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Data Privacy and Online Privacy in Higher Education
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Facebook unfriends CISPA cybersecurity bill over 'privacy'

Facebook unfriends CISPA cybersecurity bill over 'privacy' | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

Facebook no longer supports a controversial federal cybersecurity bill that would let U.S. companies share personal information with government agencies in ways currently prohibited by privacy laws.

 

The social-networking company had previously applauded the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, or CISPA, which was reintroduced last month. Facebook Vice President Joel Kaplan wrote a letter last February to Rep. Mike Rogers, a Michigan Republican, "to commend you on your legislation," and Rogers sent out his own press release noting Facebook's "strong support" for the bill.

 

But then groups including the American Civil Liberties Union, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and the Republican Liberty Caucus raised privacy alarms. CISPA would "waive every single privacy law ever enacted in the name of cybersecurity," Rep. Jared Polis, a Colorado Democrat and onetime Web entrepreneur, warned during a House of Representatives debate a few months later.

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More Privacy Perils: Facebook Data Is Greater Than The Sum Of Your Likes

More Privacy Perils: Facebook Data Is Greater Than The Sum Of Your Likes | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

New research from the University of Cambridge in England can accurately predict a person's political slant, age, gender and even if they're gay based on their Facebook Likes.

 

The report, Private traits and attributes are predictable from digital records of human behavior, was just posted on the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and is coauthored by David Stillwell and Michal Kosinski of the University of Cambridge and Thore Graepel, of Microsoft Research in Cambridge. In the authors’ words, the study shows that, “easily accessible digital records of behavior, Facebook Likes, can be used to automatically and accurately predict a range of highly sensitive personal attributes including: sexual orientation, ethnicity, religious and political views, personality traits, intelligence, happiness, use of addictive substances, parental separation, age, and gender.”

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Higher Ed InfoSec Council's comment, March 13, 2013 1:06 PM
The article also states: "There is a corollary here with computer security. The accumulation of too much data about any one entity in a single location poses a threat. In cyber security, this risk is mitigated by dispersing data in such a way that no one bit of it leads to any other. Studies like this one from Cambridge suggest that we may need to think about privacy in similar ways. Using third-party tools to distribute our data among different servers—preferable ones that users possess their own unique encryption keys to—may be the only way to prevent third parties from painting possibly misleading pictures of us without our consent or knowledge."
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Harvard E-Mail Search Stuns Faculty Members

Harvard E-Mail Search Stuns Faculty Members | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

Bewildered, and at times angry, faculty members at Harvard criticized the university on Sunday after revelations that administrators secretly searched the e-mail accounts of 16 resident deans in an effort to learn who leaked information about a student cheating scandal to the news media. Some predicted a confrontation between the faculty and the administration.


News of the e-mail searches prolonged the fallout from the cheating scandal, in which about 70 students were forced to take a leave from school for collaborating or plagiarizing on a take-home final exam in a government class last year.

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Higher Ed InfoSec Council's comment, March 11, 2013 2:19 PM
Statement from Deans Michael D. Smith and Evelynn M. Hammonds: http://www.fas.harvard.edu/home/content/deans-communications
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How Facebook Reversed Users' Privacy Push

How Facebook Reversed Users' Privacy Push | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it
While we've always known that Facebook has the final say in how people use its service, a new study reveals just how effectively the social network can nudge its members to behave in ways Facebook might consider most fitting.

 

An unprecedented study from Carnegie Mellon University followed the privacy practices of 5,076 Facebook users over six years, between 2005 and 2011. Researchers found that during the first four years, users steadily limited what personal data was visible to strangers within their school network. Yet through changes Facebook introduced to its platform in 2009 and 2010, the social network actually succeeded in reversing some users' inclination to avoid public disclosure of their data.

 

In fact, the social network's new policies were not only able to partly override an active desire not to post personal details publicly, but they have so far kept such disclosures from sinking back to their lower levels, according to the study. They also found that even as people sought to limit what strangers could learn about them from their Facebook profiles, they actually increased what information they shared with their friends.

