Many servicemembers received a letter saying that their personal information The branch of the U.S. military that oversees information technology and communications has suffered a potential breach of servicemembers' personal information,
The branch of the U.S. military that oversees information technology and communications has suffered a potential breach of servicemembers' personal information, the branch said in letters sent to victims this month.
The letters, dated Feb. 11, told recipients that last May and June, "some of your personal information, including your Social Security number, may have been compromised in a data breach on a system hosted by the Defense Information Systems Agency."
The Department of Defense confirmed the authenticity of the letters, but declined to share information on what system was potentially breached or how many servicemembers were potentially affected.
"While there is no evidence to suggest that any of the potentially compromised PII was misused, DISA policy requires the agency to notify individuals whose personal data may have been compromised," DOD spokesperson Chuck Prichard said in a statement to NBC.
The letter doesn't specify further details about what happened. Three retired veterans who received the notice said they had no idea of the scope of the breach.
"I'm an Army vet and government contractor so my info is in a lot of systems maintained by DISA," Andy Piazza, who also posted his copy of the letter to Twitter, said in an online chat. "No idea the system nor the scale."
"I have no idea what breach this is associated with," said Brett Williams, a retired Air Force general and former director of operations at U.S. Cyber Command, who posted his letter to LinkedIn and spoke with NBC News through the platform. "Just thought it was interesting to post to demonstrate the lame approach so many people take to handling successful cyber attacks. Hopefully no 'for profit' company would think this is an acceptable response."
DISA's letter raised fears of echoing the 2015 breach of the Office of Personnel Management, where hackers, who the U.S. government believes worked for Chinese intelligence, stole files on an estimated 21.5 million people who had applied for government jobs.
Phli Waldron, a retired Army veteran who also received a letter, said DISA holds sensitive information about U.S. servicemembers.
"DISA is the hub of everything communications, so it's huge," Waldron said via a messaging app. "Everybody's unclassified email runs through DISA."