Glitch deletes $600,000 worth of records from Santa Clara

Posted by Mike Luttrell

More than a million archived images stored on Santa Clara County Housing Authority computers have been unintentionally scrubbed out, and it's going to cost $600,000 to get them back.

Approximately 1.6 million images of personal data belonging to people in federally subsidized rental units simply disappeared, in what local radio station KLIV called "a major computer failure." Luckily, they were only backup images. But it's going to cost $600,000 to go back through the original records and pull all of the data to create a new backup database.

The county's Housing Authority board voted this week and approved the massive, unexpected cost.

The 1.6 million records accounts for around 12% of all the tenants and owners on file. The deleted documents included scanned copies of their driver's licenses and social security cards.

However, the authority assured everyone that no one's personal information was at risk. The documents did not get transferred anywhere, they just disappeared.