This Tuesday, Google will throw open the order books for Glass and start its first round of invitation-free sales. To many it's a hard sell - $1,500 worth of conspicuous face-jewelry without a clear use-case - whereas to others its the gateway to the new generation of wearables. Either way, those who flex their credit cards and join the Explorer program may have to face a growing push-back against technology.
The NSA has denied knowledge of the Heartbleed bug, following allegations that not only did the security agency discover the exploit two years ago, but that it opted to keep it secret so as to use it in its spy tool arsenal. Anonymous insiders claimed earlier that the National Security Agency had identified Heartbleed - which left as many as two-thirds of websites vulnerable to password and data theft - as part of its regular efforts at hunting down potentially useful bugs and hacks.
Dropbox has responded to calls for a boycott over Dr. Condoleezza Rice joining the cloud company's board, insisting that the former US Secretary of State "fully supports" its commitment to privacy. The controversial appointment earlier this week sparked fury and shock among Dropbox users, suggesting Dr. Rice's background with NSA wiretaps and other surveillance behaviors made her role at the company "tone deaf" given heightened awareness of privacy intrusion.
The NSA has not only known about the Heartbleed bug for at least two years, but exploited it in regular surveillance attacks, insider sources have alleged, opting to keep the security flaw a secret because of its value to intelligence gathering. Heartbleed, which has forced companies big and small to update the security of their sites after a flaw in the SSL believed to be keeping users' details safe, has prompted a mass change in passwords over the past week.
Storm clouds are circling over Dropbox, after its decision to add former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to its board prompted a wave of negative reactions from users who disagree both with her politics and her history with wiretaps. Dropbox announced Dr. Rice's new role yesterday, alongside new apps Mailbox for Android and Carousel, leaving some cloud storage subscribers outraged at her proximity to decisions around how their data is handled, and proposing a boycott.
If there's been a theme online over the past couple of years, it's the rise of web service hacks and privacy blunders, and Microsoft is hoping to help developers keep their users safer with a push for SSL. Currently, getting an SSL certificate - which allows the browser to authenticate what it's showing with the legitimate company behind it - costs money, but as of today Microsoft is offering free SSL security for Azure developers.
Microsoft won't go snooping through users' private content in Outlook, OneDrive, or other services, even if it believes it might find evidence that secrets stolen from the firm are there, as the company changes its policies in reaction to outcry earlier this month. Microsoft had admitted it dug through Hotmail messages back in 2012 as part of an investigation into details of Windows 8 leaked by an employee; however, as a result of the negative reaction from users since the revelation, Microsoft now says it will take a different approach, in a move that may force similar changes from Google and Apple.
A source speaking to The New York Times on Tuesday hinted at upcoming legislation that would aim to end the NSA's controversial bulk phone records collection. Today the Obama administration has introduced that legislation, getting it in a day sooner than the original deadline given to the Department of Justice.
Google has released its latest Transparency Report, and in it is a reflection of our increasingly digital world. The number of data requests in the last half of 2013 was more than double the requests from 2009, when Google first began publishing transparency reports, and was a few thousand more than the same time period ending in 2012.