updated 7/20/2009 12:04:14 PM ET 2009-07-20T16:04:14

It's a shameless thing to do in an economic crisis.

Jobless people seeking information about their benefits on the Brazilian Labor Ministry's Web site were forced to type in passwords such as "bum" and "shameless."

Labor Minister Carlos Lupi is apologizing for the situation — and he blames a private company that created the site's security system.

Lupi isn't naming the company, but says its contract with the ministry wasn't being renewed, which may have prompted the pranks.

The insults were discovered after an irate user wrote to the O Globo newspaper about it. The site was temporarily taken down. But by late last week, it was up and running — without the insulting words.

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