Saturday, June 11, 2005

The Scramble to Protect Personal Information

Tom Zeller, in the New York Times, has a lengthy article on the recent CitiGroup incident involving the loss of backup tapes of 3.9 MILLION Americans. The article notes that Citi was in the process of beefing up their security after a similar incident involving Japanese customers of a related company. The author interviewed Bruce Scheier and discusses encryption of data in transit. See The Scramble to Protect Personal Information - New York Times.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I get a little concerned with the issues around identity theft. As I see it we have three causes of identity theft:

1. too many people keeping far far too much information on us (why the hell did winner's need to keep my credit card number anyway)

2. Failure in due diligence on the part of most financial institutions. Credit is being exented to people with less and less verification of who they are: you are a SIN and a DOB, not a person to them. are barcodes and RFID chips next.

3. The collectors of this information are in conflict of interest with keeping your information private. Equifax continues to maintain the reasons they don't verify authorization for all credit checks is to make it easier for us - we don't have to wait for the home depot card ..and why does rogers need to check my credit for $30/month cable bill which is billed in advance? Most identity theft starts with "stolen" credit reports in case you weren't watching A&E.

At this point all the ID theft hype has given us is draconian laws and enforcement. No one is taking any steps to stop corporations from keeping all kinds of information on us, and half the time we don't even know when they've lost it -

I certainly feel better knowing a commission only collection agent in Scarborough is surfing around on the Equifax site looking at whoever he wants!

This all sounds alot like 1984, and remmeber: "Any soceity that is willing to give up a little liberty for a little security, will deserve neither, and lose both." B Franklin