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As ‘Do Not Track’ Effort Seems to Stall, Web Companies Race to Look Privacy-Friendly

As ‘Do Not Track’ Effort Seems to Stall, Web Companies Race to Look Privacy-Friendly | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

Privacy is no longer just a regulatory headache. Increasingly, Internet companies like Microsoft, Facebook and Mozilla are pushing each other to prove to consumers that their data is safe and in their control. 

 

In some instances, established companies are trying to gain market advantage by casting themselves as more privacy-friendly than their rivals. For example, Mozilla, an underdog in the browser market, suggested last week that it would allow its users to disable third-party tracking software altogether.

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Password Protect Your Devices - 10 Incredibly Simple Things You Can Do To Protect Your Privacy

Password Protect Your Devices - 10 Incredibly Simple Things You Can Do To Protect Your Privacy | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it
Choosing not to password protect your devices is the digital equivalent of leaving your home or car unlocked. If you're lucky, no one will take advantage of the access.

Via Stephen diFilipo
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Open Source Data: Big Data for All

Open Source Data: Big Data for All | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

Over the past decade, the privacy framework has become preoccupied with organizational data management processes grouped under the title “accountability.” While improving corporate governance and mitigating data security risks (no doubt admirable goals), accountability measures generate little benefit to individuals. Indeed, by treating organizations as trusted stewards of personal information, accountability cuts individuals out of the decisionmaking process. You want privacy? Walmart or Pfizer will take care of it for you.

 

In a new article, Big Data for All: Privacy and User Control in the Age of Analytics, which will be published in the Northwestern Journal of Technology and Intellectual Property, Jules Polonetsky, CIPP/US, and Omer Tene try to refocus the privacy framework on individual empowerment. They argue that going forward, organizations should provide individuals with practical, easy-to-use access to their information, so they can become productive participants in the data economy. In addition, organizations should be transparent about the decisional criteria underlying their data processing activities, allowing individuals to challenge, or at the very least understand, how decisions about them are made.

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Google Looks to Make Its Computer Glasses Stylish

Google Looks to Make Its Computer Glasses Stylish | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

As Google and other companies begin to build wearable technology like glasses and watches, an industry not known for its fashion sense is facing a new challenge — how to be stylish. Design has always been important to technology, with products like Apple’s becoming fashion statements, but designing hardware that people will wear like jewelry is an entirely different task.


Privacy advocates worry about a day when people wearing glasses could use facial recognition to identify strangers on the street or surreptitiously record and broadcast conversations. On a more mundane level, rude behavior like checking e-mail during conversations would become much easier to hide.

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Privacy Trends 2013: The Uphill Climb Continues

Privacy Trends 2013: The Uphill Climb Continues | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

Our ever-deepening transition into digital is transforming businesses in ways we have not seen since the onset of the industrial revolution.

It is opening doors to a world of opportunity — and tremendous risk to privacy. As we enter a new era in privacy protection, three categories play increasingly larger roles:

GovernanceTechnologyRegulation

In the past 15 years, privacy regulations have had to evolve quickly to address operational and lifestyle changes that technology has brought forth. Privacy regulators are doing everything they can to keep up, but as technology’s evolution accelerates, regulators continue to fall behind.

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Obama's Cybersecurity Executive Order: What You Need to Know

Obama's Cybersecurity Executive Order: What You Need to Know | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

Embargoed until the delivery the State of the Union address, US President Obama signed the expected and highly anticipated cybersecurity executive order. With potentially serious implications for US and foreign citizens' privacy, here's what you need to know.

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ECPA Reform Update [Recording]

ECPA Reform Update [Recording] | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

Recording of the January 29, 2013 call with Greg Nojeim, Senior Counsel at the Center for Democracy & Technology on the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) reform and its implications for higher education. Includes audio recording (MP3) and chat transcript.

