What Can Go Wrong?

The government wants us to believe that whatever data the NSA is collecting on private citizens is safe from abuse because of a number of checks and balances they have in place to prevent their data from being stolen or misused. They tell us this in response one of their contractors allegedly stole and misused their data in an attempt to warn us of the NSA spying on us.

That’s bad enough but it actually gets worse:

The AP reports that “authorities have accused a Memphis police officer of using the NCIC database to leak information to a confidential informant about a watch dealer who the informant believed had stolen a Rolex; a reserve patrolman in Clarkston, Ga., of running names and license plates for marijuana dealers; a Montgomery County, Md., officer of running checks on cars belonging to a woman who later reported that the vehicles had been vandalized; and a Hartford, Conn., police sergeant of supplying database records to a woman who used them to harass her ex-boyfriend’s new girlfriend.”

via Here’s what can go wrong when the government builds a huge database about Americans.

And it goes on and on. I think every one of us can think of a news report about people with access to the NCIC files misusing their access for their own gain. How can we trust such a system not to be abused when it is going to be run by humans?

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