Encryption

Trump’s CIA chief pick makes encrypted chat popular again

Trump’s CIA chief pick makes encrypted chat popular again

Donald Trump's impending presidency and Pompeo pick for CIA has sent downloads of secure encryption chat apps skyrocketing. According to the makers of the encrypted messaging app Signal, they've had a 400 percent growth increase since election day this month. Moxie Marlinspike, co-founder of OWS, makers of Signal, they've "never really seen any single event that's resulted in this kind of sustained, day-over-day interest." According to Marlinspike, this may be because of fears that Trump's impending control of "the least accountable surveillance apparatus in the history of the world."

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Google Pixel encryption promised to be stronger, faster

Google Pixel encryption promised to be stronger, faster

One of the biggest criticisms of Google’s open mobile platform is security. For some, especially those looking from the iOS camp, Android’s security framework is a joke. That’s not to say that Google hasn’t been working on improving the situation significantly. Especially in its first ever “by Google” smartphone, the Pixel. Now Google briefly explains some of the added security measures implemented for the device, specifically on the rather contentious topic of encryption.

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Facebook Messenger now offers end-to-end encryption to all users

Facebook Messenger now offers end-to-end encryption to all users

Earlier this year, Facebook began testing end-to-end encryption in Messenger through a new feature called Secret Conversations. Initially the feature was only available to a select number of users, but that's been changing over the past few weeks, with Facebook rolling Secret Conversations out to every Messenger user - all 900 million of them.

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Apple promises fix for iOS 10’s iTunes backup security flaw

Apple promises fix for iOS 10’s iTunes backup security flaw

Security forensics company Elcomsoft revealed last week that encrypted iOS backups created in iTunes have been made far less secure with the recent release of iOS 10. While an unintentional flaw, the new password protected backups offer an "alternative password verification mechanism" that allows them to fall victim to brute force hacks much more quickly and easily than with previous iOS versions. Fortunately Apple acknowledged the issue, and says a fix is on the way with "an upcoming security update."

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Chrome to begin flagging all websites not using HTTPS

Chrome to begin flagging all websites not using HTTPS

Google aims to step up its campaign against an unencrypted internet by alerting users to any websites that still aren't using HTTPS connections. The search giant has said that when the next version of Chrome launches, it will begin displaying a new warning on any login pages that aren't encrypted, or in other words using HTTP. This is scheduled to start in January 2017 with the rollout of Chrome 56.

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WhatsApp still isn’t as secure as you might think

WhatsApp still isn’t as secure as you might think

Facebook's acquisition of WhatsApp in early 2014 raised all sorts of red flags for security and privacy interest groups. Facebook, then and to some extent now, isn't exactly the epitome of those two values. Over time, WhatsApp has tried to assuage fears by implementing features such as end-to-end encryption. Apparently, that may be futile after all. Forensic scientist Jonathan Zdziarski revealed that, while the app does encrypt the messages it stores, it doesn't actually completely delete them and its backups still leave users open to spying or law enforcement.

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WhatsApp blocked once more in Brazil for failing to hand over user data

WhatsApp blocked once more in Brazil for failing to hand over user data

One of the wonderful things about end-to-end encryption in messaging apps is, as long as it's implemented correctly, nobody but you or the person you're chatting with should be able to see those messages. Unfortunately for WhatsApp, judges in Brazil don't seem to understand how that works. Yes, Brazil's at it again, as the office of Judge Daniela Barbosa Assunção de Souza in Rio De Janerio has ordered five carriers to block WhatsApp until it turns over data associated with a criminal case.

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Facebook Messenger begins testing end-to-end encryption with Secret Conversations

Facebook Messenger begins testing end-to-end encryption with Secret Conversations

Back at the end of May, we heard that Facebook may be rolling out encryption to Messenger sometime this summer. It looks like that day has arrived, as Facebook has announced that it will be testing end-to-end encryption in Messenger through a new feature called Secret Conversations. Not everyone will have access to Secret Conversations at first, but assuming the tests go well and Facebook doesn't need to make any big changes to the feature, it shouldn't be long before it rolls out to everyone.

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Qualcomm-powered Android devices found to have faulty full disk encryption

Qualcomm-powered Android devices found to have faulty full disk encryption

Google's Android platform has had its problems with security in the best, but a number of encryption features have been built into the software, as well as hardware, in recent years, significantly improving the situation. Unfortunately things are still far from perfect, as security researcher Gal Beniamini has discovered a vulnerability that leaves the Full Disk Encryption feature at risk to brute force attacks.

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What is Differential Privacy and why is Apple so excited about it?

What is Differential Privacy and why is Apple so excited about it?

The unexpected star of iOS 10 may well end up being a barely-known cryptography system to balance privacy and personalization, as Apple further positions itself as the bastion of user data protection. Differential privacy may not be as slick as Siri's increased skill set, or as timely in a cultural sense as new emojis and stickers, but it's arguably far more important than either.

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UK Commons passes Investigatory Powers Bill, no backdoor clause

UK Commons passes Investigatory Powers Bill, no backdoor clause

Apple may have scored somewhat of a victory in the name of security and privacy in the UK just as it somewhat did in the US just recently. December last year, Apple voiced out its concerns over the UK's proposed Investigatory Powers Bill that would require companies to have backdoors to encrypted systems so that government access could be granted any time. That bill has now been passed by the UK's House of Commons but removes the sections that make such backdoors necessary, thanks partly to the opposition of companies like Apple, Google, Microsoft, and many others.

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Facebook Messenger may get an encrypted mode this summer

Facebook Messenger may get an encrypted mode this summer

Facebook Messenger may offer users an encrypted messaging mode this summer, according to sources, following behind WhatsApp, Viber and some other services in offering users a more secure messaging option. This isn't the first time we've heard rumors of Messenger encryption plans, but is the first instance of some big details being offered. Among other things, the sources say this encryption feature will be opt-in.

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