Could Data Breaches Get Worse? Yup, and It’s Texas Voter Records This Time
Just when you thought that data breaches couldn't get any worse, they did.
According to TechCrunch, the voting records of almost 15 million Texans have been posted online, unsecured and exposed to hackers. The data is said to have been left on an unsecured server with no password.
Are you serious? Out of 19.3 million voters in Texas, 14.8 million of them have had their info exposed because an analytics firm hired by the GOP didn't have a password?
From Tech Crunch:
The file — close to 16 gigabytes in size — contained dozens of fields, including personal information like a voter’s name, address, gender and several years’ worth of voting history, including primaries and presidential elections.
Granted, much of that data is public. According to The Texas Tribune, that kind of voter data in Texas is already obtainable for a fee, but information relating to individuals’ political affiliations and party memberships is not. Sam Taylor, communications director for the Texas secretary of state, told TechCrunch in an email that certain data points — like Social Security numbers — are also excluded, and the voter data cannot be used for commercial purposes, like advertising.
I'm not cool with this, and heads need to roll. Granted, some of the information is readily available to the public, but the info that isn't should never have gotten out.