Probe sought of passport data breach

Published January 14, 2019, 8:28 PM

by Roel Tibay

By Vanne Elaine Terrazola

Senator Antonio Trillanes IV is seeking a legislative probe on the reported passport data breach in the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).

Senator Antonio Trillanes IV ( Jun Ryan Arañas/ MANILA BULLETIN)
Senator Antonio Trillanes IV ( Jun Ryan Arañas/ MANILA BULLETIN)

Trillanes, on Monday afternoon, filed Senate Resolution No. 987, which calls for an inquiry, in aid of legislation, on the alleged data breach in the DFA involving a formerly outsourced passport maker.

His colleague in the minority bloc, Sen. RisaHontiveros, earlier filed a similar measure.

In filing the resolution, Trillanes said he aims to ensure “that the government continues to uphold the protection of its citizens’ right to data privacy, and to assure the public that said incident will not pose serious threat to national security.”

The opposition senator added he also seeks “that all data will be properly and completely retrieved.”

Trillanes, in the measure, stressed the importance to investigate the controversy which started in a series of tweets by DFA Secretary Teodoro“Teddy Boy”Locsin Jr.

Locsin was responding to a netizen who inquired about the requirement of presenting the birth certificate for a passport renewal.

The DFA chief, who shared the netizen’s frustration, later bared that they had to rebuild all passport data “from scratch because a previous outsourced passport maker took all the data when contract [was] terminated.”

Locsin referred to French company Oberthur, which allegedly ran off with all the passport data when the government terminated its contract in 2015 to give way to the entry of APO Production Unit, Inc. (APUI), a division under the Presiden¬tial Communications Office.