Facial Recognition

Customs and Border Protection Photo and License Plate Database Hacked

The agency is mum on how many people are impacted


The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CPB) disclosed earlier today that hackers have breached a database of travelers photos and license plates, according to the Washington Post. The agency declined to say how many people might have had their images stolen from the subcontractor that held them.

The CPB processes nearly 400 million travelers at ports of entry annually. In light of the fact that the CPB has been building an extensive photo database as part of its growing facial-recognition program, the privacy implications of this breach for American citizens and visitors could be grave.

"This breach comes just as CBP seeks to expand its massive face recognition apparatus and collection of sensitive information from travelers, including license plate information and social media identifiers," said American Civil Liberties senior legislative counsel Neema Singh Guliani in a statement. "This incident further underscores the need to put the brakes on these efforts and for Congress to investigate the agency's data practices. The best way to avoid breaches of sensitive personal data is not to collect and retain such data in the first place."



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  1. Now some Russia assholes have my picture. Thanks Trump!

  2. Yet another reason why we should fear ICE more than we should fear the illegal sub-humans!!! OMG, an illegal sub-human might mow my yard for too little money!!!

    1. And that lowers the price of everything. I’m so sick of low prices. Trump promised us tariffs!!!

  3. Well if the border patrol wants my photo, I will moon their camera. (Do people still do that? Is mooning even still a thing?)

    1. It’s considered sexual assault.

      Thanks, LGBTQ!

      1. Right then. I have zero interest in doing that with a bunch of government goons. Eww

    2. Somehow I don’t think that would go over too well at one of the automated passport kiosk things.

  4. No worries.
    Don’t leave the country, and you will not have to return.
    Don’t use social media, and they cannot collect your social media data.
    What’s the problem? Real Americans, that enjoy the beauty of our native land instead of spending money in foreign lands, and who boycott socialist tech businesses, have nothing to fear.

    1. So before it was “if you don’t like it you can leave,” but now it’s “if you don’t like it just stop traveling.” And if you don’t value some nebulous “our native land” concept above all else (including your enjoyment of life and liberty) you’re not a “real american.”

      Because all social media is inherently socialist.

      Brilliant solutions on display here.

  5. According to the MSM Trump’s tariff threat has gotten real results.

    Mexican negotiators persuaded President Trump to back down from his tariff threat by agreeing to an unprecedented crackdown on Central American migrants and accepting more-expansive measures in Mexico if the initial efforts don’t deliver quick results, according to officials from both governments and documents reviewed by The Washington Post.

    The enforcement measures Mexico has promised include the deployment of a militarized national guard at the Guatemalan border, thousands of additional migrant arrests per week and the acceptance of busloads of asylum seekers turned away from the U.S. border daily, all geared toward cutting the migrant flow sharply in coming weeks. The measures, described by officials from both sides and included in Mexican negotiating documents reviewed by The Post, appear to be more substantial than what the Mexican government has attempted thus far during the precipitous rise in migration to the U.S. border.


    Most asylum seekers who reach U.S. soil now are processed and released into the U.S. interior to await court proceedings, something that can take months or years. The proposal would make asylum seekers instead apply for protection in the first foreign country they reach after departing their homeland, potentially allowing the United States to send Guatemalans back to Mexico, and Hondurans and Salvadorans back to Guatemala. Department of Homeland Security officials were in Guatemala last month discussing such a plan.
    Mexico has repeatedly said that it will not agree to a “safe third country” accord that would require it to take in U.S.-bound asylum seekers transiting its territory. But Mexican officials have been willing to negotiate something that would function similarly, if responsibility for asylum seekers were shared among other nations in the region.

    They say such asylum changes would require approval from Mexican lawmakers, and Trump said in a tweet Monday that he will impose tariffs if the regional asylum overhaul doesn’t pass: “If for any reason approval is not forthcoming, Tariffs will be reinstated!” he warned.



  6. “The best way to avoid breaches of sensitive personal data is not to collect and retain such data in the first place.”

    “However, such non-collection is not an option, legally or practically.”

  7. […] Infosecurity) also here here here here here here and many other places I’m […]

  8. […] Remember all those face pics that CBP pretends are “encrypted” and “only kept for …? […]

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