Another story released on “hide the news day” (Friday) Obviously coffee does not keep you alert. (This story comes from the Privacy Foundation)
Starbucks Loses Laptops With Worker Data
Associated Press 11.03.06, 5:46 PM ET
Starbucks Corp. said Friday it had lost track of four laptop computers, two of which had private information on about 60,000 current and former U.S. employees and fewer than 80 Canadian workers and contractors.
The data, which includes names, addresses and Social Security numbers, is about three years old, dating prior to December 2003, said Valerie O'Neil, a spokeswoman for the Seattle-based coffee retailer.
... O'Neil said Starbucks was in the process of notifying those affected, including an estimated 8 percent of its current work force, which numbers about 135,000 worldwide.
Starbucks has been looking for the laptops since early September after discovering they were missing from a closet in the corporate support center at its south Seattle headquarters, O'Neil said.
Another Friday story...
IHC laptop donated to thrift store contained employee information
By Linda Fantin The Salt Lake Tribune Article Last Updated:11/03/2006 04:35:01 PM MST
Posted: 4:23 PM- Intermountain Healthcare will destroy the hard drives of all recycled computers after an old laptop containing the names, job titles, social security and telephone numbers of 6,200 employees was donated to second-hand store and sold for $20.
The customer who bought the laptop from Deseret Industries discovered a single spreadsheet on a laptop whose memory was otherwise erased, [Something fishy here... Bob] said LDS Hospital spokesman Jess Gomez.
... The DI customer took the machine to television station KUTV [proof you can't hide these incidents? Bob] which alerted Intermountain and returned the computer about two weeks ago.
"Keep in mind this is a 14-year-old computer that sat in storage until last month when it donated to DI," Gomez said. "We feel very confident that no information was compromised in any way."
Lot's fishy here...
VA reports two more data security lapses
By RICK MAZE November 03, 2006
The Veterans Affairs Department is dealing with two new data security lapses affecting about 3,000 people.
About 1,600 veterans who received pulmonary tests at the VA hospital in Manhattan are being provided free credit counseling after the Sept. 8 theft of a laptop computer from a lab.
VA officials said the stolen laptop, which contained names and Social Security numbers of veterans who had received tests, had been triple-locked — in a locked corridor inside a locked room and secured by a cable to a cart, said VA spokeswoman Jo Schuda.
Some 80 percent of VA-owned computers are now encrypted, but data on this laptop was not because a decision had been made not to encrypt data being used for medical purposes. [“We call it our 'HIPPA be damned' policy” Bob]
... While that investigation was under way, VA officials learned of more missing data when computer disks containing the names and personal data on about 1,400 Oklahoma veterans were lost in the mail.
The disks contained information about veterans who had been treated at a McAlester, Okla., community-based outpatient clinic.
The disks included information on current and deceased patients at the clinic.
“It should not have been mailed, and they have promised to not mail anything like this again,” Schuda said.
Better customer service: “You don't have to steal our computers, we'll email the information directly to you!”
UVa Emails Personal Information
Michael Gorsegner November 3, 2006
Imagine having your social security number emailed to a complete stranger. That is the reality for over 600 UVa students.
... After refusing an on camera interview, spokesperson Carol Wood said, "We trust all the students will quickly and honorably dispose of the information eliminating any chance of a problem."
I'll have to think about this...
The Value of the Public Domain
I hadn’t seen this piece when it came out in July. The Value of the Public Domain by Rufus Pollock is an excellent analysis of how one might quantify the value of the public domain. It nicely introduces what otherwise strikes many as counter intuitive. Highly recommended.
If this had been a TV network, heads would roll and their stock would drop like a stone.
Friday, November 03, 2006
NBA Pulls Vids from Google Video
The NBA and Google Video have terminated their landmark partnership, which was announced to much ballyhoo earlier this year. All games, which had been previously available for a fee, have been pulled down from Google. [Not worth keeping even as an extra marketing channel? Bob] This includes last year's NBA Finals. If you follow the links on this page, you will note that all of the games are gone.
In the meantime, the NHL and Google yesterday announced that hockey games are now available for free [When they are done with the court, we turn it into an ice rink... Bob]on Google Video. Even better, you can download them for your iPod. That's wonderful for consumers, but it points to Google's bigger problems when it comes to video.
My gut is that Google is having a lot of difficulty selling content on Google Video. If the NBA were making money with Google, you can bet they would have stayed there. In fact, they probably would have used it as a platform to promote their new League Pass Broadband service - but they didn't.
