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Tag Archives for " websites "

Broadband Carriers Should Seek Permission Before Harnessing Web-Browsing Data For Ads

“We believe that each and every customer paying for your internet service has the right to determine how their personal data will be used, on an opt-in basis,” Mozilla, the Internet Society, PublicKnowledge and others said in an open letter to the CEOs of T-Mobile AT&T and Verizon.

The watchdogs specifically ask the mobile companies to avoid harnessing information about web traffic for secondary purposes, without subscribers’ opt-in consent.

The letter comes the same week it emerged that T-Mobile plans to draw on users’ web browsing and app usage for ad targeting, on an opt-out basis.

Source: Broadband Carriers Should Seek Permission Before Harnessing Web-Browsing Data For Ads, Groups Say 03/11/2021

Tracker pixels in emails are now an ‘endemic’ privacy concern

Spy pixels, also known as tracking pixels or web beacons, are invisible, tiny image files — including .PNGs and .GIFs — that are inserted in the content body of an email.

They may appear as clear, white, or another color to merge with the content and remain unseen by a recipient and are often as small as 1×1 pixels. Similar pixels are also widely used on web domains to track visitors.

However, according to Hey co-founder David Heinemeier Hansson, they also represent a “grotesque invasion of privacy.”

Full article: Tracker pixels in emails are now an ‘endemic’ privacy concern | ZDNet

An EU parliament website for COVID testing allegedly broke the EU’s privacy laws

The European Parliament is being investigated by the European Data Protection Supervisor after allegations that its COVID testing website didn’t meet EU privacy standards.

The website was set up to help MEPs schedule COVID tests, and while it didn’t handle any health information itself, sending data to the US for processing would still be illegal. According to the complaint, the testing website made over 150 requests to third parties, including Google and Stripe. Under EU law, data can only be transferred to the US if “an adequate level of protection for the personal data [can] be ensured,” and noyb argues that the companies “clearly fall under relevant US surveillance laws that allow [targeting of] EU citizens.”

The complaint also alleges that the cookie banners on the site didn’t disclose all of the cookies that would be stored on the user’s computer, and that the banners prodded users toward the “Accept All” button. Since cookies are used to track users across websites, and some of the ones found were from the aforementioned US companies, it’s understandable that EU regulators might be caught off guard.

Source: An EU parliament website for COVID testing allegedly broke the EU’s privacy laws – The Verge

He Created the Web. Now He’s Out to Remake the Digital World.

Three decades ago, Tim Berners-Lee devised simple yet powerful standards for locating, linking and presenting multimedia documents online. He set them free into the world, unleashing the World Wide Web.

Now Mr. Berners-Lee believes the online world has gone astray. Too much power and too much personal data, he says, reside with the tech giants like Google and Facebook — “silos” is the generic term he favors, instead of referring to the companies by name. Fueled by vast troves of data, he says, they have become surveillance platforms and gatekeepers of innovation.

But Mr. Berners-Lee is taking a different approach: His answer to the problem is technology that gives individuals more power.

Full article: He Created the Web. Now He’s Out to Remake the Digital World. – The New York Times

Firefox to ship ‘network partitioning’ as a new anti-tracking defense

Firefox 85, scheduled to be released next month, in January 2021, will ship with a feature named Network Partitioning as a new form of anti-tracking protection.

The feature is based on “Client-Side Storage Partitioning,” a new standard currently being developed by the World Wide Web Consortium’s Privacy Community Group. Network Partitioning will allow Firefox to save resources like the cache, favicons, CSS files, images, and more, on a per-website basis, rather than together, in the same pool.

Source: Firefox to ship ‘network partitioning’ as a new anti-tracking defense | ZDNet

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

Apple declined to implement 16 Web APIs in Safari due to privacy concerns

Apple said this week that it declined to implement 16 new web technologies (Web APIs) in Safari because they posed a threat to user privacy by opening new avenues for user fingerprinting.

Apple claims that the 16 Web APIs above would allow online advertisers and data analytics firms to create scripts that fingerprint users and their devices.

Source: Apple declined to implement 16 Web APIs in Safari due to privacy concerns | ZDNet

GDPR Subverted by Cookie Consent Tools

New study suggests that many websites are navigating around GDPR by tailoring the design of their cookie consent tools and using dark patterns to provide a misleading veneer of a consent agreement.

According to the researchers, the study illustrates “the extent to which illegal practices prevail, with vendors of CMPs turning a blind eye to — or worse, incentivising — clearly illegal configurations of their systems.”

Source: GDPR Subverted by Cookie Consent Tools, Study Reveals – CPO Magazine

Facebook’s new privacy tool lets you manage how you’re tracked across the web

Mark Zuckerberg’s long-promised “Clear History” button is finally launched globally.

Facebook has been determined to give people privacy controls while they’re on the social network. On Tuesday, it rolled out a long-promised tool designed to give them control beyond the social network.

While it had slow rollouts around the world, starting last August, it should be available now to the 2.4 billion people who use Facebook every month, Zuckerberg said.

Source: Facebook’s new privacy tool lets you manage how you’re tracked across the web – CNET

Cookie consent tools are being used to undermine EU privacy rules

Most cookie consent pop-ups served to internet users in the European Union — ostensibly seeking permission to track people’s web activity — are likely to be flouting regional privacy laws, a new study by researchers at MIT, UCL and Aarhus University suggests.

“The results of our empirical survey of CMPs [consent management platforms] today illustrates the extent to which illegal practices prevail, with vendors of CMPs turning a blind eye to — or worse, incentivising — clearly illegal configurations of their systems,” the researchers argue, adding that: “Enforcement in this area is sorely lacking.”

Full article: Cookie consent tools are being used to undermine EU privacy rules, study suggests | TechCrunch

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