Active-duty data on stolen laptop too

TEXT OF STORY

SCOTT JAGOW: It's bad enough that 26 million veterans are at risk for identity theft because someone stole a laptop from a Veteran's Affairs employee. But now, the VA says information on most of the active-duty military is out there as well. Alisa Roth reports.

ALISA ROTH: Names, birthdates and social security numbers of were among the data in the electronic file stolen May 3. Besides active duty personnel, the file included information from members of the National Guard and the Reserves.

The military doesn't think the taker was out to commit identity theft. But it acknowledges the incident does raise national security concerns about national security.

Peter Swire is a law professor at Ohio State. He says it would probably be cheaper to upgrade network security

PETER SWIRE: If your company ends up on the front page of the paper, ends up having to send out notices to lots of people, ends up with regulator scrutiny, that's very expensive. I think that tilts the balance toward saying we really ought to get our systems in place.

And then there are the legal costs: Veterans groups filed a class-action suit against the Feds yesterday. They want $1,000 for each affected Vet.

In New York, I'm Alisa Roth for Marketplace.

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