(Bloomberg) -- The fingerprint records of about 5.6 millioncurrent and former federal workers, contractors and job applicantswere stolen in the breach of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management’scomputer system, up from an initial estimate of 1.1million, the agency said Wednesday.

The breach is significant because fingerprints are increasinglybeing used by government agencies, corporations and consumers foraccess to computers, buildings and other devices.

“Federal experts believe that, as of now, the ability to misusefingerprint data is limited,” Samuel Schumach, a spokesman for OPM,which is the federal government’s jobs agency, said in a statement.“However, this probability could change over time as technologyevolves.”

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