The EU Just Finalized Copyright Legislation That breaks the Web, despite EU country opposition

The last time the EU tweaked its copyright laws was in 2001, so the idea of updating regulations in the information age made a lot of sense. But critics became alarmed by two sections of the bill: Article 11 (aka the “link tax”) and Article 13 (aka the “upload filters”). In 2018, critics like Tim Read more about The EU Just Finalized Copyright Legislation That breaks the Web, despite EU country opposition[…]

One click and you’re out: UK makes it an offence to view terrorist propaganda even once

It will be an offence to view terrorist material online just once – and could incur a prison sentence of up to 15 years – under new UK laws. The Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Bill was granted Royal Assent yesterday, updating a previous Act and bringing new powers to law enforcement to tackle terrorism. But Read more about One click and you’re out: UK makes it an offence to view terrorist propaganda even once[…]

Many popular iPhone apps secretly record your screen without asking

Many major companies, like Air Canada, Hollister and Expedia, are recording every tap and swipe you make on their iPhone apps. In most cases you won’t even realize it. And they don’t need to ask for permission. You can assume that most apps are collecting data on you. Some even monetize your data without your knowledge. Read more about Many popular iPhone apps secretly record your screen without asking[…]

The “Do Not Track” Setting Doesn’t Stop You from Being Tracked – by Google, Facebook and Twitter, among many more

Most browsers have a “Do Not Track” (DNT) setting that sends “a special signal to websites, analytics companies, ad networks, plug in providers, and other web services you encounter while browsing, to stop tracking your activity.” Sounds good, right? Sadly, it’s not effective. That’s because this Do Not Track setting is only a voluntary signal Read more about The “Do Not Track” Setting Doesn’t Stop You from Being Tracked – by Google, Facebook and Twitter, among many more[…]

I’m a crime-fighter, says FamilyTreeDNA boss after being caught giving folks’ DNA data to FBI

Some would argue he has broken every ethical and moral rule of his in his profession, but genealogist Bennett Greenspan prefers to see himself as a crime-fighter. “I spent many, many nights and many, many weekends thinking of what privacy and confidentiality would mean to a genealogist such as me,” the founder and president of Read more about I’m a crime-fighter, says FamilyTreeDNA boss after being caught giving folks’ DNA data to FBI[…]

Officer jailed for using police database to access personal details of dozens of Tinder dates

A former long-serving police officer has been jailed for six months for illegally accessing the personal details of almost 100 women to determine if they were “suitable” dates. Adrian Trevor Moore was a 28-year veteran of WA Police and was nominated as police officer of the year in 2011. The former senior constable pleaded guilty Read more about Officer jailed for using police database to access personal details of dozens of Tinder dates[…]

Nest Secure has an unlisted disabled microphone (Edit: Google statement agrees!)

We received a statement from Google regarding the implication that the Nest Secure alarm system has had an unlisted microphone this whole time. It turns out that yes, the Nest Guard base system (the circular device with a keypad above) does have a built-in microphone that is not listed on the official spec sheet at Read more about Nest Secure has an unlisted disabled microphone (Edit: Google statement agrees!)[…]

Furious Apple revokes Facebook’s enty app cert after Zuck’s crew abused it to slurp private data

Facebook has yet again vowed to “do better” after it was caught secretly bypassing Apple’s privacy rules to pay adults and teenagers to install a data-slurping iOS app on their phones. The increasingly worthless promises of the social media giant have fallen on deaf ears however: on Wednesday, Apple revoked the company’s enterprise certificate for Read more about Furious Apple revokes Facebook’s enty app cert after Zuck’s crew abused it to slurp private data[…]

Facebook pays teens to install VPN that spies on them

Desperate for data on its competitors, Facebook has been secretly paying people to install a “Facebook Research” VPN that lets the company suck in all of a user’s phone and web activity, similar to Facebook’s Onavo Protect app that Apple banned in June and that was removed in August. Facebook sidesteps the App Store and Read more about Facebook pays teens to install VPN that spies on them[…]

Apple: You can’t sue us for slowing down your iPhones because we’re like a contractor in your house

Apple is like a building contractor you hire to redo your kitchen, the tech giant has argued in an attempt to explain why it shouldn’t have to pay customers for slowing down their iPhones. Addressing a bunch of people trying to sue it for damages, the iGiant’s lawyers told [PDF] a California court this month: Read more about Apple: You can’t sue us for slowing down your iPhones because we’re like a contractor in your house[…]

Google’s Sidewalk Labs Plans to Package and Sell Location Data on Millions of Cellphones

Most of the data collected by urban planners is messy, complex, and difficult to represent. It looks nothing like the smooth graphs and clean charts of city life in urban simulator games like “SimCity.” A new initiative from Sidewalk Labs, the city-building subsidiary of Google’s parent company Alphabet, has set out to change that. The Read more about Google’s Sidewalk Labs Plans to Package and Sell Location Data on Millions of Cellphones[…]

Firefox cracks down on creepy web trackers, holds supercookies over fire whilst Chrome kills ad blockers

The Mozilla Foundation has announced its intent to reduce the ability of websites and other online services to track users of its Firefox browser around the internet. At this stage, Moz’s actions are baby steps. In support of its decision in late 2018 to reduce the amount of tracking it permits, the organisation has now Read more about Firefox cracks down on creepy web trackers, holds supercookies over fire whilst Chrome kills ad blockers[…]

