Grand Theft Identity — Plus A Big Bonus

from the fun-for-everyone dept

theodp writes “The fast-growing $53 billion a year identity theft industry gets the cover of this week’s Newsweek. ID thieves, who pay as little as $200 for 300 credit cards, may have less than a 1 in 700 chance of being convicted. Also disturbing is corporate America’s response to the problem. After Checkpoint sold the financial secrets of 145,000 consumers to con artists, its CEO still got a $1.8 million performance bonus. And the billion-dollar industry that has emerged to sell people protection against data theft is run by some of the same folks that fail to protect the info in the first place.” If you hadn’t realized, it’s all a big scam. The people who created the problem got rewarded for it, and are now making big money pretending to fix the problem — and, yet, nothing actually changes.

Rate this comment as insightful
Rate this comment as funny
You have rated this comment as insightful
You have rated this comment as funny
Flag this comment as abusive/trolling/spam
You have flagged this comment
The first word has already been claimed
The last word has already been claimed
Insightful Lightbulb icon Funny Laughing icon Abusive/trolling/spam Flag icon Insightful badge Lightbulb icon Funny badge Laughing icon Comments icon

Comments on “Grand Theft Identity — Plus A Big Bonus”

Subscribe: RSS Leave a comment
Bob says:

The Solution

The battle against identity theft hasn’t even begun, as no one really knows where to start. There’s no U.S. law that allows you to either copyright or trademark your identity, nor treat it as anything but simple information in a computer file. This is where it must begin.

It’s ironic but here is a case where extending all those draconian copyright laws to include your identity as a protected work could actually help you. Or something new similar to this.

Once such a law would pass, then the public would finally have recourse to sue the ‘information brokers’ for damages for abuse of their identity or profile.

It’s only then that things will begin to change. Otherwise, they will stay as they are.

Ivan Sick says:

Re: The Solution

Won’t work. Every ‘broker’ (like your bank) will include in its 700-line contract, that you must sign upon using their services, a clause stating that you allow them to do whatever they want with your info. This will be basically the same as the note in the “privacy policy” (that you get when you sign up for phone service [or most other things these days]) that says your information will only be used for business purposes. “Business purposes” /should/ mean record keeping within the company, but really includes sale of data–they make money selling your name, address and SSN, it’s “business”.

Add Your Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Comment Options:

Make this the or (get credits or sign in to see balance) what's this?

What's this?

Techdirt community members with Techdirt Credits can spotlight a comment as either the "First Word" or "Last Word" on a particular comment thread. Credits can be purchased at the Techdirt Insider Shop »

Follow Techdirt

Techdirt Daily Newsletter

Techdirt Deals
Techdirt Insider Discord
The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...