Former TSA analyst charged with computer tampering

He allegedly tried to tamper with databases that track possible terrorists

A U.S. Transport Security Administration analyst has been indicted with tampering with databases used by the TSA to identify possible terrorists who may be trying to fly in the U.S.

Douglas James Duchak, 46, was indicted by a grand jury Wednesday with two counts of damaging protected computers. According to a federal indictment, Duchak tried to compromise computers at the TSA's Colorado Springs Operations Center (CSOC) on Oct. 22, 2009, seven days after he'd being given two weeks notice that he was being dismissed. He was also charged with tampering with a TSA server that contained data from the U.S. Marshal's Service Warrant Information Network.

He "knowingly transmitted code into the CSOC server that contained the Terrorist Screening Database, and thereby attempted intentionally to cause damage to the CSOC computer and database," prosecutors said Wednesday in a press release.

Duchak, who had been with the TSA for about five years at the time, was responsible for keeping TSA servers up-to-date with information received from the terrorist screening database and the United States Marshal's Service Warrant Information Network.

If convicted, Duchak faces 10 years in prison.

He was expected to make his initial appearance in federal court in Denver Wednesday.

Tags TSAtamperingterrorismanalyst

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Robert McMillan

IDG News Service




Anyone who is given termination papers must lose their privileged access immediately. Allowing anyone to operate seven days into their leave notice is irresponsible. Management should be grilled.



@insane: Yup. Sounds like someone at the TSA doesn't understand that simple concept. Someone that should be walked out the door along with Duchak. This incident doesn't do a lot to inspire confidence in TSA

Umm, what?


Since the person was responsible for keeping the servers up-to-date, "transmitting code" to said servers would at least from my admin point of view be a perfectly normal task...



There's a certain professionalism associated with administration of any kind, whether careers, people, or anything else. You don't tell a senior manager to sit in a corner for his final weeks since he may have vital info and tasks he's working on that he has to pass on to his superiors and other people. Similarly you don't tie a systems administrators hands when they're transitioning to another department or company. They're supposed to work a certain professional level, and handle themselves accordingly.



If TSA is to succeed, then it needs to prevent these kinds of things. Or else it is worthless.



Don't worry about this guy and what he did — he got caught. (And TSA deserves credit for catching him.)

Do worry about the ones who are not caught.

How do we know...


"No Fly" databases are a fairly hot topic right now. How do we know he's not being set up to discredit anything he might have to say about his previous duties???

Jeffrey A. Williams


I wonder how many more TSA employeees or especially TSA
administrators or Sr. officials are or have been tampering with these databases as well as I now have serious reservations as to the accuracy of any of the information these databases contain, may contain, or will contain in the future.

Ed Gould


Confidence in TSA????!!!!

You have *GOT* to be kidding. TSA is a political brainchild of a corrupt politician, exactly like what happened at FEMA.

Fire the TSA and either give the authority to the FBI or Coast Guard.



hello to ""-ers can i tell a little joke on here ?
steve pearson



hello to ""-ers just sighned in, yous ok ????
s pearson



hi just registered ,, tina

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