Forbes: Google Gets An 'F'
Forbes.com, Tuesday, June 27, 2006 10:45 AM
Why? For possibly helping pedophiles, identity thieves, and other sickos find the private information of 619 students at public schools in Catawba County, North Carolina. The search engine made the social security numbers and test scores of 619 students available on its site until Friday, when the company complied with a local court order to delete all information about that county's board of education from its servers. Forbes spoke with search indexing experts who said Google's Web robots couldn't have successfully hacked into the school's site without knowing the password. Instead, something else must have happened--like someone making the student information available to the search engine. Barry Schwartz, head of the Search Engine Roundtable, said: "The security hole came from possibly someone publishing the content publicly, somehow, or by letting down the security or by posting a hyper-linked URL with an embedded password in the URL." Google contends that its crawler does not have the ability to enter passwords. The personal information was discovered last week by a relative who did a Google search and found all the information.Read the whole story at Forbes.com »