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Why Equifax & others will Fail at Self Policing

The simple answer is they will not do anything to hurt their own business. They sell your information and rake in too money doing so. A credit freeze prevents that. I finally found a good article to share on this by Brice Schneider.

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This happened because your personal information is valuable, and Equifax is in the business of selling it. The company is much more than a credit reporting agency. It’s a data broker. It collects information about all of us, analyzes it all, and then sells those insights.

Its customers are people and organizations who want to buy information: banks looking to lend you money, landlords deciding whether to rent you an apartment, employers deciding whether to hire you, companies trying to figure out whether you’d be a profitable customer — everyone who wants to sell you something, even governments.

It’s not just Equifax. It might be one of the biggest, but there are 2,500 to 4,000 other data brokers that are collecting, storing, and selling information about you — almost all of them companies you’ve never heard of and have no business relationship with.

Surveillance capitalism fuels the Internet, and sometimes it seems that everyone is spying on you. You’re secretly tracked on pretty much every commercial website you visit. Facebook is the largest surveillance organization mankind has created; collecting data on you is its business model. I don’t have a Facebook account, but Facebook still keeps a surprisingly complete dossier on me and my associations — just in case I ever decide to join.

The companies that collect and sell our data don’t need to keep it secure in order to maintain their market share. They don’t have to answer to us, their products. They know it’s more profitable to save money on security and weather the occasional bout of bad press after a data loss. Yes, we are the ones who suffer when criminals get our data, or when our private information is exposed to the public, but ultimately why should Equifax care?

This market failure isn’t unique to data security. There is little improvement in safety and security in any industry until government steps in. Think of food, pharmaceuticals, cars, airplanes, restaurants, workplace conditions, and flame-retardant pajamas.

Market failures like this can only be solved through government intervention. By regulating the security practices of companies that store our data, and fining companies that fail to comply, governments can raise the cost of insecurity high enough that security becomes a cheaper alternative. They can do the same thing by giving individuals affected by these breaches the ability to sue successfully, citing the exposure of personal data itself as a harm.

If you don’t like how careless Equifax was with your data, don’t waste your breath complaining to Equifax. Complain to your government.

Trump Scandal? Ooops..Hackers target The Donald’s businesses

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The FBI and CIA are investigating an attempted hack on the Trump Organization.

According to a report from ABC citing unnamed officials with the intelligence agencies, it is believed someone overseas attempted to breach the President’s international real estate holding company.

The report claims that officials and cybersecurity specialists with both the FBI and CIA met earlier this month with Eric and Donald Trump Jr, who have been running the Trump Organization since their father assumed the Presidency of the United States in January.

The report did not suggest where the hackers may have originated. The Trump Organization has denied any of its data was compromised.

“We absolutely weren’t hacked,” Eric Trump said. “That’s crazy. We weren’t hacked, I can tell you that.”

According to ABC, the meeting took place on May 9th, one day before Trump caused a political firestorm by firing FBI director James Comey in the midst of his investigation into Russian government-backed hackers meddling in the 2016 US election, which saw Trump score a surprise win.

In the months following the election, the FBI and Congress have launched investigations into just how much (if anything) the Trump campaign knew of the Russian meddling.

This is not the first time the Trump Organization has been targeted for cybercrime. First in 2015 and again in 2016, hackers managed to get malware onto the point of sale systems at several Trump hotels.

Those incidents were entirely financial, however, as the attackers were looking to steal the payment card numbers of restaurant customers and hotel guests. This latest incident, given the interest taken by the FBI and CIA, could well have involved a more serious target