Get Used To Identity Theft

from the you're-just-a-number dept

The latest David Holtzman column starts out as if he’s trying to answer the should you buy identity theft insurance question posted last night. However, it appears he’s really making an argument for getting rid of all privacy as a way to combat identity theft. He points out that the reason we have identity theft is because the digital age has turned us all into numbers – and as long as anyone has your specific numbers when you log into a computer, they are, effectively, you. To combat that, he suggests, we should have national ID cards and clear biometric data that identify who we are, and what we’re doing at all times. Maybe I’m not reading the article correctly, and all of this is implied, but I’m not clear on whether or not Holtzman has thought through any of the “unintended” consequences of such a plan. While I think there are places for biometric security systems, I wonder about forcing people to be identified in their every move. It goes back to the question of whether having more data actually makes it more difficult to find the important data. It also ignores the possibility of managing such large databases, and avoiding any “human errors” that could completely destroy someone’s life (if all of their records are stored there). Considering that Holtzman is CTO of Network Solutions, the company that recently “accidentally” gave away someone’s domain name through a “human error”, I don’t think Holtzman should be pushing for such large national databases right now. Perahps Holtzman has thought through all of this, and knows that such things will never work – hence the headline, telling us to simply “get used to” identity theft, just because he can’t come up with a non-sickening way of getting rid of it.

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