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WPAS

wpas-inc.com

Founded Year

1953

Stage

Private Equity | Alive

About WPAS

WPAS operates as a third party administration (TPA) firm that specializes in multi-employer benefit plan administration.

Headquarters Location

7525 SE 24th Street Suite 200

Mercer Island, Washington, 98040,

United States

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Latest WPAS News

Data Breach Alert: Welfare & Pension Administration Service, Inc.

Feb 21, 2022

To embed, copy and paste the code into your website or blog: <iframe frameborder="1" height="620" scrolling="auto" src="//www.jdsupra.com/post/contentViewerEmbed.aspx?fid=043b5536-13ff-405c-a09b-b6538be7a0b5" style="border: 2px solid #ccc; overflow-x:hidden !important; overflow:hidden;" width="100%"></iframe> Recently, Welfare & Pension Administration Service Inc. (“WPAS”) reported that it was the target of a malware attack, resulting in the names, addresses and Social Security numbers of as many as 211,822 people being compromised. The data breach lawyers at Console & Associates, P.C. are going to begin interviewing victims of the breach to determine what damages they sustained and what legal claims may be available to them. If you recently learned your information was compromised in the recent breach, reaching out to a data breach lawyer is the first step to understanding all of your options. What We Know So Far About the WPAS data breach Welfare & Pension Administration Service, Inc. is an employee benefits administration company overseeing a wide range of benefits, including Health and Welfare, Disability and Time Loss, Dental, Vision, Defined Contribution, Defined Benefit, Vacation, Apprenticeship, and Legal Services. Currently, the company manages over 80 Taft-Hartley and Public Trust Funds. WPAS was founded in Seattle, Washington, in 1953. Currently, the company is based in Mercer Island, WA. According to an official filing from the company, on July 21, 2021, WPAS learned that some of its computers were infected with a malware program that encrypted the affected systems. Following the incident, WPAS conducted an internal investigation to learn more about the scope of the incident and whether any consumer data was compromised as a result. On July 28, 2021, the company confirmed that certain folders may have been accessed or removed from the WPAS network. However, the company was unable to determine which files were actually accessed. In response, WPAS reviewed all information contained in the compromised folders and subsequently confirmed on December 20, 2021, that the names, addresses and Social Security numbers of certain individuals were included in the files. Between January 3, 2021 and February 18, 2021, Welfare & Pension Administration Service began sending out data breach notification letters to all individuals whose information was contained in the affected files. More About the Causes and Risks of Data Breaches Often, data breaches are the result of a hacker gaining unauthorized access to a company’s computer systems with the intention of obtaining sensitive consumer information. While no one can know the reason why a hacker targeted Welfare & Pension Administration Service, it is common for hackers and other criminals to identify those companies believed to have weak data security systems or vulnerabilities in their networks. Once a cybercriminal gains access to a computer network, they can then access and remove any data stored on the compromised servers. While in most cases a company experiencing a data breach can identify which files were accessible, there may be no way for the company to tell which files the hacker actually accessed or whether they removed any data. While the fact that your information was compromised in a data breach does not necessarily mean it will be used for criminal purposes, being the victim of a data breach puts your sensitive data in the hands of an unauthorized person. As a result, you are at an increased risk of identity theft and other frauds, and criminal use of your information is a possibility that should not be ignored. Given this reality, individuals who receive a Welfare & Pension Administration Service data breach notification should take the situation seriously and remain vigilant in checking for any signs of unauthorized activity. Businesses like WPAS are responsible for protecting the consumer data in their possession. If evidence emerges that Welfare & Pension Administration Service failed to adequately protect your sensitive information, you may be eligible for financial compensation through a data breach lawsuit. What Are Consumers’ Remedies in the Wake of the WPAS Data Breach? When customers decided to do business with Welfare & Pension Administration Service, they assumed that the company would take their privacy concerns seriously. And it goes without saying that consumers would think twice before giving a company access to their information if they knew it wasn’t going to be secure. Thus, data breaches such as this one raise questions about the adequacy of a company’s data security system. When a business, government entity, non-profit organization, school, or any other organization accepts and stores consumer data, it also accepts a legal obligation to ensure this information remains private. The United States data breach laws allow consumers to pursue civil data breach claims against organizations that fail to protect their information. Of course, given the recency of the Welfare & Pension Administration Service data breach, the investigation into the incident is still in its early stages. And, as of right now, there is not yet any evidence suggesting Welfare & Pension Administration Service is legally responsible for the breach. However, that could change as additional information about the breach and its causes is revealed. If you have questions about your ability to bring a data breach class action lawsuit against Welfare & Pension Administration Service, reach out to a data breach attorney as soon as possible. What Should You Do if You Receive a WPAS Data Breach Notification? If Welfare & Pension Administration Service sends you a data breach notification letter, you are among those whose information was compromised in the recent breach. While this isn’t a time to panic, the situation warrants your attention. Below are a few important steps you can take to protect yourself from identity theft and other fraudulent activity: Identify What Information Was Compromised: The first thing to do after learning of a data breach is to carefully review the data breach letter sent. The letter will tell you what information of yours was accessible to the unauthorized party. Be sure to make a copy of the letter and keep it for your records. If you have trouble understanding the letter or what steps you can take to protect yourself, a data breach lawyer can help. Limit Future Access to Your Accounts: Once you determine what information of yours was affected