privacy

Snowden pilfered coworker’s password to access data

Snowden pilfered coworker’s password to access data

Edward Snowden's breach of NSA data prompted a sweeping internal investigation into how he managed to pull off his mission. According to an agency memo acquired by the folks at NBC News, Snowden managed to access some of the data in part by stealing one of his coworker's passwords. That coworker has since been stripped of his security clearance and has resigned.

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Google posts French confession for privacy smack

Google posts French confession for privacy smack

Google France has posted its public mea-culpa message as demanded by French authorities, conceding that privacy regulators in the country have fined it €150,000 for infringements. The message, which must be left visible for at least 48 hours and printed in a minimum of 13-point font and in the Arial typeface, was part of the punishment leveled by the Commission Nationale de l'Informatique et des Libertés (CNIL), with Google's protestations that it would cause irreparable damage to its reputation failing to convince an appeals court last week.

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Obama’s NSA surveillance limits enforced (but are they even listening?)

Obama’s NSA surveillance limits enforced (but are they even listening?)

The first stages of President Obama's overhaul of NSA data collection have gone into action, placing limits on how easy it is for security services to monitor individuals, though new insider claims suggest only a fraction of the surveillance believed to be underway was actually taking place. For a start, if the NSA requires phone records, it must now get Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) approval on each occasion, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper writes.

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Smartphone Kill Switch in California: what’s the point?

Smartphone Kill Switch in California: what’s the point?

This week a piece of legislation is making its way through to the state level in California, a piece of legislation that would mandate a so-called "Kill Switch" for smartphones on every device inside state lines. Of course this legal document isn't about the state wanting to turn off smartphones in waves - instead it's about making the devices less accessible to thieves. This piece of law would have every smartphone manufacturer wanting to sell a device in the state of California legally bound to including a way to cut off service to the device remotely.

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Google Transparency Report shows FISA data in very, very basic terms

Google Transparency Report shows FISA data in very, very basic terms

In August of 2013, Google and Microsoft sued the United States government for the ability to be more transparent with data requests made with FISA, also known as the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978. As of January 27th, 2014, the government has loosened the reigns, if only a tiny, tiny amount. This week Google is releasing, for the first time, their report on government requests that have to do with this department specifically.

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