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Connecticut attorney general urges small businesses to reach out about cyber-attacks

Connecticut Attorney General William Tong
Office of Connecticut Attorney General William Tong

It's been more than 100 days since the war in Ukraine began, and the U.S. has experienced a surge in cyberattacks. William Tong, Connecticut’s attorney general, said affected small businesses should reach out to his office.

Cyberattacks and data privacy issues have affected businesses large and small. A recent cyber-breach at Home Depot came through a heating, ventilation and air conditioning vendor, Tong said.

“If you are an HVAC vendor, say in Hartford, Connecticut, and you get a contract from Home Depot. That’s amazing, right?" he said. "That’s what you are looking for, but it comes with a lot of risk and responsibility."

Tong’s office has a special online portal to help small businesses conform with the data breach reporting requirements of Connecticut’s new cybersecurity law.

Under the law, which took effect last October, companies large and small have to report data breaches to the state, said Michele Lucan, head of the Attorney General’s online privacy office.

“It's notice to our office and it's notice to affected Connecticut residents. And the statute calls for that notice to be provided without unreasonable delay,” she said.

The law holds companies liable if they don’t notify the state within 60 days of a cyber-breach that involves personal information.

As WSHU Public Radio’s award-winning senior political reporter, Ebong Udoma draws on his extensive tenure to delve deep into state politics during a major election year.