Now, enter YouTube. If Google can't sell video content on its own video property you can bet they will have the same challenge on the newest addition to their family. The only way they will make up their $1.6B is in advertising - provided the copyright issues don't kill YouTube first. Possible? For sure. But Google better hope that the Transient Web doesn't take over.
A long article with lots of quotes, but I'd rather see the original document.
BLOGGED BY Rebecca Abrahams ON 11/2/2006 7:16PM
EXCLUSIVE: LEAKED 2003 REPORT ON MARYLAND'S DIEBOLD VOTING SYSTEMS REVEALS SERIOUS SECURITY CONCERNS WERE WITHHELD FROM ELECTION BOARD, GOVERNOR, PUBLIC!
Long-Sought Document Finally Surfaces Showing America's Largest Voting Machine Company, MD State Election Director, Hid Major Flaws From State, Country!
Original 200-Page Security Report — Said to be 'The Pentagon Papers of Electronic Voting' — Previously Released Only in 38-Page Highly Redacted Form…Until Now…
Is this what Arnold means when he says, “I'll be back?” (This is the computerized version of the old Chicago “machine”)
California E-Voting Machines Let You Vote Early And Often
from the whoo-hoo dept
At what point do we wake up from this e-voting story nightmare and have someone reassure us it was only a dream? Every day, there's yet another story about how badly screwed up these machines are. Today, we've got a treat, as it's not actually about Diebold, but their competitor, Sequoia Voting Systems. It turns out that on the back of some of their machines used in California, there's a little yellow button. If you push it, you can vote multiple times by switching the machine to "manual" mode. In true geek fashion, Sequoia has responded with (I kid you not) their own version of "that's not a bug, that's a feature!" They claim it's "deliberate back-up feature to prevent the Edge from having a single point of failure." Hey, preventing single points of failure are great, but when they introduce a totally different point of failure, that's not so good. But, according to the company, this is the type of "flexibility" they've always provided. I didn't realize that "flexibility" was something desired in an e-voting system. Generally, you'd think people would prefer them to be pretty rigid, but to work right -- and not allow multiple votes. Sequoia claims that use of this feature emits a loud beeping noise, and they'll train poll workers to listen for that -- but that doesn't seem like the most reliable methods. We've heard so many stories of confused and technology illiterate voting officials that it's hard to believe they'll remember this or know what to do if it happens. The company says it will address the issue after next week's election -- but that any district using them can choose to simply turn off this "feature." So, if you're voting in California and you have an AVC Edge e-voting machine from Sequoia, and you have a bit of moral flexibility, apparently you can support your favorite candidate just that much more.
I don't normally report “pending” law or regulation since they rarely arrive in the form reported in the early articles, but this one interests me. Perhaps we should escape while we can? To where though...
We're All Prisoners, Now: US Citizens to be Required ''Clearance'' to Leave USA
International Politics October 26, 2006
Forget no-fly lists. If Uncle Sam gets its way, beginning on Jan. 14, 2007, we'll all be on no-fly lists, unless the government gives us permission to leave-or re-enter-the United States.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (HSA) has proposed that all airlines, cruise lines-even fishing boats-be required to obtain clearance for each passenger they propose taking into or out of the United States.
... Why might the HSA deny you permission to leave-or enter-the United States? No one knows, because the entire clearance procedure would be an administrative determination made secretly, with no right of appeal. Naturally, the decision would be made without a warrant, without probable cause and without even any particular degree of suspicion. Basically, if the HSA decides it doesn't like you, you're a prisoner - either outside, or inside, the United States, whether or not you hold a U.S. passport.
The U.S. Supreme Court has long recognized there is a constitutional right to travel internationally. Indeed, it has declared that the right to travel is "a virtually unconditional personal right." The United States has also signed treaties guaranteeing "freedom of travel." So if these regulations do go into effect, you can expect a lengthy court battle, both nationally and internationally.
... For more information on this proposed regulation, see http://hasbrouck.org/IDP/IDP-APIS-comments.pdf.
It's that time of year again. (Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving) Retailers pretend to be shocked that their deals leak out early – as if the extra publicity was bad.
OfficeMax Black Friday Ad For 2006 Posted.
graphicsux submitted by graphicsux 1 day 6 hours ago (via http://www.blackfriday.info/ads/officemax-black-friday-ad.html )
Another ad leaked out. Some of the deals in the Office Max ad are a 20" Widescreen LCD Flat Panel Monitor for $199.99, an Averatec 2370 12" AMD Turion 64 X2 12" Laptop for $599.99, and a Sandisk Cruzer Micro 1GB Flash Drive for $13.