Senator Has More Questions About Data Breach

6:47 PM, Jan 16, 2013   |    comments
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Columbia, SC (WLTX) -- Senator Darrell Jackson, one of a handful of Senators tasked to investigate the data breach at the South Carolina Department of Revenue, still has questions to how the state let down so many people.

After the hacking of our states Department of Revenue, lawmakers are looking to increase IT security at state agencies with new legislation

Jackson says this is the biggest issue he's ever been apart of in his twenty years in state government.

"When I first came, we were debating the confederate flag. I thought, there is nothing that can generate more concern and cause more than this," said Jackson. "But this probably is."

Senator Darrell Jackson says he continues to get calls from his constituents with concerns over the data breach at the department of revenue. Three months after the breach and he still wants answers and he says, he's not the only one.

"Everywhere I go I run across people and parents and others who say, 'am I covered?' 'Will I be impacted?'"

Another of those questions, why did state government first hire PR firm Chernoff Newman instead of just announcing the data breach to the public?

"I mean, you have time to hire a public relations firm you know? Who's image were you really trying to protect," asked Jackson.

Jackson tells News19 he was shocked to hear that the Chief Computer Security job at the agency was vacant for almost a year, from September 2011 through August 2012.

"Why wasn't someone in place with the credentials that would have caught this? I don't want to here budget constraints. Because we can find money for just about anything we want."

While the Senator from Hopkins is demanding answers, he's optimistic the general assembly can create a solution this legislative season.

"We, the State of South Carolina, failed our citizens for not protecting them from this."

Senator Jackson expects some legislation to be passed by mid-February. He added, that he's never quite seen a situation like this that has caused both parties to put aside politics to find a solution.


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