Facebook says that they are “improving Facebook ads” – but for whom? For themselves, of course, because remember, you are not Facebook’s customer – you are their commodity. This new development means that Facebook is now using what is known as ‘behavioral advertising’ (when it’s on their website), or ‘remarketing’ (if their ads are following you around). Basically Facebook is using your data from your browser use – and your mobile app use – when you are not on Facebook – to target ads to you.
Email Privacy Tester is exactly what it says – a way to test your email program for privacy and security leaks. And it’s free!
Coincident with the Reset the Net effort, in which they are taking part, Google and Yahoo, along with Microsoft and Facebook, and others, are moving at speed to block the NSA’s snooping, and to tighten up their systems to make it more difficult for the NSA, and others, to eavesdrop on their data.
You may have heard about NPR’s Steve Henn’s experiment he calls “Project Eavesdrop”, to simulate and determine what information the NSA can get from your data, and, if so, you may be wondering what a “Pone Plug” is. That is, of course, one of the drawbacks to radio – you hear something, and it isn’t at all how it sounds. It’s not a “Porn Plug” either. It’s a Pwn Plug, sold by Pwnie Express.
“Reset the Net” is a ‘take back the net’ grassroots campaign, launched on June 5 as a citizen initiative to tell the NSA, with apologies to the Who, “we’re not gonna take it.” But those who have jumped on board are anything but grass level. Heavyweight companies like Google, Yahoo, and Twitter, and orgs such as the ACLU and the EFF, have all jumped on board. And, of course, Edward Snowden.
If you are one of the legion who think that Google Glass sucks, at least in terms of privacy invasion, you may also be wondering if it is possible to jam Google Glass. Until now there was no simple way to block Google Glass wearers from taking a video or photos of you, but now there may be. Julian Oliver has written a script, glasshole.sh, with which, says Oliver, you can “Find a Google Glass and kick it from the network.”
Snapchat, the subject of a Federal Trade Commission (FTC) action stemming from their claims that “snaps” would disappear forever after mere seconds – which of course wasn’t true – has settled with the FTC.
Last week Yahoo quietly let slip that Yahoo is no longer honoring your “Do Not Track” request when you are on a Yahoo website. They announced this on their “Global Public Policy blog” which is on Tumblr, not even on a Yahoo property.
Running iMessage (formerly iChat) on your Mac is awesome, because you can send messages to other Mac, iPhone and iPad users from your computer. But those popup alerts notifications can be really annoying, intrusive, and even a privacy issue. Here’s how to turn off those alert popups.
Verizon Wireless has announced that it will be adding cookies to the web browser of anyone who visits the Verizon Wireless website, and then Verizon will track you across the web, and sell the data it collects on you to marketers. What’s more, they are selling the data to marketers to whom they are giving marketing access to your Verizon Wireless device!
UPS trucks are equipped with a dizzying array of technology – including 200 telematics sensors – that UPS is using to spy on drivers. According to UPS, the driver surveillance is used to optimize delivery and the company’s bottom line. From knowing when a driver buckles their seatbelt, to every time the driver opens and closes the door (using a remote keyfob because using a key takes too long), to the exact moment each time the driver starts or stops the engine, to how often and for how long a driver backs up, UPS is monitoring every little detail of their drivers’ day.
There has been a lot of hysteria and misinformation surrounding RFID-enabled credit cards (also known as contactless or smart payment cards – or as some misidentify them – wifi credit cards). Also known as an “e-dip”, e-pickpocketing is possible, but highly unlikely – your old school credit card is far more likely to be duplicated than your RFID card is to be hijacked. Here are the facts as we know them.
It turns out that the U.S.’ NSA is not the only intelligence agency conducting privacy-invading surveillance on average citizens. The UK’s GCHQ (Government Communications Headquarters) has been quietly collecting data – including revealing screenshots of breasts and other body parts – from Yahoo webcam chats – under an effort called Project Optic Nerve.