The employment database the government knows for certain was breached by hackers from China contains a wealth of information, some of it sensitive, about a federal employee’s career.
Federal officials said Friday that the massive intrusion was wider than acknowledged and that a database holding sensitive security clearance information also was compromised. But the Office of Personnel Management has said little about the employment data for 4 million active and former employees that it disclosed in early June was hacked. We’ve learned more about this database.
Think of it as a giant personnel file for everyone from secretaries to senior executives, the kind kept in manila folders in file drawers before the digital age. Every time a piece of information is added to the file, like a step increase, new title or change to their health insurance, the employee gets an e-mail in their Inbox to notify them.
Employees access this information by logging into a Web site called the Electronic Official Personnel Folder. In recent years, each federal agency has signed onto the system, run by a contractor at the Interior Department. The data provides a “comprehensive view of a federal employee’s career,” according to the Office of Personnel Management Web site.
The database does not just track each of the 2.1 million active civilian employees and continue maintaining records of the ones who retire or leave the government. It’s used by OPM for the vast database the agency keeps on employment trends called FedScope.
Here’s a list of what’s included in the electronic personnel folder:
- Job application to work in the government
- Start date for every federal job
- Home address, Social Security number, Date of Birth
- Salary, step increases, bonuses, promotions
- Job title, agency and any changes to the title
- Whether the job is sensitive, requiring a security clearance
- Military/veteran status and credit for leave, reduction-in-force, or retirement
- Health insurance plan
- Life insurance plan, including beneficiaries
- Retirement date
- Pension and annuity information
- Date employee left federal service
- Letters of commendation; letters of reprimand
- Training employee received on the job