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Privacy News

Are Internet connected toys a security risk?

When it comes to Internet security toys feature low down on the list of areas of vulnerability. Where many people introduce firewalls to their computers they may overlook the toys their children play with, yet the Internet of Things is ever expanding.

Three years on: Google discusses the right to be forgotten

Google has detailed its ongoing work to respond to right to be forgotten requests from EU citizens after the controversial concept was made law three years ago today. The company is continuing to actively protest proposed evolutions of the ruling.

Noiszy interview: How a browser plugin masks your digital tracks Special

Noiszy is a new browser plugin that masks your tracks with digital noise. It's one of a new breed of tools that let you resist online tracking and break the filter bubble. In this interview, its creator speaks to Digital Journal about the need for Noiszy.

New York considering 'textalyzers' to fight distracted driving

Albany - While still in the development stage, several New York lawmakers want police to be able to use textalyzers to determine if a person was using a hand-held electronic device while driving. Currently, police must obtain a warrant to search phone records.

Google's 'scary' new iOS feature shows you everywhere you’ve been

Google has launched a new controversial feature for the iOS version of its Maps app. "Your Timeline" tracks every location you visit and shows your movements on a graph. Already available on other platforms, it has been criticised by privacy groups.

'Vigilante' worm fights Mirai botnet for control of your devices

A new worm is rapidly spreading across the Internet in search of vulnerable smart home appliances. Curiously, it's believed its author is a vigilante white-hat hacker, aiming to fend off the dangerous Mirai botnet that's coordinating IoT attacks.

Mastodon is an open alternative to Twitter

Mastodon is a rapidly growing social network that's like a more open, less abusive version of Twitter. Open-source and decentralised, Mastodon gives you a say over how your data is used. It takes away the algorithms and returns to simple chronology.

Digital noise: How a new web plugin hides your footsteps online

A recently-launched browser plugin has introduced a new way to resist online tracking by creating "digital noise." Noiszy decreases the value of data collected by ISPs and advertisers by masking your activities with a "flood" of auto-generated web visits.

The way you tilt your phone could let hackers steal your PIN

Cybercriminals can calculate smartphone passwords and PINs by monitoring the ways in which devices are held. The warning comes from a group of security researchers who claim 70 percent of four-digit PIN codes can be identified after just one attempt.

Microsoft explains new privacy settings in Windows 10 update

Microsoft has revealed the details of how Windows telemetry works and what it collects. The announcement improves the transparency of Windows 10's often shady privacy arrangements, addressing some major concerns since the platform's launch.

Sir Tim Berners-Lee wins Turing Award for inventing the web

Sir Tim Berners-Lee has been given the Turing Award, widely regarded to be the Nobel Prize of computing, for inventing the World Wide Web. He has publicly criticised government and corporate attempts to undermine the Internet's encryption and neutrality.

Verizon slammed for installing 'spyware' on phones

Verizon has been accused of installing "spyware" on new phones. The company has developed an app that's supposed to help people find content from services they don’t have installed. The privacy policy reveals it does more than make recommendations.

VPN usage is soaring, but alone they won't keep your privacy safe

In the wake of the U.S. Congress' landmark vote to repeal the FCC's broadband privacy rules, web users are turning to VPNs in an attempt to keep their browsing private. The apps route your data through a third-party service but can introduce more issues.

Facebook unveils location tracking 'Live Location' feature

Facebook has announced a new Messenger feature that lets you share your location with your friends and family for a limited period of time. It's similar to the location tracking feature recently added to Google Maps and carries the same privacy concerns.

Microsoft hit with lawsuit as Windows 10 'destroyed data'

Microsoft has been hit with a class action lawsuit instigated by a group of Windows 10 users who claim the operating system "destroyed" their data and caused damage to their PCs. It stems from Microsoft's aggressive attempts to get people to upgrade.

Five things to know about the ISP privacy decision in the Senate

Earlier this week, Senate Republicans struck down Obama-era regulations against Internet Service Providers (ISPs) selling customer information. This has big implications for U.S. Internet users.

Instagram finally turns on two-factor authentication

Instagram has announced a series of changes to its app designed to improve security, privacy and safeguarding on its platform. It now blurs sensitive images by default and offers advice on staying safe. Among the new features is two-factor authentication.

Google adds real-time location sharing to Maps app

A Google Maps update has added support for real-time location sharing, a controversial feature that lets friends see your map position for a limited time period. Google said it'll help people meet at social events and indicate when you're running late.

'Critical' flaw in 300 Cisco switches lets the CIA take control

Networking equipment vendor Cisco has announced a "critical" vulnerability in over 300 of its most popular products. The vulnerability was found in documents stolen from the CIA and published by WikiLeaks two weeks ago. It allows remote code execution.

