Welcome to the world of discrimination by the algorithm….

Nothing will happen until new code runs through those servers as IT Infrastructure runs almost all processes today in business and government.  Below I have summarized the links on the series if you care to take a look at how consumers are being stuck and it all has to do with over indulgence in risk management with little or no levels of forgiveness with data. I don’t like writing this series but it is what it is.  It’s a technological war and few were held accountable for the big mortgage sales and most of all keeping records of who has titles and documents to homes all over the US, they were so anxious to make the big dollars that audit trails were not used! 

However, now the banks and big corporations all want complete “audit” trails on every consumer and run mismatched data for behavioral predictions against all consumers and small businesses. We are screwed. 

California did a good thing with a new law that forbids employers from using a person’s credit score when considering an applicant for a job.  I’m not sure how it will be enforced though, but it’s on the books and anyone could easily call a potential employer on it. People are being denied jobs and places to live due to flawed data as it’s not accurate.  This should be a federal law as well. 

How do you like the fact that even Social Security has 31,000 on their death index who are in fact alive??  All data is not accurate and updated.  CoreLogic has formed a partnership with FICO who is already in the process of selling algorithms with mismatched data which connects public information about you and combines it with your credit score to tell if you as a medical patient will take your prescriptions.  Somebody needs to start calling some of these folks on “mis matched data” that discriminates.

Social Security Master Death Index Data Flawed–Over 31,000 Living Found in the Index

How do we as consumers fight back, start licensing and taxing these folks and have a federal government page of disclosure, what is sold, and to who, and how much are the profits on the sale of this data.  I’m smart enough to know that you can’t create laws to govern how to write algorithms and code but we can sure go for plan B.  Someone needs to enlighten our digital illiterate Congress about this.  Read the article at the red link below and think about that excise tax you pay to put a new tire on your car and this will make sense!

The Alternative Millionaire’s Tax–License and Tax Big Corporations Who Mine and Sell Taxpayer Data They Get for Free From the Internet-Phase One to Restore Middle Class With Transparency, Disclosure and Money

The mining of data is so bad that 3 states had to fight back with more software that blocks automated data mining programs!!  They were not doing it to protect us, but their websites were inundated with mining software coming in for the “free taxpayer data” and slowing the servers down to a crawl.   It gets worse too as some states were selling the data and then charged for updates to the data for new information that was added and the data miners wouldn’t pay a few hundred bucks to update and keep sending out even more “flawed data”. 

The big culprits of flawed data are the companies that compile this information so be wary of what you put out there as well as what can appear via public records and check for accuracy.  I guess breaches someday might come in handy to fix the data <grin>.   Mathematicians know this and some of them read this blog, like this professor.

“Numbers Don’t Lie, But People Do”–Radio Interview from Charles Siefe–Journalists Take Note, He Addresses How Marketing And Bogus Statistics Are Sources of Problems That Mislead the Public & Government

All you have to do is read the news and it’s in front of you every day on how the math and algorithmic formulas are working.  In a Wisconsin town 52 businesses that have never missed a payment are being foreclosed on, and get this, the bank says the church (one of the outstanding loans) does not make enough money.  It comes down to analytics and over done risk assessments.


In California Bank of America is putting the pressure on small businesses as well, demanding that loans be paid in full immediately. You can read the article in the Los Angeles Times.

“Bank of America customer Babak Zahabizadeh was told in a letter that the $96,000 debt carried by his Burbank firm, Messengers & Distribution Inc., must be repaid Jan. 25. A loan officer offered multiple alternatives over the phone that imageZahabizadeh called unaffordable, including paying off the debt at 12% interest over two years.”

Caid and her husband, Tim Melchior, a video producer with a Burbank media company, insist they are not in serious financial trouble despite having laid off her eight full-time employees and downsized her business space by two-thirds during the recession, yet Bank of America says her credit line debt of 80k is due in May.

We all understand risk management and how a certain amount is needed but combined with all the data and flawed data that is out there today, the consumer is getting the brunt end with “discrimination by the algorithm”.  Back in August of 2009 I made a post at this blog pondering a Department of Algorithms and hopefully this is what the consumer financial agency will become, as it’s all about the math and lack of accuracy and many flaws today. 

Again, look at the billions of flawed transactions that took place with the mortgage schemes and how nobody keep audit trails but now they want every last tiny detail parameters to judge each and every consumer, even as to how they pay their bills as now credit agencies are “selling” that data for a premium too. I received my Verizon bill and it stated that my information on when I pay my bills could be reported to 3rd parties. 

The thanks we get today is becoming data chasers as consumers to fix all the flawed and corrupted information that has been compiled and used against us.  If everything is ok, then nothing to chase; however, “cookie cutter” employees today are not trained on how to work with flawed data and see everything as a blemish and thus there’s no level of forgiveness and understanding.  If they challenge or ask questions, they might get fired and are told to rely on that computer screen.

