It's only 600,000 identities…

Now there is this stupid flaunting of law two (minimal disclosure) – leading to an ‘identity loss’. I really like the concept of ‘identity loss’ – it's a lot more happy sounding than ‘identity theft’ or ‘identity catastrophe’, since we have no proof the information fell into the hands of someone evil. Here's what we do know:

“In the letter to employees, Time Warner said the missing tapes contained data such as names and Social Security numbers of current and former U.S.-based employees, their dependents and beneficiaries

Of course I always hate to drag in my dependents and beneficiaries, especially young kids, but hey – there are positive aspects to the way things unfolded:

“After determining that publicizing the data loss wouldn't interfere with the investigation, Time Warner posted a statement about it on its Web site…”

I guess if our knowing had interfered with the investigation, we would still be in the dark. But again, best not to interfere.

“Cockell said in the statement to employees that the company has made arrangements with Equifax to offer U.S. employees a free subscription to Equifax's Credit Watch Gold credit monitoring service to help protect identity and credit information for 12 months.

Have I told you just how much Equifax has alienated me as a customer? Maybe Eric Norlin or Charles Fitzgerald could sort this company out, but no one else in the world!

I mean, they make AT&T and Verizon look like Mother Theresa.

In the course of my identity research I once contacted Equifax and asked for my own credit report. I found that a company which had billed me for a never-used credit card was claiming I had never payed them for it. Seems like my lady friend had cut it up before reading the fine print. I appreciate Equifax's role in passing that around! And letting me find out about it for such a reasonable fee.

I was able to sort things out by giving in to the extortion, though I now understand Equifax should have given me one free report when I first approached them (only done if you know about it ahead of time). Since then, things have become worse. I have been repeatedly scammed and spammed by Equifax with a bounty of stuff like this (I especially appreciate having them write to me at workd and calling me ‘valued’):

equifax spam

Isn't that just great? I'm gonna save!

But back to the news from today:

Time Warner's disclosure follows on the heels of other high-profile security breaches in the U.S. In March, a laptop containing data on 100,000 graduate students, alumni and applicants from the University of California, Berkeley, was stolen from a campus office.

Bart Lazar, a privacy and intellectual property lawyer and partner in the law firm of Seyfarth Shaw. in Chicago, said that as data loss incidents pile up, thereÕs greater potential that firms found responsible will have to change their data security standards. Most of the pressure, he said, may come not from Congress but from insurance companies that will require more stringent safeguards before signing with a client.

Published by

Kim Cameron

Work on identity.

2 thoughts on “It's only 600,000 identities…”

Comments are closed.