This past week has seen the results of two intrusions into Sony's networks. One resulted in the exposure of the private data for over 77 million customers, including credit card information. A second exposed nearly 25 million more user accounts. But Sony isn't the only company subject to hacks.
While it's true that many security exploits and intrusions are the result of trojans and viruses, social engineering plays a big part in the exposure of data. Hackers can pose as employees of a target company, and talk their way into getting login information from a naive employee. After that, the doors are wide open.
It's really time for a major change in the way our personal, private data is handled. We need to take back our data from companies that are unwilling and unable to protect it. Most of these companies do not need to store our personal information. In fact, all they need to certify is that we've paid for their services. They don't need to have our credit cards on record. They don't need our names, addresses, phone numbers, birth dates, social security numbers, etc.
All they need is an encrypted hash that resolves to a customer ID number. Let us, the people, hold our own data.
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