Always Look for the Bright Side

Larry Dignan, editor in chief of ZDNet, sees a silver lining in the Equifax data breach: the company can serve as an object lesson in how not to handle a data breach. Here are his conclusions:

Add it up and Equifax looks like a company with the following:

  • A massive database with personal information that’s not protected well.
  • Little technology knowhow.
  • A need for more regulation — since it has more valuable data on consumers than Facebook or Google.
  • Class action lawsuits on the horizon.

IMO Equifax is enormously fortunate that the weather has filled the airwaves for the last week. The company’s data breach, the malfeasance that may have followed it, the company’s response to it, and, above all, the broader implications of a breach of so much data of such sensitivity on so many people would have been big news by now.

One additional word. The “data breach checker” the company has apparently implemented is the looniest thing I’ve ever heard of. There is no conceivable way I would ever give out the last six digits of my Social Security number over a wifi connection which is the way most people connect to the Internet these days. I or any other knowledgeable person can deduce somebody’s whole Social Security number in seconds if given the last six digits.

7 comments… add one
  • Guarneri

    I picked this post for an O/T comment because of its title. As I write this – 4:15 est – the eye is hitting Naples. Home videos from brother in law and news pictures have gee whiz quality. “The bright side” is that the looters have been forced in for awhile. You can find Golden Gate on a map. It was rampant. Also just N of Naples in Bonita.

    Americas finest.

  • Janis Gore
  • TastyBits

    Looting (and other thievery) is one of the reasons people (looters and looties) are reluctant to leave.

    Nonetheless, I am sure the video is from New Orleans because that is where all the hurricane looters live.

    Overblowing the storm does not help, either. After Naples, Fox News was showing a local weatherman. The winds were officially Cat 3, but he was talking about a Cat 1 with Cat 2 gusts moving up the coast. When he said that a Cat1/2 (as opposed to a Cat 3/4) was manageable Fox News cut the feed.

    Also, the reason why cities can grow so large is because, contrary to conventional wisdom, they do not get hit very often. Tampa has not been hit for 96 years, and as the South Florida weatherman noted, they could handle a Cat 1/2 or Cat 0/1.

    Rebuilding is not the fun festival some people believe it is. For most people, two or three times are enough, and those areas diminish. After Andrew, Florida instituted building codes that limit the wind damage, and therefore, people do not move.

  • Tampa has not been hit for 96 years, and as the South Florida weatherman noted, they could handle a Cat 1/2 or Cat 0/1.

    That varies from place to place. In its first 100 years of existence Houston flooded 16 times to the extent that the main street was underwater. If flooding is unexpected in Houston, it can only be because they weren’t paying attention.

    Overblowing the storm does not help, either. After Naples, Fox News was showing a local weatherman.

    That is actually a tragedy. Classic instance of the “boy who cried wolf”. The next time a big hurricane comes along more people will decide to try and ride it out.

  • TastyBits

    I have noticed that small government, anti-freebies, free-market capitalist suddenly throw their principles out the window when they (or friends or family) are the recipients.

    Anti-gouging laws are anti-free-market. The correct response is to allow people to charge as much as possible, and this will attract more sellers causing prices to drop. Were people to go into the area in response to the shortage, most likely they would be blamed for not taking personal responsibility to keep safe.

    Anybody want to bet that Florida’s Republican governor and Senator will be running to Washington to get their free-goodies.

    After Andrew, Florida implemented strong building codes, and again, these are not conducive for a free-market. These codes cause the damage to be lessened, and I am waiting for the free-marketeers to explain why more damage and gouging is better. Please be quick, I am holding my breath.

  • I have noticed that small government, anti-freebies, free-market capitalist suddenly throw their principles out the window when they (or friends or family) are the recipients.

    That’s characteristic of Jacksonians.

  • TastyBits

    I expect the government to protect the ‘little people’ from the powerful and wealthy, but hurting the powerful and wealthy does not necessarily protect anybody.

    The Florida building codes and anti-gouging laws protect the less powerful and wealthy. If builders could build using straw or sticks, they would, and we would hear how great cheap housing is. These are the same people who tell us that cheap sheetrock, children’s toys, and dog food are the greatest things since sliced bread. The ‘little people’ are supposed to be grateful for corrosive, toxic, and poisonous products.

    Unfortunately, it is often the powerful and wealthy protecting themselves from other powerful and wealthy people, and the less powerful and wealthy gets hurt in the process.

    Not related, but nobody takes note that the reporters in the evacuation zones are often staying in hotels that are staffed by people who should have evacuated.

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