• Jun 12, 2020
  • Glyn Moody
  • News, Privacy, Programming, Security,

When the home is no data protection haven: addressing privacy threats from intimate relationships

Privacy is one of the key concerns of people using digital technology. Of course, this blog has been warning about threats in this area for years, but it’s common now to read about data protection issues in many mainstream, non-technical titles. That increased awareness is welcome, but it is often quite superficial, and limited to … Continue reading “When the home is no data protection haven: addressing privacy threats from intimate relationships”

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  • Feb 26, 2020
  • Glyn Moody
  • Privacy, Programming, Security,

The enemy within: welcome to the Internet of gaslighting

Two and a half years ago, this blog warned about the Internet of “listening, eavesdropping, spying things” that were starting to become more popular. Today, smart speakers are found in many homes, and people seem largely oblivious of the privacy issues. Beyond these obvious spies that many invite into their homes, there are the more … Continue reading “The enemy within: welcome to the Internet of gaslighting”

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  • Jan 22, 2020
  • Glyn Moody
  • News, Privacy, Programming, Security,

Can hardware ever be trusted? The Betrusted project aims to find out by going back to basics

As previous posts have noted, the Internet of Things is being widely embraced in the form of so-called “smart speakers” and other devices. That’s despite the fact that few of these hardware systems can be regarded as secure: leaks of personal data can and do occur in multiple ways. Mostly, that is because the software … Continue reading “Can hardware ever be trusted? The Betrusted project aims to find out by going back to basics”

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A million tiny eyes in the sky: how a new generation of nanosatellites pose a threat to privacy

Everyone knows that surveillance is ubiquitous – on the Internet, in the street, at work, at school, in our homes. What made that constant spying possible was the amazing advance of digital technology. Thanks to powerful computers and massive storage facilities, it is now possible to “collect it all“, as the NSA wanted, and to … Continue reading “A million tiny eyes in the sky: how a new generation of nanosatellites pose a threat to privacy”

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  • Nov 9, 2018
  • Glyn Moody
  • News, Privacy, Security,

Why surveillance is even worse for your privacy than you thought: three cautionary tales

Readers of this blog hardly need to be told that surveillance represents a grave threat to privacy. By its very nature, it seeks to know who we are and what we do, whether we wish that or not. But there is a secondary harm that surveillance brings – a collateral damage – as three recent … Continue reading “Why surveillance is even worse for your privacy than you thought: three cautionary tales”

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  • Sep 15, 2018
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, Networking, Privacy,

Here come connected vehicles and urban analytics: what do they mean for privacy?

Electric vehicles and driverless cars may get the headlines, but the real revolution on roads is happening elsewhere, silently and out of sight. For twenty years, more and more digital technology has been added to vehicles. Today, they have almost become computers that have wheels and engines. That’s been made possible in part by the … Continue reading “Here come connected vehicles and urban analytics: what do they mean for privacy?”

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When the threat is in your home: Online privacy, security and domestic violence

As digital citizens, we often think about how to secure our internet activity and communications from external sources, including Internet Service Providers, governments, and malicious hackers.  For some, including journalists and dissidents, maintaining privacy and security from third parties is an essential part of protecting their lives and liberty, and breaches can have dire consequences.  However, … Continue reading “When the threat is in your home: Online privacy, security and domestic violence”

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  • May 9, 2018
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy, Security,

Crypto backdoors are in the news again, and as bad for privacy as ever

VPNs are an indispensable part of online life, and they protect many aspects of privacy. But there’s a class of threats that VPNs can’t defend against: crypto backdoors, which allow even the strongest encryption to be bypassed. That’s why it’s important for everyone who cares about their privacy and security to be aware of any … Continue reading “Crypto backdoors are in the news again, and as bad for privacy as ever”

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  • Feb 5, 2018
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy, Programming, Security,

The real Strava heatmap story is not threats to national security, but about privacy and de-anonymization

At the end of January, Nathan Ruser posted a tweet about Strava, a Website and mobile app used to track athletic activity via GPS coordinates. It concerned Strava’s global heatmap: “the largest, richest, and most beautiful dataset of its kind. It is a visualization of Strava’s global network of athletes,” as the company puts it. … Continue reading “The real Strava heatmap story is not threats to national security, but about privacy and de-anonymization”

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Germany is dealing with children’s surveillance watches in the right way

The internet of things comes with all kinds of privacy worries, and one country in particular is keen to address them. Having earlier this year banned an internet-connected talking doll for its lack of proper security, Germany’s Bundesnetzagentur (Federal Network Agency, or BNA), has now turned its attention to smartwatches that are marketed for use … Continue reading “Germany is dealing with children’s surveillance watches in the right way”

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  • Aug 31, 2017
  • Glyn Moody
  • News, Privacy, Programming, Security,

Even encrypted data streams from the Internet of Things are leaking sensitive information; here’s what we can do

As the Internet of Things (IoT) begins to enter the mainstream, concerns about the impact such “smart” devices will have on users’ privacy are growing. Many of the problems are obvious, but so far largely anecdotal. That makes a new paper from four researchers at Princeton University particularly valuable, because they analyze in detail how … Continue reading “Even encrypted data streams from the Internet of Things are leaking sensitive information; here’s what we can do”

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  • Aug 25, 2017
  • Glyn Moody
  • Copyright, Governments, Privacy, Security,

Welcome to the Internet of listening, eavesdropping, spying things

There’s a new frontier for digital privacy: home devices that understand spoken commands. That’s impressive and convenient, but it comes with definite risks, as Rick Falkvinge pointed out earlier this week. The product sites of the main players in the so-called “smart speaker” sector – Amazon, Apple, and Google – offer plenty of upbeat advertising … Continue reading “Welcome to the Internet of listening, eavesdropping, spying things”

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  • Jun 20, 2016
  • Caleb Chen
  • Networking, News, Privacy, Security,

Can the previous owner of your security camera spy on you? Webcam privacy scare highlights Internet of Things security difficulties

Over the weekend, the security community heard rumors about a potential issue with the NETGEAR Internet of Things wireless security camera. A user reported to the privacy subreddit that after returning the device and not uninstalling the app or deleting an account, the user was still able to see camera footage from the new owner’s … Continue reading “Can the previous owner of your security camera spy on you? Webcam privacy scare highlights Internet of Things security difficulties”

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