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The output of a Volkswagon plant in Poland. Photo: Wojtek Laski / Getty

Level One Robotics failed to secure a cache of trade information about its clients, including VW, Chrysler, Ford, Toyota, GM, Tesla and ThyssenKrupp, according to a new report by security firm UpGuard.

Why it matters: While there is no evidence that any malicious forces found the data left vulnerable by misconfiguring the file sharing protocol rsync, it is yet another reminder that data owners often leave huge caches of data exposed by accident. If an attacker put in the work to search for insecure files, it may have come across the data.

Details: Level One makes automated manufacturing machines. The leaky data included "over 10 years of assembly line schematics, factory floor plans and layouts, robotic configurations and documentation, ID badge request forms, VPN access request forms, and ironically, non-disclosure agreements, detailing the sensitivity of the exposed information," according to an UpGuard blog post. It also included personal information on Level One employees, including in some cases photos of passports or drivers licenses.

The discovery: Upguard researcher Chris Vickery discovered 157 gigabytes of data on July 5. Level One plugged up security holes by July 7.

  • The data included information on more than 100 companies who work with Level One.
  • Vickery praised Level One for quickly remediating the problem.

Go deeper

Trump grants flurry of last-minute pardons

Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty

President Trump issued 73 pardons and commuted the sentences of 70 individuals early Wednesday, 11 hours from leaving office.

Why it matters: It's a last-minute gift to some of the president's loyalists and an evident use of executive power with only hours left of his presidency. Axios reported in December that Trump planned to grant pardons to "every person who ever talked to me."

Trump revokes ethics order barring former aides from lobbying

Photo: Spencer Platt via Getty

Shortly after pardoning members of Congress and lobbyists convicted on corruption charges, President Trump revoked an executive order barring former officials from lobbying for five years after leaving his administration.

Why it matters: The order, which was signed eight days after he took office, was an attempt to fulfill his campaign promise to "drain the swamp."

  • But with less than 12 hours left in office, Trump has now removed those limitations on his own aides.

Trump pardons former GOP fundraiser Elliott Broidy

President Trump has pardoned Elliott Broidy, a former top Republican fundraiser who pleaded guilty late last year to conspiring to violate foreign lobbying laws as part of a campaign to sway the administration on behalf of Chinese and Malaysian interests.

Why it matters: Broidy was a deputy finance chair for the Republican National Committee early in Trump’s presidency, and attempted to leverage his influence in the Trump administration on behalf of his clients. The president's decision to pardon Broidy represents one last favor for a prominent political ally.