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Laptops Stolen From DHS Transportation Worker ID Program Office

TSA's New Haven, Conn., office was broken into over the weekend and two laptops that handle applications for new biometric IDs for port workers were stolen

Whether it’s a national security threat or a just plain old larceny, a burglary last weekend of a pair of laptops from the Department of Homeland Security’s Transportation Worker Identification Credential office in New Haven, Conn., is reportedly under investigation by DHS and the FBI.

The New Haven office handles local applications for the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) ID program. One of the stolen computers missing from the office handles applicant background-check information.

As of January, the TWIC ID is required for all workers or people conducting business at any U.S. port. It includes the individual’s biometric fingerprint.

According to the report, DHS officials said the data on the laptops is encrypted, and is supposed to be deleted after it’s electronically submitted to the department’s headquarters in Washington. Even so, the FBI told New Haven’s News Channel 8 in a statement that the Joint Terrorism Taskforce “is assessing if there's been a breach in national security."

DHS and FBI officials wouldn’t provide any details on their investigation, according to the published report.

— Kelly Jackson Higgins, Senior Editor, Dark Reading