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Posted On February 16, 2022 Consumer Privacy & Data Breaches

Data Breach Alert: Linn County, Oregon

NOTICE: If you received a NOTICE OF DATA BREACH letter from Linn County, Oregon, contact the attorneys at Console & Associates at (866) 778-5500 to discuss your legal options, or submit a confidential Case Evaluation form here.


Data Breach AlertFebruary 16, 2022 – Recently, the government of Linn County, Oregon announced it was the victim of a cyberattack stemming from the installation of ransomware on the county’s computer network. As a result of the attack, the county government chose to take down several websites temporarily. While the extent of this data security incident is still under investigation, those impacted by a data breach should be sure they understand what happened, what their rights are, and how they can pursue them. The data breach lawyers at Console & Associates, P.C. are actively investigating this security breach. If an investigation reveals that Linn County failed to ensure the safety of consumer data leading up to the breach, the local government may be liable through a data breach class action lawsuit.

Cyberattacks such as this one are increasingly common in today’s society. Today more than ever, businesses and government entities store data electronically. While there are certainly many ways to protect against cyberthreats, hackers have ways of identifying vulnerabilities in data security systems, which they can then exploit.

When a hacker breaches a computer system, they can steal sensitive consumer information from the compromised systems. While there is no guarantee that this information will be used for criminal purposes, that is not an uncommon occurrence. Thus, as a matter of course, after an organization experiences a data breach, they will inform anyone whose information was compromised. Despite the risks data breaches present, many consumers fail to take precautionary measures to protect themselves from identity theft and other frauds.

Can Consumers Whose Data Was Leaked Pursue Legal Action Against a Company?

When you allowed Linn County access to your personal data, you trusted the government to keep your sensitive information safe. However, news of the Linn County data breach raises some very serious questions about the entity’s data security measures and whether the county could have done more to prevent this type of cyber-attack.

Local government entities have a legal obligation to protect consumer information in their possession. Although creating and maintaining a data security system is costly, this is a necessary expense given the frequency with which cyberattacks occur.

Consumers whose personal, identifying, financial or healthcare-related data was compromised in a data breach can pursue legal action against an organization that misused or mishandled their information. However, the investigation into the Linn County breach is only in its beginning phases. For that reason, it is too early to tell if Linn County was legally responsible for the breach. However, our data breach attorneys are investigating the Linn County security breach to determine the potential legal remedies of those affected.

If you have questions about your ability to pursue a data breach class action lawsuit against Linn County, contact a data breach attorney as soon as possible.

What to Do If You Received a Data Breach Notification from Linn County

If you receive a data breach notification from Linn County in the coming weeks, it means your personal data was among that which was compromised in the recent cyberattack. It also means a cybercriminal had access to—and may have stolen—your personal data. Given the risks involved, it is important you remain vigilant by taking the following steps:

  1. Figure Out What Information Was Stolen: Carefully read the data breach letter sent by Linn County to determine the type of data that was compromised in the breach. You should also take a copy of the data breach letter and keep it for your records. Of course, data breach letters are not always easy to understand. A consumer privacy lawyer can help victims of a data breach understand what was compromised and how to protect themselves.
  2. Prevent the Hacker from Accessing Your Accounts: Once you determine the scope of the breach and how it affected you, you should take all steps to prevent cybercriminals from accessing your credit or financial accounts. For example, you should change all passwords and security questions for your online accounts. You should also consider setting up multi-factor authentication where it is available.
  3. Protect Your Credit and Your Financial Accounts: In the wake of a data breach, organizations usually provide free credit monitoring services for a specified period of time. This is not a gimmick, and you do not give up any rights by taking an organization up on their offer. Additionally, you should contact one of the three main credit bureaus to request a copy of your credit report. Even if you do not notice any signs of fraud or unauthorized activity, it is a good idea to request a fraud alert. Fraud alerts are free and serve as a red flag to potential lenders and creditors that your information was compromised.
  4. Consider a Credit Freeze: A credit freeze prevents access to your credit report unless you specifically authorize it. Credit freezes are free and last until you remove them. While placing a credit freeze on your accounts may initially seem like a drastic measure, according to the Identity Theft Resource Center (“ITRC”), doing so is the “single most effective way to prevent a new credit/financial account from being opened.” However, ITRC reports that just 3% of consumers whose information is leaked place a freeze on their accounts. Once a credit freeze is in place, you can temporarily lift the freeze if you need to apply for any type of credit.
  5. Regularly Monitor Your Credit Report and Financial Accounts: Protecting yourself in the wake of a data breach is not a one-time task. You should continually monitor your credit report and all financial accounts, keeping an eye out for any signs of unauthorized activity or fraud. You may also consider calling your banks and credit card companies to report the fact that your information was compromised in a data breach.

Additional Details About the Linn County Data Breach

According to a statement made by a Linn County representative, the local county government first discovered the incident around 6 a.m. on January 24, 2022.  The details of the cyberattack have not yet been released; however, the county confirmed that due to the ransomware attack, it chose to temporarily take down the city’s main web page as well as the Linn County Clerk’s website. A representative confirmed that the Linn County Health Department’s website was not affected by the cyberattack.

In response, the City of Albany, which shares some computers with the county government, disconnected all devices from the county’s network.  It remains to be seen whether the data security incident resulted in any consumer or public employee information being compromised.

If You Have Questions About Your Rights Following the Linn County Data Breach, Console & Associates, P.C. Can Help

At Console & Associates, P.C., our consumer privacy lawyers monitor all security and data breaches to help affected consumers pursue their legal remedies. We offer free consultations to victims of data breaches and can explain your rights in clear, understandable terms so you can make an informed decision about how to proceed with your case. If you’ve been affected by the Linn County data breach or any other data security incident, Console & Associates, P.C., will investigate your case at no charge and offer you thorough advice about how to most effectively proceed with your case. If you decide to bring a case, we only get paid if you do. If your claim is successful, any legal fees are either paid by the defendant or come out of the funds recovered from the defendant. If your claim doesn’t result in a recovery, you will pay nothing.

To schedule your free consultation, just call (866) 778-5500 today or fill out our secure contact form.


NOTICE: If you received a NOTICE OF DATA BREACH letter from Linn County, Oregon, contact the attorneys at Console & Associates at (866) 778-5500 to discuss your legal options, or submit a confidential Case Evaluation form here.