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Rolly: Credit cards used for Salt Lake jail inmates breached

Published January 21, 2013 8:14 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Relatives who have set up accounts for inmates at the Salt Lake County Jail may have had their credit card numbers breached by unauthorized hackers.

Those who use such accounts through the Keefe Group, the nation's leading supplier of food, personal care products, electronics and clothing to the correctional commissary market, have been notified of the breach and warned to make sure they have no unauthorized charges on their cards.

"Certain VISA credit card information that you provided to purchase items on our website … including name, credit or debit card number, expiration date and card verification code, may have been accessed without authorization by a third party, beginning in August 2010," said the letter from the Keefe Group's parent company, the Centric Group, based in Missouri.

The letter has been sent to customers using the website accounts in correctional facilities throughout the country.

Sgt. Cammie Skogg, spokesman for the Salt Lake County Jail, said the website for the commissary accounts is operated by the Keefe Group independently of the jail administration.

Utah Prison spokesman Steve Gehrke said that institution uses Keefe for some services, but not the account that has been compromised, so the prison is not affected.

Rob Bishop's Etch A Sketch • Utah Rep. Rob Bishop voted against the $50 billion disaster relief proposal for East Coast victims of Hurricane Sandy, continuing a recent theme of opposing spending bills without corresponding budget cut offsets.

Of course, Bishop has sided with the conservative Republican bloc that wants to require spending cuts to go along with any debt increase since Barack Obama has been president.

That fiscally frugal Bishop would be the same Rob Bishop who voted in favor of trillion-dollar Iraq and Afghanistan war funding without corresponding budget cuts.

It would be the same Rob Bishop who voted for the $534 billion Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit bill without a corresponding budget cut. Then he voted against a bill that would have required the Health and Human Services Department to negotiate lower drug prices on behalf of the Medicare beneficiaries (apparently, he is against saving money if that might affect the profits of drug companies).

And it would be the same Rob Bishop who voted three times to increase the debt ceiling when George W. Bush was president, totaling about a $2.4 trillion increase in the deficit.

At least he didn't vote for all of Bush's debt increases. The debt ceiling was increased seven times under Bush, for a total deficit increase of $5.36 trillion.

Grumpy on the bus • Jim Harris, who commutes from Santaquin to Utah Valley University in Orem each morning, was boarding the 805 commuter bus at the Park-and-Ride lot in Payson at 7:21 a.m. Tuesday when a young man with a cast on his leg attempted to board with the small scooter-like cart he uses to support his cast.

Even though the cart folded into a compact package, the driver balked at letting him bring it aboard.

The young man offered to put it in the bike rack in front of the bus, but the driver said he couldn't do that either.

After a short discussion, with several other commuters waiting outside the bus in freezing temperatures, the driver finally relented and allowed him to bring the cart onto the bus, but only if he could carry it himself. He said he would not allow any other passenger to carry it for him.

Does this sound like a guy with some serious power fantasies?

Refusing a perk • Newly elected state Auditor John Dougall is the first elected official in memory to refuse a state car for his official and personal use, which statutorily is part of the compensation for the governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, auditor and treasurer.

Calling himself "Frugal Dougall" during his campaign, the new auditor is putting his money where his mouth is. Every other statewide elected official eligible for a state car has accepted the perk.

"I am not aware of any other political official who has refused a state compensation vehicle for official and personal use," said Sam Lee, director of the state Division of Fleet Operations.

Wonder if Dougall's colleagues appreciate him setting such a precedent.

prolly@sltrib.com