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FTC Issues New Report on Mobile Privacy Disclosures

FTC Issues New Report on Mobile Privacy Disclosures | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) released a report on February 1, 2013 that says it wants — but is not mandating — makers of mobile operating systems, app developers, and advertisers to be provide "timely, easy-to-understand disclosures about what data they collect and how the data is used."  In the report, "Mobile Privacy Disclosures: Building Trust Through Transparency," the FTC said that most consumers are concerned, and often confused, about how mobile privacy operates.  "More than other types of technology, mobile devices are typically personal to an individual, almost always on, and with the user," the FTC said in the report. "This can facilitate unprecedented amounts of data collection."

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Make Data Security Part of Your Routine (FTC blog)

Make Data Security Part of Your Routine (FTC blog) | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

Yesterday was Data Privacy Day, and though it’s just one day a year, we hope you’ll make data security part of your regular routine.

Every day, you do things to protect what's most important to you — like locking your front door to prevent someone from breaking into your home. You can also take steps to protect your personal information from identity thieves — online and off — by adding some data privacy habits to your routine.

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Privacy Pros: A Work in Progress

Privacy Pros: A Work in Progress | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

The International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP) has only been around for 13 years. Compare that, for example, to the American Bar Association, which was founded in 1878, or the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), which traces its roots back to 1884. But for a profession still in its infancy, there already seem to be some established “generations.”

 

I view the emerging generation as the fourth generation. The opportunities available for them as privacy professionals are unprecedented: undergraduate and graduate coursework, privacy-centric graduate degrees, fellowships, and internships with established privacy departments. But they face the same question that the generations before them faced: is privacy a viable career?

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DNA hack could make medical privacy impossible

DNA hack could make medical privacy impossible | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

It may now be possible for anyone, even if they follow rigorous privacy and anonymity practices, to be identified by DNA data from people they do not even know.

 

A paper published in January in the journal Science describes a process by which it's possible to identify by name the donors of DNA samples, even without any demographic or personal information. The technique was developed by a team of geneticists at MIT's Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research and is intended to demonstrate that science and technology have surpassed the techniques and laws currently in place for safeguarding private medical data, according to Yaniv Erlich, a fellow at Whitehead and member of the research team.

 

The point was not to reveal private information, but to demonstrate a systemic weakness that will require research, debate and new laws and technology to overcome, Erlich says. The technique relies on the custom of passing family names down through the fathers family. By statistically modeling the distribution of family names, the researchers were able to narrow the list of possible contributors of DNA samples. They then pinpointed individuals using a range of other publicly available sources, none of which were directly connected to the original donors and none of which included protected personal data.

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IAPP launches new certification: CIPM

IAPP launches new certification: CIPM | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

Yesterday at the IAPP’s Global Privacy Summit, the organization launched a companion certification to its long-standing CIPP: the Certified Information Privacy Manager (CIPM), an "operationally focused" certification.

 

Aimed at chief privacy officers, corporate privacy managers, compliance officers, risk managers, information security and auditing professionals and a host of others with responsibility for implementing privacy policy, the CIPM covers subject matter like creating a company vision, structuring a privacy team, measuring performance and developing and implementing a privacy program framework.

 

The IAPP announced in conjunction with the CIPM launch the release of Privacy Program Management, a textbook, with Russell Densmore, deputy chief privacy officer at Lockheed Martin, as executive editor.

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Cybersecurity Boon or Privacy Threat?

Cybersecurity Boon or Privacy Threat? | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

Rights advocacy groups and security practitioners remain on opposite ends of the spectrum on the merits of sharing information as a means to improve cyber security.

 

The Electronic Frontier Foundation, the Center for Democracy and Technology and other groups have vigorously opposed the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA), contending that it's a major threat to privacy.

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Security practitioners, however, view CISPA and information sharing in general quite differently.

 

At the RSA Conference 2013 here this week, several security experts said that threat information sharing is a vital piece of the effort to improve cyber security at a time when attacks against U.S. organizations are escalating sharply.

