AFGE on Monday filed a class action lawsuit against Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Director Katherine Archuleta and Chief Information Officer Donna Seymour alleging that they failed to heed warnings, obey security policies, and are liable for one of the largest data breaches in U.S. history.
The union is seeking both monetary damages for every employee whose personal data has been stolen and injunction relief – steps that we want OPM to take such as sharing details on what it knows about the breach, instituting a multi-layer authentication process, encrypting Social Security numbers, and implementing an internal authentication system.
The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. AFGE and two individuals, Robert Crawford and Adam Dale, are represented by a legal team led by Girard Gibbs LLP, a national litigation firm representing plaintiffs in class and collective actions in state and federal courts and in arbitration matters worldwide. Girard Gibbs LLP has vast experience with cases involving cybersecurity attacks and data breaches.
If the court grants our motion for class action status, everyone whose information has been hacked will be automatically included in the lawsuit. That said, if anyone has specific questions about the lawsuit, they should send an email with their contact information to [email protected].
As the largest federal employee union in the country, AFGE will not sit idly by while OPM fails to comply with the most basic requests for information or provide an adequate response. Even after this historic security breach, OPM has continued to use poor data security practices and inferior private-sector strategies to solve its security woes.
Since 2007, officials at OPM have been alerted to their lackluster data security policies and protocols and failed to take appropriate steps to safeguard the information. Although they were forewarned about the potential catastrophe that government employees faced, OPM’s data security got worse rather than better.
Additionally, the credit monitoring services that OPM provided have not only fallen short, but actually created more potential security risks for employees.
To learn more about how AFGE has responded on behalf of its members, visit www.afge.org/DataBreach.