How on earth does something like even happen? Even smaller agencies and companies I’ve worked with have rigorous data destruction policies when old equipment is recycled or sold off, I’m sure MI6 has something similar.
The UK government is investigating how a digital camera containing terrorist images apparently taken by MI6 was sold on eBay.
The Nikon CoolPix camera was bought for £17 by a 28 year-old man from Hertfordshire and contained the names of al-Qaeda members, fingerprints and suspects’ academic records as well as pictures of rocket launchers and missiles, according to The Sun.
A Foreign Office spokeswoman said: “We can confirm that a police investigation is under way.”
However she refused to comment on whether the camera was put on sale by an MI6 operative, despite it containing details of MI6’s computer network.
Terrorist information, names and more for only £17! What a bargain.
It does puzzle me a bit htouhg, why would all of these documents be stored on a camera? Perhaps someone using the camera to covertly move documents out of MI6?
It seems odd for anything other than images to be on a CoolPix.
MI6 is the foreign intelligence service for the UK government with a broadly similar remit as the US CIA.
Terrorism author Neil Doyle said: “These are MI6 documents relating to an operation against al-Qaeda insurgents in Iraq. It’s jaw-dropping that they got into the public domain.
“Not only do they divulge secrets about operations, operating systems and previously unheard-of MI6 departments, but they could put lives at risk.”
Really bad PR for the agency I must say…at least no harm came of it and it was exposed so hopefully someone in power will do something about it and make sure the policies that I’m sure they have are implemented and enforced properly.
There’s no point having policies and procedures if they aren’t enforced, it’s not just good to do the paperwork, you have to put it in practice too!