Maybe I was ahead of my time, but I’ll leave you with my article from August of 2009 (link below), as folks who write code see the algorithms coming before they hit. 

I sure hope Mr. Cordray knows some math, algorithms and formulas and and at least has a tiny bit of IT experience in his background, we need those “hybrids” in executive positions more than ever.  BD

“Department of Algorithms – Do We Need One of These to Regulate Upcoming Laws?

Occupying Wall Street–It’s All About the “Attack of the Killer Algorithms”–The Unfair and Marketing Exploit of Ethics Using Math–This Could be a Subject for Michael Moore to Explore and Document In a Movie
“Killer Algorithms: Part 2” Disturbing News for Consumers With Credit Scoring Adding New Data Analytics–Some of the Same Methodologies Used by Insurers With Flawed/Potential Erroneous Data–One More Reason to Continue Occupying Wall Street
“Attack of the Killer Algorithms” Part 3–Vatican Doesn’t Like It Either–Occupy Wall Street Belongs in New York As They Don’t Do Code or Algorithms in Washington–Only Find time To Talk Abortions
Attack of the Killer Algorithms-Occupy Wall Street Part 4 Health Insurance Style - One More App For Folks Who Are Tired of Flawed Algorithms That Require A Ton of Work and Research Time To Create “Perfect” Data Files for Insurers And Others Analytics Processes

“Occupy Algorithms”–”The Attack of the Killer Algorithms Part 5” - Nothing Will Improve Until Audits and Actions Takes Place To Correct Formulas Built for Profit Only by Corporations And We Battle Back With Math

Attack of the Killer Algorithms Part 6–Discrimination With Consumer Credit-Same As Health Insurance Wanting Consumers to Reconstruct Records From Many Years Past As Middle Class Turns Into Data Chasers-Days of Taking Risks to Get Ahead Will Be Limited For Most…Occupy Algorithms

Flawed Data–Mined by Corporations Online Provides Background Checks Riddled With Errors–Attack of the Killer Algorithms Part 7

Consumers Lose More Privacy With New CoreLogic Credit Reporting–”Score” Marketed For Insurers and Employers To Gain Information-California Prohibits Potential Employers – From Using As Jan 1 - Killer Algorithms Part 8

Freddie Mac Found to be Betting Against Home Owners Being Able to Refinance - “Attack of the Killer Algorithms” On Consumers Part Nine–Home Mortgage Style

Komen Reverses Decision With Planned Parenthood–Hard Lesson on How Business Analytics Are Misunderstood And/Or Abused–Attack of the Killer Algorithms Chapter 10

Gamification–You Have Won and Now We Know All About You - It Didn’t Cost One Cent-Insurance Companies Have Games To Find Out More About You Too– “Attack of Killer Algorithms” Chapter 11

Colonoscopies–The Bait and Switch on Screenings–If Polyps Are Found You Get A Bill-Some Other Screenings Too–Killer Algorithms Part 12–Medical Billing Codes Style

Attack of the Killer Algorithms Part 13–Bank of America Style - Flawed Data With Credit Scoring Agencies–Dead Man Banking And Currently A Consumer Under Attack

Insurers to Provide User Friendly Summaries of What’s Covered–Good Luck As Constant Revisions Will Be Required as Business Intelligence Algorithms For Profit Change–Attack of the Killer Algorithms Chapter 14

Story of Duke University - The Sad Case of Flawed Data Published in Medical Journals That Was Declared Inaccurate 60 Minutes –Attack of the Killer Algorithms Chapter 15

Medicare Low Safety Rankings At Harvard Teaching Hospitals Disputed and Flawed–Attack of the Killer Algorithms Chapter 16

Start Licensing and Taxing the Data Sellers of the Internet Making Billions of Profit Dollars Mining “Free Taxpayer Data”–Attack of the Killer Algorithms Chapter 17 - “Occupy Algorithms”– Help Stop Inequality in the US

Pharmacies File Suit Against Texas Human and Health Services Commission - Managed Care Contracts Begin Delegating Reimbursements Too Soon – Attack of the Killer Algorithms Chapter 18

AMA Announces Doctors And Patients Can Expect To See the UnitedHealthCare/Ingenix Class Action Settlement Checks In the Mail Soon - Out of Network Short Payments–Attack of the Killer Algorithms Chapter 19

Healthcare Blogger Gets Spammed by Hedge Fund Using Internet “Reputation Restore” With Some Really Bad Algos–Attack of the Killer Algorithms Chapter 20

SHAKER HEIGHTS, Ohio — President Obama touched off a fierce election-year confrontation with Congressional Republicans on Wednesday, defying their deep opposition to appoint Richard Cordray as director of a new consumer protection agency and fill three labor board vacancies.



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