Data Privacy

Whistleblower Revealed Cambridge Analytica Shady Links to Indian Politics

Whistleblower Revealed Cambridge Analytica Shady Links to Indian Politics

Facebook privacy scandal whistleblower Christopher Wylie revealed this week that embattled analytics firm Cambridge Analytica had ties in Indian politics which were deeper than what was previously known. Wylie told the UK Parliamentary committee for digital, culture, media and sports that India’s Congress had been a client of Cambridge Analytica and he would be able to provide documents to back his statements. However, Congress denied any involvement with the UK firm. Another related connection was revealed by IT expert Paul-Olivier Dehaye who said that Wylie’s predecessor at the firm had been playing a double agent, working for Congress but also […]

OIG Report Says FBI Was Quick to Sue Apple, Did Not Explore Other Options

OIG Report Says FBI Was Quick to Sue Apple, Did Not Explore Other Options

Earlier this week, a report issued by the Office of the Inspector General said that the FBI had been to quick to threaten Apple with a lawsuit instead of exploring other options when it sought to compel the phone maker to unlock the iPhone used in the 2015 San Bernardino attack. The FBI said that Apple refused to cooperate with their investigation and thus resorted to take legal action, which the Bureau did not pursue when a third-party came forward with a working solution to unlock the phone. However, the OIG inquiry found that the FBI did not exhaust all […]

NZ Privacy Commissioner Deletes Facebook Account

NZ Privacy Commissioner Deletes Facebook Account

Earlier this week, New Zealand privacy commissioner John Edwards deleted his Facebook account and accused the social network of violating the country’s privacy laws. Edwards revealed that Facebook refused to cooperate when his office issued a statutory demand for the personal information of several Facebook users, saying that they were not covered by New Zealand’s Privacy Act.   In response, Facebook expressed its disappointment with the commissioner’s statements, since they were only protecting the privacy of their users by not surrendering their data to Edwards’ office. Edwards maintained that Facebook had to comply with New Zealand law and raised the […]

Mark Zuckerberg Declines Appearance Before UK Lawmakers, Sends Senior Facebook Execs Instead

Mark Zuckerberg Declines Appearance Before UK Lawmakers, Sends Senior Facebook Execs Instead

It was announced this week that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg will not be appearing to answer questions from British lawmakers on the social network’s privacy scandal involving Cambridge Analytica. Facebook will instead be sending Chief Technology Officer Mike Schroepfer or Chief Product Officer Chris Cox to appear before the parliament’s Digital, Culture, Media and Sport committee. Facebook’s Head of UK Public Policy told the lawmakers that  the two would be better suited to answer the committee’s questions. However, the committee’s chairman said that they still would want to speak to Zuckerberg in person or via a live video link. Source: […]

Indian Regulator, Apple Caught in a Deadlock on Anti-spam App

Indian Regulator, Apple Caught in a Deadlock on Anti-spam App

Apple and the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) is said to be at an impasse on the issue of the government’s anti-spam app which could compromise user privacy. Apple said that it is willing to offer help to the regulator to develop its ”Do Not Disturb” app which users are supposed to use to report unsolicited calls or texts. However, the app requires its users to provide broad access to call and text logs on the device which Apple refuses to provide. The Android version of the app already provides permissions specified by the TRAI. TRAI head R.S. Sharma […]

Breach Exposes Cambridge Analytica’s Tools, Ties

Breach Exposes Cambridge Analytica’s Tools, Ties

Security researchers from UpGuard claimed to have discovered this week an unsecured code repository belonging to a Canadian political data firm which had exposed ties to Cambridge Analytica, the embattled analytics firm at the center of Facebook’s privacy scandal. According to UpGuard’s Chris Vickery, the data warehouse owned by AggregateIQ (AIQ) revealed numerous apps, data management programs, databases, and ad trackers that could have been used to target and influence users. Information from the repository also showed that AIQ had built a software for Cambridge Analytica named Ripon, which was supposedly used for Ted Cruz’s 2016 GOP campaign.    Source: […]

Microsoft Bans Swearing, “Inappropriate Content” on Skype

Microsoft Bans Swearing, “Inappropriate Content” on Skype

A blogger named Jon Corbett recently wrote that Microsoft had already implemented some changes to Skype’s “Code of Conduct” to ban inappropriate content such as offensive language. Microsoft’s Skype and other services prohibit the sharing of content that include “nudity, bestiality, pornography, offensive language, graphic violence, or criminal activity”. However, a number of users pointed out that while this is makes sense for public platforms like Twitter, the policy change raise privacy and censorship questions since Microsoft would effectively be policing sharing a private conversation between two consenting adults. Microsoft has not yet responded to questions on how it will […]

SpaceX, Tesla Distancing Themselves from Facebook

SpaceX, Tesla Distancing Themselves from Facebook

Companies such as Tesla and Mozilla have recently announced the suspension of their support for Facebook due the the privacy scandal that had recently struck the social network. German bank Commerzbank and consumer electronics company Sonos announced this week that they will be suspending their ads on the social network, following a similar move by Mozilla.     Elon Musk, meanwhile, tweeted that he will be taking down the Facebook pages of Tesla and SpaceX. Facebook’s stock had already taken a 14% hit this week, and the negative sentiment coming from the tech industry with regards to the Cambridge Analytica fiasco […]

New US Bill Prompts Craigslist to Drop Dating Ads

New US Bill Prompts Craigslist to Drop Dating Ads

A new bill in the US which could punish websites for “facilitating” prostitution and sex trafficking has prompted classified ads website Craigslist to close its dating ads section in the country. In a statement this week, Craigslist said that it would be too much of a risk for the company to keep the section running, since the new law would expose them to criminal and civil liability when users use their online personals for illegal activity. US congress had already passed the “Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act” this March which will apply to all states […]

Australian Ethical Fund Removes Facebook After Privacy Scandal

Australian Ethical Fund Removes Facebook After Privacy Scandal

It was revealed last Friday that BetaShares Global Sustainability Leaders Exchange Traded Fund (ETHI) has removed Facebook from its roster, according to its Responsible Investment Committee. In its official statement, the Australia-based fund manager said that Facebook had been involved in a number of controversies and reputational issues, focusing particularly on the recent privacy issue involving British firm Cambridge Analytica which misused the personal data of around 50 million Facebook users without their consent. ETHI, which manages around $170 in funds, said that Facebook comprised 3.9% of its portfolio. The social network had already lost $50 billion of its value […]

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