Bits from Bill

Technology thoughts leaking from the brain of "Bill Pytlovany"

Thursday, September 07, 2006

CNet Reporters Transferred to Guantanamo Bay

Well, not exactly but it appears there’s another case of folks losing their rights and personal freedoms.  While this situation really can’t be compared to the suspected terrorists being interrogated using torture, errr.. I mean“alternate techniques”, I do have a point to make.

The Bush administration has been setting examples that are openly being adopted by corporate America. Hewett-Packard’s chairman Patricia Dunn recently authorized an investigation of board room leaks that quickly went from an internal investigation to a public embarrassment and potential legal quagmire

Investigators hired by HP decided it was easiest to just go after the phone records of reporters with CNet and the Wall Street Journal to find out who might be talking to them. (Click for Full Story)

My point to all this?  It shows how easy it can be for innocent parties to be violated.
It didn’t required the FBI, CIA or court order to access the phone records. It just took a private investigator in Iowa with  a freeYahoo Email account trick AT&T into giving out the information.

How can any of us trust privacy statements from any companies in this current atmosphere?

From AT&T’s  HOW WE PROTECT YOUR INFORMATION

All AT&T employees are subject to the AT&T Code of Business Conduct…
We employ security measures designed to protect against unauthorized access…
For example:

  • We maintain and protect the security of our servers and we typically require user names and passwords to access sensitive data.
  • We use industry standard encryption methods to protect your data transmission unless you authorize unencrypted transmission.
  • We limit access to personal identifying information to those employees, contractors, and agents who need access to such information to operate, develop, or improve our services and products.

Wow!  They require username and passwords!  Oooooo Awwww!
The AT&T “Code of Business Conduct” is what really makes me feel warm and fuzzy.
And how has this worked out?  I’m sure the folks at CNet will be happy to tell you how they feel about AT&T privacy.


 

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