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Report Reveals Consumers Want Contextually Relevant Ads, Yet Remain Cautious About Privacy

Two years since the enactment of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), data privacy remains a key concern for a significant 94% of consumers. Alongside this, whilst 33% of consumers remain unaware of data privacy regulations, such as the GDPR, nearly nine in ten (87%) of consumers now understand their browsing data will be used for advertising purposes.

The type of targeted advertising consumers are most receptive to was found to be behavioural and contextual. Consumer’s top preference for targeted ads includes targeting based on purchase history (35%) or browsing history (34%). A close second is targeted ads that are contextually relevant to the site a consumer is browsing, stated by a third (33%) of consumers to be their preferred means of targeting. Targeting based on demographic data, such as life stage (19%) or job (15%), was the least preferred method of targeted advertising.

Source: Report Reveals Consumers Want Contextually Relevant Ads, Yet Remain Cautious About Privacy | ExchangeWire.com

EU Commission Opens Public Consultation on Proposed Artificial Intelligence Regulatory Framework

On 19 February 2020, the European Commission published a white paper on the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in the EU. The White Paper forms part of the Commission President, Ursula Von der Leyen’s, digital strategy, one of the key pillars of her administration’s five year tenure, recognising that the EU has fallen behind the US and China with respect to the strategic deployment of AI.

To tackle this problem, the Commission proposes a common EU approach to ‘speed up the uptake’ of AI in the EU, whilst also tackling the human and ethical implications of AI’s fast growing use in the EU, including the possible downsides of its use, such as opaque decision making and hidden, embedded gender and racial discrimination.

Full article: European Commission’s Public Consultation on Proposed EU Artificial Intelligence Regulatory Framework

94% of Those Who Pay the Ransom Get the Data Back

According to The State of Ransomware 2020 global study conducted earlier this year on behalf of Sophos, organisations that decide to pay to get their data back, do so in an efficient 94% of cases.

Overall, the research found that while a malicious file download or link was still the biggest danger (29% of successful attacks), other methods such as remote attacks on servers (21%), unsecured Remote Desktop Protocol (9%), external suppliers (9%), and infected USB drives (7%) were also popular.

The research questioned 5,000 IT managers from 26 countries (500 from the US and 200 from the UK) in a range of sectors and company sizes from 100 to 5,000 employees.

Source: Huge toll of ransomware attacks revealed in Sophos report – Naked Security

Do Privacy Controls Lead to More Trust in Alexa? Not Necessarily, Research Finds

Researchers have found that giving smart assistant users the option to adjust settings for privacy or content delivery, or both, does not necessarily increase trust in the device.

The researchers also found that users who were sensitive about their privacy found content less credible when given the option to customize their privacy settings.

Source: Do Privacy Controls Lead to More Trust in Alexa? Not Necessarily, Research Finds | News | Communications of the ACM

Privacy experts reviewed popular video-chat apps

Researchers looked at 15 video chat apps — Zoom, Google Hangouts, FaceTime, Jitsi Meet, Skype, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Signal, Microsoft Teams, BlueJeans, GoTo Meeting, Cisco WebEx, Houseparty, Discord, and Doxy.me — and evaluated them based on a host of categories.

Researchers combed through privacy policies, sifted through app specifications, and looked at critical questions like whether the apps share user data with third parties or if they alert users when meetings are being recorded.

Only Houseparty, Discord, and Doxy.me — a telemedicine app — failed to meet the Mozilla Foundation’s minimum security guidelines. Apple’s FaceTime and Signal, which both employ end-to-end encryption, received high marks.

Source: Privacy experts reviewed popular video-chat apps, and *yikes*

Thousands of Android apps contain undocumented backdoors

A study has found that thousands of legitimate Android apps are taking liberties or installing with capabilities that users wouldn’t expect to exist.

For example, ability to reset user passwords, bypass payment interfaces, initiate hidden behaviours using secret commands, or just stop users from accessing specific, sometimes political content.

This isn’t necessarily about outright malicious apps so much as legitimate apps taking liberties or installing with capabilities users wouldn’t expect to exist.

Source: Thousands of Android apps contain undocumented backdoors, study finds – Naked Security

What can we expect over the next nine months in cybersecurity and data privacy?

A new annual report by TÜV Rheinland, in partnership with global cybersecurity experts, studying some of the main issues that we can expect to appear on the cybersecurity landscape as we progress through the remainder of this year.

The white paper, titled Cybersecurity Trends for 2020, looks at the increasing cyber-threat and the dangers posed to smart supply chains, healthcare, and operating systems that use real-time technology.

Source: #Privacy: What can we expect over the next nine months in cybersecurity and data privacy?

EDPS Publishes Annual Report 2019

The Annual Report provides an insight into all European Data Protection Superviser’s (EDPS) activities in 2019.

EDPS activities therefore focused on consolidating the achievements of previous years, assessing the progress made and starting to define priorities for the future. Of particular note were EDPS efforts to ensure that new EU rules on data protection are put into practice.

Source: EDPS Annual Report 2019: new EU data protection rules must produce promised result | European Data Protection Supervisor

Employers accused of abusing EU data privacy rules to hinder trade unions

The EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is being misused by employers across Europe as trade unions are denied access to information required to recruit and organise workers, a new study has found.

The trends highlighted in ETUC’s report bring to light the recent challenges for trade unions to mobilise their networks as a result of workplaces refusing access to employee data under the pretext that it is forbidden by the GDPR. In this vein, the report brings to attention cases in a range of EU member states including Spain, Luxembourg and Belgium.

Source: Employers accused of abusing EU data privacy rules to hinder trade unions – EURACTIV.com

Study reveals the global impact of GDPR

With the introduction in May 2018 of the European Union’s (EU) General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), 2019 was expected to be the year of enforcement, with regulators using extended powers to set a higher bar for managing individuals’ data.

The latest Beazley Breach Insights report analyses the actions of data protection regulators across the EU in 2019 and the impact on organizations based elsewhere that are nonetheless subject to the rules through their business structure or customer base.

Source: #Privacy: Study reveals the global impact of GDPR – PrivSec Report