Data Breach of United Kingdom’s Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras exposes 8.6 million cars rides to hackers and stalkers
A data breach that created a flutter in the unflappable GHCQ, the British spy headquarters. A data breach of the database recording car movements in entire Britain has created a data security panic among the British, forcing the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) to launch a probe on an immediate note.
The data breach occurred due to a mistake by Sheffield City Council and South Yorkshire Police who operated the Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras. Reports state that car journeys about over 8.6 million cars recorded on the ANPR cameras were accidentally exposed on the internet exposing the data vulnerable to hackers, stalkers, and government-funded espionage campaigns.
The Sheffield City Council and South Yorkshire Police who operated the ANPR left the database unprotected and accessible without a password – potentially allowing anyone to access it and look up individual vehicle movements. The authorities have issued an apology for the blunder, which is being investigated by the Information Commissioner’s Office. ICO could impose multi-million-pound fines on those involved.
This data breach is the biggest data breach to hit the United Kingdom since a cyber-attack on Dixons Carphone data breach in which 14 million people’s details were exposed.
The data breach happened between April 18th and 24th of this year and was exposed first by Register. According to police sources, the exposed data would have been much higher if the Coronavirus lockdown had not been imposed. The data breach involved some 8.6 million vehicle movements and anyone having access to the feeds can track the vehicles involved in the data breach.