FTC warns of improper release of sensitive consumer data on P2P file-sharing networks

The Federal Trade Commission notified almost 100 organizations that personal information - such as health-related information, financial records and social security numbers - has been shared from the organization’s computer networks and is available on peer-to-peer (P2P) file-sharing networks to any user of those networks. This data could be misused to commit identity theft or fraud. The FTC probe shows that small and large-scale companies and schools and local governments have been affected.

Peer-to-peer file-sharing networks are used to play games, make telephone calls or to share music and data. When P2P software is not configured properly, files not intended for sharing may be accessible to anyone on the P2P network.

John Leibowitz, FTC Chairman highlighted: „Companies should take a hard look at their systems to ensure that there are no unauthorized P2P file-sharing programs and that authorized programs are properly configured and secure. Just as important, companies that distribute P2P programs, for their part, should ensure that their software design does not contribute to inadvertent file sharing.“


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Source: FTC