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Dallas County facing more bills to deal with computer issues

One of the problems Dallas County had to contend with was removing hard drives that could have potentially contained sensitive information from computers it had sold

Dallas County is looking at a bigger bill to clean up its data breach problems.

Identifying whose information was affected and how to help them requires almost half a million dollars over original estimates.

An $800,000 estimate to remove hard drives from computers that the county accidentally sold was included in a vendor's original statement of work. No data leak issues have been associated with those sales.

That vendor, Identity Theft Guard Solutions, is now also managing for almost $50,000 a call center and free credit monitoring for people whose information was affected.

Another firm, Arete Advisors, was paid $375,000 to data mine for about 3 months “too voluminous” files that were stolen by hackers in October and potentially compromised on the dark web.

Those files were downloaded by Kroll, another company hired by the county to sort the data theft problems.

County commissioner Andy Sommerman said the firm’s help is needed.

"We know that there is a set of information that's on the dark web, but it's very labor intensive to figure out what it is, and we want to know what it is," he said.

Got a tip? Email Marina Trahan Martinez at You can follow Marina at @HisGirlHildy.

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Marina Trahan Martinez is KERA's Dallas County government accountability reporter. She's a veteran journalist who has worked in the Dallas area for many years. Prior to coming to KERA, she was on The Dallas Morning News Watchdog investigative and accountability team with Dave Lieber. She has written for The New York Times since 2001, following the 9/11 attacks. Many of her stories for The Times focused on social justice and law enforcement, including Botham Jean's murder by a Dallas police officer and her subsequent trial, Atatiana Jefferson's shooting death by a Fort Worth police officer, and protests following George Floyd's murder. Marina was part of The News team that a Pulitzer finalist for coverage of the deadly ambush of Dallas police officers in 2016.