Monday, February 28, 2005

Dickie's Securities

Bruce Schneier once again has an astute observation about security. This time it involves a Swiss Army knife confiscated from a Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice:

The TSA likes to measure its success by looking at the forbidden items they have prevented from being carried onto aircraft, but that's wrong. Every time the TSA takes a pocketknife from an innocent person, that's a security failure. It's a false alarm. The system has prevented access where no prevention was required. This, coupled with the widespread belief that the bad guys will find a way around the system, demonstrates what a colossal waste of money it is.

Speaking of security failures, the Seattle Times published yesterday a story on Identity thieves targeting babies and young adults.

Becca Bartelheimer was 3 when her mom tried to open a savings account for her and learned someone had beaten her to it.

The credit union told her someone else was using Becca's Social Security number. The Snohomish mother spent more than 1,000 hours trying to straighten things out and having a hold placed on Becca's credit record.

Andrew Brooke of Bothell was just 3 weeks old when someone using his name walked out of an Edmonds clinic with a prescription painkiller, leaving behind $94 in unpaid medical bills.

Stacy Hayes and her 2-year-old son, Cooper, got a letter from the Snohomish County prosecutor's office last month informing them they were both victims of identity theft. The thief was caught, but no one can tell the Bothell mother how their personal information was stolen.

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