DNA: frightening government privacy invasion tool of tomorrow or beautiful source of personal art today?
Domains by Proxy is a fairly popular service run by GoDaddy that aims to protect your personal info from whois requests. The domains by proxy homepage has links to law enforcement and civil subpoena policies, making it sound like you actually have to do something deemed illegal by a judge or officer to get outed. One blogger found out something as simple as a letter from a local lawyer was enough to reveal all his personal details in a whois request, without ever being notified beforehand. Might be worth reading up on EFF's guide to anon blogging if you ever start a whistleblower site.
Google Maps now does satellite images which is pretty cool (zoom all the way in), and what everyone predicted they would do with the Keyhole software company they bought. The part that freaks me out is finding my own house with my own car in the driveway, taken last fall (by the looks of construction in the neighborhood). I guess it's time for all of us to have our Streisand moment and wonder when satellite imagery has gotten too good. [via]
The ACLU wants to protect your privacy from government electronic surveillance programs like Echelon and Carnivore. Their full page ad in today's NYT claims 4th amendment rights are being violated by the US government, which is overstepping their bounds, and nearly free of up-to-date laws. Is it to late or can anything be done to protect civilian electronic communication?
Do you use Hotmail for email? If so, it looks like Microsoft owns all your messages and can reprint or repurpose them however they like. I'd assume the ToS could be extended to cover any content on a passport-using website as well. Scary stuff, considering all the Hailstorm services on the way...
FTC ends investigation of DoubleClick and finds no evidence of wrongdoing. I don't know about you, but I feel cheated. Don't forget to opt out of their cookie-bending racket.
Western Union's site is down, as hackers have accessed their "secure" database. Western Union's only suggestion so far is to tell all customers to cancel their credit card accounts. Is anything really secure on the internet? Do you trust amazon to hold your credit card numbers, Wells Fargo to keep your checking account private, and Kozmo employees not to pilfer your credit card numbers for fun?
SiegeSoft is a company that makes an anonymous web browser for surfing sites without getting any cookies, without recording your IP address, and without leaving a trace of where you went on your browser. I don't know how much use this would be (besides, say, looking at porn sites at work or something), but the most amazing part of this is the programming was done by 15-year old and 16-year old kids, who are now worth at least $750,000.
So a few days ago, I went off on some resume sites going out and pilfering my resume off my personal site. Well, I opted out of passportaccess.com, and here is their response. My favorite part: "Once you post your resume or any sort of material on the internet it becomes public information and therefore, can be spread from site to site very quickly." Uh, excuse me? Since when did "public information" equal "copyright-free and we can do anything we want with it?"
If you use AltaVista's yellowpage listings, you may be letting Alexa know exactly where you live, where you're planning on flying, and who you talk to on the phone. This is so far beyond a simple breach of privacy. This is insane.
Mobiltrak is a company that can monitor what radio stations people are listening to in their cars. Privacy advocates say they're against this because the monitoring takes place without anyone's consent or knowledge, but I think they just don't want people knowing they really love Britney Spears and the Backstreet Boys.
Danger Will Robinson, Real knows what music you listen to! If you've ever used Real Jukebox, check out this article. Apparently, the client uploads your listening and recording choices along with your IDENTITY to RealNetwork's servers. Real knows every CD you've encoded and every file you've played. RealNetworks = Big Brother.