California data breach reveals names, addresses, criminal histories of gun permit seekers 

Ten years of personal data belonging to state residents granted or denied permits was wrongly disclosed this week online, officials said.

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Ten years of personal data belonging to California residents who applied for gun permits was wrongly disclosed this week online, according to a statement from the state’s attorney general’s office.

Per the Mercury News, the data was of residents who received or were denied a concealed carry weapons permit between 2011 and 2021. The breach occurred as part of an update to the California Department of Justice’s 2022 Firearms Dashboard Portal.

A decade of personal data belonging to California gun permit applicants was wrongly disclosed this week online, according to the state’s attorney general’s office. (Photo: AdobeStock)

“This unauthorized release of personal information is unacceptable and falls far short of my expectations for this department,” California Attorney General Rob Bonta said in Wednesday’s statement.

According to the report, the data leak did not include financial information and Social Security numbers but did disclose names, birthdates, addresses, driver’s license numbers and criminal histories.

The state’s Assault Weapon Registry, Firearm Safety Certificate and Domestic Violence Restraining Order dashboards were also affected.

Bonta’s office added that the Department of Justice is “investigating the extent to which any personally identifiable information could have been exposed from those dashboards and will report additional information as soon as confirmed.”

The data was reportedly only available for “less than 24 hours.” However, the breach could affect hundreds of thousands of people in California with a concealed carry weapons permit — or CCW — and its contents may have been shared on some social media sites.

“The California Department of Justice is entrusted to protect Californians and their data,” Bonta said. “We acknowledge the stress this may cause those individuals whose information was exposed. I am deeply disturbed and angered.”

The report adds that the breach may include information about law enforcement officers, judges, plus victims of rape and domestic violence in the state who had sought CCW permits.

“It is infuriating that people who have been complying with the law have been put at risk by this breach,” Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea, president of the California State Sheriffs’ Association, said in a statement. “California’s sheriffs are very concerned about this data breach and the risk it poses to California’s CCW permit holders.”

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