Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Privacy Alerts

Greetings.  It seems as though there are continual assaults and threats to privacy now.  It should be clear that all of us need to stand together to oppose such intrusions.

Concerns include government spying, of course, but also corporate spying and data collection, which too often gets shared with law enforcement/government; far too often without a warrant or any meaningful oversight.  Some fairly recent examples:

  • AT & T developed a product and marketed it to law enforcement for access to their data... no warrant and they insisted on this being kept secret.  Read an account from common dreams .  Evan Greer, campaign director of Fight for the Future, said: "If companies are allowed to operate in this manner without repercussions, our democracy has no future." 
  • Google (yeah, and sometimes I wonder about them owning blogger) over the summer changed its policy to allow ad tracking to link to personal, identifiable info.  Shame on them!!!  Read about this - and how to disable it .
  •  Facebook, Twitter and Instagram gave special access to a company called Geofeedia, a company that has a very controversial marketing design. From a report at The Guardian:  "The ACLU previously found that Geofeedia’s marketing materials have referred to unions and activists as “overt threats” and that the company told police its product can help track the “Ferguson situation”. One California police department allegedly used the software to monitor South Asian, Muslim and Sikh protesters, the ACLU said."  Read the article here .
  •  A report by the AP found that LE officers have been know to abuse access to databases - databases which contain personal information. 
  •  This report says HALF, that's right HALF of U.S. adults are in facial recognition databases.  This should concern all of us due to privacy, profiling and potential abuse concerns.  There arr also concerns that facial recognition may not be the most accurate and thus could wreak havoc if someone might be misidentified in certain situations.
  • And we all should be concerned about the "internet of things."  Data can be shared with - who knows - and such devices can also be  hacked.  Now, be warned there is adult content - but here are two related reports:  something was phoning home and related lawsuit.  
  • And don't forget about yahoo allowing the gov't to scan e-mails.  One has to wonder if any other provider is/was also doing that.  
Well, I suppose that's something to think about for now.  Be aware, spread the word, and let's all stand up for privacy.

P. S.  Let's keep the protesters/water defenders protesting the DAPL in our prayers.  The latest report shows outragous police brutality against peaceful protesters.

And if you found this post to be of value, please share and/or comment!  Thanks.

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