Articles about privacy

Police search

US cops point at cell towers and say: Give us every phone number that's touched that mast

US telecoms giant Verizon says police are increasingly asking it to cough up massive dumps of cellphone data rather than individual records. This according to the latest Verizon US transparency report for the first half of the 2017 calendar year. The dossier tracks government requests for phone records both of individual …
Shaun Nichols, 17 Aug 2017
An empty courtroom

Tomorrow, DreamHost will square up to US DoJ to avoid handing over 1.3m IP addresses of anti-Trump site visitors

Efforts by US prosecutors to identify up to 1.3 million people who accessed an anti-Trump protest website is unconstitutional, a court will hear on Friday. Lawyers for DreamHost, which hosts disruptj20.org, will argue at 9.30am in a Washington DC courtroom that the demand for visitor records from the website breaks both the …
Kieren McCarthy, 17 Aug 2017
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Don't panic, Chicago, but an AWS S3 config blunder exposed 1.8 million voter records

A voting machine supplier for dozens of US states left records on 1.8 million Americans in public view for anyone to download – after misconfiguring its AWS-hosted storage. ES&S says it was notified by UpGuard researcher Chris Vickery of the vulnerable database that contained personal information it collected from recent …
Shaun Nichols, 17 Aug 2017

London cops urged to scrap use of 'biased' facial recognition at Notting Hill Carnival

London's Metropolitan Police have been urged to back down on plans to once again use facial recognition software at next weekend's Notting Hill Carnival. Privacy groups including Big Brother Watch, Liberty and Privacy International have written to police commissioner Cressida Dick (PDF) calling for a U-turn on the use of the …
Rebecca Hill, 17 Aug 2017

London council 'failed to test' parking ticket app, exposed personal info

A London council has been fined £70,000 after design faults in its TicketViewer app allowed unauthorised access to 119 documents containing sensitive personal information. The parking ticket application, set up in 2012, was developed by Islington council's internal application team for the authority's parking services. It …
Rebecca Hill, 17 Aug 2017

Cloudflare: We dumped Daily Stormer not because they're Nazis but because they said we love Nazis

Cloudflare has explained why it made a rare exception to its strident free-speech policy in its decision to cut ties with white supremacist cesspit Daily Stormer. As noted by El Reg a few hours earlier, Cloudflare today terminated the hosting and anti-DDoS services it was providing the neo-Nazi website. After GoDaddy and …
Shaun Nichols, 16 Aug 2017
Data breach

Months after breach at the 'UnBank' Ffrees, customers complain: No one told us

Customers of UK financial services firm FFrees said they were unaware of a breach that took place there four months ago until a security researcher got in touch with them. The same anonymous white hat who discovered the now infamous AA shop accessories breach back in April also uncovered the exposure of data by Ffrees Family …
John Leyden, 16 Aug 2017

Uber to bend over, take privacy probe every two years for next 20 years

Uber and America's trade watchdog have reached a settlement following claims the taxi app maker lied about the extent to which its staff can mine customers' personal info for fun. The Federal Trade Commission's formal complaint [PDF] against the troubled San Francisco biz slammed the upstart's God View – a program that …
Iain Thomson, 15 Aug 2017
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Slurping people's info without a warrant? That's OUR JOB, Google, Facebook et al tell US Supreme Court

A group of technology companies with a fondness for data collection have banded together to ask the US Supreme Court to stop the American government from snooping on cellphones without a warrant. In a friend-of-the-court brief filed on Monday, Airbnb, Apple, Cisco, Dropbox, Evernote, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Mozilla, Nest …
Thomas Claburn, 15 Aug 2017

Police camera inaction? Civil liberties group questions forces' £23m body-cam spend

Almost three-quarters of police forces have forked out more than £22m on body-worn cameras, but are failing to properly monitor how the videos are used in court, according to a report released today. Proponents of the technology argue it will improve transparency in frontline policing, stop police and the public from behaving …
Rebecca Hill, 15 Aug 2017

hiQ prevails / LinkedIn must allow scraping / Of your page info

A US judge has ruled that LinkedIn must allow an analytics outfit to scrape data from its public profiles. Judge Edward Chen, of the US Northern California District Court, granted a temporary restraining order Monday that forbids the social-network-for-suits from blocking hiQ Labs' bots to public-facing profiles. The ruling [ …
Shaun Nichols, 14 Aug 2017
Privacy

Australian Bureau of Statistics flip-flops over marriage equality survey

The Australian Bureau of Statistics is being set up for another hot privacy debate. The Bureau (ABS) has been engaged to run Australia's national postal plebiscite on whether or not to adopt same-sex marriage. The job fell into the ABS' lap because the plebiscite has been styled as a "survey", a data-seeking instrument the …

US prosecutors demand data to unmask every visitor to anti-Trump protest website

Web hosting biz DreamHost is resisting a US government search warrant to turn over data about everyone who visited a website used to coordinate anti-Trump protests. The website, disruptj20.org, is hosted by DreamHost, and was used to organize inauguration protests on January 20, 2017, in Washington DC, according to court …
Thomas Claburn, 14 Aug 2017

Brit firms warned over hidden costs of wiping data squeaky clean before privacy rules hit

Not enough companies understand how to properly delete the data they hold – and need to address this if they are to comply with new data protection rules, privacy and security experts have said. Under incoming UK and European regulations, firms will be required to completely remove all the data they hold on an individual if …
Rebecca Hill, 14 Aug 2017
Shutterstock pickpocket

Sneaky devs could abuse shared libraries to slurp smartphone data

Oxford researchers reckon they've spotted the next emerging trend in Android advertising (and possibly malware): using common libraries to “collude” between apps with different privilege levels. Libraries are a common enough vector for attackers to target, but the trio of boffins (Vincent Taylor, Alastair Beresford and Ivan …
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Blocking peeps on social media? That's a paddlin' for governors, senators, house reps

More US public officials have been sued for blocking people from their social media pages. Those sued including the governors of Maine, Maryland and Kentucky, while all of Utah's Congressional representatives have been sent letters warning them of legal repercussion if they prevent constituents from accessing their public …
Kieren McCarthy, 10 Aug 2017

Can GCHQ order techies to work as govt snoops? Experts fear: 'Yes'

Analysis The UK Home Office's ambiguous response to whether or not the Investigatory Powers Act gives the British government the authority to pressure or force people to work for GCHQ is troubling. When Reg reader Simon Clubley pointed out the unclear wording of section 190 of the new law, it generated a lively debate among legal …
John Leyden, 10 Aug 2017

US border cops must get warrants to search phones, devices – EFF

The controversial topic of electronic device searches at the US border, and whether customs agents should be required to get warrants before sucking data off them, is heading to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. For several years the legal issues surrounding what border agents are entitled to do with your electronic devices …

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