Home > Data Loss, McAfee/SafeBoot/Intel, PII > Data theft for political gain? No way!

Data theft for political gain? No way!

Computerworld today reported that a Dell PC was stolen by some enterprising thieves from John McCain’s Missouri campaign office. While I usually steer clear from commenting on political activities, being only a legal alien and therefore not even able to vote for things I really care about (the local Fire Chief and Sherriff), let alone something so influential as the 44th President of the United States of America, I find myself unable to hold back.

You can read more about the theft from the link above, but of course as this is a blog I’m duty bound to make some observations:

Twenty Two Asustek Eee PCs were not stolen, though one Dell was. No offence to Dell here but I’d like an Asus Eee much more than a Dell (hint if anyone wants to send me one). I can also imagine that Eee’s are much easier to offload on eBay.

2. The laptop contained information which would be “valuable to a political opponent” – like, “say it ain’t so, Joe!” Seriously – can you possibly imagine a location more likely to have laptops containing sensitive political information?

For those who have attended one of my Data Protection briefings, you’ll remember that I’m keen for people to understand there are two sides to data theft – the accidental, human risk that we all pose due to our inbuilt nature, we leave stuff in cabs, print things and don’t shred them, and email stuff to people we shouldn’t really send it to, then, there’s the targeted, deliberate risk – people steal stuff because it’s valuable.

One Dell from a room full of Eees in a campaign HQ? Tell me that’s not targeted.

Time for a shameless plug –  I hope they were using McAfee Endpoint Encryption (available at preferential rates to all political entities).

Simon

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