The state of California “accidentally” released the private information of nearly 3,500 firearms instructors in October 2016.
The information was released as part of the response to a Southern California Public Radio (KPCC) reporter’s Freedom of Information Act request. The reporter was seeking information on state Firearms Safety Certifications.
Fox News reports that information on “3,424 firearms instructors” was inadvertently released. That information contained “dates of birth, driver’s license numbers and California identification numbers.” On December 28, 2016 — over two months after the release of information was discovered — “the California Department of Justice sent out a letter to all of the Golden State’s instructors letting them know their personal information had been compromised.”
California Attorney General Kamala Harris also used the letter to “[recommend that] firearm instructors place a fraud alert on their credit. Since driver’s license numbers are appealing to identity thieves, a fraud alert could prevent criminals from misusing someone’s personal data.”
The National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA) is asking why it took the state two months to alert the firearms instructors about the leak.
NRA-ILA’s Jennifer Baker said:
This privacy breach is just another example of the California Department of Justice’s disregard for the rights of gun owners. There’s no reason why the private information of firearms instructors should have been released – the DOJ redacts information all the time.