Back in July, we reported on a flurry of data breaches that had been reported in the space of a few days.
One of the breaches covered in that report – the theft of data from firearms seller Guntrader – has now escalated following the release of the stolen data.
Over 110,000 records shared online
An animal rights activists’ blog has made the data publicly available online, which includes:
- Contact details
All this data relates to individuals who have a Guntrader account, and there are now concerns that these people could be at significant risk. A total of 111,295 records were stolen and leaked in this data breach.
Do gun owners face repercussions?
In our July report, we raised the prospect of individuals potentially being at risk from criminals who may be looking to acquire firearms. Concerns have also been raised that animal rights activists may look to target the homes of people whose details were taken from Guntrader.
These concerns have been fuelled by the reformatting of data by the blog where it was leaked. A map showing the location of the 111,295 addresses has been published online. As a result, anyone with sinister intentions can easily find people who live close by or mobilise group activity to organise protests.
The blog in question has also called on its readers to “contact as many [gun owners] as you can in your area and ask them if they are involved in shooting animals.”
Investigations above the ICO
While the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) will usually investigate data breaches, such is the level of concern around this incident that the National Crime Agency (NCA) is also involved.
An NCA spokesperson told the Daily Mail: “The NCA is aware that information has been published online as a result of a recent data breach which impacted Guntrader.
“We are working closely with the South West Regional Cyber Crime Unit, who are leading the criminal investigation, to support the organisation and manage any risk.”
The British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) had previously communicated with its members following the data breach in July, urging vigilance around home security while at the time not disclosing Guntrader as the source of the breach.
Martin Parker, head of firearms at the BASC, said: “The National Crime Agency is aware of the issue and BASC is working with them to ensure we can update members as quickly as possible as the situation develops.
“Our advice to members would be to check home security and be extra vigilant. Make sure all firearms are appropriately locked away and make sure buildings are kept secure. Follow normal good crime security advice and report anything suspicious to the police.”
What has Guntrader said?
Guntrader says it has “the most safe and secure gun register system on today’s market.” This claim now seems somewhat dubious following this data breach and subsequent leak.
At the time of the breach, Guntrader admitted data had been stolen but also said no information relating to the location of firearms was at risk. While many gun owners do not keep their firearms at their home address, this is unlikely to reduce the risk of a break-in by criminals or of animal rights activists contacting or threatening them.
Guntrader hadn’t commented further at the time of writing.
What can you do if your data was stolen from Guntrader?
The first course of action you should take is to ensure you’re receiving regular updates from the BASC around this case and following its advice. If you’re a firearms owner but not a BASC member, you can join or get updates from the BASC website.
If your data was involved in the breach, you may also be entitled to compensation.
While we’ll be awaiting the outcome of investigations by the ICO before proceeding with any data breach claims on behalf of Guntrader customers, get in touch today, and we’ll collect your information and start to gather details around your individual case and how it has affected you.