privacy

Microsoft explains what data Windows 10 collects

Microsoft explains what data Windows 10 collects

Right from the get go, one of the most voiced criticisms of the new Windows 10, right next to forced system updates, is its privacy policy of, well, not being private by default. It had all the switches for sending data turned on, which users might unknowingly leave enabled unless they become aware of it. Responding to the negative reception of these "features", Microsoft blogged about the types of data it does and does not collect and for what purpose. Suffice it to say, not everyone might be satisfied with the non-statement.

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Privacy-conscious Blackphone 2 now available for purchase

Privacy-conscious Blackphone 2 now available for purchase

Silent Circle has promised and now it is delivering on it second attempt to corner the still niche market for enterprise hardened mobile devices designed to keep your data in and intruders out. The Blackphone 2, now equipped with a larger screen and more or less updated specs, is now available for purchase. Sadly, that extra bit of security and privacy does come at a rather high price than most high-end smartphones. But for some, particularly in the enterprise, that might be something worth paying for.

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France orders Google to apply ‘right to be forgotten’ removals globally

France orders Google to apply ‘right to be forgotten’ removals globally

French privacy watchdog CNIL has denied Google's appeal against applying "right to be forgotten" removals to all of its global sites. Google was protesting a June decision from CNIL (Commission Nationale de l’Informatique et des Libertés), which saw the regulator threaten the search giant with sanctions. Google has been following recent European court decisions that gives individuals the right to file removal requests for certain information. However, Google was only removing search results from its European domains, such as Google.fr or Google.de.

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AVG openly admits selling user details to advertisers

AVG openly admits selling user details to advertisers

AVG has practically redefined what it means to offer a freemium service. While most products will just gate features behind paywalls, the Czech security outfit has found a different way to make money. And that is by selling some user details to advertisers. While it is hardly shocking to hear of companies cashing in on their customers' information, AVG's "coming out" is ruffling feathers as it now more openly admits to this worrying business practice. Sadly, it is a practice that almost everyone uses but get away with it because barely anyone reads the fine print.

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Comcast strikes settlement with California over privacy issue

Comcast strikes settlement with California over privacy issue

Comcast and California have struck a settlement deal according to the state’s Attorney General Kamala Harris. The settlement was announced on Thursday, and is related to claims that Comcast published personal customer data online, including phone numbers, names, and addresses. This is said to have affected “tens of thousands” of Comcast subscribers who had shelled out for an unlisted VOIP service.

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Uber fixes ETA privacy gap that left full trip details public

Uber fixes ETA privacy gap that left full trip details public

Uber has fixed a gaping privacy hole which left ride details for some passengers visible in Google searches, with full address information available even months after the journey. The glitch was a side-effect of Uber's "Share my ETA" feature, launched in 2013, which allows users to show others the progress of their trip.

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Spotify updates its privacy policy again, makes it more clear

Spotify updates its privacy policy again, makes it more clear

Spotify updated its privacy policy in the recent past, and while many users went on to accept the updated terms (which are, by all accounts, fairly benign), some users expressed concern about some of the content Spotify may or may not be accessing. That all boiled down to a communication issue, says Spotify, which had quickly pushed out an apology when the uproar started. Now it is back with another updated privacy policy, and this one is more clear.

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Iowa starts testing smartphone-based digital driver’s licenses

Iowa starts testing smartphone-based digital driver’s licenses

Over a year ago, we heard about the state of Iowa's initiative to develop digital driver’s licenses that could eventually replace the plastic cards used through the US. The digital licenses would feature the same information as the physical versions — photo, address, date of birth, etc. — but be stored on a user's smartphone. Well, Iowa has now announced that it's beginning a test program, known as the Mobile Driver License (mDL), for a number of different situations, but limited to employees of the states' Department of Transportation.

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Are we excessively worried about privacy? Share your thoughts

Are we excessively worried about privacy? Share your thoughts

Not too long ago we wrote a bit about how Windows 10 is claimed to phone home and give your private data to Microsoft even if you set all the share data options to off. These claims go so far as to say that Windows 10 has a keylogger that captures your passwords and even images from your camera. As you can imagine people were angry, the comments weren't flattering.

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Court: FTC can sue companies for failing to protect customer data

Court: FTC can sue companies for failing to protect customer data

Wyndham Worldwide Corp. must face a case against it from the Federal Trade Commission, a US appeals court has ruled. The case is in regards to Wyndham’s alleged failure to protect its customers’ data. In both 2008 and 2009, Wyndham suffered three cyberattacks that ultimately left in excess of 619,000 card accounts vulnerable. Many consumers were then hit with fraudulent charges after the Russian hackers behind the breach disseminated the stolen information.

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Windows 10 claimed to phone home despite privacy settings

Windows 10 claimed to phone home despite privacy settings

If you still don't think that Windows 10 is a privacy disaster in the making, then this latest detective work might. At least, if you actually subscribe to it. According to Czech website aeronet.cz, Windows 10 has been doing some rather dubious communication with Microsoft servers in places and instances where it doesn't make sense to do so. In short, even if you have disabled all possible privacy-infringing settings, the OS will still be sending some of your private data, without your knowledge and definitely without your consent.

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Spotify is sorry about their new privacy policy

Spotify is sorry about their new privacy policy

Over the past day or so you may have noticed a new privacy policy popping up when you attempt to open or update Spotify. Spotify CEO Daniel Ek is sorry about this. Not because of the privacy policy itself - it's mostly harmless - but about the method with which it was distributed. Asking for permission to access your photos, mobile device location, voice controls, and contacts. Needless to say this has thrown some users for a bit of a loop.

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