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Protecting Society by Protecting Information Reducing Crime by Better Information Sharing Adam Shostack

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Presentation on theme: "Protecting Society by Protecting Information Reducing Crime by Better Information Sharing Adam Shostack"— Presentation transcript:

1 Protecting Society by Protecting Information Reducing Crime by Better Information Sharing Adam Shostack

2 Information Sharing (Ideal) Information is rapidly and securely shared amongst law enforcement to prevent serious crime & catch criminals This is a very worthwhile goal My talk: focus on deviations from ideal Not because all uses are deviations, but because as a society we must consider how things break

3 Privacy and Info Sharing Both Protect People Our panel title sets up a false dichotomy Goal is to protect people False data, misuse of data is a burden How much information should we share achieve that? Use the No-Fly List as an example application No fly list exists because of terrorists

4 No Fly List Typical Information Sharing Application? Data brought to bear to prevent criminal activity/terrorism Data gathered from a plethora of sources No privacy policy around the data We hear only about failures

5 Who’s on The No-Fly List?

6 No Fly List Analysis Assembled from a plethora of sources No privacy policy Using privacy in sense of Fair Information Practices: Notification, Consent, Access, Correction, Reliability Large quality problems False positive vs. real hit frequency Waste of officer time

7 Information Sharing (nightmare) Kafka-esque Denied civil rights (travel, voting) ID theft victims being arrested No ability to solve problem Orwellian World Surviellance for its own sake Stalkers All the data sold to marketeers

8 Info Sharing Economics Building systems is expensive, hard Outsource to private sector! Choicepoint, Siesint Data shared is data shared Data will “update” other records (Eg, Change of address)

9 Info Sharing by Data Brokers [Choicepoint] disclosed that it had agreed to pay as much as $7 million to settle an Illinois class-action lawsuit by insurance agents. The agents said ChoicePoint took information from their inquiries about potential insurance clients and then sold the names back to them and to competitors as sales leads."

10 Info Sharing with Whom? Siesint, a Lexis Nexis Company MATRIX 320,000 records accessed 57 account breaches detected and reported How much data was from law enforcement?

11 Commercial Databases Data sales to all sorts, for all sorts of purposes Stalking ID Theft Revenge EPIC Phone complaint Real ID Act, home addresses Judge Lefkow (?)

12 Increased Information Sharing More information sharing through companies will lead to more crime Stalking, ID theft, Assaults More data capture will increase value of ID theft Is this trade-off worthwhile? Hard to say: need more on how lists work Some 9/11 Hijackers were on lists Too many lists, too many people on them?

13 Economics of Fraudulent ID Increase in document checking Getting harder to exist without papers 15 million illegal immigrants need paper So did 19 terrorists Demand facilitates supply Hijacker Alghamdi (pictured) A facilitator helped him get VA ID

14 Economics of Fraudulent ID Economic incentives hard to resist Arrests across the country Katrina will lead to a groundswell of fraudulent issuance as processes are relaxed for hurricane survivors who need ID More ID checking, more “acceptable” reasons to evade

15 Is There A Laffer Curve of ID?

16 Why Does This Matter? If information sharing is based on “database data,” the quality of that data is dropping rapidly Easier “investigation” by computer may distract from other avenues

17 Alternatives? Pose requirements as what to achieve “Need to distinguish between Johnnie Thomas and Johnnie Thomas” Not how to achieve it “Need social security numbers to distinguish JT and JT”

18 Share Queries, Not Data Move to allowing database queries, rather than shipping data Allows data to be stored, managed, corrected, by creators The FBI’s database is updated, but bad data whose source is unknown, corrupts new lists.

19 Share Less Invasive Data Fingerprints vs: Left thumb to right thumb, my fingerprints: Right loop, whorl, right loop, whorl, right loop... Using a 4 class system, over a million permutations Hard to loan IDs when it’s a million to one match 5 class (arch/tented arch) close to a billion possibilities

20 Conclusions Privacy protects people Information sharing protects people Privacy can improve information sharing

21 Questions, Comments? Thank you for your time and attention


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