Don’t worry, if we put all our data into central government databases, it’ll all be fine. Except when it isn’t. Our esteemed Prime Minister says
â€œIt is important to recognise we cannot promise that every single item of information will always be safe because mistakes are made by human beings. Mistakes are made in the transportation, if you like in the communication, of information.â€
in the aftermath of yet another ridiculous data breach: this time, people’s passwords to the Government Gateway on a memory stick dropped in the road.
Perhaps it is uncouth to point this out, but … if the system had been designed by people with any security clue whatsoever there would have been no passwords to put on a memory stick in the first place.
I notice that Gordon thinks the contractors in this case (Atos Origin) are responsible and action should be taken against them (though how he squares this with his statement that such events are inevitable only a politician can tell you). Well, sure. But why is he not taking action against the morons that designed and approved a system that made it possible for Atos Origin to have the passwords in the first place?
My theory? Policy makers think that it is beneath them to actually understand the technologies they make policy about, or to consult anyone who does. So, it has not occurred to Brown or any of his advisers that this is actually an avoidable error.