A peer-to-peer file sharing vulnerability has exposed the names, dates of birth, and Social Security numbers of about 2,000 clients of a Virginia investment firm, including a number of high-powered lawyers and Supreme Court Justice Stephen G. Breyer.
According to a report in today's Washington Post, the breach took place when an employee used the popular P2P program Limewire to share files, inadvertently opening up the private files of his investment company, Wagner Resource Group, to Internet scrutiny.
The breach was not discovered for nearly six months. A Washington Post reader found the information while searching LimeWire in June.
Robert Boback, chief executive of Tiversa, the company hired by Wagner to help contain the data breach, said such breaches are hardly rare. About 40 to 60 percent of all data leaks take place outside of a company's secured network, usually as a result of employees or contractors installing file-sharing software on company computers.
"We've seen a lot of instances where a company will be working on a product that's not even released yet, and the diagrams for that product are already out on the Net," Boback told the Post. "This case is unique because of the high profile of the targets. The individuals on this list are at a very high risk, almost imminent, of identity theft."
Tim Wilson, Site Editor, Dark Reading