Category Archives: Definition

Phone companies can’t conspire, can they?

“Probe Focuses on Cellphone IDs,” The Wall Street Journal, April 21, 2018 B1.  DOJ investigates.

Are phone companies (and a standard-setting company) conspiring to make it harder for you to keep your phone number if you change carriers?  Or are they trying to make phones smaller?

Is your phone number information?  If so, to whom does it belong?  Is this just about whether you have to remove the SIM card to change carriers?

Just asking.


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Filed under Information, Ownership, Definition, Interconnections, Controls, Internal controls, Access

It’s all about networks

“Facebook Breaks Its Silence, Admits to ‘Mistakes,'” The Wall Street Journal, March 22, 2018 A1.  Facebook takes fire for use of Facebook’s data on 50 million users by outside app developers and others.  One analyst points to “systemic mismanagement.”  Stock value has dropped 10% ($50 billion).

Well, that’s your data, isn’t it?  Data about who your friends and interests are, and other data generated by your use of Facebook.  What are your networks worth?  Who says privacy is dead?

The common crisis management three-step.  Crisis, government outrage/testimony and heartfelt (albeit delayed) apologies, and more regulation/lawsuits.

Lots of questions about who owns what data and who has what responsibilities with respect to that data.  Are your personal networks information?  What’s the information worth? When FB holds the information, is it no longer yours?  Did you accept this risk?  Was this really just a problem with FB’s vendors not controlling things?  The list goes on.

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Filed under Access, Analytics, Communications, Controls, Corporation, Definition, Duty, Governance, Information, Internal controls, Oversight, Ownership, Privacy, Protect assets, Security, Third parties, Value, Vendors


“You’re Being Tracked, and Hackers Loom,” The Wall Street Journal, March 5, 2018 B1.  If an app can track your location, the app can sell that data to others.  This explains why the ads you get are context-appropriate.

Who owns the data of where you are?  Who get’s paid for selling it?  Is there a connection between the two?

If you wanted to share information with an app for your own convenience (like knowing what the local weather is), are you agreeing to receive ads from nearby merchants?  Do you know you’re making this bargain?  Do you read the terms and conditions?


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Filed under Access, Definition, Information, IT, Ownership, Security, Value

More on family information

“Family Ties Are Probed At the Border,” The Wall Street Journal, March 3, 2018 A3.  People claiming to be family are probed on information on accompanying children.

Of course your son’s birthday is information.  If you don’t know that, are you more or less likely to be his father/mother?

If you’re the government agent, how do you determine if the relationship is legitimate?  What information’s important?  How do you verify?

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Filed under Compliance, Definition, Governance, Information, Oversight, Value

Who’s who?

“Scientists Build a Family Tree of Millions,” The Wall Street Journal, March 2, 2018 A3. Scientists use information posted by people searching for relatives to build “a database of 13 million people related across 11 generations, based on 86 million public profiles.”

Who owns your family tree?  How will this information be used, and by whom?  What’s it worth?  What will analyzing this information yield?  What happened to privacy?  Do you give that up when you search for your forebears?

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Filed under Access, Accuracy, Analytics, Controls, Definition, Information, Ownership, Value


“U.S. Probes Supplier to VW,” The Wall Street Journal, February 1, 2018 B2.  Engineering firm under criminal investigation for alleging helping VW cook the emissions tests – altering the nature of the information provided to the government.  See also, “Robert Bosch Workers Face Probe,” The Wall Street Journal, February 1, 2018 B3. (Similar allegations, but involving Chrysler).

Are you concerned about your vendors?  Do you make sure they comply with law?  Do you appreciate the data that confirms your own compliance?  What’s it worth to have that data be accurate?

Were this a blog about Crisis Management and Emergency Response, there would be an entry here about what you should do when you hear that someone else in your industry has been doing something bad.

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Filed under Accuracy, Board, Compliance, Compliance, Compliance Verification, Controls, Corporation, Data quality, Definition, Directors, Duty, Duty of Care, Employees, Governance, Information, Internal controls, Oversight, Oversight, Protect assets, Protect information assets, Third parties, Value, Vendors

What’s information worth?

“Cryptocurrency Exchange to Pay Back Customers,” The Wall Street Journal, January 29, 2018 B4.  Company to pay customers back $426 million after hack of cryptocurrency.

What is cryptocurrency except information that people agree has a certain value?  If that information is hacked, isn’t it the same as a theft of a client account?

No Christmas bonus for you, I guess.

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Filed under Board, Controls, Corporation, Definition, Duty, Governance, Information, Internal controls, Protect assets, Protect information assets, Security, Value