Mideast edition, Friday, July 27, 2007
ARLINGTON, Va. — Personal information on more than 10,000 Marines was posted on the Internet, the Marine Corps has announced.
The security lapse affects Marines who went through rifle qualification training at Parris Island between January 2004 and December 2006, a recent Corps-wide message says.
“The Marine Corps provided a compact disk (sic) to Penn State University for research,” spokesman Maj. Tim Keefe wrote in an e-mail response to a Stars and Stripes query. “The CD contained an archive of research files containing rifle qualification scores for the period. The files also included a list of names and social security numbers.”
Penn State then posted the information on a university Web site, and the information was cached by Google.
“Penn State Security Operations and Services (SOS) section quickly removed the files and reviewed their system logs when it was brought to their attention,” the message says. “Penn State SOS contacted Google and had the files removed and purged from Google.”
It appears the information was viewed by only one person, who happened to be one of the Marines whose personal data was on the Web site, Penn State spokeswoman Lisa Powers said.
Powers explained that the data was provided to a researcher who was looking into the effectiveness of live-fire versus simulated training on individual and crew-served weapons.
The information was posted about June 7 and was up for 10 days before it was detected when one of the affected Marines did an Internet search of his Social Security number, Powers said.
Keefe said Training and Education Command learned of the incident on July 6.
The Corps has established a response team to contact all Marines whose personal information was posted on the Web, the message said.
For more information, go to Marine Corps Administrative Message (MARADMIN) 443/07 at www.usmc.mil.