Sunday, December 21, 2008

Why bother?

State Department worker gets probation for passport snooping. Recently a number of government employees were investigated for looking at the confidential passport-application files of celebrities and presidential candidates... A retired worker was sentenced to 12 months of probation and ordered to perform 50 hours of community service when found guilty of unauthorized passport file access.

Hmm, this blogger wonders why these government employee snoopers bother, it's not like there is anything super secret there, and in fact most of the information there is available in different places in the public sphere... True, the information is nicely aggregated to facilitate identity theft, but that has not turned out to be the reason for which why they snooped. Guess it probably is just as the guilty ex-employee said, "idle curiosity." And thus this will be reduced not by surveillance and punishment, but by keeping them busy!

(Information on the application form: 1. Name 2. Date of Birth 3. Sex 4. Place of Birth 5. Social Security Number 6. Mailing Address 7. Contact Phone Number 8.E-mail Address 9. Have You Used a Different name? 10. Parents; Information 11. Height 12. Hair Color 13. Eye Color 14.Occupation 15. Employer 16. Additional Contact Number 17. Permanent Address 18. Emergency Contact 19. Travel Plans 20. Have You Ever Been Married? 21. Have You Been Issued a U.S. Passport Book 22. Have You Ever Been issued a U.S. Passport Card?)

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