Former head of Department of Revenue talks security measures

Ray N. Stevens (Photo source:
Ray N. Stevens (Photo source:

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Ray Stevens, who was the head of the Department of Revenue during Mark Sanford's administration, said during his tenure his department contracted with outside consultants whose job it was to routinely check security.

"The department contracted with outside consultants whose job it was to look at the systems and decide if it was vulnerable to an external intrusion on a regular basis," Stevens said."The consultants reviewed the system and found it appropriate.  I know it was taking place at least quarterly and probably was taking place from 2005 forward."

Stevens also says the DOR also got information from the IRS and that agency conducted audits reviewing security features.

"In the same vein, the Department of Revenue routinely received information from the IRS and they conducted audits of the security system annually and possibly more often. There was never an adverse decision," Stevens said.

He said there were highly sophisticated firewalls, security codes and anti virus software.

"Security was always critical and never taken lightly," Stevens said. "According to the laws of the state, if there is any improper disclosure, you end up losing your job."

Stevens says while he was surprised the recent intrusion happened, he said,"There is a growing degree of evil in the world and we have to do the best to protect ourselves."

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