MANILA - There is "no leak so far" of the passport data that a former private contractor allegedly ran off with, Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin said Monday.
Locsin over the weekend said the Department of Foreign Affairs needed to "rebuild" its database for passports issued before 2010 because a previous outsourced maker "took all the data when contract terminated."
"No leak so far," Locsin said of the data in a tweet.
He surmised however that data "is possibly hopelessly corrupted and at any rate inaccessible now or we are being lied to as usual."
The DFA in 2015 tapped APO Production Unit Incorporated to produce a new e-passport system provided that it does not get a private subcontractor, Locsin's predecessor Perfecto Yasay said in a Facebook post on Sunday.
But the company, which is under the Presidential Communications Office, subcontracted the production of new passports to the United Graphic Expression Corporation (UGEC), he said.
The DFA entered the deal with APO despite its the agency's existing contract with French firm Francois-Charles Oberthur Fiduciare for the production of passports compliant with the requirements of the International Civil Aviation Organization, noted Yasay.
Oberthur, Locsin claimed, deposited the data in a warehouse in Lipa "out of irritation" and refused to give the access code so it could now be "corrupted" even though it is under APO.
Locsin, in a separate tweet on Sunday, vowed to unmask those behind the passport mess, whom he said will "launch a social media campaign against me."
"Apparently the mess crosses partisan lines," he added.