(Adam Fagen)

Private Companies Are Scanning Your License Plate And Location, Selling The Data

When you hear the phrase “vast hidden network of cameras that scan license plates,” what do you think of? The police? The Department of Homeland Security? While the government and privacy advocates argue over government use of plate-scanning data, private companies are already collecting and selling that data with little regulation. [More]

(cavale)

Billboards That Scan Your Features And Figure Out Your Age And Gender Are Not At All Creepy

Shoppers at discount store Tesco in the U.K. might get the unnerving feeling that someone is watching them. Something is. The chain is using sophisticated software to identify customers and beam ads at them. No, not by name: by demographic. [More]

(Renew Lodnon)

London Asks Company To Stop Monitoring Foot Traffic By Tracking Smartphones Of Passers-By

You know that tingly feeling you get at the nape of your neck when it feels like someone’s watching you? Londoners might be getting that titchy touch of spy vibes just from walking past recycling bins in the city. Officials have told a company it has to stop using those bins to track the smartphones of people strolling by, because [insert whole lot of privacy concerns right here]. [More]

Selling like futuristic hot cakes. If they have those.

Sales Of Orwell’s Dystopian ’1984′ Have Spiked With News Of NSA Surveillance

There’s a hot book on the scene — have you heard about it? It’s this wacky vision of a dystopian future where the government is always listening. And oh yeah, it’s George Orwell’s 1984, which was published 64 years ago. Sales of the futuristic cautionary tale to society have been hopping in the wake of the National Security Agency surveillance scandal, with one edition jumping from No. 73797 to No. 125 on the Amazon.com best-seller list. [More]

Google Reaching Its Grabby Arms Out To Combine More Of Your Personal information

Google Reaching Its Grabby Arms Out To Combine More Of Your Personal information

Google wants to change things up a bit and grant itself the right to combine your personal information across its products. So how is it planning on doing that? By simply rewriting its privacy policy to let you know about it first, which they figure you’ll agree to if you want to keep using Google stuff. [More]

Author Crafts Modest Proposal For Police Officers To Consider

Author Crafts Modest Proposal For Police Officers To Consider

Law enforcement officers put themselves at great risk, perform a vital public service and give society the peace of mind to be able to function with confidence. Even so, it has been said that some cops have been known to do things that could be classified as annoying or abusive. [More]

Big Brother Is Watching You — And He Has Ice Cream!

If you happen to be going to Cannes this summer (and, really, if you aren’t, you should be) mega-conglomerate Unilever is ready to tempt you with a treat straight out of Minority Report. The company has set up a vending machine that lets anyone who walks by score some free ice cream. The price? Just smile for the machine’s facial recognition software, which will determine your age, gender and emotion. Only the most happy will get ice cream. The rest? We don’t really know, but we seem to remember something having to do with stolen eyeballs that can be used to trick such systems. [More]

Google Street View Cars Accidentally Collected Web Site Info

Google Street View Cars Accidentally Collected Web Site Info

Woopsies! Looks like Google’s super neat Street View cars have been going about collecting the wrong kind of information – namely, data about what Web sites people were using via open wireless Internet networks, CNN reports, [More]

PleaseRobMe.com Lets The World Know No One's Home

PleaseRobMe.com Lets The World Know No One's Home

The history of online social networking is rife with faux pas. From celebrities trolling hookup sites to people being fired for thinking they could blab about their boss on Facebook with impunity, there are countless tales of Internet lessons learned the hard way. And an ingenious — and some say dangerous — new site is out to demonstrate just how easy it is to find out when you’re away from your home so people can steal your stuff. [More]

Progressive Offers Discount To Those Who Let Company Spy On Them

Progressive Offers Discount To Those Who Let Company Spy On Them

Progressive has a rather creepy yet potentially money-saving way to save on car insurance called MyRate, WalletPop reports. [More]

MPAA Asks FCC For Control Of Your TV's Analog Outputs

MPAA Asks FCC For Control Of Your TV's Analog Outputs

The Motion Picture Association of American wants to rent movies to TV viewers earlier in the release window, but they don’t want anyone potentially streaming that video out to other appliances. That’s why last week they went back to the FCC to once again ask for the power to disable analog ports on consumer television sets.

Google Invites Privacy-Concerned Users To Move To Remote Village

Google Invites Privacy-Concerned Users To Move To Remote Village

The Onion reports that Google’s new privacy policy requires users who wish to opt out to relocate to a remote ghetto and abandon all contact with the outside world. (Photo: kalle svensson)

Jobs Confirms iPhone 'Kill Switch'

Jobs Confirms iPhone 'Kill Switch'

Last week, a developer discovered that the iPhone has the capability to quietly connect to Apple’s servers to check an application blacklist, and then disable any installed apps that are on the list. The story was quickly defused by blogs, but today the Wall Street Journal says Steve Jobs has confirmed that there really is an application “kill switch.”

Want To Spy On Comcast Subscribers? Comcast Has The Job For You!

Want To Spy On Comcast Subscribers? Comcast Has The Job For You!

If you’d like to help Comcast eavesdrop on its own subscribers, you’re in luck: Comcast has posted a job listing for an “intercept engineer” on a headhunter site, according to Wired. Want ad for position of The Man, inside.

http://consumerist.com/2007/10/16/verizon-may-have-admitted/

Verizon may have admitted it gives out customer info without warrants, but AT&T and Qwest both refused to give Congress any information on their participation in the government’s wire-tapping activities, saying they needed permission from Bush administration first. [Reuters]

Congress Asks AT&T, Verizon, And Qwest About Warrantless Wiretapping

Congress Asks AT&T, Verizon, And Qwest About Warrantless Wiretapping

Qwest, Verizon, and AT&T have until October 12th to provide information on how the government went about asking for private customer records, and how the three companies provided the information. The Committee on Energy and Commerce opened an official investigation Tuesday. “If reports about the government surveillance program are accurate, Congress has a duty to inquire about whether such a program violates the Constitution, as well as consumer protection and privacy laws,” said committee chairman Rep. John Dingell.

Big Brother Watches Your Grandma

Good Morning America ran a clip about how we’re using technology to keep tabs on Alzheimer’s patients. Verichip is a small barcode you inject into an old person that contains all their medical history.

Why Are Insurance Companies So Interested In Your Car's Onboard Computer System?

Why Are Insurance Companies So Interested In Your Car's Onboard Computer System?

Insurance companies are beginning to view the increasingly advanced onboard computer systems found on many vehicles as mini black-boxes. The data collected by the systems can help determine if a driver was speeding or driving recklessly.

It’s done by capturing data about speed, braking and steering input from what is called an event data recorder. And it’s going to get even more complex — already there are systems on some cars that warn when there’s a vehicle in a car’s blind spot, as well as anti-collision warning systems like the one currently featured in a Volvo commercial.