(PatrioticPost.com)- The personal information for many federal lawmakers as well as their staff members may have been exposed as a result of a serious data breach at one of the health-care administrators that serves the House of Representatives.
In letters that circulated on Capitol Hill earlier this week, a senior official in Congress confirmed that the personal data could have been compromised.
Reuters saw one of the letters that was sent by Catherine Szpindor, who serves as the chief administrator officer for the House, to some Congress members. That letter said there was a “significant data breach” that happened at DC Health Link that may have exposed personal information of thousands of people who are enrolled with the company.
“Currently, I do not know the size and scope of the breach.”
Szpindor did add that the FBI told her “hundreds of members and House staff” were affected by the breach. She continued:
“Atn this time, it does not appear that members of the House of Representatives were the specific targets of the attack.”
The office of the Chief Administrative Officer, or CAO, confirmed to media outlets this week that the breach indeed happened. It also added it was “deeply concerned” about it and the long-term effects.
In a statement, DC Health Link said:
“We can confirm reports that data for some DC Health Link customers has been exposed on a public forum.”
The company didn’t name what the forum was that the information was posted to. Company officials did say they were currently working with law enforcement agencies and various investigators.
Reuters reached out to the Federal Bureau of Investigations for a comment for their story, but their messages weren’t immediately returned.
A joint letter sent by Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and Democratic Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries was also shared with Reuters. It said the breach was the source of a “cyber hack” that hit members of Congress as well as their families.
The letter labeled the incident as an “egregious security breach.”
Multiple lawmakers from both sides of the political aisle have since released personal statements that said they were looking into the matter and investigating it further.
This week, the Committee on House Administration tweeted that Republican Bryan Steil, who serves as the panel’s chairman, was currently working with the CAO so that Congress members’ personal information, and that of all others affected by the breach, would be protected.
Joe Morelle, who serves as Steil’s counterpart in the Democratic Party, released a statement of his own that read:
“[The] cause, size and scope of the data breach impacting the DC Health Link still needs to be determined by the FBI.”
Data breaches have unfortunately become a relatively regular occurrence in recent years. Many of these breaches have occurred at private companies and affected mostly private citizens in America.
However, this data breach is one of the only ones that have affected members of Congress and the families – at least to this extent.