privacy

Google promises to crack down on Google Home recording leaks

Google promises to crack down on Google Home recording leaks

Google just recently came under fire for what could be a privacy violation involving Google Assistant on Google Home smart speakers. According to the anonymous source, just like Amazon, Google is sending some recordings to human auditors who process and tag the clips to improve Google Assistant. Google doesn't deny the role that these reviewers play in improving the service but also clarifies its stance on the privacy of its processes.

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Google Home allegedly records clips without trigger, sends to contractor

Google Home allegedly records clips without trigger, sends to contractor

Just three months ago, Amazon was revealed to be sending its presumed anonymous and very private Alexa recordings to humans that listen to and process the audio to help the assistant become smarter. It turns out that it might not be alone in doing so. A new report claims that even Google may be guilty of the same thing, with Google Home recording clips even without the customary "Hey Google" trigger.

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Thousands of Android apps bypass permissions to violate user privacy

Thousands of Android apps bypass permissions to violate user privacy

Unlike on regular desktop computers, the opportunities to gather information on users are greater on mobile phones. That's why platform makers have devices as a permission-based system to limit what apps can do and what they can access on the device. Android has gone a long way in refining its system to ensure that few to no abuses would happen. Unfortunately, it turns out that more than 1,000 apps have found a way around those restrictions, even after users explicitly denied them permissions.

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Huawei says own OS to be faster than Android, likens privacy to Apple

Huawei says own OS to be faster than Android, likens privacy to Apple

Huawei's problems are far from over. The US seems to be pretty ambiguous about whether it will continue to ban Huawei from US goods and to what extent. Other countries are following in the US footsteps as well, looking into excluding the company from key sectors and businesses. Despite those, Huawei remains bullish and proud of its touted self-efficacy and independence. In fact, it claims to be able to do one better than Google or Apple in OS performance.

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Japan’s 7-Eleven customers lose $500k in BASIC security flub

Japan’s 7-Eleven customers lose $500k in BASIC security flub

It would seem that the developers of the Japan-based 7-Eleven wallet app (7 Pay) had not heard of phone fraud. If they had, they'd have built a more secure method of changing user passwords in said app. As a result of their relative lack of finesse when it came to developing this one bit of the app, 900 customers lost a grand total of approximately 55-million Yen (which converts to roughly $506k).

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Sign in with Apple has critical security flaws says OpenID Connect maker

Sign in with Apple has critical security flaws says OpenID Connect maker

At WWDC 2019, Apple was largely praised for turning privacy from an add-on feature to a service. The biggest proof of that was its "Sign in with Apple", its attempt to overthrow Google and Facebook logins in iOS and macOS apps. Underneath, it used a version of the OpenID Connect specification to make secure logins possible. But according to the OpenID Foundation, its implementation might ironically leave users exposed to hacking attacks.

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Axon says it won’t make police body cams with facial recognition tech

Axon says it won’t make police body cams with facial recognition tech

Axon, the company formerly known as Taser International, said in a statement this week that it will not produce police body cameras that feature facial recognition technology. The company, which refers to this technology as 'face matching,' made its decision based on a recommendation from its Axon AI and Policing Technology Ethics Board.

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Google auto-delete for Location History goes live on Android and iOS

Google auto-delete for Location History goes live on Android and iOS

Before Facebook grabbed the unwanted spotlight, Google was the one always on the hot seat over privacy concerns. To its credit, the company has made it easier for users to control what data Google gathers from them, even if it continues to collect that data. Its latest attempt at simplifying those controls is to automatically delete the location data it gathered from your Web activities. That is, if you remember to set it in the first place.

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How companies are using your data

How companies are using your data

Jill picks up her phone to plan a trip out to meet a client. She checks her route via Google Maps, and realizes the best way to get there is on a cab. She gets an Uber and rushes down while sending a message via Gmail to her client to tell him she’s on the way. Finally, she logs on to DoorDash to order some food for them to enjoy while they discuss. It certainly sounds like an average day of life, but in these short couple of minutes, Jill has already valuable data to over four companies that use it to understand consumers better and make products out of it. And taking a step back; Jill is part of a whole network of millions of consumers who leave data trails for corporations and data harvesters to analyze and learn more about what everyone wants.

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BBC Box personal cloud aims to rewrite the rules on internet privacy

BBC Box personal cloud aims to rewrite the rules on internet privacy

The BBC has built a personal cloud that not only collects up your data from services like Spotify, Instagram, and others, but promises to make interesting mashups like recommendations and more without demanding that you share your private information online. The BBC Box is part of a research project into ways people can control access to their personal data, at a time when trust in services like Facebook, Google, and others is pointedly low.

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This app made ‘Dark Knight’ phone mic spy tech a reality

This app made ‘Dark Knight’ phone mic spy tech a reality

Remember that time in Batman: The Dark Knight when they hacked into every phone in the city and used audio matching and GPS to locate The Joker? It would seem that the app developers behind the app LaLiga had the same idea as Bruce Wayne - because they've essentially made that nightmare a reality. With their app, they've been detecting pubs and bars broadcasting pirated football (soccer) matches illegally, using geofencing and live audio from everyday users with their LaLiga app.

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Facebook’s privacy problem begins at the top

Facebook’s privacy problem begins at the top

Next to Google, Facebook is perhaps the biggest tech company holds most of the population personal data. The amount of information, be it text or photos, that people upload, provide it data points that can be used to build very accurate profiles. Unlike Google, however, Facebook hasn't been grilled over its privacy practices, or lack of it, until recently. Now all its old practices, messages, and secret policies are being dragged into the spotlight, revealing that Facebook's culture of disregarding users' privacy comes from its top executives.

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