Saturday, December 24, 2005

Analyst calls for more action to protect consumer information

From Line 56, an eBusiness Executive Daily: Data Loss Incidents:

After a lull during which there weren't many high-profile data loss/theft incidents, 2005 is finishing with a couple of embarrassments. This month, ABN AMRO Mortgage Group, Ford, and Sam's Club went through such incidents. ABN AMRO lost computer tape with information on roughly 2 million customers, Ford reported the theft of a company computer containing data about 70,000 current and former employees, and Sam's Club disclosed that 600 gas cardholders who had bought gas from the company had been hit by credit card fraud.

The bottom line, says Gartner Analyst Avivah Litan, is that 'despite more than a year's worth of highly publicized security breaches, not nearly enough has been done to protect U.S. consumers' data.' She points out that the problem begins at the top: 'Identity-theft-related legislation is currently stalled in Congress. Moreover, third-party data brokers remain entirely unregulated, so it is likely that many more serious breaches have not been brought to public attention.'

It isn't just a question of government regulation, though. Litan points out that many different groups can do more when it comes to fighting the problem....

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