fading news – disks astray and children named

This is now old news (it takes me a long time to get to the blog!), but anyone in the UK will know the story of the missing child benefit disks – 25 million records containing parents and children’s names addresses, dates of birth, bank account and national insurance details … an identity fraudsters’ gold mine. This has caused worries of millions of parents and embarrassment for Alistair Darling in Parliament. The BBC has a timeline of the events and Computer Weekly has (very) slightly more techie focused account.

Anyway a week ago last Thursday (22nd Nov) I did a short radio interview on Radio Cumbria, which forced me to consider the issue in a little more detail. I think they expected more a security angle, but obviously this is very much a human story also.

Despite the gravity of the event I was shocked but not surprised. In the end if you put people in a severely time pressured, cost-controlled context mistakes will inevitable happen.

So what went wrong? …

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