Online Privacy

Apple’s content blocking is chemo for the cancer of adtech

This means the iOS platform will now support developers who want to build sophisticated apps that give users ways to block stuff they don’t like, such as adtech tracking and various forms of advertising — or all advertising — and to do it privately.

This allows much more control over unwanted content than is provided currently by ad and tracking blockers on Web browsers, and supports this control at the system level, rather than at the browser level. (Though it is executed by the browser.)

From Doc Searls Weblog · Apple’s content blocking is chemo for the cancer of adtech

The Ashley Madison Hack Should Scare You, Too

Likewise, those who blithely state “privacy is dead” as if they have no skin in the game, as if merely shrugging and accepting that we no longer have any rights as individuals, may be the most disheartening of all. Are we ready to agree that we, as citizens, have no recourse, that it’s perfectly natural that criminals and the corporate entities that fail to protect us from them would mishandle our assets and expose us all to fraud and identity theft and public attacks? Do we want our public servants targeting citizens by using information gained through criminal means?

From The Ashley Madison Hack Should Scare You, Too -- The Cut

Monica at Mozilla: Tracking Protection for Firefox at Web 2.0 Security and Privacy 2015

Advertising does not make content free. It merely externalizes the costs in a way that incentivizes malicious or incompetent players to build things like Superfish, infect 1 in 20 machines with ad injection malware, and create sites that require unsafe plugins and take twice as many resources to load, quite expensive in terms of bandwidth, power, and stability.

From Monica at Mozilla: Tracking Protection for Firefox at Web 2.0 Security and Privacy 2015

Librarians Versus the NSA

Macrina, 30, is not your grandmother's librarian. She has a kaleidoscopic illustration from a Mother Goose book tattooed on her arm, occasionally poses for selfies in red lipstick, and wears a small piece of hardware called a security token around her neck like a pendant. Macrina has worked as a public librarian for nearly a decade, but she's not shelving books; she's fighting Big Brother.

From Librarians Versus the NSA | The Nation

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

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

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

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

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

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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