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K-12 student database jazzes tech startups, spooks parents

K-12 student database jazzes tech startups, spooks parents | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

(Reuters) - An education technology conference this week in Austin, Texas, will clang with bells and whistles as startups eagerly show off their latest wares.

 

But the most influential new product may be the least flashy: a $100 million database built to chart the academic paths of public school students from kindergarten through high school.

 

In operation just three months, the database already holds files on millions of children identified by name, address and sometimes social security number. Learning disabilities are documented, test scores recorded, attendance noted. In some cases, the database tracks student hobbies, career goals, attitudes toward school - even homework completion.

 

Local education officials retain legal control over their students' information. But federal law allows them to share files in their portion of the database with private companies selling educational products and services.

 

Entrepreneurs can't wait.

 

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CISPA Cybersecurity Bill, Reborn: 6 Key Facts -- InformationWeek

CISPA Cybersecurity Bill, Reborn: 6 Key Facts -- InformationWeek | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it
House revives controversial cybersecurity information-sharing bill, but can CISPA 2.0 address lingering privacy concerns?
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The Rich See a Different Internet Than the Poor

The Rich See a Different Internet Than the Poor | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

Imagine an Internet where unseen hands curate your entire experience. Where third parties predetermine the news, products and prices you see—even the people you meet. A world where you think you are making choices, but in reality, your options are narrowed and refined until you are left with merely the illusion of control.

 

This is not far from what is happening today. Thanks to technology that enables Google, Facebook and others to gather information about us and use it to tailor the user experience to our own personal tastes, habits and income, the Internet has become a different place for the rich and for the poor. Most of us have become unwitting actors in an unfolding drama about the tale of two Internets. There is yours and mine, theirs and ours.

Higher Ed InfoSec Council's insight:

As this relates to privacy: "...federal regulations make it illegal to discriminate in pricing access to credit based on certain personal attributes. But, as Natasha Singer recently reported in the New York Times, technical advances in mining online and offline data have made it possible to skirt the spirit of the law: companies can simply not make anyoffers to less credit-attractive populations. If you live on the wrong side of the digital tracks, you won't even see a credit offer from leading lending institutions, and you won't realize that loans are available to help you with your current personal or professional priorities."

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Taking Privacy to Extremes: What Consumers Need to Know

Taking Privacy to Extremes: What Consumers Need to Know | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

Personal privacy: It’s a tenant of American citizenship, but also the source of a long-held debate over the balance between an individual liberty and national security. Where should governments draw the line, and what do consumers need to know about balancing their own privacy with security?

 

Take, for example, Silent Text, one of a few new encryption apps built to allow anyone to “send files securely from a smartphone or tablet at the touch of a button.” For context, encryption is a key part of what most security company does for its users. It’s the process of scrambling information, like your email messages, in such a way that eavesdroppers or hackers cannot read it.

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How to sacrifice your online privacy for fun and profit | PCWorld

How to sacrifice your online privacy for fun and profit | PCWorld | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it
Companies buy and sell your private data every day. Should you remain a passive observer, or jump into the action yourself? Welcome to the dark side of the data economy.
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Executive Order -- Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity

Executive Order -- Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

Read the text of President Obama's cybersecurity Executive Order signed on February 12, 2013.

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Security Pioneer Creates Service to Encrypt Phone Calls and Text Messages

Security Pioneer Creates Service to Encrypt Phone Calls and Text Messages | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it
Phil Zimmermann, the creator of the widely used Pretty Good Privacy e-mail encryption software, recently unveiled Silent Circle, which adds security features to phone, video and text messages sent by smartphones.
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10th Annual “Safer Internet Day” Now Involves Over 100 Countries, And Google Is Ready

10th Annual “Safer Internet Day” Now Involves Over 100 Countries, And Google Is Ready | Higher Education & Privacy | Scoop.it

[February 5] is the 10th annual “Safer Internet Day” celebration in more than 100 countries on six continents. The idea is that you’re supposed to take a step back and think about how you can do a better job of keeping your private information more secure and keep yourself and your loved ones safe while surfing the web.

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