Friday, July 07, 2006

Another Data Breach at ADP

When will these guys ever learn?

I don't know about you, but I am getting really sick and tired of people's personal information being compromised when placed in the care of companies with which we do business. It seems that almost every day there is a story about a data breach, a lost laptop, or a posting of personal information on the internet. What gives?

Why isn't there better care of our data? I think it's high time that Congress act in this matter. Put some meat in the law with respect to enforcing existing legislation. Place substantial fines upon those companies involved in the data compromises. Make it a severe jail sentence for those found complicit. Finally, make it a law that your personal information is yours and yours alone. Make it automatically copyrighted and enforce the copyright rules.

It's really very simple. Start making the responsible (or is it irresponsible?) parties, um, RESPONSIBLE. Make them pay. Make them give each customer credit monitoring for life. Each customer compromised should get a sum of money. What shall it be? Say $1000 for the first breach and $10,000 for the second. The third: How about $1,000,000? Is that unreasonable?

How much is my personal information worth? How much is yours worth? What value do you place on your information? I think the public is complicit in this too, for it is us who have not made it perfectly clear to our elected officials just how important this issue is to us. In fact, I am not even sure that most of us believe it's that important.

"Oh, it's never going to happen to me." Well, when it does happen to you, how will you feel? Your data is everywhere. It's only a matter of time before it becomes public. What will you do then? Will your stance on this issue change?