The Dutch Health Authority (GGD) said on Friday that the personal information of a large number of people participating in the Dutch coronavirus tracking program has been leaked.
GGD confirmed a media report that the data was stolen and apologized because it said it was two separate leaks. It said in a statement that it does not know how many people have been affected by data theft, but they may be thousands.
The leak was confirmed as a violent protest against the government’s decision to impose a night curfew, in addition to a lockdown for several months in an attempt to control the epidemic.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte also came under fire because the Netherlands was the last country in the European Union to start COVID-19 vaccination.
GGD stated that the data leak comes from its core tracking system and has nothing to do with tracking the smartphone application, which has been strictly reviewed for potential privacy vulnerabilities.
In one example, GGD employees targeted the personal information of a few prominent individuals. On the other hand, the entire data set was leaked and sold online, although it is not clear whether anyone bought the data.
GGD said: “If a sick person deliberately removes data from the system, it is almost impossible to stop.”
GGD admits that people may be reluctant to participate in its tracking program, but said it will do its best to restore public confidence.
It said: “We are working closely with police, judicial, data and cybercrime experts.”
“Simply, those who cross the border will be fired, and our security weaknesses will be discovered and strengthened.”
The broadcaster RTL first reported the leak. GGD confirmed that the leak includes name, address, social security number, phone number and test results.
Thomson Reuters 2021 ©
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