stored on a computer. She added that the Personnel Board's 30 contract psychologists now will be required to take privacy training and sign revised contracts requiring them to use encryption on all state data (Swett, Sacramento Bee, 1/31).