Data Chain Of Tools

The latest loss of a MOD laptop and data discs is not the fault of government. It is more likely to be one person’s mistake together with the combined failure of IT to be able to enforce data encryption.

Anyone who has worked in IT support at the implementation level will tell you how hard it can sometimes be to impress security measures on users who are used to the laissez faireData discs security they enjoy on their own home computers. Enforcing new passwords every 30 days, data encrypted discs and only allowing a secure remote access to sensitive data are all hassle for poorly trained or casual users and with IT and IT users having an abnormal number of people fudging and winging it then I find it surprising that even more incidences than those we’ve heard about do not occur.

In essence it’s another failure of management in my opinion,with poorly implemented IT, poorly trained (or even belligerent) users and the inability of people to accept personal responsibility.

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2 thoughts on “Data Chain Of Tools

  1. I find it surprising that even more incidences than those we’ve heard about do not occur.

    Personally, I find this latest rash of losses suggestive. Could it be that such losses are in fact quite common and that what is new is the interest taken in them by the media? There tends to be a bandwaggon effect such that if a journalist makes a fuss over a particular incident, then any other incidents of a similar kind are also splashed across the media.

    If you look back through the news reports in the past, you will find many stories of briefcases (remember: that was what we had before we had laptops?) being stolen or forgotten in taxis. The media reported them but without the furore that is now common.

    One reason for this is that in times past we didn’t have the Internet. People’s bank details were much more difficult to use for nefarious purposes. Only your local bank knew who you were and you had to go there in person. Nowadays it is much easier to transfer funds online if you have people’s personal data.

    Carelessness with security is nothing new. People have always been careless and always will be. Once again the technology has developed quicker than our ability to adapt our behaviour to ensure the necessary levels of security. There will be more losses before we catch up. By that time, of course, the technology will have developed still further, so the problem will recur…

  2. No doubt the press have their own agenda to pursue and a little light digging would reveal many similar incidences. Computer use in many a workplace is often analogous to owning a car but most people not ever learning to drive past the basics of turning it on and putting it in gear. Maybe one day they’ll invent a car that doesn’t involve having to learn any skills in order to drive , need maintenance or kill people when drivers make mistakes and so too we dream of the computer software that would require the same lack of base skills in use and required caution in order to setup and use without mistakes being costly.

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