A US military device used to capture fingerprints and perform iris scans sold on eBay for $68. A German security researcher, Matthias Marx, returned home to Hamburg in August and found the hand-held machine contained a memory card with the names, nationalities, photographs, fingerprints, and iris scans of 2,632 people, the New York Times reports.
“Most people in the database, which was reviewed by The New York Times, were from Afghanistan and Iraq. Many were known terrorists and wanted individuals, but others appeared to be people who had worked with the U.S. government or simply been stopped at checkpoints.”
Mr. Marx is a German Security Researcher and had read about these biometric devices falling into Taliban hands.
The device is known as a Secure Electronic Enrollment Kit, or SEEK II. They bought five of these devices. On another, they said they found sensitive, identifying information of U.S. servicemen. That device was last used in Jordan in 2013.
“The irresponsible handling of this high-risk technology is unbelievable,” Marx told Times. “It is incomprehensible to us that the manufacturer and former military users do not care that used devices with sensitive data are being hawked online.”
“It was disturbing that they didn’t even try to protect the data,” Marx said. “They didn’t care about the risk, or they ignored the risk.”
Well, they are busy teaching the military about the proper pronouns and gender identity.
The U.S. military could not verify the information reported to be contained on the biometric scanner.
“Because we have not reviewed the information contained on the devices, the department is not able to confirm the authenticity of the alleged data or otherwise comment on it,” Defense Department press secretary Brig. Gen. Patrick S. Ryder said in a statement. “The department requests that any devices thought to contain personally identifiable information be returned for further analysis.”
Think of all the Afghanis who helped us who could be tracked and slaughtered by the Taliban and probably were.