IAAF apologizes to athletes after bio passport data leakage

Fancy Bears struck again. This time leaked out confidential information containing bio passport data for key elite athletes across the world. The list had “Likely doping” or “Passport suspicious” as per the blood passport.

This evening IAAF has issued a statement about the cyber-attack with an apology to the athletes whose names appear on the leaked list.

“The IAAF offers its sincerest apologies to the athletes who believed their personal and medical information was secure with us,” read the statement.

IAAF states that it will continue to work with cyber incident response (CIR) firm Context Information Security, who identified the Fancy Bear cyber-attack which we announced in April – link – to create a safe environment. Context believes that the information published yesterday emanates from that attack.

“There can be no excuse for the leaking of personal and medical data or the releasing of information on informants and ongoing investigations as this puts those individuals involved at risk and harms the fight against doping” said IAAF President Sebastian Coe. “However we must acknowledge that we need to look at our processes.”

We continue to investigate any suspicion of doping in a robust way in accordance with applicable protocols and under WADA’s supervision. It would be wrong to make assumptions based upon leaked documents without the full evidence and that evidence being put in context. Single data readings of an Athlete’s Biological Passport (ABP) cannot alone constitute evidence of doping. All atypical ABP Profiles are automatically reviewed in the Anti-Doping Administration and Management System (ADAMS) following the processes and protocols of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

Information on Athlete Biological Passport process:

The monitoring and review of ABP profiles recorded under the IAAF’s Anti-Doping Programme are conducted in strict accordance with the applicable WADA Regulations, by external independent experts and through ADAMS. It consists of a multi-stage review process with a specific official terminology set out in accordance with WADA’s Result Management Regulations to assist Anti-Doping Organisation in the implementation and prioritization of their ABP Programme.

The official terminology which includes “Likely doping”, “Passport suspicious; Further data is required”, “Likely medical condition”, “Normal”, “Cancelled by APMU” (Athletes Passport Management Unit) are used to classify profiles flagged as “atypical” by the ADAMS mathematical model, indicating whether or not an athlete’s biological passport profile should be further investigated. It does not provide a final determination on whether or not an athlete has committed an Anti-Doping Rule Violation. It is a dynamic process in which the status of an athlete’s profile can change at any time.

Related Documents (pdf) for download:

– ABP Review Process Flow chart

– WADA ABP Operating Guidelines



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