Online Privacy

Schneier on Security: AT&T Charging Customers to Not Spy on Them

I have mixed feelings about this. On one hand, AT&T is forgoing revenue by not spying on its customers, and it's reasonable to charge them for that lost revenue. On the other hand, this sort of thing means that privacy becomes a luxury good. In general, I prefer to conceptualize privacy as a right to be respected and not a commodity to be bought and sold.

From Schneier on Security: AT&T Charging Customers to Not Spy on Them

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Privacy is at a crossroads. Choose wisely.

We already put legal limits on financial, medical, military, transportation, telecommunications and agriculture technology. Why not online tracking? With digital technology making its way into more parts of our lives, and with our data quickly becoming more and more valuable, of course there should be some limits on online tracking!

From Privacy is at a crossroads. Choose wisely. — Medium

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San Jose: Public library gets $35k for online privacy literacy prototype

"This is a new direction," said Erin Berman, community programs administrator for technology and innovation for San Jose Public Library. "We've done programmatic things before, but we're trying to broaden the scope and have a real understanding of privacy."

From San Jose: Public library gets $35k for online privacy literacy prototype - San Jose Mercury News

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Uncle Sam and the Illusion of Privacy Online - The Atlantic

All of this is a reminder of one of the core principles of modern communication: that nothing is private on the Internet. But it also raises a question about the real nature of the privacy threat. Law enforcement requests are only part of the picture. The NSA, for instance, has used Facebook in its plans to hack computers on a mass scale, according to The Intercept. As Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg put it in a blog post last year: "This is why I've been so confused and frustrated by the repeated reports of the behavior of the U.S. government. When our engineers work tirelessly to improve security, we imagine we're protecting you against criminals, not our own government."

From Uncle Sam and the Illusion of Privacy Online - The Atlantic

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Apple CEO Tim Cook delivers a fantastic, touching speech about why online privacy matters

Apple CEO Tim Cook delivers a fantastic, touching speech about why online privacy matters
History has shown us that sacrificing our right to privacy can have dire consequences. We still live in a world where all people are not treated equally. Too many people do not feel free to practice their religion or express their opinion, or love who they choose. A world in which that information can make the difference between life and death. If those of us in positions of responsibility fail to do everything in our power to protect the right of privacy, we risk something far more valuable than money, we risk our way of way of life. Fortunately, technology gives us the tools to avoid these risks and it is my sincere hope that by using them and by working together, we will.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/tim-cook-on-online-privacy-2015-2

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Library trades users' privacy for slick search capability

Library trades users’ privacy for slick search capability [PDF Link To Central City Extra]
BiblioCommons’ critics insist, however, that that increased functionality comes at a steep price: Some aspects of
the site open the door to users’ personal data being turned over to a foreign firm to do with as it chooses, they say. The Library Commission encouraged this jaundiced view when it killed one three-letter word from its privacy
policy that had been in place since 2004.

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Washington DC's Public Library Will Teach People How to Avoid the NSA

%u200BLater this month, the Washington DC Public Library will teach residents how to use the internet anonymization tool Tor as part of a 10 day series designed to shed light on government surveillance, transparency, and personal privacy.

http://motherboard.vice.com/read/washington-dcs-public-library-will-teach-people-how-to-avoi...

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How Ninja Librarians are Ensuring Patrons' Electronic Privacy

Librarians in Massachusetts are working to give their patrons a chance to opt-out of pervasive surveillance. Partnering with the ACLU of Massachusetts, area librarians have been teaching and taking workshops on how freedom of speech and the right to privacy are compromised by the surveillance of online and digital communications -- and what new privacy-protecting services they can offer patrons to shield them from unwanted spying of their library activity.

Library Patrons Are At Risk

One of the authors of this Boing Boing article, Alison Macrina, is an IT librarian at the Watertown Free Public Library in Massachusetts, a member of Boston's Radical Reference Collective, and an organizer working to bring privacy rights workshops to libraries throughout the northeast. Librarians know that patrons visit libraries for all kinds of online research needs, and therefore have a unique responsibility in helping keep that information safe. It's not just researchers who suffer; our collective memory, culture, and future are harmed when writers and researchers stop short of pursuing intellectual inquiry.

In addition to installing a number of privacy-protecting tools on public PCs at the Watertown library, Alison has been teaching patron computer classes about online privacy and organized a series of workshops for Massachusetts librarians to get up to speed on the ins and outs of digital surveillance.

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