The Obama administration’s security failure in the hacking by the Chinese of the Office of Personnel Management continues to grow in both in scope and depth this week.
The breach, which was first reported to involve records on a few million federal employees, ballooned last week to a staggering 21.5 million people which includes retirees, veterans and critical federal personnel.
In an admission of the degree of damage done by its failure to secure federal databases, OPM Director Katherine Archeluta was forced to resign last week after members of Congress called for heads to roll.
But intelligence experts are pointing to the latest revelation this week as the worst aspect in what one former NSA official called our “biggest counterintelligence threat”.
According to analysts, the multi-million-record breach includes fingerprints of over one million federal personnel.
The challenge that this breach presents is entirely unprecedented and irreversible in that, unlike social security numbers and addresses which can be changed, fingerprints are forever, a reality that creates new threats as technology is pressing toward biometric identification protocols.