May 27, 2005

Action: Hewlett-Packard National Identity System product queries and complaints

Having read Sunni's post and having a free day on my hands, I decided to take some time to poke the hornet's nest that is the HP National Identity System.

Ironically, HP's privacy policy states:
HP respects the privacy of its customers and is committed to protecting it. As a leader in the world of e-commerce and information technology services, HP also leads the way in the worldwide marketplace in advancing the rights of consumers to have their personal information safeguarded. Through its Privacy Office, HP assures that its global policies and procedures match the highest standards of privacy excellence. Additionally, HP champions consumer privacy rights at conferences and forums in countries around the world.

There's more- follow the link to read it for yourself.

As a customer, investor, and professional colleague, I would like Hewlitt-Packard to know exactly what I think of this. Fortunately, I have many options of which I plan to exercise more than one:

I can provide e-mail feedback regarding
-Investor Relations, or
-Send a Message to the CEO- Mark Hurd

I already spent some time on the phone (see note below) this morning by
-calling HP toll-free at (800) 752-0900,
-then on my own nickel at (650) 857-7166 (Executive Customer Relations),
-then toll free again at (866) 266-7272, and
-then again at Executive Customer Relations.

My goal here was to find someone to ask about the details of the HP National Identity System product. I like to get the facts before I make my formal complaint so that I sound informed and can make specific criticisms. However, I have so far gotten nowhere except to get a very condescending-sounding ECR rep tell me I should send an e-mail to the office of the president at with "CNET security" in the subject field and they would send me something back (it sounded like it would be a canned response). I'm going to go off and do that right after I post this, but since he sounded like he didn't know what the product was that I was talking about, I'm going to send the e-mail with subject line "CNET National Identity System".

If anyone else chooses to act on this news from HP- and I hope you do- I would appreciate it if you would please post your e-mail and any response you receive (no matter how pre-formed or uninformative the response may be) or post the crux of your telephone conversations with any additional feedback opportunities you may uncover in the comments for this post. If you are a customer or investor in Hewlitt-Packard, please be sure to mention that when you register your displeasure. I really would like to see a lot of people work this- the more people- particularly customers/investors- that HP hears from, the more it's going to mean to them that we are not on board with their plan.

Note: When making these sorts of calls, it pays to be courteous yet persistent. Having friends who work in the call-center industry, I can tell you that yelling (particularly at the first few people you talk to who probably don't even work for HP) is not going to do anything but get you accidentally hung up on or (if they are really angry) put on hold while the rep goes on break or something like that. When you call the toll-free number, the person you talk to likely can't do a thing for you and is probably most interested in getting you off the line quickly so that his or her call time metric isn't shot. Wasting this person's time may mean you are taking money out of his or her pocket, and the rep probably doesn't even work for HP let alone have any power to fix this for us. Not too many people are interested in helping someone who is hurting them. But by being polite you can often get someone to divulge a secret number that they don't usually give out or other useful information to get you off the phone quicker. Be sure to have a pen and paper nearby to take down any and all information they give you for future use.


Blogger Kirsten said...

E-mail I sent on 27 May 2005:

Today I read the following article on CNET

HP aims to help governments check IDs

As a customer and investor, I am interested in HP's involvement in national identificaiton. Would you please clarify some of the details of the article? Specifically, I would like to know

1. How does the HP National Identity System manage citizens' online identity?

2. What technology does the product use to make documents more secure and intelligent, and how does the technology accomplish that?

3. How does the technology heighten security at national borders?

4. How does the technology protect the privacy of those who are being tracked?

Thank you,


Reply I received on 31 May 2005:

Hello Kristen,

Thank you for taking the time to send HP your comments. Your comments have been forwarded to the appropriate people within Hewlett-Packard for their information and / or action. Should more clarification or information be needed, you may be contacted directly. Your input is important to us and very much appreciated.

Thank you,

Executive Customer Relations
phone: 1-800-756-0608 #7

6:36 PM  
Blogger ShadowHawk said...

I'm against a federal ID system and am sorry to see HP creating such a thing. I never thought much of their printers anyway. So now I'll boycott any and all HP products, including their shitty printers, scanners and computers. Nice going idiots!

11:16 AM  
Anonymous MJ Taylor said...

Boycott HP

And make sure you're very vocal about it. We have a National ID column in the pipeline and I'll make sure HP gets mentioned as an enabler of this fascist behavior.

M.J. Taylor
from Reason to Freedom

12:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

(Plugged this into the privacy form)

HP is Big Brother

National ID...
great "outsourcing tyranny"
where do I get my yellow star.

6:01 AM  

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