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Category Archives for "Technology"

Facebook tests linking your FB account to your news subscriptions

Facebook is testing a new feature that could help news publishers create a better experience for paying subscribers on the social network.

The idea is that when Facebook identifies a subscriber from one of its publisher partners, that subscriber will be invited to link their news account to their Facebook account. Once they’re linked, if they encounter a paywalled article on Facebook, they’ll be able to read it without hitting the paywall or having to log in again.

Source: Facebook tests linking your FB account to your news subscriptions | TechCrunch

Facebook says Apple’s new privacy rules could spare its own apps but hit smaller companies

Facebook warned that privacy changes coming from Apple could hurt smaller developers such as gaming companies disproportionately but will likely leave its own apps mostly unscathed.

Facebook said it was making a change to its own apps – which in addition to its flagship app also include WhatsApp and Instagram – that would likely spare them from having to ask iPhone users for data-tracking permissions that many advertising industry insiders believe users will refuse.

Source: Facebook says Apple’s new privacy rules could spare its own apps but hit smaller companies – Reuters

TikTok, WeChat & Co: How does spyware get into smartphones?

TikTok, WeChat and thousands of other apps from China look harmless but are, in fact, malware, experts say. The apps cleverly disguise their origin. How can we protect ourselves from them?

Many apps seem innocuous and harmless to start with. At first, there is only a small back door that an attacker can use later. “Even if you look at the app now, and it is only doing harmless things, the Chinese manufacturer is often able to extend the functionality at runtime,” says founder and CEO of the IT security company CIROSEC. “All of a sudden, the app does completely different things without having been updated somewhere from the app store.”

Source: TikTok, WeChat & Co: How does spyware get into smartphones? | Science| In-depth reporting on science and technology | DW | 27.08.2020

Google and Apple to roll out phase two of contact-tracing system

Apple and Google are preparing to roll out phase two of their Covid-19 contact-tracing system, allowing users to receive notifications about their exposure to infectious people without needing to install a specific app.

Operating system update will allow opt-in to coronavirus exposure notifications without need of an app.

Source: Google and Apple to roll out phase two of contact-tracing system | Technology | The Guardian

Lincolnshire Police to trial new CCTV tech that can tell if you’re in a mood

New facial-recognition technology enabling people’s moods to be picked up by CCTV is set to be trialled by Lincolnshire Police.

Officers will be able to enter searches for people wearing hats and glasses – and can even find those showing a certain mood or expression.

Source: Lincolnshire Police to trial new CCTV tech that can tell if you’re in a mood – Lincolnshire Live

A New Tool Jams Facial Recognition Technology

Berlin-based startup  recently launched a public interest campaign to help solve the problem of authorities using facial recognition technology to identify protesters.

The campaign website, , provides a free privacy engineering service that quickly removes “facial fingerprints” from user-uploaded images. Software scans the original photos and creates new images that look strikingly similar to the originals but which contain an essential difference – new photos have new synthetic faces.

Source: A New Tool Jams Facial Recognition Technology With Digital Doppelgängers | by Evan Selinger | Aug, 2020 | OneZero

Data Commissioner assessing TikTok plans to establish data centre in Ireland

The popular short-video app plans to open its first European data centre in Ireland by 2022, following moves by other big tech companies in recent years.

TikTok must be assessed to see if the company meets the criteria needed to avail of the same One Stop Shop (OSS) data processing mechanism currently given to other tech giants such as Facebook.

Source: Data Commissioner assessing TikTok plans to establish data centre in Ireland

Coronavirus is halting US data privacy efforts across tech companies

Data privacy has taken a backseat by way of nationwide priorities within the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, as Congress has shifted its complete focus to the virus and US tech companies have begun working with state and federal authorities to achieve potential sufferers.

The US has turned to Silicon Valley in the course of the pandemic searching for tech-based options to issues brought on by the outbreak.

Source: Coronavirus is halting US data privacy efforts across tech companies – Gruntstuff

U.S. Government Contractor Embedded Software in Apps to Track Phones

Anomaly Six LLC , a small U.S. company with ties to the U.S. defense and intelligence communities has embedded its software in numerous mobile apps, allowing it to track the movements of hundreds of millions of mobile phones world-wide.

Virginia-based company founded by two U.S. military veterans with a background in intelligence, said in marketing material it is able to draw location data from more than 500 mobile applications, in part through its own software development kit, or SDK, that is embedded directly in some of the apps.

Source: U.S. Government Contractor Embedded Software in Apps to Track Phones – WSJ

Firefox adds protections against redirect tracking

New protection already active in Firefox 79; will roll out to all Firefox users in the next few weeks. According to Mozilla, Firefox 79 can now block a new technique called “redirect tracking.”

Online advertisers and web analytics companies have recently begun adopting this new technique after Firefox, Chrome, Brave, and other browsers have recently included privacy protections inside their code to block user tracking and user fingerprinting scripts.

Source: Firefox adds protections against redirect tracking | ZDNet

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