Front Page
NMJ Search
Editorials
Commentary
Archive
NMJ Radio
Constitutional Literacy
Islamofascism
Progressivism
Books
NMJ Shop
Links, Etc...
Facebook
Twitter
Site Information
About Us
Contact Us
  US Senate
  US House
  Anti-Google






The phone companies said the records of 343 people were accessed from at least March and were removed April 26, after Scripps said it found information through a "simple" Google search and informed the companies of the breach.
Social Bookmarking
Print this page.
Indiana A.G. Probing Privacy
Breach of 'Obamaphone' Users

FOX News
The Indiana attorney general's office confirmed Monday it is investigating a security breach in which Social Security numbers and other personal information were posted online for roughly 44,000 low-income Americans who applied for a federal program that provides discount Internet and phone service.

The program was nicknamed the "Obamaphone" during the 2012 election, though it actually started long before President Obama took office. Indiana reportedly has the highest number of applicants, roughly 17,400, who were signed up by TerraCom Inc. and the affiliated YourTel America Inc.

Applicants from at least 26 states were exposed to the security breach, according to a report published by Scripps Howard News Service.

In addition to the application forms, 127,000 supporting documents such as scans or photos of food-stamp cards, driver's licenses, tax records, pay stubs and parole letters also were available online.

Federal law prohibits carriers from keeping applicants' proof of eligibility.

A TerraCom attorney told Scripps the records were stored by Call Centers India, a contractor that helps determine eligibility.

The phone companies said the records of 343 people were accessed from at least March and were removed April 26, after Scripps said it found information through a "simple" Google search and informed the companies of the breach.

The news service said TerraCom officials declined numerous requests for an interview but that a company spokesman said federal and state officials were notified of the breach.

The Federal Communications Commission, which runs the program, acknowledged it knew of the situation and said a single privacy violation could cost a company as much as $1.5 million.

The FCC program is known as Lifeline and started in the Reagan administration in large part to help low-income residents in emergencies and to help them find and keep jobs.

But the program was hit with fraud and abuse through the end of President Obama's first term, after cell phones were added and wireless companies, getting reimbursed as much as $34.25 a line per month, were reportedly signing up people who'd never applied or were dead.

As a result, the FCC last year tightened the guidelines, essentially limiting households to either one land or cell phone line and requiring carriers to document applicants' eligibility, which cut the number of subscribers from a peak of 18.2 million in August 2012 to 13.2 million last month.

The program became known during the final months of the 2012 election cycle as "Obamaphones," after a woman in Cleveland in a viral YouTube video touted what she called the "Obamaphone."

"He gave us a phone," she said.

The program cost $2.2 billion in 2012 and is funded through the $2.73 surcharge on monthly phone bills.

READ FULL SOURCE ARTICLE: 05/20/2013

Editor's Note: Guess those ObamaPhones aren't worth the ObamaMoney they were bought with, eh?!...








The BasicsProject.org informational and educational pamphlet series is now available for Kindle and iPad. Click here to find out more...

The New Media Journal and BasicsProject.org are not funded by outside sources. We exist exclusively on tax deductible donations from our readers and contributors.
Please make a sustaining donation today.







Opinions expressed by contributing writers are expressly their own and may or may not represent the opinions of NewMediaJournal.us, its editorial staff, board or organization.  Reprint inquiries should be directed to the author of the article. Contact the editor for a link request to NewMediaJournal.us.  NewMediaJournal.us is not affiliated with any mainstream media organizations.  NewMediaJournal.us is not supported by any political organization.  Responsibility for the accuracy of cited content is expressly that of the contributing author. All original content offered by NewMediaJournal.us is copyrighted. NewMediaJournal.us supports BasicsProject.org and its goal: the liberation of the American voter from partisan politics and special interests in government through the primary-source, fact-based education of the American people.

FAIR USE NOTICE: This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance a more in-depth understanding of critical issues facing the world. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 USC Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to:http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.


The Media Journal.us © 1998-2014    Content Copyright © Individual authors
Powered by ExpressionEngine 1.70 and M3Server