Hackers open DEA databases
We know what you know
Redfaced US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) says it is investigating reports that hackers gained unauthorised access to an agency portal that taps into 16 different federal law enforcement databases.
KrebsOnSecurity has learned the alleged compromise is tied to a cybercrime and online harassment community that routinely impersonates police and government officials to harvest personal information on their targets.
On 8 May KrebsOnSecurity was tipped off that hackers obtained a username and password for an authorised user of esp.usdoj.gov, which is the Law Enforcement Inquiry and Alerts (LEIA) system managed by the DEA.
LEIA "provides federated search capabilities for EPIC and external database repositories," including data classified as "law enforcement sensitive" and "mission sensitive" to the DEA.
The DEA’s El Paso Intelligence Center (EPIC) systems in Texas are available for use by federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement, as well as the Department of Defense and US spooks.
EPIC and LEIA also have access to the DEA’s National Seizure System (NSS), which the DEA uses to identify property thought to have been purchased with the proceeds of criminal activity.
The data in EPIC would probably be far more valuable to organized crime rings or drug cartels who could submit false records to law enforcement and intelligence agency databases.
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May 13, 2022 at 03:53AM