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Police loses unencrypted pendrive containing all Budapest officers' personal data

2019.07.13. 11:16 Módosítva: 2019.07.13. 11:16

The Hungarian National Authority for Data Protection and Freedom of Information had issued a €15 000 fine to the Budapest Police Headquarters for a data breach,

as they have lost a 4 GB pendrive containing the entire staff chart of the Budapest police force, including the name at birth, time and place of birth, mother's maiden name, insurance number, rank, and position of all police officers working at the Budapest headquarters, 1733 to be exact.

An employee of the Budapest police took the USB drive to an executive meeting back in January. After attaching the pendrive to their car keys, the staff member of the police took the keys up to the hotel room. The next day, the officer checked out of the hotel and after a visit to a fast-food restaurant, returned to their post when the sudden realisation set in:

The pendrive is lost.

The police officer notified their superior the same day, and a number of phonecalls were hastily made in search of the lost pendrive, but in vain, though the officer involved assumes it was destroyed due to the snowy weather conditions.

Disciplinary proceedings were initiated against the absent-minded officer who, instead of using a police-issued pendrive, copied the spreadsheets onto a private one without any sort of encryption.

The pendrive is still at large.

Update on 16 July 2019: The pendrive was found, it was in the officer's service vehicle all along, according to the website of the Hungarian Police. The Police noted that the car was in the officer's exclusive use, nobody else had access to the data. The National Authority for Data Protection and Freedom of Information was also notified.

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