Social Security Numbers Widely Available

According to the Government Accountability Office (GAO), many bulk and online public records contain Social Security Numbers (SSNs), exposing many people to an increased risk of identity theft. Responding to a request from Senator Charles Schumer, the GAO prepared a report addressing the following concerns: (1) to what extent, for what reasons, and to whom […]

Google Settles Key Copyright Case

This morning Google announced the settlement of a lawsuit brought against them by the Authors Guild and the Association of American Publishers over their Book Search technology. Google launched this product several years ago, which indexes books that Google scans from partnering university libraries. Book Search allowed full access to out-of-copyright material and snippets of […]

Federal Trade Commission Chairman Speaks on Internet Privacy

William Kovacic, Chairman of the Federal Trade Commission, appeared on C-SPAN’s The Communicators recently to discuss the Internet and privacy policy. The audio podcast is available online as well as a video clip – which appears to be Mac-unfriendly. It’s a wide-ranging discussion on many internet issues with one of the two agency heads (the […]

Washington Post Cites Growing Voter Database Issues

Saturday’s Washington Post detailed growing concerns and political battles over the implementation of new voter registration procedures as states use newly constituted statewide voter registration databases. One of the most difficult issues to resolve is the “no match” problem when state voter registration databases are compared against federal databases (such as the Social Security Number […]

EDUCAUSE Analyzes University IT Workforce – Potential Shortage Ahead

While ACM has focused on Information Technology workforce issues, we have rarely had the opportunity to look at specific sectors in detail. EDUCAUSE is focused on Information Technology in higher education, and I want to note a recently released study their research center conducted on the IT workforce in higher education. Leading the IT Workforce […]

A Framework For Thinking About Surveillance

Calling on the Executive and Legislative branches of the U.S. Government to “systematically” review every counterterrorism program that deals with personal data and establish new privacy protections, the National Academies recently released a new report examining counterterrorism efforts and privacy rights. In usual academies fashion, the report is a tome. The august body convened a […]