The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is encouraging all Web surfers to install its new privacy add-on for Chrome and Firefox browsers, which aims to block websites' abilities to keep tabs on users.
Police cannot generally search cellphones without a warrant when they are arresting someone, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a unanimous decision Wednesday that weighs heavily in favor of Fourth Amendment and privacy rights.
In an age of surveillance anxiety, the notion of leaving your Wi-Fi network open and unprotected seems dangerously naive. But one group of activists says it can help you open up your wireless internet and not only maintain your privacy, but actually increase it in the process.
At the Hackers on Planet Earth conference next month, the Electronic Frontier Foundation plans to release software designed to let you share a portion of your Wi-Fi network, password-free, with anyone nearby. The initiative, part of the OpenWireless.org campaign, will maintain its own flavor of free, open-source router firmware called Open Wireless Router. Good Samaritans can install this firmware on a cheap Wi-Fi router, creating a public slice of bandwidth that can dialed up or down with a simple smartphone interface.
When Apple releases iOS 8 in the fall, corporate employees who use their iPhones and iPads for work will have better privacy protection when walking in places with Wi-Fi networks.
Another privacy feature being added to iOS 8 is to make DuckDuckGo the default search engine in the Safari browser. DuckDuckGo is considered more secure than competitors because it does not track users or collect and store personal information.
The concept of a career roadmap is something with which we are extremely familiar. We are both retired military intelligence professionals with a combined 60 years of service to the United States. We grew up in a system that consisted of an enterprise-wide, tiered certification process, which laid out a set of minimum skills and experience levels required at certain waypoints in our career. We have also witnessed the benefits of a structured career roadmap during our tenures in the U.S. government’s civilian career service. Entry-level employees understand exactly what knowledge, skills and abilities they must acquire to compete successfully at the middle and senior technical and management levels. Aspiring U.S. government civilian senior executives, positions comparable to corporate-level executives, also have structured career roadmaps that define executive core competencies they must possess in order to compete successfully at this level.
This is why we are proposing a career roadmap for privacy professionals.
A landmark “right to be forgotten” ruling against Google in Europe risks damaging the next generation of internet start-ups and strengthening the hand of repressive governments looking to restrict online communications, Larry Page, the search company's chief executive officer, has warned.
For decades, companies have attempted to educate employees on security awareness. However, these efforts have largely failed. Instead of merely seeking to give workers knowledge, you need to embed behaviors that reduce information security risk.
But here's the problem: We cannot keep addressing privacy from a top-down, legally driven perspective. No amount of additional processes and compliance checks is going to change the fact that software itself is so complex. Software engineering is often assumed to be the final stage and by some a mere consequence of many requirements from a large number of often conflicting sources.
Often privacy issues are “solved” by hashing an identifier, encrypting a communications link or anonymizing a data set, for some definition of anonymization. Many of these are piecemeal, ineffective, Band-Aid type solutions—the proverbial rearranging of deck chairs on the Titanic. Privacy Theater at its worst … or best.
Plans to favor some Internet packets over others threaten consumers’ hard-won right to use encryption, a digital privacy advocate says.
Activists and tech companies fended off efforts in the U.S. in the 1990s to ban Internet encryption or give the government ways around it, but an even bigger battle over cryptography is brewing now, according to Sascha Meinrath, director of X-Lab, a digital civil-rights think tank launched earlier this year. One of the most contested issues in that battle will be net neutrality, Meinrath said.
The online-education boom has made technology vendors powerful. So powerful, in fact, that some university officials say it’s getting harder and harder to update their technology without placing themselves under the sway of outside companies.
Now four major research universities are trying to promote strength in numbers. They are creating a consortium, called Unizin, that they hope will help member institutions innovate on their own terms.
“Unizin is a strategic move by universities to assert greater control and influence over the digital-learning landscape than would otherwise be possible by any single institution,” the founders write in a news release. The four institutions are Colorado State University, Indiana University, the University of Florida, and the University of Michigan.
Unizin will negotiate contracts with technology vendors for products and services that many universities already buy individually. But instead of implementing the technologies locally, member institutions will get a set of “sewn-together services” from Unizin in exchange for dues, says Bradley C. Wheeler, vice president for information technology at Indiana.
Target. The University of Maryland. EBay. Just a few of the organizations that have been hit with major, headline-grabbing data breaches. And that’s only in the past six months.
Breaches—both minuscule and major—are now so common that it’s hard not to think fatigue will soon set in—if it hasn’t already. I’m finding that friends and family—generally people not involved in the privacy profession—are becoming more aware of these events, which is great, but will the public eventually begin to ignore them?
During the summer of 2010, Symplicity Corporation knew it wasn’t keeping up with the competition.
Trying to stand out in the small world of technology companies that supply colleges with software to track student disciplinary cases, Symplicity CEO Ariel Manuel Friedler noticed more colleges and universities picking its main competitor, Maxient, because its software “feels like a website,” he emailed to employees. “We are bleeding ... we have lost close to a dozen [clients] this year.”
To win back colleges, Symplicity’s top leader and two other employees hacked their way into Maxient’s servers to stock up on the competitor’s product design, new features and software layout.
Spurred by a desire to better control who is moving in and out of campus facilities, colleges are adopting sophisticated online access systems at a steady clip. The systems, which support arrays of hard-wired and wireless locks, are being applied to interior doors, such as those in residence halls and labs, in addition to exterior doors. In some places they are being installed in concert with other security features, like video surveillance technology. The migration is such that traditional keys on college campuses could soon become as quaint as typewriters.
Online building-access systems deliver a certain "wow" factor. They allow administrators to monitor and control individual doors using a dedicated workstation or browser-based interface. User-friendly features include doors that can be unlocked by contactless "tap" cards and mobile devices.