A glaring testament to this fact is being reported by the New York Post:
Hundreds of Ground Zero workers were exposed to potential identity theft when stacks of payroll sheets - which included their names and Social Security numbers - were dumped in the trash along with confidential plans for the new World Trade Center.Plans for the new Port Authority Police Station were also found.
Fortunately, a homeless person discovered the plans for the new Freedom Tower (presumably while dumpster diving).
This prompted two unnamed individuals, described as "salvage experts" to turn in the other sensitive documents found in the trash:
Included in the stash were blueprints for World Trade Center 4 and the temporary PATH station, construction specifications for World Trade Center 7 and plans for the PA Police headquarters.In this instance, we are probably lucky that salvage experts and a homeless person found this sensitive information instead of a criminal, or even worse, an Osama Bin Laden "wannabe."
If you would like to see other examples of human error, or stupidity being the cause of information being compromised, the DLDOS database at Attrition.org and PogoWasRight have a lot of examples that they share with the public-at-large.
PogoWasRight's mantra, "WE HAVE MET THE ENEMY AND HE IS US" certainly applies in this instance!
New York Post story by Lukas I. Alpert and Matthew Nestel, here.