Articles about Privacy

CCTV camera trained on a garden. Photo by Shutterstock

US surveillance court declined less than 2 per cent of applications

The US Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) has published its annual report, revealing that less than 2 per cent of surveillance applications made under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) were declined in 2016. As part of the USA Freedom Act of 2015, statistical information on FISC is published annually …

Nuh-uh, Google, you WILL hand over emails stored on foreign servers, says US judge

Google has been ordered by a US court to cough up people's private Gmail messages stored overseas – because if that information can be viewed stateside, it is subject to American search warrants, apparently. During a hearing on Wednesday in California, magistrate judge Laurel Beeler rejected [PDF] the advertising giant's …
Shaun Nichols, 20 Apr 2017
Trump

Trump's lips sealed on surveillance, complains EU privacy chief

The US administration has been keeping schtum regarding President Trump's plans to adhere to promises made by Obama's government on how EU citizens' data would be protected from the NSA's mass-surveillance activities. Giovanni Buttarelli, the EU's data protection supervisor, has complained that his office is "waiting for a …
Light bulb photo via Shutterstock

Ambient light sensors can steal data, says security researcher

Security researcher Lukasz Olejnik says it is possible to slurp sensitive data with the ambient light sensors installed in many smartphones and laptops. The sensors are there so that devices can automatically change the brightness of screens, a handy trick that save scrambles to change settings. But Olejnik says such sensors …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Apr 2017
headphones

SPY-tunes scandal: Bloke sues Bose after headphones app squeals on his playlist

A chap in Chicago is suing headphone maker Bose after discovering how much personal information its app was phoning home to base – this slurped data includes songs listened to, for how long, and when. The class-action lawsuit, filed Tuesday in the US district court of Illinois by a one Kyle Zak, claims the Bose Connect …
Iain Thomson, 20 Apr 2017

Stop asking people for their passwords, rights warriors yell at US Homeland Security

Civil and digital rights groups are leading a campaign to stop the US Department of Homeland Security's demanding access to foreigners' social media accounts when entering America. In an open letter to DHS secretary John Kelly, the group argues that by forcing travelers from some countries to give border patrol agents free …
Shaun Nichols, 18 Apr 2017

'Nobody's got to use the internet,' argues idiot congressman in row over ISP privacy rules

Faced with an angry citizen asking why he had voted away their online privacy rights, US House Rep Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI) had a remarkable answer: you don't have to use the internet if you don't like it. Speaking at a town hall meeting in Wisconsin on Friday, the Republican legislator was asked about his vote to kill off …
Kieren McCarthy, 17 Apr 2017

Alert: Using a web ad blocker may identify you – to advertisers

The recent explosion in people installing ad blockers for their browsers may have an ironic side effect: identifying them to advertisers. French researchers digging into online privacy issues have built on a 2010 study by the EFF that used people's browser configurations to identify individuals. The researchers account for the …
Kieren McCarthy, 14 Apr 2017
Man ties laces on running shoe pre-jog. Photo by Shutterstock

Free health apps laugh in the face of privacy, sell your wheezing data

Free health tracker apps pose a severe privacy risk, security researchers warn. Developers frequently neglect data protection and, worse, intentionally lure in users with free health gimmicks in order to monetise their data. Other sharp practices uncovered by the researchers include unsecured data transmission and ad tracking …
John Leyden, 13 Apr 2017

Irish! data! police! are! preparing! to! whack! Yahoo! over! that! hack!

Yahoo! is set to get a spanking under European Union data protection laws for the biggest of the many megabreaches it copped to last year. The Irish data protection commissioner has stated that a probe by the office into Yahoo!'s megabreach of 2014 – the one in which more than a billion user accounts were affected – has almost …

China emerges as digital rights champion with new info privacy law

China plans to impose the world's strictest digital privacy rights rules against large corporations like Facebook and Google by requiring them to obtain users' permission before sending any data on them outside the country. The draft rules were put out for public comment on Tuesday and would oblige any company that transfers …
Kieren McCarthy, 11 Apr 2017

Homes raided in North West over data thefts from car body repair shops

Two properties in the North West of England were raided this morning as part of an ongoing investigation into nuisance calls related to data thefts from car body repair shops. The pair of search warrants — which had been obtained in court by Information Commissioner's Office — were executed this morning at homes in …

How their GDPR ignorance could protect you from your denial

We may be leaving the EU, but some EU law – with significant consequences for the IT community – will carry on. One such is the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). We signed up to it before the referendum, agreed to persist with it after and, if businesses wish to continue to process data belonging to EU firms, as well …
Jane Fae , 7 Apr 2017
washington

Democrats draft laws in futile attempt to protect US internet privacy

Less than a week after President Trump signed the law allowing ISPs to sell customers' browsing habits to advertisers, Democratic politicians are introducing bills to stop the practice. On Thursday, Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) submitted a bill [PDF] that would enshrine the FCC privacy rules proposed during the Obama …
Iain Thomson, 6 Apr 2017

FCC Commish: Hey, don't look at me – Congress should sort out net neutrality mess

FCC Commissioner Michael O'Rielly has said US Congress will have to resolve the tricky question of net neutrality. "I've always said that anytime Congress can provide us direction and answer the question of how they would like the commission to implement something, then I am totally supportive," he told legal industry watchers …

ICO fines 11 big charities over dirty data donor-squeezing deeds

Eleven charities have been fined by the UK's Information Commissioner's Office for their dodgy dealings with donors' personal data. Over the last two years, an ICO investigation into fundraising has found a number of charities operating in breach of the Data Protection Act. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to …
Nurse erects drip behind privacy curtain at hospital bed. Photo by Shutterstock

Half a million 'de-identified' patients records to be shared in Bradford

The UK city of Bradford is to share the "de-identified" medical data of half a million patients from 88 GP surgeries across the region. We're told this will help improve treatments for frailty and childhood obesity. Under the Connected Health City project, the data will be shared across two trusts, three clinical commissioning …
Kat Hall, 5 Apr 2017
Privacy image

Speaking in Tech: Verizon, Comcast and AT&T... Trust us, we won't sell you out

Podcast speaking_in_tech Greg Knieriemen podcast enterprise Cloud for less than a penny? Tencent recently won a bid to provide the city of Xiamen with cloud services for one Yuan. The President of Alibaba claims the bid “destroyed the entire industry”. On this week’s podcast we discuss China’s cloud race, privacy rules in the US and …
Team Register, 5 Apr 2017

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