• Apr 1, 2020
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Open Source, Privacy,

How can we protect privacy during a crisis like Covid-19, when “health surveillance” is on the rise around the world?

A couple of weeks ago, this blog looked at the use of smartphones to track people so that contact tracing can be carried out to slow the spread of Covid-19. Two weeks is a long time in a pandemic. Soon after, it emerged that many countries were going further, and using smartphone location to check … Continue reading “How can we protect privacy during a crisis like Covid-19, when “health surveillance” is on the rise around the world?”

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  • Mar 26, 2020
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

Coronavirus delays the passage of the world’s most important new privacy law

For obvious and justified reasons, the coronavirus pandemic dominates the news currently. One of the latest developments is that India’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, has put his entire country on lockdown. Ordering 1.35 billion people to stay indoors is a pretty dramatic move. A side-effect of that lockdown is that one of the most important … Continue reading “Coronavirus delays the passage of the world’s most important new privacy law”

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  • Mar 13, 2020
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

Police forces around the world continue to push for routine – and real-time – facial recognition capabilities

Facial recognition crops up on this blog more than most technologies. That’s in part because the underlying AI is advancing rapidly, boosting the ability of low-cost systems to match faces to those in databases. The Clearview saga is a good example of this, where an unheard-of startup has put together what is claimed to be … Continue reading “Police forces around the world continue to push for routine – and real-time – facial recognition capabilities”

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  • Feb 7, 2020
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

Why the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) risks turning into a paper tiger

Ireland’s Data Protection Commission (DPC) has just announced two new GDPR inquiries. One of them concerns Tinder, as a result of “concerns raised by individuals both in Ireland and across the EU”. The other inquiry will examine Google’s processing of location data and the transparency surrounding that processing. The issue is whether consent to share … Continue reading “Why the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) risks turning into a paper tiger”

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  • Jan 26, 2020
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

Top EU court’s advisor: bulk surveillance is “disproportionate”, and national security exemptions do not always apply

The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU), the EU’s top court, has played a key role in protecting privacy in the digital age, in Europe and beyond. In 2014, it ruled that a major piece of EU legislation, the Data Retention Directive, was “invalid” – that is, illegal – and should be taken … Continue reading “Top EU court’s advisor: bulk surveillance is “disproportionate”, and national security exemptions do not always apply”

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  • Jan 17, 2020
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, Privacy,

Police forces around the world continue to deploy facial recognition systems, despite no evidence of their utility

Last month, this blog wrote about governments around the world continuing to trial facial recognition systems, and the growing concerns this is provoking. There’s one area in particular where facial recognition systems are deployed: law enforcement. That’s hardly a surprise, since the legal system can only operate if it identifies alleged criminals that need to … Continue reading “Police forces around the world continue to deploy facial recognition systems, despite no evidence of their utility”

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  • Jan 6, 2020
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

Why 2020 will be make or break time for transatlantic personal data transfers

The transfer of personal data lies at the heart of much of online activity. Since many of the leading online companies were founded and have their headquarters in the US, that typically means that huge quantities of personal data cross the Atlantic every day. If information concerns EU citizens, those data flows are governed by … Continue reading “Why 2020 will be make or break time for transatlantic personal data transfers”

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  • Dec 31, 2019
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

As public fears mount over online surveillance and lack of control, advertising industry gets privacy religion – sort of…

A new Pew Research Center survey confirms what readers of this blog already know: many people are deeply worried about the routine tracking of their activities online: A majority of Americans believe their online and offline activities are being tracked and monitored by companies and the government with some regularity. It is such a common … Continue reading “As public fears mount over online surveillance and lack of control, advertising industry gets privacy religion – sort of…”

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  • Nov 25, 2019
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

EU’s ePrivacy regulation is being subverted by publishers who want their “right” to use tracking cookies enshrined in law

Last year, Privacy News Online wrote about the important EU ePrivacy legislation. As that noted, it was moving through the EU’s legislative process slowly because of massive lobbying against the new law, which aims to regulate how metadata is gathered and used, and to limit how people are tracked online, for example using cookies. A … Continue reading “EU’s ePrivacy regulation is being subverted by publishers who want their “right” to use tracking cookies enshrined in law”

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  • Oct 4, 2019
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

Web sites have a problem after top EU court rules that pre-ticked checkboxes for tracking cookies aren’t valid for consent

Last week we wrote about two important judgments from the EU’s top court – the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU). It has just released another long-awaited ruling that is likely to have an even bigger impact on privacy and the Internet. It involves the use of pre-ticked checkboxes for allowing cookies. It’s … Continue reading “Web sites have a problem after top EU court rules that pre-ticked checkboxes for tracking cookies aren’t valid for consent”

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  • Sep 27, 2019
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

Top court says “right to be forgotten” doesn’t always apply outside EU – and orders search engines to manipulate results

One of the more controversial elements of EU data protection law is the so-called “right to be forgotten” (RTBF), which dates back to 2014. This allows EU citizens to request internet search engines such as Google to remove search results directly related to them. Despite its misleading name, they are not “forgotten”: the material that … Continue reading “Top court says “right to be forgotten” doesn’t always apply outside EU – and orders search engines to manipulate results”

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  • Jun 1, 2019
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

General Data Protection Regulation one year on: what has it done?

A year ago, arguably the most important event in the recent history of privacy occurred: the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) started to be enforced. To mark that anniversary Privacy News Online will look at what the GDPR has achieved in its first 12 months, and what is likely to happen next. The GDPR … Continue reading “General Data Protection Regulation one year on: what has it done?”

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Article 13: EU passes copyright directive which will lead to a more censored internet

The European Union (EU) has passed all articles, including Article 13 and Article 11, of the Copyright in the Digital Single Market Directive.  Article 13 of the copyright directive mandates that websites are responsible for keeping copyrighted materials off of their site – in the most absolute sense. Over the next two years, the directive … Continue reading “Article 13: EU passes copyright directive which will lead to a more censored internet”

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  • Dec 1, 2018
  • Glyn Moody
  • Android, Governments, News, Privacy,

Multiple threats from EU’s GDPR to today’s corporate surveillance and targeted advertising system

Eighteen months ago, Privacy News Online wrote about how pervasive corporate surveillance is threatening the privacy of everyone who uses the Internet. Nearly every move people make online is being tracked and recorded. This is not in order to spy on the public directly, but to create vast databases about people’s interests and habits, which … Continue reading “Multiple threats from EU’s GDPR to today’s corporate surveillance and targeted advertising system”

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  • Nov 10, 2018
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

AI-based lie detection system will screen travellers to EU for ‘biomarkers of deceit’

As the borders between nations have become increasingly sensitive from a political point of view, so the threats to privacy there have grown. Privacy News Online has already reported on the use of AI-based facial recognition systems as a way of tightening border controls. As software improves, and hardware becomes faster and cheaper, it’s likely … Continue reading “AI-based lie detection system will screen travellers to EU for ‘biomarkers of deceit’”

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