(Jacob Bruns, Headline USA) A recently-published Government Publishing Office report has revealed that almost 2000 White House visitors in December of 2020, during former President Donald Trump‘s final months in office, had their social security numbers leaked by the federal government.
According to the report, the numbers were “inadvertently” leaked along with the J6 Committee’s 2022 publication of government records.
The watchdog for the Government Publishing Office said 1,900 Social Security numbers were published in error as part of the Jan. 6 House select committee's final report. https://t.co/B3Gt0hpbGO
— CBS News (@CBSNews) March 31, 2023
The Biden administration had directed the National Archives and Records Administration to release visitor information without sensitive information, like social security numbers.
But after learning of the error, the GPO removed the initial document and replaced it with an updated version. The GPO issued a statement explaining the gaffe, noting that they are not sure who to blame.
“Due to the involvement of multiple governmental agencies from different branches of government, it is not clear which body is responsible for the breach response. GPO has presented congressional oversight with a breach response plan and is waiting for their approval to act.”
They also noted that the mistake arose because of an “inadvertent” error in the midst of a “perfect storm” of confusion and rushed procedures, blaming the J6 Committee for causing “confusion” that left the publishing office “without active committee oversight.”
They added that the massive volume of material requested by the J6 Committee caused a great deal of confusion and chaos.
In response to the gaffe, the GPO also pledged to improve its processes by creating systems to “overtly notify customers to review their information” before publication, ensuring that all released information is properly “sanitized.”
Republicans were also compromised by leaks from Snapchat last year, when the social median platform gave leftist political operators access to their opponent’s political data before the 2022 midterms.