Friday, March 21, 2008

Identity Theft in a careless world

I sometimes wonder what is the tremendous need to have all that information out there and that these companies, and government agencies are in such a rush to have it all at their fingertips. We constantly hear about some dum-dum taking his government or company laptop home with him, leaving it in his car or around the house and having it stolen. Ok. Then we find out that they have 8 zillion clients on the laptop always with social security numbers and dates of birth and sometimes addresses, too. Sheesh, think they might soon add all your credit card numbers?

Now, when Buz was in the service ( a couple of years ago), compartmentalization was practiced: you tried never to have all the information in one place, and if needed it was very secure indeed. So the consultant wonders why organizations always insist on having both birth dates and social #'s in the same place--often unencrypted. Like, can't they create an account number of some kind which is only good there, and if they have to, look up dob in one place, and social in another?

Then we just got a mailing from the Blue Cross Dental affiliate reporting that all of our info was openly displayed on a website that anyone could look at. Ugh. Why? Don't the computer types drink a lot of coffee or something? Doesn't anyone review their own work anymore?

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