Feeds

FBI ‘loses’ hundreds of laptops and guns

Where did they see them last?

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

An audit on the FBI has revealed it is missing hundreds of laptop computers, many of which are believed to have been stolen from under the nose of the agency.

Ashen-faced FBI officials have been forced to admit 184 computers are unaccounted for and that three of these machines are believed have sensitive material on their hard disks, and one is known to hold classified data. Of the missing machines 13 are believed to have been nicked.

To make matters worse 449 weapons - including some sub-machine guns among the cache of handguns- are missing from the Bureau's armoury, of which 265 were lost and 184 stolen, according to officials.

The frankly quite alarming losses came to light during the course of comprehensive audit of the agency carried out on behalf of the US Department of Justice.

FBI officials said that the bureau has roughly 50,000 guns and 13,000 computers, or at least they did last time they looked.

Last year the State Department admitted that it had "misplaced" a laptop containing highly classified information and agents of Britains security services have been known to leave laptops in Tapas bar after a night on the razz, so the phenomenon of spooks not taking care of PCs is hardly unknown. However the extent of the FBI's loss will be extremely hard for the agency, which is trusted with America's domestic security, to explain away.

The losses reportedly took place over the course of 11 years and are attributed a variety of causes including retiring agents keeping hold of weapons and the loss of laptops as they were been transferred around the different offices that shared them. This doesn't go anywhere near getting the FBI off the hook on the issue or restoring public trust in the organisation, which has suffered a series of setbacks in recent months.

Chief among these is the arrest of FBI agent Robert Hanssen, after his admission that he spied for the Russians for the best part of two decades, selling closely guarded secrets to the Soviet Union. The Bureau is also accused of screwing up an investigation into a scientist who is accused of stealing secrets from the Los Alamos nuclear research facility.

Attorney-General John Ashcroft is expected to make a statement on the missing equipment and the issue is sure the crop up when two senior FBI officials appear before the powerful Senate Judiciary Committee today. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
Apple CEO Tim Cook: TV is TERRIBLE and stuck in the 1970s
The iKing thinks telly is far too fiddly and ugly – basically, iTunes
Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales
Giganto mobe firm slams door shut on Microsoft. OH DEAR
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Show us your Five-Eyes SECRETS says Privacy International
Refusal to disclose GCHQ canteen menus and prices triggers Euro Human Rights Court action
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.