Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.


04:05 PM
Connect Directly

OPM: Personal Info On 21.5 Million People Exposed In Hack

The Office of Personnel Management today confirmed the final body count of victims affected by its massive data breach, which also exposed some 1.1 million fingerprints stored in the background-check database.

The body count is in: some 21.5 million individuals had their social security numbers, residency and employment history, family, health, and financial history exposed in the massive data breach of the Office of Personnel Management's (OPM) background-check investigation database.

Of the 19.7 million individuals who had applied for the background checks, 1.1 million had their fingerprint scans exposed as well. The remaining 1.8 million people affected by the breach were spouses or other members of the applicants' households, OPM said today.

"Some records also include findings from interviews conducted by background investigators and fingerprints. Usernames and passwords that background investigation applicants used to fill out their background investigation forms were also stolen," OPM said today in an announcement describing the findings from its forensics investigation of the breach.

The agency says so far there's no indication that the data has been abused or distributed anywhere. Security experts have pointed the finger at China, but OPM has not officially called out the source of the attack. 

Who's affected? Anyone who had a background-check via OPM as far back as 2000. "If an individual underwent a background investigation prior to 2000, that individual still may be impacted, but it is less likely," OPM said.

The background-check system breach is related to a previous attack on OPM discovered in April that exposed personnel data on 4.2 million current and former federal employees. OPM has been under the microscope for its security failings in the wake of the attacks.

Read OPM's release here for more details on the latest breach information.



Kelly Jackson Higgins is the Executive Editor of Dark Reading. She is an award-winning veteran technology and business journalist with more than two decades of experience in reporting and editing for various publications, including Network Computing, Secure Enterprise ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
<<   <   Page 2 / 2
User Rank: Ninja
7/10/2015 | 10:15:50 AM
Re: Lost war
I wouldn't say lost...I would say losing heavily. I think that security takes a back seat to ease of use unfortunately. "Oh, I can make my password my name. Great, I'll never forget that and no one else knows my name" (Sarcasm) Perhaps not that bad but for multi-form authentication ease of use is definitely the preferred among non-security professionals. I was just applying this mindset to one principle of security and does not pertain explicitly to the article but I feel that amongst many non-security folk this mindset is prevalent.
User Rank: Ninja
7/10/2015 | 10:11:40 AM
Who was the instigator of the hack? Any leads?
User Rank: Apprentice
7/9/2015 | 7:21:15 PM
Lost war
If this is confirmed information..  America has lost the counter intelligence and cyber war.
<<   <   Page 2 / 2
HackerOne Drops Mobile Voting App Vendor Voatz
Dark Reading Staff 3/30/2020
Limited-Time Free Offers to Secure the Enterprise Amid COVID-19
Curtis Franklin Jr., Senior Editor at Dark Reading,  3/31/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
6 Emerging Cyber Threats That Enterprises Face in 2020
This Tech Digest gives an in-depth look at six emerging cyber threats that enterprises could face in 2020. Download your copy today!
Flash Poll
State of Cybersecurity Incident Response
State of Cybersecurity Incident Response
Data breaches and regulations have forced organizations to pay closer attention to the security incident response function. However, security leaders may be overestimating their ability to detect and respond to security incidents. Read this report to find out more.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-06
An issue was discovered in the Linux kernel through 5.6.2. mpol_parse_str in mm/mempolicy.c has a stack-based out-of-bounds write because an empty nodelist is mishandled during mount option parsing, aka CID-aa9f7d5172fa.
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-05
An issue was discovered in libgpac.a in GPAC 0.8.0, as demonstrated by MP4Box. audio_sample_entry_Read in isomedia/box_code_base.c does not properly decide when to make gf_isom_box_del calls. This leads to various use-after-free outcomes involving mdia_Read, gf_isom_delete_movie, and gf_isom_parse_m...
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-05
PRTG Network Monitor before allows remote unauthenticated attackers to obtain information about probes running or the server itself (CPU usage, memory, Windows version, and internal statistics) via an HTTP request, as demonstrated by type=probes to login.htm or index.htm.
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-05
The Search Meter plugin through 2.13.2 for WordPress allows user input introduced in the search bar to be any formula. The attacker could achieve remote code execution via CSV injection if a wp-admin/index.php?page=search-meter Export is performed.
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-04
3xLOGIC Infinias eIDC32 2.213 devices with Web 1.107 allow Authentication Bypass via CMD.HTM?CMD= because authentication depends on the client side's interpretation of the &lt;KEY&gt;MYKEY&lt;/KEY&gt; substring.