Articles about privacy

Verizon promises to stop selling its subscribers' location data... for now

Verizon has promised to stop selling user location data to third parties in response to a privacy campaign by US Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR). In a letter [PDF] to the lawmaker, the American telco giant said it has "conducted a comprehensive review" of its "location aggregator program" and as a result would kill the agreements it …
Kieren McCarthy, 19 Jun 2018
Zuckerberg

The hits keep coming for Facebook: Web giant made 14m people's private posts public

Facebook is having to douse yet another privacy blaze – as the social network admitted to inadvertently setting some of its addicts' private posts to public, meaning anyone could read them. The web goliath said that about 14 million people were affected by a bug that, for a nine-day span between May 18 and 27, caused profile …
Shaun Nichols, 7 Jun 2018
Cloud Pets toys

IoT CloudPets in the doghouse after damning security audit: Now Amazon bans sales

Amazon on Tuesday stopped selling CloudPets, a network-connected family of toys, in response to security and privacy concerns sounded by browser maker and internet community advocate Mozilla. The move follows similar actions taken by Walmart and Target last week. And other sellers of the toy are said to be considering similar …

Cloudflare experiments with hidden Tor services

Cloudflare has added a Tor hidden service to its DNS services. Launching the service, the company explained that while it wipes logs and doesn't write client IP addresses to disk, “exceptionally privacy-conscious folks might not want to reveal their IP address to the resolver at all, and we respect that.” The resolver's …
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook insists device data door differs from dodgy dev data deal

Facebook on Sunday said an arrangement that gave some 60 mobile device makers access to data about device users' Facebook friends is not at all like the deal it made with app developers that gave rise to the Cambridge Analytica scandal. Developers who signed up for access to the Facebook Graph API used to be able to get data …
A digitized fingerprint

Clock blocker: Woman sues bosses over fingerprint clock-in tech

A former employee at a nursing home is alleging the company and its equipment provider violated the US state of Illinois' biometric privacy laws with a fingerprint-scanning time clock system. Judge Matthew Kennelly, of the northern Illinois district court, has agreed to hear the claims of Cynthia Dixon against Smith Senior …
Shaun Nichols, 4 Jun 2018
Many people, expressions of fear

'Tesco probably knows more about me than GCHQ': Infosec boffins on surveillance capitalism

Privacy of medical data and the machinations of surveillance capitalism were under the spotlight at a Cambridge University symposium last week. Much of the day-long event, marking the 20th anniversary of think tank the Foundation for Information Policy Research (FIPR), was spent debating state-backed surveillance in its many …
John Leyden, 4 Jun 2018
A stingray

Stingray phone stalker tech used near White House, SS7 abused to steal US citizens' data – just Friday things

Someone may have spied on smartphones in or near the White House using a fake cellphone tower – and miscreants are said to have abused SS7 weaknesses to swipe US citizens' private information, it emerged this week. On Friday, Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) revealed a letter he received from the US government's Department of Homeland …
Shaun Nichols, 1 Jun 2018
Soldier with a gun

Law forcing Feds to get warrants for email slurping is sneaked into US military budget

The US House of Representatives has once again advanced a law bill that would always require the FBI and cops to obtain a warrant from a judge before forcing email providers to hand over people's messages. The latest incarnation of what was the Email Privacy Act comes in the form of an amendment to the National Defense …
Shaun Nichols, 30 May 2018
Facebook notifications

Activists hate them! One weird trick Facebook uses to fool people into accepting GDPR terms

Facebook has been accused of purposefully misleading netizens into accepting its GDPR-friendly privacy policy – by tricking them with fake notifications. Folks are shown the social network's updated terms and conditions to agree to, with what appears to be pending notifications from friends in the top right corner – such as …
Kieren McCarthy, 29 May 2018
xxx

Smut site offers VPN so you don't bare all online

Faced with growing state enthusiasm to block its services, one of the world's most popular adult sites has created its own virtual private network (VPN). PornHub's VPNhub (this link is safe to follow) is just what it says on the box: a VPN app designed to protect user traffic, hide the Web server they're visiting, and spoof …
Lady  standing on a hand with a megaphone shouting into mans ear

Welcome to your sci-fi dystopia: Sonic firewalls to crumble inaudible ad-tracking phone cookies

Boffins in Austria have developed a defense against acoustic cookies, a form of ad tracking by which smartphones can send and receive data using sounds people can't hear. App developers can implement ultrasound data transfer on their own or using various SDKs, such as XT Audio Beacons or Lisnr, or the Google Nearby API. ads …
Thomas Claburn, 25 May 2018
Person hides face in shocked anticipation of something horrible. Photo via shutterstock

You know that silly fear about Alexa recording everything and leaking it online? It just happened

Updated It's time to break out your "Alexa, I Told You So" banners – because a Portland, Oregon, couple received a phone call from one of the husband's employees earlier this month, telling them she had just received a recording of them talking privately in their home. "Unplug your Alexa devices right now," the staffer told the couple …
Kieren McCarthy, 24 May 2018
Lab tech with urine sample - Shutterstock

Oz sports’ pee-samplers outed buying Cellebrite phone-crack kit

Australia is ramping up its use of phone-cracking technology to crack serious criminals: its peak sports anti-doping body has taken a Cellbrite licence. ASADA, the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority, announced the near-AU$13,000 licence at the government's tender site in April. The announcement says ASADA is using the …
child browsing on tablet outdoors. pHOTO BY SHUTTERSTOCK

Kids and the web latest: 'Won't somebody please think of the children!' US Congresscritters plead

US Congress is pondering a bipartisan measure to expand the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) – the law that, well, protects children's privacy online. Senators Ed Markey (D-MA) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), along with Represetnative Joe Barton (R-TX) and Bobby Rush (D-IL) have introduced bills in both houses …
Shaun Nichols, 23 May 2018

Lawyer warned FCC of Securus phone-tracking risks 10 months ago

Some ten months before Sen. Ron Wyden would request the FCC examine legal concerns over the service, a US lawyer had alerted the agency to potential problems with the Securus THREADS database. Law360 found that Lee Petro, a Washington DC-based attorney at Drinker, Biddle, and Reath LLP, noted in a July 25, 2017 filing (PDF) to …
Shaun Nichols, 23 May 2018
Facial recognition

Folks are shocked – shocked – that CIA-backed Amazon is selling face-recog tech to US snoops, cops

Analysis The American Civil Liberties Union on Tuesday expressed dismay that Amazon Web Services has been urging US government agencies to use its Rekognition API for state-sponsored facial recognition. The advocacy organization published emails obtained over a six-month investigation documenting marketing efforts by Amazon employees …
Thomas Claburn, 22 May 2018
arms

GDPR for everyone, cries Microsoft: We'll extend Europe's privacy rights worldwide

Microsoft has said it will extend new privacy rights that become law in Europe this week to all its users worldwide. The promise was outlined in a blog post on Tuesday written by the Windows giant's new deputy general counsel, Julie Brill, who was until recently a commissioner at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). "We've …
Kieren McCarthy, 22 May 2018

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