Sunday, December 12, 2010

Ronald robbed! Hamburglar a suspect?

McDonald’s Warns Customers of Data Theft

December 11, 2010 by admin

Mitch Lipka reports:

McDonald’s is warning its customers of the theft of a database of customers who signed up for promotions, such as its Monopoly game. The data breach makes them vulnerable to phishing attacks and other scams and identity theft.

McDonald’s stressed that its records don’t include financial information or Social Security Numbers. But it would include customers’ ages, phone numbers, email addresses and physical addresses.

Read more on Wallet Pop.

McDonald’s statement says, in part:

Our records indicate you previously elected to submit information to McDonald’s in connection with one of our websites or promotions. We wanted to let you know there is a possibility that the limited information you provided to McDonald’s through its websites or promotions was improperly accessed by an unauthorized third party.

By way of background, McDonald’s asked Arc Worldwide, a long-time business partner, to develop and coordinate the distribution of promotional emails. Arc hired an email service provider, a standard business practice, to supervise and manage the email database. That email service provider has advised that its computer systems recently were accessed by an unauthorized third party, and that information, including information that you provided to McDonald’s, may have been accessed by that unauthorized third party. Law enforcement officials have been notified and are investigating this incident.

McDonald’s has also created an FAQ about the breach.

This should enliven the debate... Perhaps my “fly naked” idea will make a comeback.

Backscatter X-Ray Machines Easily Fooled

"A paper by Leon Kaufman and Joseph W. Carlson in the Journal of Transportation Security asserts that x-ray backscatter machines are not very effective (PDF) even in their intended role. While carelessly placed contraband will be detected, the machines have glaring blind-spots and have difficulty distinguishing explosives from human tissue. As they write, 'It is very likely that a large (15–20 cm in diameter), irregularly-shaped, cm-thick pancake [of PETN explosive] with beveled edges, taped to the abdomen, would be invisible to this technology. ... It is also easy to see that an object such as a wire or a boxcutter blade, taped to the side of the body, or even a small gun in the same location, will be invisible.'"

Strategy by lobbyist?

Feds To Adopt 'Cloud First' IT Policy

"The White House Thursday announced plans to restructure IT by consolidating federal government data centers and applications, and adopting a so-called 'cloud first' policy. Unveiled by federal CIO Vivek Kundra, the 25-Point Plan (PDF) calls for cutting 800+ data centers by 2015, as well as shifting work to cloud computing systems. The new 'Cloud First' policy cites the ability of to scale vs. the government's short-lived (Cash for Clunkers), although Google Trends suggests this may be somewhat of an apple-to-oranges comparison for justifying a national IT strategy. As long as we're talking clouds, a tag cloud of the 25-Point Plan underscores that the Feds are counting more on IT Program and Contract Management rather than Computer Science wizardry to deliver 'the productivity improvements that private industry has realized from IT.' Not to be a buzzkill, but those of you celebrating CS Education Week might be advised to consider an MBA if you want a Federal IT career."

No comments: