Tuesday, July 29, 2003

So I was reading in the paper today about some local libraries that were purging their records in defiance of the USA-PATRIOT act. Of course, I'm thinking that's great - anytime someone stands up against that fucked up piece of legislation is fine by me. But I got to thinking - what exactly do they mean when they say that records are being purged? If it's paper records, that's easy - just burn that shit. But a lot of stuff is computerized these days. I sincerely hope they're doing more than just hitting the delete key on stuff, which doesn't make data disappear like some people might think. I would imagine that libraries could tell the government "Oh, sorry, we deleted our records", but then the Feds say "Well, give us your computers anyway" and then use either simple methods or complex forensics to retrieve the "deleted" data. Hopefully these libraries are using some proper tools to truly delete records that they want purged.

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