The Obama-Care website is under attack by congress for a variety of reasons, not the least of which are the security measures undertaken by the Administration to protect the personal information collected. This entire development project is reminiscent of the urban legend created when Donald Trump took over the re-engineering of the skating rink in Central Park. After several failed attempts and millions of dollars spent by the City of New York, the skating rink in Central Park wouldn’t freeze. This rink is an icon to New Yorkers and the ire of the city was at a fever’s pitch.
Trump offered to oversee the re-engineering on three conditions. First, he would not (should this be wouldn’t) use the city’s engineers; second, he would refuse to take the lowest bidder; and third, if it didn’t work he would pay for the repairs himself. The mayor of NYC took Trump up on his offer.
What Trump determined was that the engineers that worked for the city lacked the skills needed to accomplish the project and in fact when the best engineers in the country looked at the history of failed projects they were able to point out a number of flaws that the then best practices in the industry would have eliminated. In other words -the City’s engineers didn’t have the most up-to-date knowledge on how to build a skating rink. Makes you wonder how many websites the Government IT groups in D.C. have built of this size and complexity. The answer is simple – none.
Long story short, Trump didn’t take the lowest bidder and the engineering and work overseen by Trump remains the foundation of a fully functional skating rink more than 25 years after his efforts.
Today we have created, by all expert accounts, a weak system without the security measures equivalent to the information it was designed to collect and store. I am a realist, and just as the Apple® iPhone’s “finger print” feature was hacked in less than 48 hours post-release the Healthcare.Gov site was destined to be a target for the best hacktivist criminals and anarchists in the world. Senator McCain made a very good and off-the-cuff statement, “Take Air Force One, fly to Silicon Valley and load it up with geeks and fix this damn thing.” The problem is that it is too little, too late and too sad.