February 25th, 2009

snark maiden

ID cards: UK's largest honeypot already sticky

"Staff at 30 local authorities have been responsible for security breaches of the government database that will help make up the national ID cards programme. The public sector workers viewed personal records on the Customer Information System (CIS) run by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). The database contains personal data for the majority of UK citizens, including benefit recipients, pensioners and anyone with a national insurance number. The breaches were discovered following routine checks, and found that staff at 30 local authorities have accessed personal records, “without business justification”, since 2006. The DWP CIS database will form the majority of the biometrics-based national identity register under the government's ID cards scheme."
care of NCC, a security consultancy.

So, the 'it's so secure  you don't need to worry' national identity database that will have biometric data (good luck getting a new fingerprint issued after it gets compromised) that I've been viewing as a honeypot that will attract every idenity thief who can get online, is also going to leak like a sieve to internal users. There are supposed to be stern punishments that will deter people from just rummaging around the national ID database; let's see if they get applied this time then.

H: opening up mobile browsing

Firefox on mobile phones is going to be more than just a rival to Web kit; it's going to be an application platform, with location services protected by privacy preferences, with ways of syncing your history from the desktop so the Awesome bar just works on a new phone. But it might not have Flash support...

One of our many fascinating meetings at Mobile World Congress was with Jay Sullivan, VP of mobile at the Mozilla Foundation; what he had to say about Fennec and open mobile browsing are now up as my first piece for The H (the relaunch of Heise Online for the UK, as run by one codepope of this parish).

Opening up mobile browsing: Location, privacy and web standards: as the first alpha and beta releases of Fennec, Mozilla's mobile browser, come out, Mozilla VP Jay Sullivan tells us the phone isn't a separate world any more. Does the world really need another mobile browser? Jay says...</strong>