Sensitive Teacher Information Missing with Stolen Laptop

December 8, 2005

Walker Robinson

More than a thousand San Antonio ISD teachers were worried Tuesday about possibility becoming identity theft victims, News 4 WOAI learned, after a laptop computer with their personal information on it was stolen.

SAISD elementary school teachers received e-mails Tuesday telling them their names, birthdates and social security numbers were stolen, officials said.

That had several teachers demanding answers from SAISD.

“I’m pretty outraged, and very upset that this information has gotten out,” Shelly Potter the Teacher’s Union President said. Angry SAISD teachers called the union Tuesday for help, Potter said.

“If somebody has your social security number, they can steal your identity, “Potter said. “That's a big concern.”

A district employee had taken the laptop home and left it in the car, SAISD officials said.

“The vehicle door was not locked, and someone entered the vehicle,” SAISD Police Chief Mike Pimentel said. “While inside the vehicle, they opened the trunk and found there was a laptop computer.”

Inside that laptop there was information on nearly all the pre-kindergarten, first, second and third grade teachers in the district, officials said. The employee was allowed to work at home, the district said.

Police were still searching for the laptop Tuesday, but some claim there is one reason to be thankful.

“It was only teacher information,” SAISD Associate Superintendent Dr. Iris Amon said. “We, of course, are devastated that it's teachers, but we know it was not students. And that's good news from our perspective.”

“I do want to say we feel for the teachers,” Amon said.

Police don't believe the thief knows that information is on the laptop. The files are password protected, officials told News 4 WOAI.

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