Posted On March 19, 2023 Consumer Privacy & Data Breaches
March 19, 2023 – Happy State Bank (HSB) discovered that sensitive customer data kept on the business’s computer system had been accessed as a result of an email phishing attempt on March 16, 2023, and as a result, it filed a notice of data breach with the Maine Attorney General’s office. The breach led to an unauthorized entity obtaining access to the names and Social Security numbers of customers, according to the company’s report. Once it was established that customer data had been compromised, HSB started notifying everyone who had been impacted by the event.
If you receive a notification of a data breach, it is essential that you know what is at risk. The data breach lawyers of Console & Associates, P.C. are investigating the Happy State Bank data breach on behalf of those whose information was exposed. As part of this investigation, we’re providing free consultations to anyone affected by the breach who wants to learn more about the risks of identity theft, what they can do to stay safe, and whether they have any legal alternatives to demand restitution from Happy State Bank.
Based in Glad, Texas, Happy State Bank is a banking institution. More than 60 facilities are run by Happy State Bank across the South Plains, Texas Panhandle, Dallas/Fort Worth area, and Central Texas. Happy State Bank became a division of Centennial Bank in 2022. Happy State Bank, which was founded in 1908, presently has a staff of about 750 and an annual income of about $136 million.
Happy State Bank discovered unusual behavior in an employee’s email account in July 2022, according to the company’s filing with the Maine Attorney General’s office. In an effort to understand more about the incident and determine whether any customer information was compromised, the business began an investigation. The investigation verified that a successful phishing attempt against the staff email account had gained access to some files containing sensitive customer data.
Happy State Bank started to examine the affected files after learning that private customer information had been made available to an unauthorized source in order to ascertain what information had been hacked and whose customers were impacted. Your name and Social Security number may have been exposed, albeit the specifics vary on the individual.
On March 16, 2023, Happy State Bank notified everyone whose information was affected as a result of the current data security issue by sending data breach letters.
The consumer privacy lawyers at Console & Associates, P.C. help customers affected by data and security breaches pursue legal solutions by offering free consultations. By explaining your rights in clear, concise terms, we help you make an informed decision about your next steps. If you are a victim of the Happy State Bank data breach, Console & Associates, P.C. will investigate at no charge to you and offer advice on how to proceed. If you decide to pursue a case, rest assured that we don’t get paid unless you do. If your claim is successful, legal fees are either paid out of the funds recovered or by the defendant. If your claim is not successful, you pay nothing.
To schedule your free consultation, just call (866) 778-5500 today or fill out our secure contact form.
Below is a portion of the letter sent to affected individuals:
Happy State Bank (“HSB”) is writing to inform you of an incident that may affect the security of some of your data. This notice provides information about the incident, our response, and resources available to you to help protect your information should you feel it necessary to do so.
What Happened? In July 2022, we became aware of unusual activity on the email account of an employee who is no longer with the company. We immediately began a review of the matter, which confirmed the employee was the subject of a phishing email scam. The individual’s HSB email account was accessed without authorization between July 28th and 29th, 2022. The unauthorized activity was limited to this one email account. All HSB core banking systems were unaffected and remain secure. We performed a careful review and determined that data for certain individuals was stored within the account at the time. However, our investigation was not able to confirm whether any email messages or attachments were actually accessed or viewed without authorization. Therefore, we are providing you with this notice in an abundance of caution.
What Information Was Involved? We are not aware of any misuse of data as a result of this incident. However, HSB is notifying you out of an abundance of caution because your information was present in the employee’s email account during the period of unauthorized access. The information related to you that was stored within the email account includes the following: [Redacted].
What We Are Doing. We take this incident and the security of personal information in our care seriously. Upon learning of this incident, we moved quickly to investigate, assess and strengthen the security of our email environment to respond to the incident. Our response included resetting the account password and performing a review of the affected email account. We also reported the incident to federal law enforcement. We are also offering you access to complimentary credit monitoring services for [Redacted] months through Equifax. These services include credit monitoring with email notifications, daily access to your Equifax credit report, WebScan notifications, automatic fraud alerts, identity restoration services, and identity theft insurance coverage. If you wish to activate these services, you may follow the instructions included in the enclosed Steps You Can Take to Protect Personal Information.
What You Can Do. We encourage you to remain vigilant against incidents of identity theft and fraud by reviewing your account statements and monitoring your free credit reports for suspicious activity and to detect errors over the next 12 to 24 months. You may also review the information contained in the enclosed Steps You Can Take to Protect Personal Information. There you will also find more information about the credit monitoring services we are making available to you. While HSB will cover the cost of these services, you will need to complete the activation process to take advantage of these services.
For More Information. We understand that you may have questions about this incident that are not addressed in this letter. If you have additional questions, please call 1-855-675-0999 (toll free), Monday through Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. Central Time (excluding major U.S. holidays). Again, we take this incident and the security of personal information in our care very seriously and sincerely regret any inconvenience or concern this incident may cause you.