FRANKFORT, Ky. — Kentucky will temporarily shut down its unemployment system to bolster security protections to block an onslaught of cybercrime being detected nationwide, state officials said Thursday.
What You Need To Know
- Kentucky's UI system will be dormant for four days to bolster cybercrime security
- The online portal will be down from midnight Thursday through Monday
- Claimants will be unable to file new claims or request benefits
- When the new system launches next week, claimants will have to set up a new 12-character password
The four-day system shutdown will run from midnight Thursday through Monday, said Amy Cubbage, the governor’s general counsel. State officials suspect that individuals or criminal enterprises have attempted to hack into the system’s customer data, she said.
During the shutdown, claimants will be unable to file new claims or request benefits.
“We hate that we have to do this, to make things more difficult,” Cubbage said at a news conference. “But these criminals are relentless. They will not stop.”
Internal systems will remain operational, allowing the continued processing of previously filed claims, she said. State unemployment staff will be able to backdate any new claims that should have been filed during the shutdown.
Gov. Andy Beshear said the action was “unavoidable” due to the “sophistication of the criminal attacks” on unemployment systems being detected across the country.
“And they’ve moved from hoping to get lucky to trying to directly steal the money of people who qualify for and are being paid,” the governor said.
When the system is relaunched next week, claimants will have to set up a new 12-character password, Cubbage said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.