LUMBERTON — Five computers containing personal identification information of some county voters were stolen during a break-in this week at the Robeson County Board of Elections office at 108 W. Elizabethtown Road, but the elections director said two passwords are needed to access the information.
Dock Locklear, the elections director, said the information includes voters’ names, addresses, dates of birth and in some instances the last four digits of their Social Security number or their driver’s license number. Locklear said the number of affected voters will be known next week when the information, which is used for early voting, is retrieved from a server.
He did not want to guess the number of voters affected, but said they must have participated previously in early voting for their information to have been on any of the stolen computers. The state Board of Elections was notified immediately after the thefts were discovered on Tuesday and advised the county to send letters to the affected voters. That is expected to happen next week.
Locklear said that early voting, which begins on Oct. 18 for the Nov. 6 General Election, will not be affected by the thefts.
Lumberton police are investigating the thefts. Locklear said police were first told eight laptops were missing, but an inventory showed that there were just five stolen. He valued the computers at about $1,000 each.
For information about how to protect yourself from identity theft visit www.ftc.gov.