Class Action Suit Filed in SC Hacking Case

2:26 PM, Oct 31, 2012   |    comments
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  • Gov. Nikki Haley speaks to reporters on October 26, 2012.
  • John Hawkins (image courtesy

Columbia, SC (WLTX) -- A lawsuit was filed Wednesday by former SC Lawmaker and Attorney John Hawkins of Spartanburg, requesting a class action against Governor Nikki Haley, the SC Department Of Revenue, and James Etter, Director of SC DOR. 

The lawsuit, filed in Richland County, charges Gov. Haley, Etter, and SC DOR with failure to protect the citizens of South Carolina from the hacking that has taken place. 

The suit names the plaintiffs as all current residents of South Carolina, whose personal information was compromised as a result of the hacking.

In the press release included with the lawsuit, Hawkins states: "This hacking amounts to a 'Cyber Hurricane' and it's a Category 5.

"Tragically for the people of South Carolina, there were cost effective, non-cumbersome steps that could have been taken by these Defendants, but for whatever reason, they were not," Hawkins said. 

In the class action request, it sites South Carolina Codes of Law that specifically lay out what a state agency is, and the definition of 'breach of security system,' failed to 'render data unusable through encryption,' and states that the agency: "Shall disclose a breach of the security of the system... in the most expedient time possible..."

In the attached release, Hawkins said: "For Governor Haley to say this hacking was not preventable is like saying we can't prepare for Hurricanes because we don't know they're coming."

The class action is requesting that Haley, Etter, and the agency be subject to a fine of up to $1,000 for each resident whose personal information was accessible by the hacker. 

To read the full filing, download the attached PDF file. 

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