On February 19, the Ministère de l’Éducation et de l’Enseignement supérieur received confirmation that personal information concerning teachers may have been stolen.
Every effort has been made to properly support and guide the people who may have been affected. Those concerned will receive a letter informing them of the measures to take and the resources available. For their protection, they will also be offered the services of a credit monitoring company, the cost of which will be assumed by the government.
A Services Québec telephone line (1 877 644‑4545) is available to provide information about the situation and about the measures in place to support the people affected. However, this telephone line does not provide any information regarding the identity of the people affected.
Anyone who may have been affected should remain vigilant.
The Ministère de l’Éducation et de l’Enseignement supérieur is collaborating with the Sureté du Québec, which is pursuing its investigation.
Frequently asked questions
How many teachers are affected by the breach?
According to the most recent information, 51 400 people are affected. However, the investigation is still ongoing.
How do I know if I am in the database ?
Anyone who has ever been a teacher in Québec is in the database.
Are substitute teachers affected by the situation ?
All substitute teachers who completed a contract of 20 days or more are included in the 360 000 individuals, and, therefore, may be affected by the situation.
How many teachers have had their identity stolen as a result of this breach ?
To date, approximately 400 teachers have filed complaints and claimed to have had their identity stolen.
If someone thinks they have been a victim of fraud and wishes to submit a complaint to declare the fraud, who should they contact ?
Any person who believes they may have been a victim of fraud should contact their municipal police department.
If I want to make a complaint about the protection of my personal information, who do I contact?
People who wish to make complaints about the protection of their personal information can submit a written complaint to the Ministère de l’Éducation et de l’Enseignement supérieur, using the form . You can also make your complaint by phone by calling 1 866 643‑4806
What type of information was stolen ?
The database contains the following information about teachers: SIN, last name, first name, date of birth.
How was the data stolen ?
The breach is the result of a fraudulent use of a password and access code. The reliability of the Ministère’s computer systems is not at issue.
Can we be sure that this was the only data stolen ?
Only one data bank was involved. For now, however, we cannot confirm that only 51 400 teachers were affected. That is why the government is notifying everyone in the data bank. The investigation is still ongoing.
What will the government do to safeguard teachers’ identities ?
The 360 000 people in the database in question will receive a letter indicating the procedure to follow to contact a credit monitoring company. The government will assume all costs related to the protection of people who are not already covered.
What should people do who are not already protected by the services of a credit monitoring company ?
These people will be entitled to protection at the government’s expense. In the coming weeks, they will receive a letter indicating the procedure to follow.
These people are also free to register immediately at their own expense. They may then modify their account once they receive the letter, and the government will assume the cost of protection.
What do I need to do to ensure the letter is sent to the correct address?
The Ministère is collaborating closely with Revenu Québec to ensure that everyone who may have been affected will be contacted. Individuals who would like to change the address in their file can do so using the Service québécois de changement d’adresse . Please make sure to select Revenu Québec from the list of government services provided in step 1.
What are the steps to take for a person who has not received a letter by the end of the notification period?
The Ministère is confident that it will be able to obtain the addresses of the majority of people affected. If necessary, a procedure will be developed for people who could not be contacted.
What are the details of the coverage and duration of the protection offered?
The Ministère is currently in discussions with a provider of credit monitoring services in order to determine the level of protection that will be offered.
The 360 000 people who are listed in the database involved will receive a letter with instructions on how to contact a company that offers credit report monitoring services.
Am I already protected if I am covered by the protection service offered by Desjardins?
People who are covered by the protection service offered by Desjardins are already protected.
Will the victims of fraud be compensated? What recourse do they have ?
The people concerned may want to resort to the common law courts.
Government resources are available for those concerned about identity theft. The Commission d’accès à l’information du Québec provides guidance for citizens whose personal information has been lost or stolen.
A checklist is available for consultation. It explains what to do if you suspect your identity has been stolen, and indicates the measures you should take, as well as the companies and public agencies you should contact (e.g. keep copies of all relevant and official documents, contact certain agencies such as financial institutions, service providers, the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, Revenu Québec).
Last update: March 13, 2020