22 August 2011

Overzealous "Security" Probably Provides Very Little

The problem with undoing any of the post 9/11 security stupidity is that if the one thing you undid gets exploited 18 years from now because someone else didn't do their job right, it's your ass that goes down in history as the guy who screwed up.

As a staggered nation scrambled after Sept. 11, 2001, to anticipate possible next targets, there was a widespread sanitizing of publicly available information suddenly viewed as tipsheets and road maps for terrorists.
But what also resulted, as shown by an Associated Press review for the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, were some befuddling inconsistencies — telling private pilots not to fly over nuclear reactors, for example, and then not allowing them access to plant locations.
It was all based on a fear that seemingly innocuous fragments of information could be paired to hatch an attack. If authorities couldn't be sure what information might help, they concluded it was best to keep as much secret as possible. Or if total secrecy couldn't be justified, at least make the information much harder to obtain.
Security-sensitive information wasn't just the coordinates of the nation's nuclear power plants, or the locations of massive inventories of dangerous chemicals, or detailed maps of potentially explosive natural gas pipelines. Withheld from public view were things that average citizens might need to know: emergency response plans for public buildings in Idaho, building blueprints in Delaware, and drinking water test results in Texas.

By: Brant

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