Browsing All Posts filed under »Security«

4 Reasons the Supreme Court’s Decision to Allow Suspicionless Strip Searches is Stupid

April 3, 2012 by


What yesterday’s US Supreme Court opinion allowing suspicion-less strip searches for any offense says to me: Don’t piss on the street after a night of debauchery because you may get arrested. If you get arrested, you may be taken to the local jail where a bored/sadistic guard will ask you to strip down to your birthday […]

Using GPS to Track Offenders and Warn Victims Raises Questions

March 23, 2012 by


I love a good gadget as much as the next geek, but using GPS on offenders is not quite the simple-yet-brilliant idea that it seems to be at first glance. The concept has gained traction as states struggle with responding to crime with limited funding in conditions of constant resource scarcity. Victims, as well, embrace […]

What Grows In Bad Neighborhoods?

March 22, 2012 by


I grew up in a diverse working class inner city neighborhood, two blocks from the elevated train (the el) in one direction and two blocks from a low-income housing development (the projects) in another. Ever since I left home, people I’ve met have been quick to inform me that I come from a ‘bad neighborhood.’ […]

TSA Pretends to Lose Interest in Patting Down Your Gran

March 14, 2012 by


Oh, TSA. Shall I compare thee to a stupid agency? Oh wait, there’s no one out there doing security work as badly as you are. I’m glad you aren’t as interested in patting down the elderly. But reading through the official release carefully, here’s what it boils down to for older travelers: TSA is going to […]

Recipe for Awesome: One Part Bruce Schneier + One Part Trope + One Part Geekery

March 12, 2012 by


Bruce Schneier is a cryptologist. Bruce Schneier is his own trope. Bruce Schneier is also a geeky hero, triumphing with the mighty power of his little gray cells over the brawny exploits of Chuck Norris. If you’ve never checked out, run right over and do it. Then come back here, because if you don’t, Bruce […]

James Q. Wilson Dead at 80: The Enduring Legacy of Broken Windows Theory

March 3, 2012 by


In 1982 James Q. Wilson and George Kelling co-authored a piece for The Atlantic in which they laid the foundation for a new theory of crime. In essence, they argued that fixing broken windows is of critical importance. They wrote, “Untended property becomes fair game for people out for fun or plunder and even for people who […]

Sense and Sensibility in Protecting Whistleblowers

February 28, 2012 by


It’s hard to protect whistleblowers. Occasionally crackpots, sometimes contrarians, but always risking their livelihoods and reputations for the truth, whistleblowers clearly need special protections. For federal employees, those protections exist in the form of the Whistleblower Protection Act of 1989. The Act is intended to protect not just employees from retaliation, but their communications with […]