Thursday, December 13, 2007

How the Government ignores its own advice

Why is it that those who offer the best advice rarely heed the same advice themselves? Peter Mandelson for example was renowned for being brilliant at giving out advice to avoid media hiccups, but when it came to his own private life he was a complete mess.

The same it seems is true of the Government. Take for example the Cabinet Office sponsored sponsors Get Safe Online campaign. The Cabinet Office has spent £300,000 on this worthy campaign will soon provide a futher £150,000 to it to help educate the masses.

The campaign includes very useful and sensible pages such as 'Prevent data theft using removable devices', 'Control access to critical information' and 'Use Encryption'.

The phrase "practice what you preach" springs to mind doesn't it?

8 comments:

Surreptitious Evil said...

Well, Tony N***e isn't exactly the most persuasive individual. He rapidly comes across as hectoring, arrogant and ignorant. Goes down like a lead balloon with normal people, even in with beer to hand. With Oxbridge CS FastTrackers?

Anyway, HMG should be talking to CLAS members not GSOL regarding security. Oh, except they've been muzzled as CESG don't want them saying, in public and especially not to the media, what cnuts HMRC clearly were / are.

Anonymous said...

what sprang to my mind was "practiSe what you preach"

comfy socks and co-op rum said...

"How the Government ignores its own advice", some lazy clerk who ignored the rules ain't the Government. Blaming Gordon for everything is getting tiresome. Just been over to make a post at Guidos' and it's the same pathetic rants by the same pathetic people every bleedin' day. I decided far better to come here, still the same tediously boring bloggers but less of them. They seem to appear not only here but on every other blog imaginable, it's a sort of hobby I suppose.

dizzy said...

Bought the line about it all being the fault of a junior official then. Nice.

Anonymous said...

No "comfy socks and co-op rum said..." strictly speaking it's not /all/ the one eyed cunt's fault.

It's people like you, you raving fucking half wit, who voted for this shower of lying fucks that is to blame. (I assume you voted for him as embarrasment is the only conceivable reason I can see to try to defend Cyclops at the moment).

Zorro.

excalibur said...

It obviously isn't down to a lazy clerk ignoring the rules. It's ingrained incompetence. Think about it.

The NAO only wanted a small sample of the Child Benefit records and no bank account details. Eliminating fields from files of dumped data is not difficult, producing reports from a database with only the needed fields should be elementary.

An interesting question is whether this would have been better under the Tories. There would have been the same ignorance of IT at the top, but less complication of the tax system with the addition of tax credits and child benefits, so not such a sprawling organisation as the HMRC and not so much chaos and incompetence. It's far easier for a small organisation to be secure, professional and cope with change. Brown added the complication and created the HMRC with the disruption that involved, so he's due a chunk of the blame.

Probably, it would have been less likely under the Tories, but this is the consequence of big government and the Tories are still a big government party. Governments can do a few things and do them well, or try to do Hell and all, and screw up.

The interesting thing is the loss of the unencrypted DVLA discs after the scandal of the HMRC discs. Having seen a fellow department embarrassed and heads rolling, they allow the same dumb thing.

Have you seen Dizzy's Public Key? This allows anyone to encrypt data and send it to him, but only he can decrypt it, using his private key. Virtually unbreakable public/private key encryption has been around for years.

comfy socks and co-op rum said...

I feel to post as "anonymous" and then sign as "Zorro" is a tad silly. Charging around in a cape and wearing a mask is even sillier. Bullying a poorly pensioner like myself who has never done you any harm, is however far from silly.

i spy strangers said...

Whilst on the subject, see also:

http://www.cpni.gov.uk/About/topTen.aspx

Point 7 could usefully be taken on board by HMRC, whilst Ms Smith's 11,000 (or whatever the figure is) presumably didn't fall foul of Point 8.