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Thursday, June 07, 2007

South Australian Police lose the file and the plot

While the Victorian Police have their heads up after grabbing Mr. Mokbel in Greece, their South Australian colleagues have their heads down after a major theft of crime investigation files from an unattended police vehicle. The files ended up with a 'bikie gang' and apparently included the names and contact details of dozens of police and police informants.

It's touched off a major fuss about the handling of information by the Police with calls for an independent inquiry about how all this came to pass.

Tony Soprano where are you?

As we have commented previously, its a great mystery how few data thefts come to light in Australia. Does it mean they don't occur often, or just that we never get to hear much about them?

In the US, data about more than 155million people has been lost or hacked since January 2005 according to the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse.

Maybe something to do with the absence here (but not in many US states) of a statutory obligation to inform people about data security breaches that affect their personal information.

Unfortunately the informers might have more to worry about than a loss of privacy.

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