Vote 2020 graphic
Everything you need to know about and expect during
the most important election of our lifetimes

State Dept. Stops Issuing New Overseas Passports, Possibly Due to Hack

Illustration for article titled State Dept. Stops Issuing New Overseas Passports, Possibly Due to Hack

The State Department is having some technical difficulties with its overseas passports and visa systems, and while it’s working to figure out the problem, it stopped giving out most new travel documents.


People who applied for overseas passports after May 26 and people who applied for visas to the U.S. after June 9 will have to wait until the problem gets cleared up.

This is going down at a time when hacker-led cyberattacks on the government are very much in the news. We learned this month about hackers who stole massive amounts of personal data from the federal government. The State Department issued letters to people whose passport information was stolen in the OPM hack earlier this week.


The fact that the people affected applied so recently makes me doubtful that this is directly related to the OPM hack, since that attack supposedly concluded at the beginning of May, but malicious actors have not been ruled out as a cause.

This doesn’t impact domestic passports, so if you’re a US citizen and you need to renew your travel docs from within the US, you’re fine. The State Department will give US citizens emergency passports for “urgent” travel, but this’ll impact any Americans overseas applying for new documentation, as well as anyone from other countries who needs a visa to travel to the US.

Contact the author at
Public PGP key
PGP fingerprint: FF8F 0D7A AB19 6D71 C967 9576 8C12 9478 EE07 10C


Image via Ludovic Landry/CC

Share This Story

Get our newsletter



It’s the gummit, I tells ya, they’re all up and tryin’ to keep us pinned in here. Chuck Norris was right! He ain’t never no lyed to us. I gotta run to the Walmart to get more ammo for my maw. She done be shot all her AK-47 ammo at rabbits in the turnip greens. #Murica