Insecure Likud database holds personal data of a million Israelis - report

The entries are listed under three categories: “supporters,” “non-supporters,” and “undecided.”

By
September 9, 2019 20:54
1 minute read.
Benjamin Netanyahu

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declares victory at a Likud party rally early on April 10, 2019. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)

The Likud Party gathered the personal information and political allegiances of over a million Israeli voters in an unsecure, online database, financial daily TheMarker reported on Monday.

According to the report, the database features the personal details, including identification numbers, addresses and telephone numbers, of senior military officials, judges, journalists, politicians and regular citizens. The party relies on the directory to manage its electoral campaign efforts.

Individuals in the mass database were listed under three categories concerning their political stance: “supporters,” “non-supporters” and “undecided.”

Family members of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, fellow Likudnik and political rival Gideon Sa’ar – listed as a supporter – and Supreme Court president Esther Hayut were among the most high-profile names to appear in the list. The political allegiances of most public officials, however, remained undefined.

The database full of sensitive information, based on the electoral register open to all parties which must be kept confidential, was not adequately protected. The reporter was able to simply access it through a dedicated smartphone application developed for Likud activists responsible for monitoring polling stations on Election Day.

Party activists were supposed to use the app, directly accessible via an internet link, to list all voters who show up to cast their ballot at their local polling station on September 17.

Only 20 minutes after TheMarker approached the Likud to comment on the security breach, access to the database was blocked. It is unknown, however, how long access to the sensitive data contained in the database had been available prior to the newspaper’s discovery, or whether malicious actors took advantage of the breach before it was secured.

“The information [TheMarker] published constitutes an illegal breach of the Likud’s activities,” the party said in a statement. “The issue of information security has been addressed. We will file a complaint to the police.”

 


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