Feeds

MoD loses most of the armed forces

Oh! what a lovely data loss

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

The Ministry of Defence and contractor EDS are frantically checking the bins this morning for a missing hard drive containing records of 100,000 servicemen and women and their families.

The case is worrying, even by this government's cretinous standards, because of potential targetting of people who worked in Northern Ireland or in more recent conflicts. The records also appear to contain enough information to create a fake identity.

The information included bank details and passport numbers of 100,000 servicemen and women. There was also information on 800,000 people who had applied to serve in the armed forces.

Why such a huge amount of data was stored on an unecrypted and portable drive has not been revealed.

The MoD sent us the following statement:“On Wednesday 8 October we were informed by our contractor EDS that they were unable to account for a portable hard drive used in connection with the administration of Armed Forces personnel data. This came to light during a priority audit EDS are conducting to comply with the Cabinet Office data handling review. The MOD Police are investigating with EDS.”

Much of the data of course will have already been lost by the MoD. Here's a quick reminder of how much information the department has lost this year, due to its failure to follow even the most basic data protection principles.

In January the MoD admitted losing a laptop with details of 600,000 applicants for the armed services. The data was unencrypted and the laptop, which was not password protected, was left in an empty car overnight.

In March it admitted losing 11,000 ID cards over the last two years.

In July it coughed to losing 87 storage devices containing classified material since 2003.

In September it was the turn of the RAF. It lost three hard disk drives containing information on all current and recently-ex members of the RAF - about 50,000 people.

Also in September it was an MoD staffer, on secondment to the Cabinet Office, who left two top secret intelligence documents on a train from Waterloo. We learnt yesterday that he is to be charged with offences under the Official Secrets Act. ®

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
EU: Let's cost financial traders $400m a day, because EVIL BANKERS. Right?
Wait 'til this one hits your pension fund where it hurts
Systems meltdown plunges US immigration courts into pen-and-paper stone age
Massive outage could last four weeks, sources claim
RIP net neutrality? FCC boss mulls information superhighway FAST LANE
Financial fast track to replace level playing field, report claims
Lavabit loses contempt of court appeal over protecting Snowden, customers
Judges rule complaints about government power are too little, too late
UK.gov chucks £28m at F1 tech for buses and diggers plan
Well, not really F1 but who's heard of LMP and VLN*?
Don't let no-hire pact suit witnesses call Steve Jobs a bullyboy, plead Apple and Google
'Irrelevant' character evidence should be excluded – lawyers
Record labels sue Pandora over vintage song royalties
Companies want payout on recordings made before 1972
Edward Snowden on his Putin TV appearance: 'Why all the criticism?'
Denies Q&A cameo was meant to slam US, big-up Russia
Ex-Tony Blair adviser is new top boss at UK spy-hive GCHQ
Robert Hannigan to replace Sir Iain Lobban in the autumn
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.