Australian government left personal data of more than 700 000 migrants exposed online

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At the weekend the Australian government came under fire regarding one of its digital platforms that exposed the personal data of an estimated 774 000 migrants.

The platform in question is called SkillSelect and The Guardian published a report detailing how easy it was to obtain personal information on people wanting to migrate to the country, with details such as their age, country of birth, marital status, qualifications and status of applications, freely accessible.

When the publication reached out to the Australian department of home affairs, which was at fault for this gaff, the SkillSelect site was down for maintenance, and at the time of writing, has been placed online again.

Unfortunately the department did not offer a reason for why the site was down, or indeed why the information was so easy to access for other individuals.

There is also the issue of informing the 774 000 migrants expressing interest (wanting to migrate to Australia), as leaking this kind of personal information requires the necessary parties to be properly informed by law.

As such the department may have landed itself in hot water.

More importantly though, as Engadget points, there has also been an outcry regarding the country’s recently launched COVID-19 tracing app, with concerns raised with regard to privacy. Following this latest gaff, the Australian government is doing much to maintain trust with its citizens.

With this still being a developing situation, we’ll to wait to see whether the compromised migrant information has been used for any nefarious means.

[Image – Photo by Amber Weir on Unsplash]

Robin-Leigh Chetty

Robin-Leigh Chetty

When he's not reviewing the latest smartphones, Robin-Leigh is writing about everything tech-related from IoT and smart cities, to 5G and cloud computing. He's also a keen photographer and dabbles in console games.