Julian Assange (Wikileaks), Edward Snowden and Pfc. Chelsea (née Bradley) Manning became household names overnight. They downloaded U.S. Government secrets. Diplomatic relations, American politics and military secrets were seriously compromised. How'd it happen? Up to 4 million people—including 500,000 government contractors—hold Top Secret clearances. That's how.
Whether you view him as a hero or a traitor, it's hard to deny that Edward Snowden is a marketing genius. Since the former National Security Agency leaker burst into the spotlight, he's become something of a folk hero. The documents he stole became breaking news for The Washington Post and Guardian, which won the prestigious Pulitzer Prize and Polk Award for their coverage. They also became the catalyst for a
As readers of this cranky blog know, the "Big Data" marketing craze amuses the hell out of me. I once looked at some shoes on Zappos.com and decided to purchase them direct from New Balance, whereupon Zappos chased me all over the Internet with photos of shoes. Several weeks later, Peggy and I were on a Rhine riverboat cruise, whereupon Son of Zappos started chasing me all over Europe. This past Sunday? An underwear ad next to a photo of the Underwear Bomber
Echoing sentiments expressed by Julian Assange at South by Southwest Interactive two days ago, exiled American whistle-blower Edward Snowden and fellow panelists today suggested that tech giants such as Google and Facebook may be forced to hand over civilian data when the United States government asks. "I took an oath to support and defend the Constitution, and I saw the Constitution was violated on a massive scale," Snowden said, recalling his days at the National Security Agency. "Would I do it again? Absolutely. Regardless of what happens to me, this is something we had a right to."
Attorney General Eric Holder is calling on Congress to require companies to more quickly alert customers when their personal information is put at risk in cyberbreaches. In a video message Monday, Holder says "a strong, national standard for quickly alerting consumers whose information may be compromised ... would empower the American people to protect themselves if they are at risk of identity theft. It would enable law enforcement to better investigate these crimes—and hold compromised entities accountable when they fail to keep sensitive information safe
What triggered this column was The New York Times headline: "U.S. Debates Drone Strike on American Terrorism Suspect in Pakistan." Was this an official leak? If so, why? The American target was tipped off. U.S.-Pakistani relations were not helped. Worse were the Edward Snowden leaks.