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Tag Archives for " law enforcement "

Australia’s spy agencies caught collecting COVID-19 app data

Australia’s intelligence agencies have been caught “incidentally” collecting data from the country’s COVIDSafe contact-tracing app during the first six months of its launch, a government watchdog has found.

The report, published Monday by the Australian government’s inspector general for the intelligence community, which oversees the government’s spy and eavesdropping agencies, said the app data was scooped up “in the course of the lawful collection of other data.”

Source: Australia’s spy agencies caught collecting COVID-19 app data | TechCrunch

Police turn to car data to destroy suspects’ alibis

In recent years, investigators have realized that automobiles — particularly newer models — can be treasure troves of digital evidence. Their onboard computers generate and store data that can be used to reconstruct where a vehicle has been and what its passengers were doing.

They reveal everything from location, speed and acceleration to when doors were opened and closed, whether texts and calls were made while the cellphone was plugged into the infotainment system, as well as voice commands and web histories.

Full article: Insecure wheels: Police turn to car data to destroy suspects’ alibis

How Your Digital Trails Wind Up in the Police’s Hands

Data collected for one purpose can always be used for another. Search history data, for example, is collected to refine recommendation algorithms or build online profiles, not to catch criminals. Usually.

Smart devices like speakers, TVs, and wearables keep such precise details of our lives that they’ve been used both as incriminating and exonerating evidence in murder cases. Speakers don’t have to overhear crimes or confessions to be useful to investigators. They keep time-stamped logs of all requests, alongside details of their location and identity. Investigators can access these logs and use them to verify a suspect’s whereabouts or even catch them in a lie.

Full article: How Your Digital Trails Wind Up in the Police’s Hands | WIRED

Law enforcement wiretapped the very service used by criminals to evade interception

The virtual private network (VPN) Safe-Inet used by the world’s foremost cybercriminals has been taken down in a coordinated law enforcement action led by the German Reutlingen Police Headquarters together with Europol and law enforcement agencies from around the world.

This VPN service was sold at a high price to the criminal underworld as one of the best tools available to avoid law enforcement interception, offering up to 5 layers of anonymous VPN connections.

Much of the criminal activity occurring on the network involved cyber actors responsible for ransomware, E-skimming breaches, spearphishing, and account takeovers.

Source: Law enforcement wiretapped the very service used by criminals to evade interception

Belgian DPA to Take Down Websites Infringing GDPR

Belgian Data Protection Authority signed a cooperation agreement with DNS Belgium. The purpose of the cooperation agreement is to allow DNS Belgium to suspend “.be” websites that are linked to infringements of the GDPR.

The “Notice and Action” procedure is only available for infringements that cause very serious harm and are committed by natural or legal persons who deliberately infringe the law or who continue data processing activity despite a prior order by the Investigation Service or the Litigation Chamber of the Belgian DPA to suspend, limit, freeze (temporarily) or end the processing activity.

Source: Belgian DPA to Take Down Websites Infringing GDPR | Privacy & Information Security Law Blog

Law enforcement is using location tracking on mobile devices to identify suspects, but is it unconstitutional?

As the use of geofence warrants has grown, so have controversies surrounding them. Defense attorneys argue they’re unconstitutional, and prosecutors say their use is a valid and valuable crime-solving technique. Litigation questioning the constitutionality of geofence warrants is now surfacing.

Privacy and civil rights advocates also say the geographic scope of these warrants gives police information about people in private locales, such as their homes or doctors’ offices. But prosecutors say these warrants help authorities catch criminals.

Full article: Law enforcement is using location tracking on mobile devices to identify suspects, but is it unconstitutional?

EDPB Issues Guidance on Its Coordinated Enforcement Framework 

The European Data Protection Board has issued guidance on its Coordinated Enforcement Framework (CEF).

The CEF provides a structure for coordinating recurring annual activities by EDPB Supervisory Authorities. The annual coordinated action focuses on a pre-defined topic which participating SAs may pursue using a pre-defined methodology.

Full article: EDPB Issues Guidance on Its Coordinated Enforcement Framework | Privacy Compliance & Data Security

GDPR enforcement must level up to catch big tech, report warns

A new report by European consumer protection umbrella group Beuc, reflecting on the barriers to effective cross-border enforcement of the EU’s flagship data protection framework, makes awkward reading for the regional lawmakers and regulators as they seek to shape the next decades of digital oversight across the bloc.

Beuc’s report — which it’s called “The long and winding road: Two years of the GDPR: A cross-border data protection case from a consumer perspective” — details the procedural obstacles its member organizations have faced in seeking to obtain a decision related to the original complaints, which were filed with a variety of DPAs around the EU.

Source: GDPR enforcement must level up to catch big tech, report warns | TechCrunch

Activists Call for Scrutiny of Palantir Over Partnerships With EU Law Enforcement Agencies

SOMI, a Dutch privacy group, is calling for a large-scale investigation into the partnerships that data analytics company Palantir Technologies has with a number of law enforcement and intelligence agencies throughout the European Union.

SOMI contends that the firm could be participating in both knowing and unknowing privacy violations based on its associations with agencies that are making use of “predictive policing” technologies.

Source: Dutch Group Calls for Scrutiny of Palantir Over Opaque Partnerships With EU Law Enforcement Agencies, Possible Privacy Violations – CPO Magazine

IRS Could Search Warrantless Location Database Over 10,000 Times

The IRS was able to query a database of location data quietly harvested from ordinary smartphone apps over 10,000 times, according to a copy of the contract between IRS and the data provider obtained by Motherboard.

The document provides more insight into what exactly the IRS wanted to do with a tool purchased from Venntel, a government contractor that sells clients access to a database of smartphone movements. The Inspector General is currently investigating the IRS for using the data without a warrant to try to track the location of Americans.

Source: IRS Could Search Warrantless Location Database Over 10,000 Times

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