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ICE faces heat after agents install thousands of personal apps, VPNs on official phones

November 7, 2023

America’s immigration cops have pushed back against an official probe that concluded their lax mobile device security potentially put sensitive government information at risk of being stolen by foreign snoops.

Between April 27 and August 17, the US Department of Homeland Security Office of the Inspector General conducted an audit of equipment managed by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the agency’s IT policies.

In an October 30 write-up, the inspector general came down hard on the Feds’ device management practices, highlighting “urgent issues” on ICE-managed handhelds – including concerns about devices running apps that could be hijacked by foreign adversaries. Think: software linked to or developed within reach of China or Russia, which could be altered or compromised to spy on Uncle Sam.

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