Author Archives


In Memoriam: John R. Rice

By Eugene H. Spafford, with assistance by Simson Garfinkel John Rischard Rice, a leading scientist and educator, died at home on Jan. 7, 2024. Rice was the W. Brooks Fortune Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Computer Science and a professor of mathematics at Purdue University. Rice was born June 6, 1934, in Tulsa, OK, to Margaret […]

Risks of social security numbers

The problem with social security numbers today is that some organizations are using these ubiquitous numbers for identification, others are using them for authentication, and still others are using them for both. I call up my bank, tell them my account number and ask them for a balance. Just to make sure that I am really who I claim to be, my bank asks for my SSN—as if this is a number that is some kind of secret that we share.

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