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Quarter of Government databases are 'almost certainly illegal'

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posted on Mar, 23 2009 @ 04:15 AM
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Quarter of Government databases are 'almost certainly illegal'


www.yorkshirepost.co.uk


Their findings reveal billions of pounds wasted on information technology projects which are badly managed and not fulfilling the role for which they were designed. Children are "most at risk" according to the report, and "major privacy or operational problems" mean private data about adults is also open to abuse. Researchers used a "traffic light" system to grade each project and a further 29 were found to require an independent review, while just six received "green light" status over their legality and operations.

The team say citizens should have the right to access most public services anonymously, while sensitive information should only shared with their consent or under clearly-defined "proportionate and necessary" legal rules. But report co-author Prof Ross Anderson said some databases penalised innocent members of society, branding them criminals without conviction and sharing sensitive information without permission.
(visit the link for the full news article)




posted on Mar, 23 2009 @ 04:15 AM
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What? Suddenly the police state powers have grown a conscience? No offense, Brits. And whoever else is out that way.


Actually, I am glad that this is getting some attention. Apparently

I liked this part,




"Britain's database state has become a financial, ethical and administrative disaster," he said.
"It wastes billions of pounds a year and often damages service delivery rather than improving it. There must be urgent and radical change in the public-sector database culture so that the state remains our servant, not our master, and becomes competent to deliver appropriate public services."



Now if only the powers that be, in America, would grow a conscience, too.

www.yorkshirepost.co.uk
(visit the link for the full news article)

[edit on 23-3-2009 by LostNemesis]



posted on Mar, 23 2009 @ 05:19 AM
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Unfortunately, we only are made aware of these databases when the MSM is given the information and told to report it. When thousands of people's information might be compromised. Due to increasingly incompetent management of personal information.

Funny story from a technical support call center (has since outsourced jobs to Mumbai, India and Bumfook, Egypt etc.) A co-worker had found that the Oregon DMV had made a 2 CD database set available containing 3 DB's.
List of Driver's License numbers; License Plate numbers and State ID numbers.

When the web was young (1997'ish) and my co-worker being clever and all... His friend ran a local dial-up ISP and he put both CD's a in server at the ISP; wrote a short web script for his personal web page (looked as stark as Google is today) that searched those 2 CD's. You could find out all kinds of information from a simple search. Plate number search revealed the owner and the bank that held the loan, car make & model etc... DL search yielded a persons last reported address, driving restrictions etc...

Needless to say, when word got out around work, many cubicles were empty. Clusters of 6-10 people were eagerly occupying only a few cubicles searching and laughing until the management found out.

Fairly soon thereafter, the governor called him and asked him to please remove the databases from his search page.

That was an early wake up call to the Oregon DMV about making public information truly public. Government isn't all that sophisticated; it's taken them 12 years to dig themselves out of all their red tape and get with the 21st century. Wheels still turn awfully slow.

I've heard that you can still get DMV records on CD or maybe DVD now but they cost hundreds or thousands of dollars.

They may have passed laws prohibiting release of information.



posted on Mar, 23 2009 @ 05:25 AM
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So, in short, The Joseph Rowntree Trust's findings match what many people (you know, the ones who are so often told 'what are you worried for if you've nothing to hide?') have said all along: these are incredibly expensive, badly managed and just bang out of order.



posted on Mar, 23 2009 @ 06:35 AM
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I'm more concerned about the databases we don't know of.

The ones sitting in the NSA's "data-mining farms" that operate silently in the background taking information from emails, phone calls, letters, internet usage, faxes and so on that are deemed "questionable" (by standards set by the same people who regard dissent as treason) and recorded automatically into databases for analysis usage by the American Intelligence agencies.

Be thankful we at least know about these databases, and what they contain for the most part.

I'm sure there's far larger ones however, hooked into ECHELON or other SIGINT interception networks that are just trawling through reams and reams of confidential of data on everyone and anyone, and no one is made aware of their existence or what they're used for.

[edit on 23/3/09 by The Godfather of Conspira]



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