RNC data firm exposes information on nearly 200 million Americans

RNC data firm exposes information on nearly 200 million Americans
Posted at 1:32 PM, Jun 19, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-19 13:32:00-04

(RNN) - A data analytics company employed by the Republican National Committee left information on 198 million potential voters exposed to the web without security.

The contractor, Deep Root Analytics, said in a statement that it takes "full responsibility for this situation." Advertising Age reports the company was paid $983,000 by the RNC.

The voter data was on an unsecured Amazon Drive account and included 1.1 terabytes of personal voter information. This account could be browsed without logging in and was discovered by researcher and cybersecurity expert Chris Vickery.

"In terms of the scope and depth, this is the biggest one I've found," said Vickery.

Last year, Vickery discovered a massive breach in Mexican voter data, the second-largest ever.

The breach encompasses nearly every registered voter in the U.S. The information was gleaned from public voter rolls and included "the voter's date of birth, home and mailing addresses, phone number, registered party, self-reported racial demographic, [and] voter registration status," according to The Intercept.

"Deep Root Analytics maintains industry standard security protocols," said the firm in a statement. "We built our systems in keeping with these protocols and had last evaluated and updated our security settings on June 1."

The files have since been secured.

Deep Root Analytics was one of three firms hired by the RNC to provide information on the American electorate. TargetPoint and Data Trust had similar tasks, attempting to provide information that would sway Hillary Clinton supporters and convince voters leaning toward Donald Trump.

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