DMV: Thieves never got to info in stolen computers

Thieves may have managed to steal a drivers' license machine and the computer attached to it, but DMV officials say they apparently were unable to access information contained in the computer's memory.

The computer was stolen in a March 7 break-in at DMV's Donovan office in Las Vegas along with the machine and supplies used to make Nevada drivers' licenses. Federal agents joined Nevada investigators because of the potential violations of Homeland Security laws if the thieves were able to make and start selling authentic-looking Nevada drivers' licenses.

Also on the computer was the personal information of more than 8,000 Nevada motorists.

The machinery and DMV supplies were recovered a week ago after Las Vegas Metro officers followed a tip and found the equipment hidden on a rooftop.

Secret Service Agent Paul Mastro said after it was recovered, a forensic specialist with the Secret Service determined the computer hard drives had not been accessed.

"Because of that, we can reasonably assume that the thieves were unable to get to the information that was on the hard drive," he said.

"This is a happy ending to what could have been an incredible nightmare," said DMV Director Ginny Lewis. "It was a hard lesson learned for the department and I'm pleased that no Nevada motorist had to pay the price."

n Contact reporter Geoff Dornan at or 687-8750.


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