Employment Background Checks Impacted Amid Kansas Judicial Cybersecurity Attack
The Kansas court system recently faced a severe cybersecurity breach. This incident disrupted the court's information systems, causing delays for employers reliant on background checks.
The Kansas court system encountered a significant cybersecurity incident on October 12, 2023, when it fell victim to a sophisticated foreign cyberattack. In this breach, cybercriminals infiltrated the Kansas court system, compromising sensitive data and threatening to release it on the dark web through a ransomware attack. As a result, the court’s information systems, including its electronic court (eCourt) case management system, experienced disruptions. For employers relying on background checks, this disruption resulted in delays as accurate and up-to-date information became temporarily inaccessible.
Efforts to restore normalcy have been a priority for the Kansas District Court. A statement released by the Kansas Judicial Branch notes, “phased restoration of the Kansas eCourt case management system in district courts continues, although at a slower pace than had been planned.” As of January 2, 2024, the Kansas District Court Public Access Portal is back online, allowing individuals to search for cases over the Internet.
While some affected counties have regained access to the Kansas eCourt case management system, the available case information pertains to cases processed before the October 12 security incident. For cases processed on or after that date, individuals must contact the district court where the case was filed. It’s important to note that the public access case search service is specific to district court case information, and the Office of Judicial Administration will announce when appellate cases can be searched.
To address the backlog caused by the disruption, impacted courts are diligently inputting information from October to the present into the electronic system. This process may take several weeks to months. Although the portal is now operational, users should be aware that the available information may be outdated due to ongoing efforts to digitize case records previously filed on paper within the district courts.
Employers conducting background checks should remain vigilant during this transition period, recognizing the importance of accurate and timely information for informed hiring decisions. Collaborating closely with the background check vendors and understanding the nuances of the restored services will help ensure compliance and reliability in the background check process.
Release Date: February 7, 2024
Alonzo Martinez is Associate General Counsel at HireRight. Mr. Martinez is responsible for monitoring and advising on key legislative and regulatory developments globally affecting HireRight’s service delivery. His work is focused on ensuring HireRight’s performance as a consumer reporting agency and data processor complies with relevant legal, regulatory, and data furnisher requirements. Mr. Martinez obtained his Juris Doctorate from the University of Colorado, and is licensed by the Supreme Court of the State of Colorado. He is a member of the Colorado Bar Association Employment Law Division, the Association of Corporate Counsel, and the Professional Background Screening Association.