During the government shutdown, sensitive information about private Americans was left vulnerable and exposed.
February 5, 2019
The U.S. government shutdown had lasted for a month or so before temporarily re-opening around January 25th. It’s staying open until February 15th.
Before it re-opened, any private data you submitted on a U.S. government website was subject to a potential data breach. Why? Sovereign Man explains:
Because it turns out that there are now at least 200 federal websites whose SSL certificates have expired ever since government employees were furloughed.
The simple explanation for SSL (now TLS) is this certificate acts like a “key” to a very secure â€œfront doorâ€ that houses all of your private information. That key just expired. So you could imagine the front door to your house, without the doorknob or lock installed.
That was the first line of defense for your private information on these websites, and it’s gone. Even worse, the people who take care of this “lock and key” were at home during the shutdown.
And that’s not all:
One agency, US-CERT, lost 80% of its workers during the shutdown. This “skeleton crew” of workers is responsible for fighting off foreign hackers. But more importantly, they perform critical security updates on U.S. government networks.
Sovereign Man explained the dire consequences of this workforce reduction:
That leaves their systems, and the treasure trove of information within them, heavily exposed to foreign hackers.
Just think about all the personal data that sits inside government networks. Tax and financial information. Family details. Address history. Travel history. Work history. They literally have your whole life in there.
That’s your information, sitting out there in the open for hackers that know how to get it. In 2016 a data breach at the IRS exposed over 700,000 social security numbers, according to CBS News.
In May 2015, the agency reported cyber criminals accessed approximately 114,000 taxpayer accounts. Three months later, that number grew to as many as 334,000. This month, the IRS said there are as many as 724,000 victims.
That happened before this government shutdown, and the gaping security flaws I’m sharing with you here. Now, it could be even worse.
And in Brooksville, FL, the U.S. government shutdown also exposed a list of names and social security numbers on a desk, viewable by the public from an office window. The Department of Agriculture is looking into the issue, but it’s already too late.
More importantly, who knows how many government desks across the U.S. had papers with Social Security numbers of even more people? All viewable through a window.
Has yours been seen? You might find out in a few months.
But you’re just supposed to entrust your privacy to the IRS, Social Security Administration, the Department of Agriculture, or any other government agency.
Yeah, right. Don’t do that.
Never assume your private data is being secured by any government agency. And keep in mind the government is set to shut down again on February 15th unless another funding agreement is reached.
So if these gaping violations of security aren’t fixed by then, who knows what will happen…
Right now, your private life is an open book thanks to the U.S. government.
With just a few clicks, a phone call, and a few dollars almost everything someone wants to find out about you can quickly be put together into a complete file.
And who knows how some stranger or hacker will use that information? So you need to start protecting your privacy any way you can, right now…
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To living privately,
Location Independent Entrepreneur
P.S. Like the 2016 IRS data breach, it might take months or years before you find out if you were a victim of this gaping hole in U.S. government website security.
And if you use the same password on multiple sites, you may want to change all of them now. But I also suggest taking matters into your own hands by getting my special report today. You’ll discover the secrets for easily securing your privacy.
And you won’t even have to leave your couch … Download our new “Off the Grid” Report now.