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Welcome to the Data Theft Bowl

3:40 PM -- This isn't how any company wants to end the year.

And here's a barrel-shoot of a prediction: We're going to see even more of this, probably not too long after the last word of "Auld Lang Syne" gets slurred.

Yes, more lost data, from theft or negligence is anybody's guess. The Marriott Corp. isn't saying much except that some tapes are missing. The missing tapes contain personal information about employees and customers -- affecting more than 206,000 people, according to wire reports.

In case you were too busy last week what with all the wassailing, Ford Motor Co. alerted 70,000 current and former employees that their social security numbers had been stolen, along with a company computer.

This isn't how companies that so zealously safeguard their image and branding really want to compete.

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