- How to live stream Pacquiao vs. Thurman 2 Years Ago
- Review: Hulu with Live TV ensures you always have something to watch Today 6:00 AM
- How to live stream UFC on ESPN 4: Rafael dos Anjos vs. Leon Edwards Today 5:49 AM
- 2020 Democrats refuse to answer our questions about ‘Cats’ Friday 4:14 PM
- Belle Delphine’s Instagram account removed after mass reporting campaign Friday 4:08 PM
- Mariah Carey refuses old-age FaceApp challenge Friday 3:19 PM
- Journalists horrified by consolidation of Gatehouse, Gannett Friday 3:12 PM
- Facebook and Google could be tracking you on porn sites Friday 1:42 PM
- 7 best sites for psychic love readings Friday 1:20 PM
- Driver demonstrates why you always need to read road signs Friday 12:58 PM
- Area 51 remix video proves it’s the summer of Lil Nas X Friday 12:26 PM
- ‘ICE will come’: Convenience store clerk threatens customers speaking Spanish Friday 12:11 PM
- Rand Paul dodges questions about 9/11 Victims Fund, says ‘watch Fox News’ Friday 11:51 AM
- Report: ‘Stranger Things’ season 4 to begin shooting in October Friday 11:03 AM
- AT&T paid Michael Cohen to consult on net neutrality, FBI documents show Friday 9:10 AM
Nearly 200 million U.S. voters exposed by leaky Amazon database
A data analysis contractor hired by the Republican National Committee left the personal information of 198 million registered voters exposed on a publicly accessible Amazon server, a new Gizmodo report reveals.
Researcher and analyst Chris Vickery, who works for security firm UpGuard, discovered the database, owned by Deep Root Analytics, which contains a wealth of data on each individual voter collated from a range of sources, from super PAC research to Reddit communities. All in, 25 terabytes of data was available to read on the open internet, with 1.1 terabytes of that available to download.
“In terms of the disc space used, this is the biggest exposure I’ve found. In terms of the scope and depth, this is the biggest one I’ve found,” Vickery told Gizmodo.
Files included names, addresses, and phone numbers for more than half of all Americans. Deep Roots Analytics assigned each person an “RNC ID” that correlated that voter’s profile to other data on the person’s policy stances and preferences on a range of issues—such as gun ownership, abortion, and religion. One research analyst with UpGuard carried out a search of himself on the available database information, finding that the results were “astoundingly accurate.”
Although Deep Root Analytics did not gather the data, the company confirmed their ownership of it in a statement to Gizmodo on Friday.
“We take full responsibility for this situation,” the firm’s founder, Alex Lundry, said. “Since this event has come to our attention, we have updated the access settings and put protocols in place to prevent further access.”
The incident raises serious questions for the company about data security and, more broadly, about the role of complex data ecosystems utilized in political campaigns for voter targeting.
The RNC spent $983,000 between January 2015 and November 2016 on the Deep Root contract, according to Ad Age, and an extra $4.2 million on similar services delivered by another firm, TargetPoint.
David Gilmour is a reporter who specializes in national politics, internet culture, and technology. He previously covered civil liberties, crime, and politics for Vice.