Stolen thumb drives might hold personal data on Ramstein students

Jennifer H. Svan reports:

The theft of five thumb drives from an unlocked vehicle may have compromised the personal information of hundreds of pupils, their parents and staff members at a Defense Department school in Germany, school officials said Wednesday.

Parents of more than 900 students at Ramstein Intermediate School were notified of the possible data breach Tuesday night, more than three weeks after the information disappeared.

The thumb drives were stolen overnight Oct. 26 from the unlocked vehicle of an American living in Landstuhl, according to German police.

The data sticks belonged to an intermediate school employee, said Department of Defense Dependents Schools-Europe spokesman Bob Purtiman.


Purtiman said officials were trying to determine whether the data on the thumb drives was protected by encryption, and whether the devices were personal or government-owned.

Read more on Stars and Stripes. Then explain to me why there’s no answer to the question of whether the data were encrypted. It doesn’t take over three weeks to pose the question to the employee and to get an answer, does it?

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