A number of photographs posted on the official St James’ Palace website – picturing Britain’s Prince William in his daily life – have been found to expose a number of passwords and other sensitive information belonging to the Royal Air Force (RAF).
The 10 pictures, meant for the website of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, were taken by a RAF photographer, but they were not “properly cleared” at RAF Valley before being made public, Daily Mail informs.
The photos show that Prince William doesn’t act like royalty while on duty at the RAF Valley base located in Anglesey, north Wales, where he serves as Flight Lieutenant Wales of the Search and Rescue (SAR) unit. They reveal that he makes his own coffee, makes his own bed, and even spends time checking his aircraft.
However, they also reveal the screen of a computer with a password prompt screen, another one of an email account, documents, and even usernames and passwords written on a piece of paper. A total of four of the ten pictures contained sensitive information.
As a result of the incident, the Ministry of Defence has been forced to reset exposed passwords as a precaution.
New photos have been issued – with the sensitive parts blurred out – and members of the press have been requested to replace the old ones. However, by the time the security breach was discovered, the photographs had already been published by websites from all around the world and printed by several newspapers.
This is not the only incident of this kind we’ve learned about over the past period, but it’s certainly the most dangerous from an information security perspective.
Experts have often warned about making sure that when the TV crew comes to visit, all the post-it notes containing passwords and other sensitive information should be hidden from plain site.