Terminal Snooping At Bloomberg

This is a 2013 story, but I thought it was interesting. Apparently Bloomberg news reporters used a function on the company's data terminals that permitted them to view subscriber information and activity.

More than 315,000 Bloomberg subscribers worldwide use the terminals for instant market news, trading information and communication. Reporters at Bloomberg News, a separate division from the terminal business, were nonetheless told to use the terminals to get an edge in the competitive world of financial journalism where every second counts, according to these people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the company’s strict nondisclosure agreements.

The company acknowledged that at least one reporter had gained access to information on Goldman Sachs after the bank complained to the company last month.

In his editorial, Mr. Winkler [editor in chief of Bloomberg News] apologized for the practices that had taken place in the newsroom for decades. “Our clients are right,” he said. “Our reporters should not have access to any data considered proprietary. I am sorry they did. The error is inexcusable.”

I seem to recall Frank Herbert writing about the idea of network monitoring detection in his excellent 1977 novel The Dosadi Experiment:

The evidence began with a slowed response at her computer terminal. Someone was monitoring. Whoever had taken her bait wanted to make sure she was expendable...

The microsecond delay from the monitoring triggered a disconnect on her telltale circuit, removing the evidence of her preparations before anyone could find it.

Via NYTimes.

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