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Case Studies

Officials in ten states including Vermont, Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Maine and Oklahoma have all reported a security breach which has accessed the information of the states' job seekers. The third party vendor, America’s Joblink Alliance, which operates the Joblink nationwide database has notified the states that the job seeker service had been compromised by malicious software.

While the full scope of the breach is not yet known, the AP says it's unknown whether social security numbers were breached, and that officials advise all system users to review bank, credit and debit accounts.

Experts with Prevalent, leaders in third-party risk management, comment on the massive breach:

Brad Keller, JD, CTPRP, Sr. Director 3rd Party Strategy, Prevalent, says "Certainly there is still much more to be revealed about the breach, but one thing is quickly reinforced – breaches may occur at vendors that a company has never identified pose a risk or which needs to be assessed. Companies need to take a broad look to determine all of the places outsourced risk could strike."

Jeff Hill, Director of Product Management, Prevalent comments: "One challenge we encounter when working with companies developing vendor risk management programs for the first time is the simple task of identifying all their vendors. On the surface, it sounds absurd, but modern organizations utilize myriad services that, at first glance, don’t conform to the conventional notion of a vendor. The Vermont Labor Department breach and other Joblink Alliance users highlight one example: a service embedded in the organization’s website. If we were to ask the vendor risk management team – assuming one exists – at the Vermont, Arkansas or Main agency to list their most critical vendors, it’s unlikely a JobLink would be top of mind. As these states' Departments of Labor learned the hard way, sometimes the riskiest vendors are the most obscure."