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Category Archives for "Surveillance"

DuckDuckGo denies using fingerprinting to track its users

Responding to a forum post that accused it of “fingerprinting users”, privacy-centric search engine DuckDuckGo says that fears are unfounded and that it is not tracking its users.

The allegation was made after the Firefox extension CanvasBlocker showed a warning to users. The suggestion of fingerprinting — gathering as much information as possible about a user through their browser to create a unique identifier that can be used for tracking — is clearly something that would seem to sit in opposition to what DuckDuckGo claims to stand for. The company CEO says the accusation is simply wrong.

Full article: DuckDuckGo denies using fingerprinting to track its users

Facebook Knows How to Track You Using the Dust on Your Camera Lens

In 2014, Facebook filed a patent application for a technique that employs smartphone data to figure out if two people might know each other.

The author, an engineering manager at Facebook named Ben Chen, wrote that it was not merely possible to detect that two smartphones were in the same place at the same time, but that by comparing the accelerometer and gyroscope readings of each phone, the data could identify when people were facing each other or walking together.

That way, Facebook could suggest you friend the person you were talking to at a bar last night, and not all the other people there that you chose not to talk to.

However, Facebook says it hasn’t put this technique into practice.

Full article: Facebook Knows How to Track You Using the Dust on Your Camera Lens

How Facebook Tracks Non-Users via Android Apps

If you quit Facebook or never joined because of its data collecting practices the odds are good the social network is still tracking you – despite your protest.

Facebook collects data of non-users of its social network via dozens of mainstream Android apps that send tracking and personal information back to the social network. Some of the dozens of apps sharing data with Facebook include Kayak, Yelp and Shazam.

Full article: How Facebook Tracks Non-Users via Android Apps | Threatpost | The first stop for security news

Bulk surveillance is always bad, say human rights groups

A band of human rights organisations have appealed against a top European court’s ruling on bulk surveillance, arguing that any form of mass spying breaches rights to privacy and free expression.

The group, which includes Liberty, Privacy International and the American Civil Liberties Union, has taken issue with parts of a September judgment from the European Court of Human Rights.

Full article: Bulk surveillance is always bad, say human rights orgs appealing against top Euro court • The Register

Airport Surveillance Takes Off in a New, Dangerous Direction

In 2018, we learned that expanded biometric surveillance is coming to an airport near you. This includes face recognition, iris scans, and fingerprints. And government agencies aren’t saying anything about how they will protect this highly sensitive information.

Full article: Year in Review: Airport Surveillance Takes Off in a New, Dangerous Direction | Electronic Frontier Foundation

Facial recognition technology to be used in London streets

Retail zones and shops in the UK capital are guaranteed to be bustling with consumers seeking out presents this Yuletide period. But central London shoppers themselves may also be getting picked out by new facial recognition technology implemented by Metropolitan police.

Source: Facial recognition technology to be used in London streets

Tech’s invasion of our privacy made us more paranoid in 2018

People are flocking to privacy tools online that block trackers following your every click, companies are hiring more privacy experts, and politicians are fighting for legislation to force companies to be more open about how they use your data.

While Cambridge Analytica was the biggest event, other privacy mistakes throughout the year continued to grow people’s concerns.

Full article: Tech’s invasion of our privacy made us more paranoid in 2018 – CNET

The End of Privacy Began in the 1960s

The privacy warriors of the 1960s would have been astounded by what the tech industry has become. They would be more amazed to realize that the policy choices they made back then — to demand data transparency rather than limit data collection, and to legislate the behavior of government but not private industry — enabled today’s tech giants to become as large and powerful as they are.

Full article: Opinion | The End of Privacy Began in the 1960s – The New York Times

Online ads spoil Christmas surprises, raising privacy concerns

Social media users say they’re being burned by online advertisements spoiling “surprise” gifts by popping up in front of the intended recipient. That’s because of data collected through online tracking by companies like Google and Facebook.

Full article: Online ads spoil Christmas surprises, raising privacy concerns | CBC News

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