The theft of laptops with ‘top secret’ government and military data has become a punch-line in the United Kingdom.
There were 28 laptops lost or stolen in the last four months and 66 in total since January 1, 2009. Looking back over the last 4 years there were 658 that vanished. A major hunt is now on in London after a laptop crammed with secret data was stolen from inside the Ministry of Defence (MoD) nerve center. FROM THEIR HEADQUARTERS!
How embarrassing taken from right under the noses of the MoD leadership in Whitehall. If the theft of the laptop was not bad enough, the USB type encryption key needed to unlock the highly sensitive files was also taken. The loss was said to have occurred toward the end of November but news of the event did not leak out until late last week and was not confirmed until earlier this week.
The laptop was said to belong to a high-ranking Royal Air Force officer. One agency is reporting that a source inside MoD stated, “This has the potential to become one of the most serious security breaches at the Ministry for a very long time.” A spokesman for the MoD said that “an investigation by MoD police is ongoing and it would be inappropriate to comment further.”
I wonder if anyone told the MoD that you can equip your laptops with GPS and have your laptop phone home and even delete sensitive data?
FACT: The current MoD budget is 36,702 million
FACT: MoDs principal objectives are to defend the United Kingdom and its interests and to strengthen international peace and stability
FACT: In 2006 on average one in ten laptops were stolen.
Filed under: Communications, Information, Military Industrial Complex, Privacy Tagged: | encryption, global positioning system, Ministry of Defence, Royal Air Force, secrecy, United Kingdom, Whitehall