Smartphone owners neglect basic security, study finds

A study into the security considerations made by typical smartphone owners has concluded that most people ignore basic best practices when on mobile devices. Over a quarter of survey respondents said they don't even use a lock screen.

CAPTCHAs to disappear as Google unveils 'invisible' version

Google has developed a new version of its reCAPTCHA "I'm not a robot" box that lets you verify your identity to websites without clicking a button. The system checks you're a real person and not a robot behind the scenes, cutting out the waiting time.

Security firm finds hidden backdoor in Chinese 'smart' products

Chinese smart products connected to the Internet of Things contain a hidden backdoor that sends data back to the manufacturer, according to a security research firm. The company behind the devices is ignoring the reports and hasn't fixed the hole.

Future Windows updates will be smaller and faster to install

Microsoft has announced changes coming to the way in which future Windows updates install that will make the process faster, easier and more controllable. Update downloads will be around 35% smaller, reducing download times and saving data.

Google discloses third 'high severity' Windows bug

Google has publicly detailed another "high severity" vulnerability in Microsoft's Windows, escalating a divide between its research and Microsoft's responses. Google has recently disclosed several major flaws, only for Microsoft to seemingly ignore them.

Phone surveillance in 2017: Are you being watched?

Phone tracking is now easier than ever using off-the-shelf software that anyone can buy. As Congress introduces a bill to require a warrant for the mobile tracking of Americans, over 80 percent of the population say they are concerned about being watched.

Microsoft postpones release of critical Windows bug fix to March

Microsoft has announced it's delaying its regular Patch Tuesday Windows security updates by an entire month. The unprecedented decision will leave customers at risk of attack for longer. The update includes a fix for a critical zero-day file sharing flaw.

Signal gets encrypted video calls in new beta update

Signal, the Edward Snowden-approved messaging app famed for its security, has added beta support for video calls to its apps. The calls are fully encrypted to keep communication private. There is a potentially weakness which could leak some data though.

Apple secretly stores your deleted browsing history online

Apple stores browser history data in its iCloud online storage for months after you delete it, according to a report from a security research company. The issue affects the Safari browser across devices and is a significant privacy concern.

TV brand Vizio pays $2.2m after being caught tracking users

Vizio has been ordered to pay $2.2 million after being found guilty of unlawfully monitoring customers' browsing habits. The smart TV manufacturer secretly tracked what users watched, storing up to 100 billion data points every day.

New crowdfunded device lets you protect your children online

A new device launching in the U.K. today aims to tackle children's online safety by giving parents full control over how the internet is used. iKydz, funded on Kickstarter, creates a special Wi-Fi network for children that limits how they use the web.
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Photographs from the Leveson Inquiry at the Royal Courts of Justice.
Photographs from the Leveson Inquiry at the Royal Courts of Justice.
 Flying pasties
'Flying pasties'
www.flyingpasties.com
A woman with the  flying pastie  scanner shield.
A woman with the "flying pastie" scanner shield.
www.flyingpasties.com
Lady author JK Rowling being sworn in at the Leveson Inquiry  November 24  2011.
Lady author JK Rowling being sworn in at the Leveson Inquiry, November 24, 2011.
A cartoon poking fun at the CISPA bill
A cartoon poking fun at the CISPA bill
Donkey Hotey
Privacy expert and author Frank M. Ahearn has written a new book called   How to Disappear From Big ...
Privacy expert and author Frank M. Ahearn has written a new book called, "How to Disappear From Big Brother."
courtesy of Frank M. Ahearn
Photographs from the Leveson Inquiry at the Royal Courts of Justice.
Photographs from the Leveson Inquiry at the Royal Courts of Justice.
Lady author JK Rowling testifies to the Leveson Inquiry  November 24  2011.
Lady author JK Rowling testifies to the Leveson Inquiry, November 24, 2011.
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Google Street View
Untitled
Viktor Hanacek
Photographs from the Leveson Inquiry at the Royal Courts of Justice.
Photographs from the Leveson Inquiry at the Royal Courts of Justice.
Edward Snowden
Edward Snowden
AFP
Author JK Rowling testifies to the Leveson Inquiry  November 24  2011.
Author JK Rowling testifies to the Leveson Inquiry, November 24, 2011.
Photographs from the Leveson Inquiry at the Royal Courts of Justice.
Photographs from the Leveson Inquiry at the Royal Courts of Justice.
Facebook s new  targeted attack  warning
Facebook's new "targeted attack" warning
Alex Stamos, Facebook
Persistent Surveillance Systems Sample Camera Image.
Persistent Surveillance Systems Sample Camera Image.
Persistent Surveillance Systems
Representative Edward J. Markey
Representative Edward J. Markey
Congressman Markey

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