The letter finally showed up in my mailbox on December 7, 2015 – about eight months after the United States Office of Personnel Management (OPM) first noticed something weird in their database records, and more than twenty months after the hack began.
“Dear FORREST BRAZEAL,” began the letter, which went on to use words like “malicious cyber intrusion”, “Social Security numbers” and “theft of background investigation records”. The letter expressed sympathy for any “concern and frustration” I felt, mentioned that no misuse of my stolen information had yet been detected, and offered a link to some identity protection resources, just in case. For legal reasons, I’m sure, there were no words of apology in the letter.
When the OPM minions – those who haven’t resigned in disgrace – finish licking and stamping, more than twenty million Americans will have received this letter. It’s the latest fallout from one of the largest government data breaches in American history, affecting current federal workers, military service members, families and retirees. And, apparently, me.