Registrar office

Fairfax’s Deputy Registrar’s Office in Renville County closed after employees illegally accessed driver and vehicle data

According to the statement, an audit found seven cases in which both users accessed Driver and vehicle service data without lawful commercial purpose.

The West Central Tribune does not appoint deputy clerks whose access has been revoked because they have not been formally charged with a felony.

“As a result, their access to DVS data has been permanently revoked, as required by law,” the statement read. Information about the misuse has been forwarded to the Renville County District Attorney’s Office.

One person who responded to the Fairfax registrar’s office declined to comment when reached by the West Central Tribune.

“If you have a press release, what more do you want,” they said.

According to the statement, the office is privately owned and operated and the office will have to close until more people can be hired, trained and authorized to access the data from the driver and vehicle departments of the Ministry of Security. public. In addition to vehicle title and registration services, the office is also a limited driver’s license agent.

“We take our work and our customers’ data very seriously,” said Emma Corrie, Director of Driver and Vehicle Services.

Corrie said the details seen were either a personal research or family members and, although a Minnesota law was broken, there was no malicious intent and public data remains safe. .

“Under the law our hands are tied,” she said. “We must revoke access to the data.”

Corrie stressed that the security of public data is very important to the ministry, and staff are reminded on a quarterly basis of the proper use of the system. These statutes also apply to anyone with access to this data, not just registrars.

“We are reviewing and reviewing the case,” Renville County District Attorney David Torgelson said.

Torgelson later wrote in an email that as of Wednesday afternoon his office had not received a formal criminal referral regarding the two employees involved. Director Corrie said the letter from her office regarding the incidents was in the mail.

The offices closest to the Fairfax Deputy Registrar’s office that offer similar services are located in Sleepy Eye, New Ulm, Redwood Falls, Olivia, Springfield and Gaylord.

Three of five employees at North Mankato’s Deputy Registrar’s office also had their access permanently revoked following the audit, which was triggered on May 4 after an employee self-searched the system. The audit found that a total of four employees had violated Minnesota law by accessing driver and vehicle services data without a legitimate purpose.

One of these employees of the private registry office is no longer employed in the office, leaving only two employees on site.

According to the release, Minnesota law requires the Department of Public Safety, Driver and Vehicle Services “to immediately and permanently revoke the authorization of anyone who has entered, updated, viewed, shared or disseminated data in violation of state or federal law ”.

“Although the law states that access is to be revoked ‘immediately and permanently’, it does not state whether the person should be reassigned or whether their job should be terminated. It is the employer’s decision,” reads -on in the press release.

The law also requires the Public Security Department of Driving and Vehicle Services to report violations to the appropriate prosecuting authority for prosecution, and both county prosecutor’s offices have received misuse information transmitted for examination of possible criminal charges, the statement said.

The Driver and Vehicle Services Public Security Department has taken action in several cases since the law came into force in October 2018. A total of 51 people, including employees of private companies and employees State, were permanently deprived of access to the data.