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Re: Colorado license renewal

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Tarek,

To some degree, it may not matter if you do it online or by mail.  If
their renewal and licensing system is computerized and they ask for your
social security number and the computer system is connected to the
Internet, then in theory their system could be compromised and your social
security number compromised no matter whether you renew by mail or
electronically.  If such is the case, then only added risk by renewing
electronically would be if their renewal system is somehow compromised
such that when you do the actual renewal transaction your SSN (and credit
card number) are compromised during the transaction.  Otherwise, it would
be a situation of happening AFTER that transaction and is purely a
question of whether or not the "system" is connected to an outside
network.

Thus, if they allow any outside connections to their system for renewal,
access for PE board employees, etc, then your data would likely have the
same risks even if you were permitted to do a snail mail renewal.

The key thing is to make sure during the renewal process that the website
says "https:" and the little padlock icon appears in the browser window
(typcially in the lower right hand corner).  If that is the case, then the
renewal information should be transmitted in encrypted form and you should
have less to worry about (I would never say that you cannot be completely
worry free...the only way to be completely worry free with regard to
computer related security is to becomes hermit in the mountains with no
more connection to the outside world for the rest of your life, but even
then someone could still "steal" your SSN/identity from some computer
system that has it right now only if you are a hermit in the mountains,
you would not care...most likely <grin>).

Regards,

Scott
Adrian, MI


On Fri, 9 Feb 2007, Tarek Mokhtar wrote:

> I just received my license renewal form from the state of Colorado,
> and it now is an online renewal
> only, which is cool. The part that I do not like is that you have to
> include your ssn in the online renewal form, and based on what has
> been happening lately in security breaches in universities in
> California,
> and subsequent identity thefts , I do not feel comfortable with this
> system. The thing is that they will not renew it any other way, what
> would you do?
> --
>
> Tarek Mokhtar, SE
> Laguna Beach, CA
>
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