Monday, March 12, 2012

NASA: Good News, Bad News, and a Stolen Laptop

"NASA to Beef Up Cybersecurity After Laptop Computer Theft"
Clara Moskowitz, (March 8, 2012)

"NASA is taking steps to prevent another security lapse like the one that caused unencrypted space station codes to leak when a NASA laptop computer was stolen, the space agency's chief Charles Bolden told Congress Wednesday (March 7).

"The stolen NASA laptop was among 48 mobile devices taken from the space agency between April 2009 and April 2011, the agency's Inspector General office announced on Feb. 29. The laptop contained command and control codes for the International Space Station (ISS).

" 'I can take action there and I intend to do so,' Bolden told the U.S. Senate's Commerce, Science and Transportation committee Wednesday (March 7). 'I can make it a policy or reemphasize the policy that when critical information is put on a laptop, it's encrypted.'..."

The good news is that folks on the ISS weren't in danger as a result of the laptop - and its data - getting stolen.

The not-so-good news is that NASA, and just about everybody else, is still getting used to the Information Age - and learning what is a good idea, and what isn't.

Encrypting data on gadgets that are easy to steal sounds like a really good idea.

It's not just NASA - SEGA, Sony, credit card companies, and a whole lot more outfits have been climbing a learning curve over the last few years.

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