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Data Security

The latest on data breaches and cybersecurity and data security by Adam K Levin.


  • Hackers: If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Pay ‘Em Like BankersData Security, Blog, Technology

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    So what’s it worth to you to prevent world-wide economic collapse, or even a major interruption of essential services, like power or water? These are not hypothetical questions. Nor will they be caused by the Eurozone disaster, a double-dip recession, the disintegration of institutions deemed “too big to fail,” or government spending run amok. I am talking about cybergeddon — or the endgame of cyber warfare. A concept well-worn in national security organization conference rooms […]

  • The New American Pie: Breached, Tracked and Strip SearchedData Security, Blog, Privacy, Identity Theft, Technology

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    For those of us who care about privacy, these past seven days have truly sucked. With relatively little fanfare in the midst of a cacophonous (that means “noisy,” Senator Santorum) parade of news, three significant events seriously undermined our constitutional right to privacy and highlighted (in a muted sort of way) the extent to which new business practices and perhaps the second oldest human inclination (criminality) have continued the relentless assault on our individual rights […]

  • Google’s New Privacy Policy: Close But No CigarData Security, Blog, Privacy

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    Last week was a pretty good one for the notion of privacy in America, which has increasingly become forlorn and tattered as a result of the advancement of digital technology. First, the Supreme Court ruled in United States v. Jones that warrantless GPS tracking of a criminal suspect by the FBI was unconstitutional, and then later in the week Google announced its new privacy policy, a model of simplicity and fairness with one sizeable flaw. […]

  • Children and data

    Playstation Invasion: Child Identity Theft is No GameData Security, Blog, Identity Theft, Technology

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    By now almost everyone I know (and millions of people I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting yet) has read or heard about Sony’s announcement last week that its PlayStation network was hacked and that the Personal identifying Information (PII) of potentially 77 million individuals worldwide has been compromised. Then, earlier this week, Sony notified us that there’d been a second breach. This one involved the accounts of 25 million members of Sony Online Entertainment, […]

  • The Next Osama Bin Laden Already Has Your Social Security NumberData Security, Blog, Privacy

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    A massive cyber attack on American infrastructure is the 21st-century equivalent of the neutron bomb. All buildings remain standing but systems inside them are rendered useless. Human beings aren’t killed on a large scale, but few, if any, are left standing either. And while this sounds pretty dire, it’s quite likely some segment of this nation will at some time be shut down by cyber terrorists. Late last month Janet Napolitano, Obama’s homeland security chief, […]

  • On Cell Phone Hacking and Privacy: A Modest Proposal for Mr. MurdochData Security

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    The recent revelations regarding the outrageous escapades of certain News Corp. subsidiaries, and the employees thereof, have been so scandalous as to capture and dominate the attention of the worldwide media for several weeks. For once, most Americans began to follow business news with the obsessive fascination normally accorded “Jersey Shore” and “Keeping Up with the Kardashians.” This story has everything: the resignations and apparent bribery of high Scotland Yard officials; the arrest of very […]

  • The Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Breach: Losing Client Data the Old Fashioned WayData Security, Blog, Privacy

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    A few days ago, a friend of mine received several letters dated June 24, 2011 from Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, where he has kept brokerage accounts for himself and his children for many years. It began with the now familiar, “we care about you” phrase: “At Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, client satisfaction and information security are critical priorities.” Then it segues into the sickeningly familiar, “but perhaps not enough” phrase: “We are writing to inform […]

  • The Weakest Link: Feds Fail with Cyber Security ProposalData Security, Blog

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    Last week I expressed my concern over efforts in Congress to delay, defang and ultimately defund the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. I called upon consumers to rebel against being treated as little more than pachyderm toe-jam and to send a clear message in 2012 to those in Congress who have been the spear carriers for business. My consternation over the GOP’s crusade to derail the first truly powerful and focused national consumer protection agency, however, […]

  • Herding Cats: Regulating Online TrackingData Security, Blog, Privacy, Technology

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    There was a time, when the World Wide Web was young, that many entrepreneurs counted on the idea they could make money the old-fashioned way–by charging cyber-customers on a per-use basis, the same way they charged traditional brick-and-mortar patrons. Most print magazines, for example, felt they could make a seamless transition from paid print subscriptions to paid Internet subscriptions. Newspapers believed that some of their traditional departments, such as classifieds, would become huge profit centers […]

  • The Michaels & Fox Data Breaches: Coincidence or Cohesion?Data Security, Blog, Privacy, Identity Theft, Technology

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    Well, two fascinating—and repellant—things happened in the last few days, which but for the broadest possible subject matter connection, would seem to be unrelated. On May 6, a group calling itself LulzSec hacked Fox Entertainment network computers and released personal information about people from the database of potential contestants for the popular Fox show “X Factor.” Five days later, the same group announced in quite caustic terms that it also had hacked Fox.com computers to […]

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