Even large organizations that must process sensitive data cannot reliably guarantee its security. Now the US Department of Homeland Security has to admit the loss of important information.
In this case, the border protection authorities under the ministry were affected. When breaking into their system, the perpetrators downloaded a huge database of photos that were part of a facial recognition system that was used to connect cameras at border crossings to other passages into US territory. But records from license plate scanners are also prey to intruders.
It is almost lucky that the network was breached last year. At that time, the biometric system was only in a pilot phase and it did not contain too many images of people entering the USA. A total of 184,000 photos are said to have been downloaded. At least some of the data ended up on the dark web. Probably as evidence of the loot that is usually advertised for resale on the black market in this way.
Loss of trust threatens
The data loss has been approved by the annual report of the Inspector General, who is the supervisory agency of the Ministry. He concluded that sensitive information is stored in an unencrypted system, which ultimately does not meet the requirements for processing such data.
The report stated: “This incident may undermine the public’s confidence in the government’s ability to adequately protect biometric data.” As a result, travelers may refuse to perform corresponding data comparisons and significantly slow down border processing. At the same time, such systems have not been tested at least, and the Department of Homeland Security conducts about 300,000 biometric transactions every day