Monday, March 21, 2005

Investigators Argue for Access to Private Data

The New York Times, which has had great coverage of the latest privacy debate, is running an article in today's edition giving the private investigator's perspective on data aggregators:

The New York Times > Technology > Investigators Argue for Access to Private Data:

"Diany Castillo, a 54-year-old home health care aide who lives in Brooklyn, says she is grateful that the fragmented bits of her past - her moves from one state to another, her marriages and her name changes - can be found in the vast commercial databases that contain personal information on tens of millions of Americans.

Last October, a private investigator in Los Angeles used those digital bread crumbs to track down Ms. Castillo and send her a letter. Her estranged daughter, Diani Ramos, adrift for nearly a decade on the streets of southern California, was looking for her, the letter said.

The two were reunited in November.

In the heated debate over privacy rights and the sale of personal information by the data-mining industry, the story of Ms. Castillo and Ms. Ramos may represent a contrarian's view. "

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