Postal Service Discloses Major Data Theft

HardOCP News

[H] News
Joined
Dec 31, 1969
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0
I'll never understand why computers with sensitive data are connected to the internet in the first place. C'mon, let's at least make it somewhat difficult for hackers.

The Postal Service on Monday became the latest government agency to announce a major theft of data from its computer systems, telling its roughly 800,000 employees and retirees that an attack “potentially compromised” databases containing postal employees’ names, birth dates, addresses and Social Security numbers.
 

cyclone3d

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Aug 16, 2004
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13,473
I'll never understand why computers with sensitive data are connected to the internet in the first place. C'mon, let's at least make it somewhat difficult for hackers.
What else are they going to do? Have a private WAN connection to headquarters to every single post office?

What about delivery confirmation? How are their scanners supposed to report back in real time?

I'm sure that USPS also has a web page for employees to login from outside the office to be able to check stuff as well.

You can also purchase postage and other things online from them.

Get rid of the internet connection and you basically cripple them.

There is a lot more to security than just unplugging.
 

Yakk

Supreme [H]ardness
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It's like Christmas year round for hackers!
 

mi7chy

2[H]4U
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Doubly screwed since government is complacent to begin with and they're faced with budget crisis.
 

kingsleytim

Limp Gawd
Joined
Jan 19, 2005
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What else are they going to do? Have a private WAN connection to headquarters to every single post office?

What about delivery confirmation? How are their scanners supposed to report back in real time?

I'm sure that USPS also has a web page for employees to login from outside the office to be able to check stuff as well.

You can also purchase postage and other things online from them.

Get rid of the internet connection and you basically cripple them.

There is a lot more to security than just unplugging.
Data centers can be on a network that does not face the internet. There are many ways to mask and move data securely but haveing that critical data facing a cloud is just bad.
 

kingsleytim

Limp Gawd
Joined
Jan 19, 2005
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They probablly had outdated hardware due to the financial situation they are in. This breach can totally bring them down now. And now they will be an even larger drain on the economy trying to recover.
 

cyclone3d

[H]F Junkie
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Data centers can be on a network that does not face the internet. There are many ways to mask and move data securely but haveing that critical data facing a cloud is just bad.
True.. but as long as there is at least 1 way to access that data from a computer connected to the internet, it has the possibility of being hacked.

If it can be programmed, it can be hacked.
 

kingsleytim

Limp Gawd
Joined
Jan 19, 2005
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364
Yes but thats where access restrictions etc come into play. Minimizing your face to the world is the best approach. Man made can be man broken.
 

jojo69

[H]F Junkie
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Sep 13, 2009
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10,565
Nobody said anything about taxes, They provide a service at a cost. The hole they are digging keeps getting deeper. They lost 5 Billion in 2013 alone.
not sure that is strictly correct

I don't recall the details but there is some BS accounting imposed by Congress that makes USPS look worse than it is.
 

SuicidalGoat

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jun 15, 2004
Messages
1,863
yeah, this part stolen from the wiki:

Since the 2006 all-time peak mail volume,[6] after which Congress passed the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act,[7] (which mandated $5.5 billion per year to be paid into an account to fully prefund both employee retirement health and pension benefits, a requirement exceeding that of other government and private organizations [8]), revenue dropped sharply due to recession-influenced[9] declining mail volume,[10] prompting the postal service to look to other sources of revenue while cutting costs to reduce its budget deficit.[11] The USPS lost US$5 billion in 2013, and its revenue was US$66 billion.

The post office really isn't supposed to turn a profit like a business does. It is supposed to just keep going and providing a service while covering its own costs. It has managed to do that for a long time except now with Congress meddling making it difficult. At least the prepaid retirement mandate is almost done.
 

aShrubbery!

[H]ard|Gawd
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Nobody said anything about taxes, They provide a service at a cost. The hole they are digging keeps getting deeper. They lost 5 Billion in 2013 alone.
Well, if they weren't required to pre-fund benefits 75 years ahead, I guess they wouldn't be so deep in the red... IF at all!

Name me one private company that is required to do the same.

I'll help you..... NONE!

I wished, someone would try to mandate private corporations to do the same. Just to see the squirming and whinging that would occur.
 

Monkey34

Supreme [H]ardness
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Apr 11, 2003
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5,128
A drain how? taxes? I have seen that myth perpetuated many times. IIRC, the post office hasn't seen a dime of taxpayer money since the 80s

http://about.usps.com/who-we-are/postal-facts/top-10-things-to-know.htm
They get taxpayer funded subsidies, and also borrow billions from the federal government. The federal government is funded by taxpayers. Now when they consistently MAJORLY run in the red, and will never conceivably pay it back and run in the black EVER, how can anyone sit there and deny the USPS is a drain on the US economy.

It's not just a drain, it's a black hole. A rose by any other name....
 

Jagger100

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Well, if they weren't required to pre-fund benefits 75 years ahead, I guess they wouldn't be so deep in the red... IF at all!

Name me one private company that is required to do the same.

I'll help you..... NONE!

I wished, someone would try to mandate private corporations to do the same. Just to see the squirming and whinging that would occur.
All businesses had the same requirement at that timeframe. The funding is basically money they owed to pay out eventually. One of the rare instances today when kicking the can down the road was ended.
 

aShrubbery!

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jul 28, 2007
Messages
1,026
They get taxpayer funded subsidies, and also borrow billions from the federal government. The federal government is funded by taxpayers. Now when they consistently MAJORLY run in the red, and will never conceivably pay it back and run in the black EVER, how can anyone sit there and deny the USPS is a drain on the US economy.

It's not just a drain, it's a black hole. A rose by any other name....
Proof that old myths die hard...!

MYTH #1: The U.S. Postal Service is bankrolled by taxpayers.

FACT: The U.S. Postal Service is funded entirely by revenues from postage.

According to the U.S. Postal Service, "The Postal Service receives no tax dollars for operating expenses, and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations."

Additionally, USA Today reported in July 2013 that the Postal Service “does not receive federal assistance, getting revenue from postage sales, delivery services and other products. But mail service has dropped nearly 25% from 215 billion pieces delivered in 2006 to a current volume of 160 billion."
http://www.carper.senate.gov/public...vs-facts#d53bdca2-972a-4146-bf80-0f639ad7b8f4
 

aShrubbery!

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
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All businesses had the same requirement at that timeframe. The funding is basically money they owed to pay out eventually. One of the rare instances today when kicking the can down the road was ended.
Private businesses are in no way obligated by law to provide benefits for their all their employees, let alone pre fund said benefits 75 years ahead.

http://www.politifact.com/georgia/s...-signs-letter-saying-post-office-faces-big-p/

Federal employers:

Under the current retirement system, all federal employers, including the Postal Service, must prefund their pension benefits. And as we explained earlier, the USPS does have unique health benefit funding rules.

It’s therefore accurate that under the current retirement system, no federal employer aside from the Postal Service must prefund 100 percent of both its retiree health and pension benefits.
Private industry:

By federal law, private companies must fund their pensions fully, and catch up over time if they fall behind. They don’t have to prefund retiree health benefits.

This means there’s no reason to go postal over the claim by Bishop and others that "no other public or private business in America" except for the USPS must fund 100 percent of employee pension and retirement health costs in advance.
 
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