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Major League Lacrosse leaks personal information of entire player pool

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League advises players to freeze accounts after accidentally sharing private information.

Major League Lacrosse is facing criticism - and potentially legal action - after inadvertently sharing personal information of the individuals of the MLL player pool last week.

Last Thursday (August 24), the league became aware of a “data incident” in which a link on their player pool registration page connected to a spreadsheet that included the “full name, address, telephone number, email address, Social Security number, citizenship, date of birth, height, weight, position, college, graduation year, team, and non-MLL occupation” of every player connected with their player pool.

In an email to the players, the MLL advised that individuals possibly affected by the data breach establish fraud alerts, put a hold on on their accounts, and to notify the Federal Trade Commission if they become a victim of identity theft.

That link seemed to be unhelpful, however.

Additionally, the league stated they will provide prepaid credit monitoring for each of the individuals whose information was compromised. They also promised to send a formal notice once more information is gathered.

In a statement to Inside Lacrosse, MLL Players' Council member (and New York Lizard) Ryan Flanagan said:

"This is unacceptable and inexcusable. The spreadsheet that was shared publicly with player information has been shared privately on more than one occasion. Players have previously requested that the file not be shared with anyone and that any files with player information be encrypted and password protected. This request was clearly ignored. On top of that, the issue of player information being shared publicly was brought to the attention of the league on Aug. 23. The league did not send a note to those impacted until Aug. 28. The individuals that were aware of the information breach went home for the weekend without making the players aware that their personal information was shared publicly. This is unacceptable."

"We greatly appreciate Commissioner [David] Gross offering prepaid credit monitoring to those impacted. However, the players of Major League Lacrosse have continued to create an outstanding on-field product for fans and deserve better treatment off-the-field in a variety of areas, including the protection of our personal information."

Some players took to Twitter to express their reactions to the breach.

This situation is not the first time this season that the league has been highlighted for negative reasons. Suspension protocol, infrastructure, and statistics have been points of contention this season, along with instances where simple details seem to go unnoticed. You’ve heard me ramble about the league on multiple occasions this summer.

Outside of the email to players and media members, the MLL has yet to issue an official statement on the matter.

Earlier today, the league’s website opened their annual Player Movement for the 2017 offseason. The complete list is below, including some notable players:

This is the second season with the Player Movement Policy in effect, and according to the league, “Players with at least five straight seasons in MLL and an expiring contract may declare their intent to seek opportunities with other MLL teams. If that player agrees on a contract with a new team, his former team may receive compensation in the form of a Collegiate Draft pick.”

Stay tuned for more information on the situation as it develops.

UPDATE: We have a podcast up about this situation: