Surveillance & Privacy

15 April 2016

Europe's Privacy Watchdogs Call for Changes to U.S. Data-Transfer Deal New York Times

Only two months after the European Union's top policy makers agreed to a hard-won data-sharing pact with United States officials, the bloc's national privacy regulators said on Wednesday that the deal did not go far enough to safeguard the personal information of Internet users in Europe.

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Microsoft sues for right to tell customers when US government requests emails The Guardian

Microsoft sued the US government on Thursday for the right to tell customers when authorities search their email inboxes.

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10 April 2016

U.S. Adds China's Internet Controls to List of Trade Barriers New York Times

China's notorious online controls have long been criticized as censorship by human rights groups, businesses, Chinese Internet users and others.

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Why Apple's Stand Against the F.B.I. Hurts Its Own Customers New York Times

Two weeks ago, privacy advocates across the country celebrated as the Federal Bureau of Investigation backed off its request for Apple to help gain access into the iPhone of Syed Farook, one of the terrorists who killed 14 people in San Bernardino, Calif., in December.

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Your WhatsApp secrets are safe now. But Big Brother is still watching you... The Observer

In some ways, the biggest news of the week was not the Panama papers but the announcement that WhatsApp was rolling out end-to-end encryption for all its 1bn users. "From now on," it said, "when you and your contacts use the latest version of the app, every call you make, and every message, photo, video, file and voice message you send, is end-to-end encrypted by default, including group chats."

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06 April 2016

Whatsapp adds end-to-end encryption BBC News

Instant messaging service Whatsapp has announced it will encrypt all its users' communications from Tuesday.

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30 March 2016

Why the arms race between the FBI and Apple is only getting started Washington Post

The U.S. government's revelation that it had accessed the San Bernardino shooter's iPhone without the help from Apple that it had so desperately sought indicates the FBI was either disguising its technical capabilities or its agents and employees remain outmatched by tech workers in the private sector, according to current and former bureau officials and legal scholars.

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29 March 2016

In Apple Debate on Digital Privacy and the iPhone, Questions Still Remain New York Times

A furious legal battle over digital privacy in the age of the iPhone ended on Monday with no clear winner -- only lingering questions over what will happen the next time the government tries to force Apple to help break into one of its own phones.

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28 March 2016

American Tech Giants Face Fight in Europe Over Encrypted Data New York Times

Silicon Valley's battle over encryption is heading to Europe. In the United States, the F.B.I.'s demands that Apple help "unlock" an iPhone used by a mass killer in California opened a heated debate on privacy. After recent attacks on the Continent, like the bombings in Brussels last week and the wave of violence in Paris last November, governments across the European Union are increasingly pushing for greater access to people's digital lives.

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25 March 2016

France fines Google for not being forgetful enough PC World

The French data protection authority has fined Google for failing to implement the so-called right to be forgotten as ordered.

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15 March 2016

Facebook, Google and WhatsApp plan to increase encryption of user data The Guardian

Silicon Valley's leading companies - including Facebook, Google and Snapchat - are working on their own increased privacy technology as Apple fights the US government over encryption, the Guardian has learned.

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13 March 2016

WhatsApp Encryption Said to Stymie Wiretap Order New York Times

While the Justice Department wages a public fight with Apple over access to a locked iPhone, government officials are privately debating how to resolve a prolonged standoff with another technology company, WhatsApp, over access to its popular instant messaging application, officials and others involved in the case said.

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11 March 2016

F.C.C. Proposes Privacy Rules for U.S. Internet Providers New York Times

Federal regulators on Thursday proposed a set of privacy rules for Internet service providers that would significantly curb the ability of companies like Comcast and Verizon to share data about their customers' online activities with advertisers without permission from users.

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07 March 2016

German court rules Facebook may block pseudonyms Reuters

Facebook may prevent its users from using fake names, a German court said on Thursday, overturning a previous order from the Hamburg data protection authority.

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22 February 2016

Apple or the FBI… whose side are you on in the iPhone privacy battle? by Will Hutton The Observer

So is Apple fighting for everyone's liberty? It is defying the US government's request that it must help open up the iPhone of the terrorist Syed Rizwan Farook, who killed 14 people in San Bernardino, because the software so created will compromise the integrity of every iPhone. Or is it another example of a hi-tech company bogusly invoking the threats to privacy mounted by the new digital age as a marketing strategy - and carelessly putting the lives of every citizen a little more at risk?

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Death from above, dished out by algorithm The Observer

"Guns don't kill people," is the standard refrain of the National Rifle Association every time there is a mass shooting atrocity in the US. "People kill people." Er, yes, but they do it with guns. Firearms are old technology, though. What about updating the proposition from 1791 (when the second amendment to the US constitution, which protects the right to bear arms, was ratified) to our own time? How about this, for example: "algorithms kill people"?

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12 February 2016

Google takes wider action on 'right to be forgotten' BBC News

Tech giant Google says it will hide content removed under the "right to be forgotten" from all versions of the search engine when viewed from countries where removal was approved.

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11 February 2016

US intelligence chief: we might use the internet of things to spy on you The Guardian

The US intelligence chief has acknowledged for the first time that agencies might use a new generation of smart household devices to increase their surveillance capabilities.

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09 February 2016

French data privacy regulator cracks down on Facebook Reuters

The French data protection authority on Monday gave Facebook three months to stop tracking non-users' web activity without their consent and ordered the social network to stop some transfers of personal data to the United States.

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01 February 2016

New Technologies Give Government Ample Means to Track Suspects, Study Finds New York Times

For more than two years the F.B.I. and intelligence agencies have warned that encrypted communications are creating a "going dark" crisis that will keep them from tracking terrorists and kidnappers.

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26 January 2016

The heavy price we pay for 'free' Wi-Fi The Conversation

For many years, New York City has been developing a "free" public Wi-Fi project. Called LinkNYC, it is an ambitious effort to bring wireless Internet access to all of the city's residents.

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21 January 2016

Internet providers want to know more about you than Google does, privacy groups say Washington Post

Most of us know, at least in the abstract, that Google and Facebook are tracking our every move online. Even Netflix collects detailed information on our binge-viewing habits, the better to make decisions about which films to drop from its catalog or what new TV series to invest in.

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19 January 2016

EU wants stricter controls over U.S. snooping powers in data pact talks Reuters

The European Union wants guarantees of effective limits on U.S. authorities' power to request people's personal information from companies to conclude a new EU-U.S. data transfer pact, a top EU official said on Monday, as a deadline from EU privacy regulators looms.

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18 January 2016

European Antitrust Chief Takes Swipe at Privacy Issue New York Times

Margrethe Vestager, the European Union's antitrust chief, warned on Sunday that the collection of a vast amount of users' data by a small number of tech companies like Google and Facebook could be in violation of the region's tough competition rules.

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15 January 2016

'Don't snoop on staff,' European bosses warned BBC News

Bosses have been urged not to indulge in invasive surveillance by reading their employees' private messages.

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