By TOM JOYCE
THE CENTER SQUARE CONTRIBUTOR
(The Center Square) – A new dashboard from the California Attorney General’s office has leaked the personal information of thousands of the state’s gun owners.
The California Department of Justice launched its 2022 Firearms Dashboard Portal on Monday. The portal featured data on the state’s gun purchases as well as concealed carry license holders.
Users quickly learned that publicly-accessible files – including identifying information of concealed carry permit owners – could be downloaded from the graphics, as The Reload reports. As of Tuesday afternoon, the dashboard appears to have been pulled from the website.
The leaked info included people’s full names, home addresses, dates of birth, and permit issue dates, as confirmed by a lawyer for the California Rifle and Pistol Association that obtained a copy of the data.
Some personal information of concealed carry license holders is available through a public records request.
Additionally, the data revealed the type of permit one holds and whether the person holding the permit is a judge or a member of law enforcement, the report found.
In Los Angeles County alone, 2,891 people with standard licenses had their information compromised by the leak, The Reload stated.
Initially, this information was available to download on the website by downloading the background information behind the graphics, but it had been updated by Tuesday morning so that any personal information was no longer public. As of the afternoon, the state’s database site appeared entirely inactive.
California Rifle and Pistol Association President Chuck Michel was not happy with the leak and said that a lawsuit may be coming.
“Vindictive sore loser bureaucrats have endangered peoples lives and invited conflict by illegally releasing confidential private information,” Michel told The Center Square in a statement. “CRPA is working with several legislators and sheriffs to determine the extent of the damage caused by DOJ’s doxing of law-abiding gun owners. Litigation is likely.”
Attorney General Rob Bonta’s office responded to The Center Square after the publication of this story.
“We are investigating an exposure of individuals’ personal information connected to the DOJ Firearms Dashboard,” his office said via email. “Any unauthorized release of personal information is unacceptable.We are working swiftly to address this situation and will provide additional information as soon as possible.”
Mr. Bonta’s office issued a press release on Monday announcing the dashboard feature.
“Transparency is key to increasing public trust between law enforcement and the communities we serve,” Mr. Bonta said in the press release. “As news of tragic mass shootings continue to dominate the news cycle, leaving many with feelings of fear and uncertainty, we must do everything we can to prevent gun violence. One of my continued priorities is to better provide information needed to help advance efforts that strengthen California’s common sense gun laws.
“Today’s announcement puts power and information into the hands of our communities by helping them better understand the role and potential dangers of firearms within our state.”