MoD suspends official over leak that exposed data of 250 Afghans who worked for British forces, as SECOND email breach reported

The military has said it suspended one official following a breach that exposed data concerning some 250 Afghan interpreters who used to work with UK forces, while a second breach affecting another 55 people has been reported.

The suspension of the unnamed official, believed to be linked to the major data breach, was announced in a brief statement by the Ministry of Defence on Wednesday.

“We have been made aware of a data breach that occurred earlier this month by the Afghan Relocation and Assistance Policy [ARAP] team. This week, the Defence Secretary instigated an investigation into data handling within that team,” the military tweeted.

“An individual has already been suspended while that work is carried out. Steps have already been taken to ensure this does not happen in the future. We apologise to those affected and extra support is being offered to them.”

Also on
An Afghan Interpreter, an Afghan National Police Officer and a British Soldier in Helmand, Afghanistan. May 15, 2007. © Getty Images / Marco Di Lauro
‘Cavalier incompetence’: UK MoD launches probe after data leak exposes names & emails of over 250 Afghans who aided British forces

The leak, believed to have affected over 250 Afghans who worked with British forces in Afghanistan as interpreters and are seeking help to relocate out of the country, was first reported by the BBC on Monday. Many of those whose data was compromised are in hiding amid the recent takeover by the Taliban. Their information was exposed when they were copied into an email from the MoD, with their names, email addresses and even profile pictures visible to all the recipients.

And potentially even worse, many accidentally replied to all the people mentioned in the MoD email, exposing further details.

“Some of the interpreters didn’t notice the mistake and they replied to all the emails already and they explained their situation which is very dangerous. The email contains their profile pictures and contact details,” one interpreter, who received the faulty correspondence, told the BBC.

Also on
Members of the British armed forces arrive at RAF Brize Norton base after being evacuated from Kabul, in Oxfordshire, Britain on August 29, 2021.
‘I lost hope, I lost everything’: Former Afghan interpreter left behind by UK speaks to RT

As the ministry said it suspended the offending official, the BBC released a follow-up report on the matter, suggesting the scandalous breach was not an isolated incident. According to the broadcaster, another email was sent out to the interpreters earlier this month, containing the emails and names of some 55 people, which could be seen by everyone who received the message.

Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!

Post a Comment