privacy

JKehoe_Photos

Vizio To Pay $2.2 Million For Watching TV Watchers Without Telling Them

There is a new truism for our era: If something can connect to the internet, it collects data. That’s true for everything from wearable fitness trackers to “smart” washing machines. But one TV company went farther than most, in collecting, aggregating, and selling your data, and now it’s in hot water with the Federal Trade Commission. [More]

inajeep

Cable & Phone Industries Tell Congress To Reverse New Internet Privacy Rule

Last fall, the FCC approved a new rule detailing internet service providers can and can’t gather and use your information. The affected industries cried “unfair!” and now, with a new business-friendly FCC Chairman and White House, they are calling on Congress to make this pesky privacy rule go away. [More]

David Menidrey

5 Things We’ve Learned About How Companies Track You Online And Off

Is there an ad that seems to be following you everywhere? Perhaps you browsed for new sneakers in a slow moment at work a week ago, and now you see ads for them on every site you view on your phone? Or maybe you clicked an ad on Facebook, and now that company’s product seems to be stalking you around the internet, asking you to buy it in every sidebar ad you see. [More]

Jeepers Media

Court Declines To Rehear Appeal, Agrees Microsoft Can’t Be Forced To Turn Over Email Stored Overseas

Back in July, a federal appeals court took Microsoft’s side in a case over a contentious question: if you’re a U.S. company, storing a customer’s data on a server in another country, are you obligated to turn over all that data as part of a search warrant? Microsoft said no, and many years later, it appears that at the end of the appeals process, the court once and for all agrees. [More]

lonewolf

Should Microsoft Be Allowed To Tells Its Users When Government Searches Their Data?

If the police serve a search warrant on your home, you know, but if law enforcement searches your cloud-stored files, you’ll probably have no idea — and companies like Microsoft are currently forbidden from telling you. That’s why the tech giant is suing the Justice Department, but can Microsoft even bring this lawsuit? [More]

ibraheem kurdieh

Court: No, You Don’t Have a Reasonable Expectation Of Privacy With Your PSN Account

How do you communicate with most of the folks in your life, these days? Is it face-to-face, or is it digital communication over someone else’s private service? If it’s the latter, there’s a recent court ruling from a federal court in Kansas that should remind you about where you should — and shouldn’t — reasonably expect your data to remain private. [More]

Eric Hauser

Samsung “Smart” Camera Is Ridiculously Hackable

A security camera in your house, that you can access remotely, might seem like a good idea at first. You can log into it from anywhere, to see what’s going on and if it really was the cat who opened your kitchen cabinets every day last week. But the problem with a thing you can access remotely is that a sufficiently determined bad actor can, too. And sometimes it doesn’t even take much determination to do. [More]

Byron Chin

You Don’t Care About Your Friends’ Data, And 4 Other Things We Learned From Privacy Experts

The things we buy and use every day are increasingly connected — to the internet, and to each other — and while this new level of interconnection provides a slew of benefits, it also raises a new set of privacy problems and security challenges. Yet, as we recently learned, consumers are often self-centered when it comes to protecting their data and don’t give much thought to making their friends’ info available. [More]

Dev.Arka

Reminder: If Your Password Is “123456,” Change It

While one might think that there cannot possibly still be anyone out there who would use incredibly easy-to-guess passwords like, for example, “123456,” one would be wrong: according to a new study, that’s still the most popular password in the world. Sigh. [More]

It’s Creepy, But Not Illegal, For This Website To Provide All Your Public Info To Anyone

It’s Creepy, But Not Illegal, For This Website To Provide All Your Public Info To Anyone

This week, the social media world has been alight with warning about a “genealogy” site that makes just about anyone’s information — addresses (current and former), age, family members, possible associates — available for free to any user. While this has caused a minor uproar, with concerned folks telling each other how to opt out of having their data shared by this site, this sort of data-aggregating service isn’t exactly anything new — and while what this site is doing might seem remarkably creepy, it is, in fact, completely legal. [More]

Rob Lawton

FBI Paid Multiple Best Buy Employees After Finding Illegal Content On Computers

As we told you last spring, lawyers for a California doctor accused of possessing child pornography claimed that the FBI had paid a Best Buy employee as an informant. Recently released court documents confirm that multiple Best Buy/Geek Squad staffers received money from the agency after telling the FBI about finding illegal content on customers’ devices. [More]

IMDb Not Complying With New Law Blocking It From Publishing Actors’ Ages

IMDb Not Complying With New Law Blocking It From Publishing Actors’ Ages

On Jan. 1, a new law went into effect in California that would require the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) remove information about actors’ ages and birthdays. We’re now more than a week into the new year, and the site hasn’t taken this information down — and it has no intention of doing so in the immediate future. [More]

Uber | YouTube

Uber Trying To Make Nice With Cities By Sharing Traffic Data

Have you ever watched a busy downtown city street and wondered how many of those cars are Ubers, how far they’re going, and how long it usually takes them to get there? City planners and transit administrators do, and so to make their lives a little easier, Uber’s planning to start giving away some aggregated, public-interest data to help transit planners plan. [More]

Xavier J. Peg

Calling Customer Service? An AI Is Picking The Agent That’s “Best” For You

Think back to the last time you had to call a real, live person in order to complete a purchase or have a problem resolved. How did it go? Did you and the customer service representative you spoke to have trouble understanding one another in some fundamental way? Or was it a smooth interaction, almost as if the CSR you spoke with was carefully hand-picked for you by robots?

If it’s the latter, it might be because the CSR you spoke with was in fact carefully hand-picked for you by robots. [More]

Feds Accuse D-Link Of Failing To Properly Secure Routers & Webcams

Feds Accuse D-Link Of Failing To Properly Secure Routers & Webcams

Federal regulators have accused D-Link, a manufacturer of popular networking and smart-home products, of leaving its routers and webcam devices vulnerable to hackers. [More]

Flyinace2000

Got An Idea On How To Make ‘Internet Of Things’ More Secure? You Could Win $25,000

Internet-connected (“smart”) devices are becoming ubiquitous, but they have this persistent problem: they’re internet-connected. A huge number are extremely vulnerable to being taken over by bad actors, for a whole host of reasons. And so, before your fridge becomes part of the next record-breaking botnet, the Federal Trade Commission wants to give someone cold, hard, cash money for coming up with a way to prevent it. [More]

Mike Mozart

Will Massive Data Breaches Lead Verizon To Dump Yahoo?

While Yahoo has been grabbing headlines lately for its most recent data breach — one that affected more than one billion users — what about that other big story involving Yahoo, the one where Verizon Communications was preparing to buy the company’s internet business? [More]