June 28, 2006
VA to Offer Free Credit Monitoring
Secretary Nicholson Announces VA to Provide Free Credit Monitoring
WASHINGTON (June 21, 2006) - As part of the continuing efforts by the Department of
Veterans Affairs (VA) to protect and assist those potentially affected by the recent data
theft that occurred at an employee's Maryland home, Secretary of Veterans Affairs R.
James Nicholson today announced that VA will provide one year of free credit monitoring
to people whose sensitive personal information may have been stolen in the incident.
"VA continues to take aggressive steps to protect and assist people who may be potentially
affected by this data theft," said Nicholson. "VA has conducted extensive market research
on available credit monitoring solutions, and has been working diligently to determine how
VA can best serve those whose information was stolen.
"Free credit monitoring will help safeguard those who may be affected, and will provide
them with the peace of mind they deserve," he added.
The Secretary said VA has no reason to believe the perpetrators who committed this
burglary were targeting the data, and Federal investigators believe that it is unlikely that
identity theft has resulted from the data theft.
This week, VA will solicit bids from qualified companies to provide a comprehensive
credit monitoring solution. VA will ask these companies to provide expedited proposals
and to be prepared to implement them rapidly once they are under contract.
After VA hires a credit monitoring company, the Department will send a detailed letter to
people whose sensitive personal information may have been included in the stolen data.
This letter will explain credit monitoring and how eligible people can enroll or "opt-in" for
the services. The Department expects to have the services in place and the letters mailed
Secretary Nicholson also announced VA is soliciting bids to hire a compa