U.S. Terror Targets: Petting Zoo and Flea Market?
July 13th, 2006 by JTJ

Regular readers know that the IAJ has long been interested in the quality of the data in public records databases.  The NY Times of 12 July 2006 carries a front-page story by Eric Lipton on just how bad the data is in the “National Asset Database.”  As Lipton's story points out:

“The National Asset Database, as it is
known, is so flawed, the inspector general found, that as of January, Indiana,
with 8,591 potential terrorist targets, had 50 percent more listed sites than
New York (5,687) and more than twice as many as California (3,212), ranking the
state the most target-rich place in the nation….

“But the audit says that lower-level
department officials agreed that some older information in the inventory “was
of low quality and that they had little faith in it.

“The presence of large numbers of out-of-place
assets taints the credibility of the data,” the report says.”

Sigh.  This is not a new problem, or even one that we can hang on the Bush Administration.  It started with the Clinton Administration in 1998.  In 1998, President Clinton issued Presidential Decision Directive No. 63
(PDD-63), Critical Infrastructure Protection, which set forth principles for
protecting the nation by minimizing the threat of smaller-scale terrorist attacks
against information technology and geographically-distributed supply chains
that could cascade and disrupt entire sectors of the economy.” [Source here.]

Link to the PDF of the Inspector General's Report at

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