Tue 27 December 2022:
The New York Times revealed on Tuesday that a US military device designed to collect biometric information from mainly Afghans and Iraqis was sold on eBay to a German security researcher in August for $149.95.
The memory card of the SEEK II device contained the Names, nationalities, photographs, fingerprints and iris scans of 2,632 people, mostly suspected and known terrorists, but also people who had worked for the US government or who had been stopped at checkpoints. The last time the device had been used was in 2012 near Kandahar.
It appeared that US military leaders at the time thought that collecting biometric data would help root out Taliban agents inside US bases in Afghanistan, amid a string of incidents involving Afghan forces attacking American troops.
Over the past year, a small group of researchers from the Chaos Computer Club, a European hacker organization, purchased six biometric capture devices on eBay for analysis, following concerns that the Taliban had seized such devices following the US withdrawal from Afghanistan.
Two of the four SEEK devices purchased by the group contained sensitive data. The second appeared to have been used last in Jordan in 2013 and contained fingerprints and iris scans of US service members.
It’s unclear how the devices ended up on eBay. The Pentagon stated that it would not be able to comment on the data until it had reviewed it.
SOURCE: INDEPENDENT PRESS AND NEWS AGENCIES
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