Breach puts Mo. soldiers' personal data at risk

July 15, 2008

By Carolyn Tuft

The Missouri National Guard has called for a criminal investigation after it learned that the personal information of as many as 2,000 soldiers had been breached.

"I am distressed that sensitive information has been compromised," Major General King Sidwell said in a prepared statement released today.

"I am especially concerned about the problems and inconveniences this may cause for our Missouri National Guard Citizen-Soldiers and their families," King said.

The Guard would not release how the personal information had been taken -- whether by computer hackers or other means -- because it has asked for a "full law enforcement investigation into the matter, the statement said.

The Guard said that it did not believe that "this personal information will be exploited, but (the Guard) is being pro-active to protect all those involved."

Capt. Tamara Spicer, spokeswoman for the Missouri National Guard, said this mornig that details of how the security had been breached and any other information could not be released. She said that police investigators told Guard officials that releasing those details could "hamper the investigation."

Letters are being sent to all soldiers and their family members to notify them of the breach.

A press release sent out this morning defended the Guard's security program, calling it "robust." Yet, the Guard is now reviewing its information security procedures to look for weaknesses and how the system might be improved.

Any soldier or family member with questions should call a hotline number at 1-888-526-6664 extension 7888. If the soldier is deployed overseas, the soldier may use the Defense Switching Network and call 312-555-9500 extension. 7888. The soldiers also can visit the Missouri National Guard website at

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