ekc writes "Apparently people don't need to find lost government laptops in order to get people's social security numbers. The agriculture department was nice enough to make them available in a searchable public database." Even better is the fact that the database's records were available via Google. The only way this was discovered was because a bored farmer did a vanity Google search and was surprised to find her social security number displayed. The article quotes numerous people wondering (a) why the Agriculture Department was using SSNs for identification purposes and (b) how no one could have noticed that they were then putting that info into a public database. By this point, though, it seems pretty reasonable to just admit defeat: your social security number is not private. It's available, and anyone who wants it can probably get it. What should be done, then, is for everyone to simply stop using it as a means of identification, but somehow, that seems unlikely to happen any time soon.
If you liked this post, you may also be interested in...
- Crowdfunded Prize For Open Source Jailbreaking iOS7 To Improve Accessibility
- Advisory Panel Offers Suggestions To Strengthen US Cybersecurity, But Is The Government Capable Of Change?
- ACLU Calls For Ban On Nonlethal Weapons In Schools After Tased Student Ends Up In Coma
- Lightning Strikes Twice: Wannabe Murderer Butt-Dials His Almost-Victim
- Companies Developing Crowd Analysis Programs To Detect 'Abnormalities' In Behavior And Match Faces Against Giant Databases