Maine State Police Statement on Third-Party Data Breach Involving the Maine Information and Analysis Center (MIAC) 

June 26, 2020 

The MIAC was notified on June 20, 2020 of a data breach by Netsential, a company that provides third-party web hosting services to over 200 law enforcement and government agencies throughout the United States. We were told this data breach may have included information from the MIAC, consequently, we notified our partner agencies of the possible data breach with recommendations on mitigation measures, such as creating awareness for phishing attacks and changing passwords.  Since then the MIAC has been working to assess the extent of the data breach with our state, local and federal partners, including the FBI Houston Field Office, which is actively investigating this incident. 

Earlier today we received confirmation that datasets submitted to the MIAC by partner organizations and are maintained by Netsential have been compromised and made public through various unlawful means.  Our initial analysis revealed some of these files contain information distributed among law enforcement and government agencies.  The MIAC has been utilizing the services of this vendor since 2017.

The most common documents shared are crime information and situational awareness bulletins that are used to assist in solving crimes, to connect regional incidents and to create situational awareness for public safety entities and private sector partners throughout the State. These bulletins often contain identifying information, such as full name and date of birth of people under investigation by other law enforcement agencies.  They may also involve individuals wanted for criminal activity or individuals reported as missing.  We will be engaging in additional, more specific notifications to those agencies affected as we learn what the contents of those breaches are to ensure that ongoing investigations are not jeopardized.    

Fusion Centers were created to enhance public safety and encourage effective, efficient, ethical, lawful, and professional intelligence and information sharing.  MIAC’s mission is to prevent and reduce the harmful effects of crime and terrorism on victims, individuals, and communities while protecting people’s privacy, civil rights and civil liberties. 

For more information please contact Lieutenant Michael Johnston via e-mail at Michael.P.Johnston@Maine.Gov

Statement of Maine Department of Public Safety Commissioner Michael Sauschuck and Colonel John Cote, Chief of the Maine State Police

The Maine State Police is aware of a published complaint that includes allegations involving the Maine Information and Analysis Center (MIAC) and two valued leaders within our agency. As a matter of policy and on the advice of the Maine Attorney General’s Office, we will not comment on the specific aspects of on-going civil litigation. We would however, like to take this opportunity to express our confidence that our fusion center is operating in accordance with applicable laws, policies, procedures and best practices that safeguard people’s privacy, civil rights and civil liberties. 

We would also like to publicly express our full faith and confidence supporting both Lt. Scott Ireland and Lt. Michael Johnston. Both are experienced, well-respected leaders.   Lieutenants Ireland and Johnston are individually credited with many successful achievements and accomplishments in challenging commands and roles within our agency.  

The core values of the State Police are Integrity, Fairness, Compassion, and Excellence. We remain steadfast in our commitment to these principles, to our members, and to the citizens we are proud to serve. 

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