Photos of travellers taken at US border point stolen by hackers

Photos of travellers and licence plates gathered at a US border point have been exposed by hackers.

Customs and Border Protection (CBP) said the pictures were taken as travellers in vehicles entered and exited the US through a few specific lanes at a land border.

In a statement, the agency said that it had learned about the incident on 31 May, and estimated that fewer than 100,000 people were affected.

It added: “A subcontractor, in violation of CBP policies and without CBP’s authorisation or knowledge, transferred copies of licence plate images and traveller images collected by CBP to the subcontractor’s company network.

“The subcontractor’s network was subsequently compromised by a malicious cyber attack. No CBP systems were compromised.”

The agency has claimed none of the image data has been identified on the dark web or the internet.

However, technology news site The Register has reported that data from a Tennessee-based licence plate reading and passport data processing company called Perceptics was leaked online.

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While the CBP did not identify the subcontractor involved in the breach, a Word document sent to the Washington Post included the name “Perceptics” in the title.

A spokesperson for CBP told the newspaper that they were unable to confirm the identity of the contractor, adding: “CBP has alerted members of Congress and is working closely with other law enforcement agencies and cyber security entities, and its own office of professional responsibility to actively investigate the incident.

“CBP will unwaveringly work with all partners to determine the extent of the breach and the appropriate response.”

Source: SKY NEWS

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