January 28, 2008

The hunt for Jérôme Kerviel

Jérôme Kerviel is the trader at Société Générale responsible for the loss of almost 5 billion EURO or 7.2 billion USD. He is taken into custody by the French police. Journalists and bloggers have started a worldwide hunt for information on him.

A Wikipedia article describes in detail his professional career at SocGen. A photo of Jérôme Kerviel was first published in a blogpost from the Fincancial Times. His CV has been published on several news sites, including the Telegraph. According to the Guardian Jérôme Kerviel lost almost all his friends on Facebook. At this moment his Facebook account is not accessible anymore. Several fake accounts have been created. Luckely for Jérôme Kerviel, not everyone is attacking him. Different fan groups have been created on Facebook to support him.

Jérôme Kerviel does not seem to have a Twitter account. Twitter users are informing each other on their progress on finding information on him, directly in Twitter messages or indirectly by announcing posts on their blogs. His hotmail email account (listed in the CV) seems to be invalid, you cannot add this email address anymore to your MSN contacts (as found by this Twitter user). Another Twitter user says he has found Jérôme Kerviel's address and even his mobile phone number (see this tweet).

On the one hand Web 2.0 allows users to look up information on all kind op topics. The scary thing however is that in case of a sudden event, information about an individual person can be found, revealing personal information that is taken out of its context. E.g. what is the relationship between "ambitious judo teacher" and this fraud case ?

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