A database that was supposed to help law enforcement agencies combat the spread of ransomware was hacked and used by hackers to release the personal information of more than 700,000 people, according to a report from the cybersecurity firm FireEye.
FireEye, which was contracted to analyze the data and provide security updates, said it received a copy of the database on July 29 and confirmed that it contained names, addresses, birthdates, social security numbers and other information.
The data is linked to the personal identification number, which is a unique identifier that can be used to track a person’s location and personal data.
The breach comes as lawmakers and some privacy advocates are pushing for the Federal Bureau of Investigation to create a national database of personal data that can then be used by law enforcement.
The FBI’s National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center, known as NCTCIC, was created by the Department of Homeland Security to help coordinate cyber-security efforts and to develop and deploy cyber-defenses.
DHS has said it is not responsible for the cybersecurity breaches and has said that the agency will not be responsible for any data breaches.
The database contained a variety of personal information, including a user’s name, email address, zip code, email addresses, birthday, gender, marital status, and other personal data, according an internal document obtained by The Washington Post.
It also contained a user name, password, credit card information, and Social Security number.
The bureau is also working on a system to collect information about criminals, including identifying their targets, to help combat terrorism and other crimes, according the document.
The DHS website said the bureau’s cyber-intelligence and data collection efforts are focused on protecting the nation from terrorist threats.