privacy

Nest Google privacy row resumes as thermostat hacked

Nest Google privacy row resumes as thermostat hacked

Nest's announcement that it will share user data with Google as well as third-party services like Logitech and Jawbone has unsurprisingly reawakened privacy concerns, coinciding with a new hack of the Smart Thermostat that could in theory give nefarious backdoor access. The Nest Developer Program will allow fitness wearables like UP24, Mercedes-Benz cars, and Logitech Harmony remotes to link with the thermostat, but it's Google Now integration - and what that means for Nest's privacy promises - that have some concerned.

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Chicago light poles to study air pollution, foot traffic

Chicago light poles to study air pollution, foot traffic

It could be a privacy advocate's worst nightmare, but soon the city of Chicago will have lamp posts that are aware not just of its surroundings but also of the people that pass by it. However, in theory, the sensors on these posts will only be taking in environmental data and human numbers to aid the city government in urban planning and nothing else.

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Google doesn’t need Dropcam to see your family

Google doesn’t need Dropcam to see your family

Google-owned Nest's acquisition of security camera company Dropcam may have left privacy advocates worrying again at the search giant's potential intrusiveness, but the company doesn't need a webcam on your wall to tell advertisers what's going on in your home. A new update to Google's AdWords platform is promising the ability to filter potential advert viewers by Parental Status, a valuable insight into demographics.

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Yo hack spills users’ phone numbers

Yo hack spills users’ phone numbers

Single-function messaging app Yo may have seemed like a gimmick - albeit one raising $1m in funding - but it's also got an unpleasant security sting in its tail, with hackers claiming to be able to extract phone numbers of users. Yo arrived to mixed confusion and enthusiasm earlier this week, intended to do one thing in sending a "Yo" message to a contact.

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Star N9500 Chinese smartphone ships with pre-loaded spyware

Star N9500 Chinese smartphone ships with pre-loaded spyware

Allegations that the Chinese government is using smartphones to spy on other nations have been around for a while - back in October 2012, for example, US lawmakers expressed concern over potential espionage. Despite the White House having found no evidence to support the concern, many have still proceeded carefully with the use of Chinese handsets, and now one has been spotted with pre-loaded spyware.

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France World Cup training monitored by unknown drone

France World Cup training monitored by unknown drone

The World Cup has seen a bit of controversy this week as French national team coach Didier Deschamps has called for an investigation of a drone. This drone was flying over the French team in a private practice session, and is suspected of being a spy for either the national media or for their opponents.

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Vodafone admits “direct access” wiretaps by some governments

Vodafone admits “direct access” wiretaps by some governments

Cellular behemoth Vodafone has revealed that a number of governments have "direct access" to its network, collecting mass surveillance on users and allowing them to listen in on calls among other things. The revelation was detailed in the carrier's first Law Enforcement Disclosure Report, a 40,000 word breakdown of what Vodafone is - and isn't - allowed to say about the monitoring and tracking requirements it faces from agencies like the NSA.

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Glass jammer cuts wearable’s WiFi in misguided privacy ploy

Glass jammer cuts wearable’s WiFi in misguided privacy ploy

An anti-Google Glass artist is threatening to cut off the wearable's WiFi over privacy concerns, though the connection cutting project seems to be based more on knee-jerk fear than an understanding of how Glass actually works. The jammer, handiwork of Julian Oliver, runs on a Raspberry Pi with a WiFi adapter and can supposedly spot nearby Glass users on the same network, "deauthorizing" their connection if it finds them. However, Oliver's goal - to prevent Glass from recording video - isn't actually served by the device.

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