Articles about privacy

Stef Hoffer

Here is how Google handles Right To Be Forgotten requests

RTBF trial Google allows software engineers, as well as its dedicated Right To Be Forgotten (RTBF) operatives, to make decisions about which search results ought to be deleted on request – and places such requests onto its internal bug-handling systems. Behind-the-scenes details of how the "online advertising technology" company handles …
Gareth Corfield, 19 Mar 2018

Facebook confirms Cambridge Analytica stole its data; it’s a plot, claims former director

Analysis Facebook has “suspended” any business with controversial analytics firm Cambridge Analytica (CA) and its holding company, following claims by CA’s former director that the social media ad slinger’s data was purloined and used for political dirty tricks. In a statement Facebook said that in April 2015 Dr Aleksandr Kogan, a …
Iain Thomson, 18 Mar 2018
Illustration of someone taking off a mask

FYI: AI tools can unmask anonymous coders from their binary executables

Talk about the ultimate Git Blame. Programmers can be potentially identified from the low-level machine-code instructions in their software executables by AI-powered tools. That's according to boffins from Princeton University, Shiftleft, Drexel University, Sophos, and Braunschweig University of Technology, who have described …
Thomas Claburn, 16 Mar 2018

ProtonMail posts workaround for Turkish government block

Encrypted email provider ProtonMail says its service has been blocked in Turkey, but can still be accessed via a VPN, DNS, or Tor. The secure messaging provider said Thursday that it believes the government is behind the block that has left its services partially or fully unreachable in Turkey. "After investigating the issue …
Shaun Nichols, 15 Mar 2018

ACL-Sue: Rights group takes on TSA over device searches

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is suing to force the TSA to produce documents detailing searches of electronic devices. The rights group said its FOIA complaint [PDF] seeks documents that detail how agents have searched electronic devices owned by passengers on domestic flights. While the government has long been …
Shaun Nichols, 14 Mar 2018

WhatsApp agrees not to share user info with the Zuckerborg… for now

WhatsApp has agreed not to share users' data with parent biz Facebook after failing to demonstrate a legal basis for the ad-fuelling data slurp in the EU. The move comes after a years-long battle between the biz and European data protection agencies, which argued that changes to WhatsApp's small print hadn't been properly …
Rebecca Hill, 14 Mar 2018

Uncle Sam slams plans to give govts final say over domain privacy

A plan by ICANN to let governments collectively decide who is allowed to bypass new European privacy rules over domain names has been blasted by its most powerful member, the United States. At a meeting of DNS oversight organization ICANN, the US government representative told colleagues from across the globe his country didn' …
Kieren McCarthy, 13 Mar 2018

US government privacy watchdog stumbles back to its feet with new hires

The federal agency designed to ensure US spy agencies protect people's privacy and civil liberties has been revived two years after it was effectively killed off by Congress. On Tuesday, the White House announced two members to the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB), adding to a nomination for PCLOB chair made …
Kieren McCarthy, 13 Mar 2018
School Computer Lab from Shutterstock

Privacy folk raise alarm over schools snooping on kids' online habits

Privacy activists have called for more transparency and parental control over web monitoring in British schools after a survey indicated that almost half track their students online. Defend Digital Me, a children's privacy campaign group, teased (PDF) the survey's findings – which will be published in full in its State of Data …
Rebecca Hill, 13 Mar 2018
The Royal Courts of Justice in London

Man who gave interviews about his crimes asks court to delete Google results

RTBF Trial The Right to be Forgotten trial has heard arguments on whether a man who gave interviews about his criminal past should be able to have those reports, among others, deleted from Google Search. “The claimant in this case is a businessman who more than a decade ago pleaded guilty to an offence of conspiracy to intercept …
Gareth Corfield, 13 Mar 2018

Info Commissioner tears into Google's 'call us journalists' trial defence

RTBF Trial UK Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham has declared war on Google, urging the High Court to throw out the ad biz's defences in the Right To Be Forgotten trial because they are "impermissibly broad". "If Google were right in its approach to the concept of 'journalism', that would yield a result whereby the commissioner …
Airbus A380

Emirates dinged for slipshod online data privacy practices

Updated International airline Emirates leaks customers' sensitive personal information to third-party marketing partners and network adversaries, according to Konark Modi, a data security engineer for Cliqz, a privacy-focused browser based on Firefox. Modi, in an online post on Friday, said that after a customer books a flight through …
Cartoon of someone stealing information from a Mac

Boffins baffled as AI training leaks secrets to canny thieves

Private information can be easily extracted from neural networks trained on sensitive data, according to new research. A paper released on arXiv last week by a team of researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, National University of Singapore, and Google Brain reveals just how vulnerable deep learning is to …

Revealed:'s ‘third direction’ to keep tabs on spies’ potentially criminal activities

The government has finally made public a secretive direction that requires snoop oversight bodies to monitor spies’ potential participation in criminality. The oversight instruction was put on a statutory basis as a Prime Ministerial direction in 2014. However its existence was only revealed in 2016 as a result of legal …
Rebecca Hill, 1 Mar 2018

US Supremes take a look at Microsoft's Irish email slurp battle, and yeah, not a great start

The battle between the American government and Microsoft over emails on an Irish server has reached the US Supreme Court – and so far, the judges seem wary of Redmond's position. Essentially, back in 2014, the Feds went to a court in New York for a search warrant to demand Microsoft hand over an enterprise customer's Office …
Shaun Nichols, 28 Feb 2018
Google, photo by lightpoet via Shutterstock

Google asked to take down 2.4 MEEELLION URLs under EU law

Google has received takedown requests for 2.4 million URLs since 2014 – but said yes to less than half. As a result of a 2014 ruling from the European Court of Justice, EU citizens can ask Google to remove information about them from search results. According to Google's transparency report, published today, since 28 May 2014 …
Rebecca Hill, 27 Feb 2018
A person hiding in a box

Private browsing isn't: Boffins say smut-mode can't hide your tracks

A group of boffins working at MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory believe that “private” browsing modes aren't private, so have given developers a framework to fix it. The problem, wrote Frank Wang with his thesis advisors (Nickolai Zeldovich and luminary James Micken), is that even if you're using “ …

Facebook told to stop stalking Belgians or face fines of €250k – a day

Facebook has been told to stop tracking Belgian citizens' online habits, and to delete all the data it holds on them, or it could be fined up to €100m. The Brussels Court of First Instance today ruled that Facebook doesn't provide users with enough information on what data it gathers on people's web use or how long that data …
Rebecca Hill, 16 Feb 2018

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