A number of Israeli citizens have been charged with using illegal means to access the data of their relatives, the Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth reported Tuesday.
The charges, reported by the Israeli news outlet, are the latest in a series of incidents of Israeli law enforcement officials accessing data belonging to Israeli citizens, especially during investigations of possible espionage.
The latest case involved Yitzhak Rabin, a former Israeli prime minister who was charged with espionage in 2016.
Rabin and his son, the former Israeli President Reuven Rivlin, were charged with leaking state secrets to Egypt’s Sisi regime, and later released on bail, according to a statement from the Israeli attorney general’s office.
The criminal case against Rivlin has been ongoing since November, when the Israeli police arrested him after he was caught on surveillance cameras with a laptop in his apartment.
Rakhmam Zoubi, a spokesman for the attorney general, said Rivlin’s laptop contained data that belonged to his son and a number of other Israeli citizens.
According to Yedioths report, the indictment cited as part of the case “a long list of alleged data breaches and violations of privacy rights and the security of sensitive data, which have been reported to the Attorney General’s Office and the Israel Security Agency.”
The cases against the two defendants came just a week after Israeli media reported that Israel’s cyberpolice was investigating more than 100,000 cyberattacks in which data was illegally accessed, without a warrant.
The data breach revelations have prompted a push by the government to develop a system to protect sensitive data and make it more secure.
Israel has launched a new cyberpolice, but the agency has been accused of a lack of transparency and an inability to deal with breaches in a timely manner.
According a Yediath Ahronot report, Rabin’s son and Rivlin were arrested in July 2016 and charged with stealing a computer system belonging to the Israeli National Archives, a document that records the records of more than 300,000 documents from the State Archives and other archives across the country.
They were released on their bail in January after being arrested on the eve of a parliamentary session.
Rabin was arrested in 2016 after the Israeli military found his laptop on the roof of his home in Jerusalem, and Rivli was arrested last year in Jerusalem on suspicion of stealing a laptop belonging to a retired police officer, who works in the National Archives.
Both men are now in prison awaiting trial, and have been granted bail pending the outcome of the criminal case.