...a blog by Richard Flowers

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Day 2515: Alistair Darling – A Great Big Northern Rock Up… and then ANOTHER one!


Déjà vu for Sooty, Mr Frown's Chancellor of the Blank Chequer, who was at the despatch box for his second emergency in two days.

The sheer SCALE of the numbers involved just blows the imagination: twenty-four BILLION pounds loaned to a busted bank on the increasingly shaky gamble that he'll be able to get it back; twenty-five MILLION people exposed to identity theft and old fashioned bank robbery thanks to the Labour's OBSESSION with gathering up people's data and their CARELESSNESS about it once they've got it.

You almost expect him to announce today the disappearance of twenty-SIX trillion gallons of correcting fluid somewhere in the vicinity of his HAIR…

Crazy as the situation at the Northern Rock bank is, where the Government has a hundred billion pounds of assets to sell but we can't even be sure of getting back the twenty-four billion pounds of OUR MONEY that they have already advanced, the biggest data breach in history (…SO FAR!) knocks it into a cocked hat.

And the IRONY-METER is on OVERLOAD today, with Sooty ordering the Customs Men to use their UNPARALLELED powers of entry and search to break into their own offices to try and find a couple of lost CDs!

Rare as it is for me to agree with Conservatory Junior Bean-counting Champ Master Gideon Oboe, you have to say he was SPOT ON when he said that this has GOT to be the end for the Labour's LUNATIC I.D.iot card scheme.

The dangers involved cannot be understated. The information that they've ALREADY lost – more than a month ago, by the way, without a peep out of them – covers the names, addresses and dates of birth of EVERY child in the country and the bank and national insurance details of their families… this includes the sisters of both of my daddies, along with – we can but presume – the details of the Prime Monster, Mr Frown; the leader of the Opposition, Mr Balloon; and both of the contenders to be leader of the Liberal Democrats, Mr Clogg and Mr Huhney-Monster.

And basically, someone somewhere now has all they could possibly want in order to steal almost everybody's money!

Mr Richard Jeavons is director of IT implementation at the Department of Health, and the man in charge of setting up the NEXT TEMPTING TARGET: the NHS database. Even HE thinks that it is at risk.

Already he said: "there were instances where staff 'abuse their privileges'."

After this, how can we possibly, POSSIBLY think that the Labour's scheme to feed all of our personal and private info into a MAD COMPUTER in return for a plastic I.D.iot card is REMOTELY safe?

Information is VALUABLE and people will be ACTIVELY trying to get hold of it… but these revelations show that it doesn't even need MALICE: ordinary, everyday idiocy is enough to compromise every family in the nation!

People must wake up to the fact that large, bureaucratic organisations quite simply WILL make mistakes, take short-cuts, overlook procedure and in the end accidentally lose control of data in EXACTLY this sort of calamitous way. Like the Bishop of Southwark loosing control and hurling presents from the back of a Mercedes in a drunken stupor, IT'S WHAT THEY DO.

But just putting the blame on some junior nobody IS NOT GOOD ENOUGH. If your security procedure relies on your staff FOLLOWING the procedure, then it's simply NOT SECURE.

(And clearly, the head of Mrs Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs recognises this and with honour resigned.)

For the Liberal Democrats, Mr Power Cable has challenged the Government to say where the BUCK stops. After all, Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs is a CREATION of the Labour Government, in fact directly under the charge of PREVIOUS Chancellor… whose name escapes me for the moment.

Merging the Inland Revenue with HM Customs and Excise, while not necessarily a bad idea, was always going to be a tricky operation. Trying to do so while simultaneously engineering a quadrupling in the complexity of tax legislation seems recklessly abandoned. And cutting a quarter of their staff at the same time is just plain BONKERS!

"Clearly if officials are being asked to do more and more with fewer staff then mistakes will be made," said Mr Power Cable.

We need to take the challenge right to the very top. Or, as my Daddy Alex puts it:

"How can Mr Frown take his own livelihood less seriously than the tens of millions of people he’s recklessly endangered?"

Still, with everybody's EXISTING bank accounts compromised, perhaps now is the time to open a new NORTHERN ROCK account… er…

1 comment:

Alix said...

From Vince Cable's petition email re Northern Rock:

"This Prime Minister and this Chancellor have invested the equivalent of 30 Millennium Domes in this bank..."

The cruel beasts!