TSA Laptops Missing

Should I have called this bit "Missing Laptops with Personal Info: Part 6,000,003?" It's happened again folks, although like most before it, this is probably a case of laptops being stolen to sell for cash. Little do the perps know -- or thankfully they just don't care -- these purloined laptops are like an all-you-can-eat buffet for identity thieves.

The bigger issue here is that this isn't the first time sensitive data has gone missing from the TSA. Earlier this year, the TSA lost a computer with bank and payroll data for nearly 100,000 employees. (By the way, that acronym stands for "Transportation Safety Administration." I'd question the "S" and the "A" if they continue to have laptops lifted from them on a semi-regular basis. Aren't these the people who're supposed to keep bad guys from bringing bad things onto airplanes?)

This time, two laptops with detailed personal information about commercial drivers licensed to transport hazardous materials are gone. The laptops belonged to a contractor called Integrated Biometric Technology that works for the TSA. Since they were reported missing, TSA has instructed the contractor to encrypt its hard drives. So far, there have been no reports of data misuse.

Has your organization ever experienced data theft or loss like this? How did you deal with it? What was your plan? Steal a few moments and let me know at llow@redmondmag.com.

Posted by Lafe Low on 10/17/2007 at 1:23 PM


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