Posts in category Privacy


Privacy

Artificial Intelligence vs. Echo’s Eavesdropping and Google’s Home Invasion

There’s a lot of excitement about all the new artificial intelligence technology hitting the market — like Amazon’s Echo and Google’s Home smart speakers, among many other products. However, there’s also growing concern over how these devices may invade our privacy. Despite the companies’ assurances to the contrary, some people worry that they could be listening to every word we utter.

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Privacy

Vivaldi CEO Claims Google Retaliated for Privacy Criticism

Vivaldi CEO Jon von Tetzchner, the brains behind both the new Vivaldi browser and the early Opera browser, has accused Google of retaliating against his company after he questioned its customer privacy practices. Vivaldi’s Google Adwords campaigns mysteriously were suspended just two days after von Tetzchner’s criticisms of Google’s handling of customer data were published this spring, he said.

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Privacy

Facebook Gets Tough on Spy Apps

Facebook has updated its Facebook and Instagram policies to prohibit developers from using data obtained from those platforms in surveillance tools, according to Rob Sherman, deputy chief privacy officer. Facebook already has taken enforcement actions against devs who created and marketed surveillance tools in violation of the company’s previous policy, he noted.

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Privacy

Evernote Toes the Privacy Line

Caught off guard by a huge backlash, Evernote recently abandoned its plan to let staffers read customer notes under certain circumstances. The plan would have allowed staffers to review private customer notes as a means of assessing the accuracy of its new machine learning technology. The company made a mistake in judgment, Evernote CEO Chris O’Neil acknowledged.

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Privacy

iPhone Call Logs Easy Pickings on iCloud, Says Russian Security Firm

Russian digital forensics firm ElcomSoft on Thursday reported that Apple automatically uploads iPhone call logs to iCloud remote servers, and that users have no official way to disable this feature other than to completely switch off the iCloud drive. The data uploaded could include a list of all calls made and received on an iOS device, as well as phone numbers, dates and times, and duration.

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Privacy

Report: Apple Shares Unencrypted iMessage Metadata With Cops

Apple last week faced renewed scrutiny for its data-sharing practices, following news that it retains iMessage metadata and shares it with law enforcement when presented with a court order. The company has insisted that it would not share data that would jeopardize the privacy and trust of its millions of customers. Metadata includes contacts, IP addresses, and dates and times of conversations.

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Privacy

Innocents Exposed as WikiLeaks Gushes Information

WikiLeaks reportedly has leaked sensitive personal information belonging to hundreds of innocent individuals worldwide, including some residing in several highly repressive countries.
The organization has revealed private credit card data, medical information, personal addresses and other data of various individuals, including the identification as gay of a Saudi Arabian who had been arrested.

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Privacy

WhatsApp Shaves Off a Little More Privacy

WhatsApp on Thursday announced an update to its terms and privacy policy — the first in four years. Among other things, the changes will affect the ways users can communicate with businesses while continuing to avoid third-party banner ads or spam messages, according to the company. However, WhatsApp will begin to share some personal details about its 1 billion users with Facebook.

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Privacy

KeySniffer Follows the Scent of Cheap Wireless Keyboards

A vulnerability in inexpensive wireless keyboards lets hackers steal private data, Bastille reported this week. The vulnerability lets hackers use a new attack the firm dubbed “KeySniffer” to eavesdrop on and capture every keystroke typed from up to 250 feet away. The stolen data is rendered in clear text. It lets hackers search for victims’ credit card information, passwords and more.

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Privacy

Snowden Puts His Mind to Designing Spy-Proof Smartphone Cases

NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden and noted hacker Andrew “Bunnie” Huang on Thursday published a paper on their collaboration to design a smartphone case that will protect user privacy. The pair developed a prototype compatible with the 4.7-inch iPhone 6, as it’s “driven primarily by what we understand to be the current preferences and tastes of reporters,” the paper states.

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Privacy

Facebook Lets Messenger Conversations Go Dark

Facebook last week said it would begin testing long anticipated end-to-end encryption capabilities in its Messenger app, enabling users to have secret conversations. The new level of security means that a message will be visible only to the sender and the recipient — Facebook won’t even be able to read it. Users can set a timer to limit the amount of time that a message remains visible.

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