Just keep slurping: HMRC adds two million taxpayers’ voices to biometric database – but people are starting to opt-out, now that they can

HMRC’s database of Brits’ voiceprints has grown by 2 million since June – but campaign group Big Brother Watch has claimed success as 160,000 people turned the taxman’s requests down. The Voice ID scheme, which requires taxpayers to say a key phrase that is recorded to create a digital signature, was introduced in January 2017. Read more about Just keep slurping: HMRC adds two million taxpayers’ voices to biometric database – but people are starting to opt-out, now that they can[…]

Wow, fancy that. Web ad giant Google to block ad-blockers in Chrome. For safety, apparently

Google engineers have proposed changes to the open-source Chromium browser that will break content-blocking extensions, including various ad blockers. Adblock Plus will most likely not be affected, though similar third-party plugins will, for reasons we will explain. The drafted changes will also limit the capabilities available to extension developers, ostensibly for the sake of speed Read more about Wow, fancy that. Web ad giant Google to block ad-blockers in Chrome. For safety, apparently[…]

Google fined $57 million by French data privacy body for hiding terms and forcing users to accept intrusion or lose access

Google has been hit by a €50 million ($57 million) fine by French data privacy body CNIL (National Data Protection Commission) for failure to comply with the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) regulations. The CNIL said that it was fining Google for “lack of transparency, inadequate information and lack of valid consent regarding the ads Read more about Google fined $57 million by French data privacy body for hiding terms and forcing users to accept intrusion or lose access[…]

Torrent Paradise Creates Decentralized ‘Pirate Bay’ With IPFS

The BitTorrent protocol has a decentralized nature but the ecosystem surrounding it has some weak spots. Torrent sites, for example, use centralized search engines which are prone to outages and takedowns. Torrent-Paradise tackles this problem with IPFS, a searchable torrent indexer that’s shared by the people. IPFS, short for InterPlanetary File System, has been around Read more about Torrent Paradise Creates Decentralized ‘Pirate Bay’ With IPFS[…]

Europe’s controversial ‘link tax’ sent back after member states rebel – The Verge

Copyright activists just scored a major victory in the ongoing fight over the European Union’s new copyright rules. An upcoming summit to advance the EU’s copyright directive has been canceled, as member states objected to the incoming rules as too restrictive to online creators. The EU’s forthcoming copyright rules had drawn attention from activists for Read more about Europe’s controversial ‘link tax’ sent back after member states rebel – The Verge[…]

NL judge says doc’s official warning needs removing from Google

An official warning by the Dutch Doctors guild to a serving doctor needs to be removed from Google’s search result, as the judge says that the privacy of the doctor is more important than the public good that arises from people being warned that this doctor has in some way misbehaved. As a result of Read more about NL judge says doc’s official warning needs removing from Google[…]

Project Alias is a DIY project that deafens your home voice assistant until you want it to listen to you

Alias is a teachable “parasite” that is designed to give users more control over their smart assistants, both when it comes to customisation and privacy. Through a simple app the user can train Alias to react on a custom wake-word/sound, and once trained, Alias can take control over your home assistant by activating it for Read more about Project Alias is a DIY project that deafens your home voice assistant until you want it to listen to you[…]

Amazon’s Ring Security Cameras Allow Anyone to Watch Easily – And They Do!

But for some who’ve welcomed in Amazon’s Ring security cameras, there have been more than just algorithms watching through the lens, according to sources alarmed by Ring’s dismal privacy practices. Ring has a history of lax, sloppy oversight when it comes to deciding who has access to some of the most precious, intimate data belonging Read more about Amazon’s Ring Security Cameras Allow Anyone to Watch Easily – And They Do![…]

Netflix password sharing may soon be impossible due to new AI tracking

A video software firm has come up with a way to prevent people from sharing their account details for Netflix and other streaming services with friends and family members. UK-based Synamedia unveiled the artificial intelligence software at the CES 2019 technology trade show in Las Vegas, claiming it could save the streaming industry billions of dollars over the next Read more about Netflix password sharing may soon be impossible due to new AI tracking[…]

Professor exposing unethical academic publishing is being sued by university in childish discrediting counterclaims of being unethical for showing unethical behaviour

The three authors, who describe themselves as leftists, spent 10 months writing 20 hoax papers they submitted to reputable journals in gender, race, sexuality, and related fields. Seven were accepted, four were published online, and three were in the process of being published when questions raised in October by a skeptical Wall Street Journal editorial writer Read more about Professor exposing unethical academic publishing is being sued by university in childish discrediting counterclaims of being unethical for showing unethical behaviour[…]

T-Mobile, Sprint, and AT&T Are Selling Customers’ Real-Time Location Data, And It’s Falling Into the Wrong Hands

Nervously, I gave a bounty hunter a phone number. He had offered to geolocate a phone for me, using a shady, overlooked service intended not for the cops, but for private individuals and businesses. Armed with just the number and a few hundred dollars, he said he could find the current location of most phones Read more about T-Mobile, Sprint, and AT&T Are Selling Customers’ Real-Time Location Data, And It’s Falling Into the Wrong Hands[…]