The British government claims that the purpose of surveillance is to display the online trends in cities around the world.
According to Edward Snowden British authorities spy on what people are doing on some of the world’s most popular social media sites, such as YouTube, Facebook, Twitter etc. Nevertheless, he denies spying on specific users. The latest information from the National Security Agency was obtained by NBC News with journalist Glenn Greenwald, who was the first to report on Snowden’s documents about NSA and United Kingdom espionage while on the staff of the Guardian. NBC doesn’t mention when the information was received.Read more
Google Inc. and more than 100 other software, social-media and technology companies said they oppose a U.S. proposal to let Internet-service providers charge them extra for faster routes to Web users.
The rules may let telephone-service and cable providers “discriminate both technically and financially” and would be “a grave threat to the Internet,” the companies said yesterday in a letter to the Federal Communications Commission. Other signers included Facebook Inc. (FB), Netflix Inc. and Microsoft Corp. (MSFT). FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has asked the agency to vote May 15 on whether to begin writing rules to let Internet-service providers such as AT&T Inc. and Comcast Corp. negotiate deals with content makers like Google for quicker and more reliable delivery of video and other fare.Read more
Apple has the technical ability to disclose a wide range of information about a user upon the request of the authorities – from the person’s name and contact information to their photos and e-mail content.
This refers to the new company policy of cooperation with the law enforcement agencies. If there is a valid search warrant and the serial number of the iPhone, iPod touch or iPad the Cupertino-based company may extract some types of data, even if the device has a password.
In particular, this refers to the user files created with proprietary applications. These include SMS-messages, photos, videos, contacts, and call history records. In case if the iOS-device is password-protected, the Apple cannot disclose the contents of the e-mail, calendar plans or the data of the third party applications.Read more
Viber, a mobile messenger app that allows users to make phone calls and send text messages and images for free, also gives up plenty of free user data to anyone who wants to listen.
According to researchers from the University of New Haven (UNH) in Connecticut, US, Viber's app sends user messages in unencrypted form - including photos, videos, doodles, and location images.
All of that rich data from users is also stored unencrypted on Viber's servers, rather than being deleted immediately, and is accessible without credentials, just a link, the UNH researchers said.Read more
When couples find out they are expecting, they usually spread the news to family and friends as soon as possible.
When Janet Vertesi, an assistant professor of sociology at Princeton University, found out she was pregnant, she made a very similar call to family and friends, but with very different intentions.
Those close to Vertesi and her husband were told not to post anything on social media sites that would reveal the couples' pregnancy. Vertesi had decided to take her pregnancy off the grid, not because she wasn't overjoyed, but because marketing bots that figure out when a woman is pregnant become relentless in their targeted advertising.Read more
Russia's parliament has passed a bill that could see Western technology firms barred from operating if they fail to store Russian data within the country.
The legislation would require Silicon Valley companies, such as Facebook, Google’s Gmail, and Microsoft-owned Skype, to relocate Russian customer data back onto Russian soil in order to allow authorities to legally acquire and inspect data at will. Currently, Russian authorities have no powers to acquire data outside its borders, unless they submit a lawful mutual legal assistance request, which can be denied by that nation.Read more
Two American privacy watchdogs are attempting to thwart Facebook’s $19-billion acquisition of popular messaging service WhatsApp, citing privacy concerns.
WhatsApp users should switch to a more secure messaging service now that it is being bought by Facebook, a German data protection commissioner urged Thursday.
Facebook announced on Wednesday that it plans to acquire WhatsApp, a mobile messaging service with about 450 million monthly users, for $12 billion in shares, $4 billion in cash as well as $3 billion in stock options. The deal could raise important data protection issues because the personal data of its users will likely be merged with Facebook data, said Thilo Weichert, data protection commissioner for the German state of Schleswig-Holstein. When communication metadata and content of both services is merged, it can be used for profiling and commercially exploited for advertising purposes, Weichert said.Read more
Facebook, Microsoft, Yahoo and Google on Monday began publishing details about the number of secret government requests for data they receive, hoping to show limited involvement in controversial U.S. surveillance efforts.
The tech industry has pushed for greater transparency on government data requests, seeking to shake off concerns about their involvement in vast, surreptitious surveillance programs revealed last summer by former spy contractor Edward Snowden. The government said last month it would relax rules restricting what details companies can disclose about Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court orders they receive for user information.Read more
Representatives of Obama‘s Administration continue to insist that spying on Americans is not a violation of constitutional rights of citizens and carried out exclusively in the interests of national security.
However, Chris Kitts, the father of beforeitsnews.com, believes that the obtained information is used not only for security purposes.
According to Chris Kitts, Washington creates “The machine for the implementation blackmail. Now they have access to the emails of people who are in the data store in Utah.Read more