by the breach, the safest play is to assume that the hacker orchestrating the attack stole your data. While this may not be the case, it’s better to be safe than sorry. To prevent future access to your accounts, you should change all passwords and security questions for any online account. This includes online banking accounts, credit card accounts, online shopping accounts, and any other account containing your personal information. You should also consider changing your social media account passwords and setting up multi-factor authentication where it is available. Protect Your Credit and Your Financial Accounts: After a data breach, companies often provide affected parties with free credit monitoring services. Signing up for the free credit monitoring offers some significant protections and doesn’t impact any of your rights to pursue a data breach lawsuit against the company if it turns out they were legally responsible for the breach. You should contact a credit bureau to request a copy of your credit report—even if you do not notice any signs of fraud or unauthorized activity. Adding a fraud alert to your account will provide you with additional protection. Consider Implementing a Credit Freeze: A credit freeze prevents anyone from accessing your credit report. Credit freezes are free and stay in effect until you remove them. Once a credit freeze is in place, you can temporarily lift the freeze if you need to apply for any type of credit. While placing a credit freeze on your accounts may seem like overkill, given the risks involved, it’s justified. According to the Identity Theft Resource Center (“ITRC”), placing a credit freeze on your account is the “single most effective way to prevent a new credit/financial account from being opened.” However, just 3% of data breach victims place a freeze on their accounts. Regularly Monitor Your Credit Report and Financial Accounts: Protecting yourself in the wake of a data breach requires an ongoing effort on your part. You should regularly check your credit report and all financial account statements, looking for any signs of unauthorized activity or fraud. You should also call your banks and credit card companies to report the fact that your information was compromised in a data breach. Below is a copy of the initial data breach letter issued by Welfare & Pension Administration Service, Inc.: Dear [Consumer], Welfare & Pension Administration Service, Inc. (“WPAS”) is writing to make you aware of a recent incident that may impact some of your information. WPAS is a third-party administration firm that specializes in multi-employer benefit plan administration. We have your information because we provided administrative services to a fund(s) with which you may be associated, including <>. This notice provides you with information about the incident, our response, and steps you may take to help protect your personal information, should you feel it is appropriate to do so. What Happened? On July 21, 2021, WPAS discovered that portions of our computer network were infected with malware that encrypted certain systems. We promptly activated our Incident Response Team, isolated the affected systems, initiated other containment measures, and with the assistance of third-party forensic specialists, launched an investigation into the nature and scope of the incident. On or about July 28, 2021, the investigation confirmed that certain folders may have been accessed or removed from our systems without authorization. We therefore undertook a lengthy, time-intensive, and thorough review of the potentially impacted folders to identify the information that was potentially impacted and to whom it related. We completed these preliminary efforts on or around December 7, 2021, at which time we began the process of reviewing our internal files and systems to identify accurate address information for the potentially impacted individuals. After this process was completed on or around December 20, 2021, WPAS worked with its partner funds to provide notification to potentially impacted individuals as quickly as possible. What Information Was Involved? Our investigation determined that the information related to you that may have been potentially affected includes your <><>. Importantly, there is no indication that your specific information was accessed or misused. However, we are notifying potentially impacted individuals out of an abundance of caution. What We Are Doing. Information security is one of WPAS’s highest priorities, and we have security measures in place to help protect information in our care. Upon discovering this incident, we promptly took steps to respond, including taking steps to mitigate the event by resetting passwords across the network and bringing in third-party forensic specialists to assist with the investigation and remediation. Further, we notified federal law enforcement regarding this event. Moreover, following our investigation, WPAS has taken steps to further secure its environment, and is reviewing and enhancing existing policies and procedures and implementing additional safeguards to further secure the information in our systems and reduce the likelihood of a similar future event. We are also notifying relevant regulatory authorities as required. As an added precaution, WPAS is offering you access to twelve (12) months of identity monitoring services through Kroll at no cost to you. You will find information on how to activate these services in the enclosed “Steps You Can Take To Help Protect Your Information.” We encourage you to activate these services as we are not able to do so on your behalf. What You Can Do. We encourage you to remain vigilant against incidents of identity theft and fraud by reviewing your account statements and monitoring your free credit reports for suspicious activity and to detect errors. Please also review the information contained in the attached “Steps You Can Take To Help Protect Your Information.” For More Information. We understand that you may have questions about this incident that are not addressed in this notice. If you have additional questions or concerns, please call our dedicated assistance line at (855) 568-2075, which is available Monday through Friday, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Pacific Time, excluding major U.S. holidays. You may also write to WPAS at PO Box 34203, Seattle, WA 98124-1203. We take this incident very seriously and sincerely regret any inconvenience or concern it may cause you.

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WPAS Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

  • When was WPAS founded?

    WPAS was founded in 1953.

  • Where is WPAS's headquarters?

    WPAS's headquarters is located at 7525 SE 24th Street, Mercer Island.

  • What is WPAS's latest funding round?

    WPAS's latest funding round is Private Equity.

  • Who are the investors of WPAS?

    Investors of WPAS include Periscope Equity.

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