Appendix B. Acknowledgments

My first formal exposure to privacy issues came in 1986, when I took a course in science, technology, and public policy from Dr. Gary Marx at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. One of the books we read was David Burnham’s The Rise of the Computer State: A Chilling Account of the Computer’s Threat to Society. Although I had been a computer programmer for nearly ten years and had always enjoyed working with the machines, I knew there were aspects of computers that could easily be abused. Marx and Burnham opened my eyes to the extent of many of these problems, and they’ve both played a continuing role in my education ever since.

Also in 1986, I started reading Peter G. Neumann’s RISKS Digest, the Forum on Risks to the Public in Computers and Related Systems on the Internet. Contributors from all over the world send contributions to RISKS. Many submissions are stories, anecdotes, and observations to the forum on ways people have made grave mistakes in deploying or using computerized systems. Peter’s forum has been a constant source of material for more than decade, and his kindness, wit, and wisdom have likewise been a source of inspiration. After many years of online communication, I finally got the chance to meet Peter in person, and we became friends. While Peter was on Martha’s Vineyard one summer, he looked over several chapters of this manuscript and gave me much-appreciated guidance—he even took me out for dinner and a movie!

Steve Ross at the ...

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