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Be careful what you say online.

Be careful what you say online. At least if you're in the UK, where an anonymous poster to 2 message boards now faces charges of defamation after the courts ordered the disclosure of their identity. ISP Totalise used existing law to force Motley Fool to disclose the details of an anonymous poster to their message boards alleged to have made defamatory comments. Landmark case or storm in a teacup?
posted by Markb on Mar 23, 2001 - 3 comments

 

JunkBusters voices concerns of Amazon's new honor pay system...

JunkBusters voices concerns of Amazon's new honor pay system... an interesting link for all of us here, as we've noticed a proliferation of blogs/personal sites (including MeFi) using the system. Do you want Amazon to know you're a MetaFillistine? Comments?
posted by silusGROK on Mar 21, 2001 - 3 comments

Beyond the bar code:

Beyond the bar code: Tags on retail products will send radio signals to their manufacturers, collecting information about consumer habits -- and raising privacy concerns. Radio tag technology is already here, used in fields such in livestock, freight-train cargo and highway tolls. The only barrier to widespread use is consumer products is price. When they can be made for a penny, expect to see them everywhere. From the March issue of MIT Technology Review.
posted by jhiggy on Feb 20, 2001 - 13 comments

The Privacy Space

The Privacy Space In every MeFi thread about personal privacy in the digital age, the comment inevitably arises: "You already have zero privacy. Get over it." The article even quotes it. But someone else in the article says, "The idea that technology and privacy are intrinsically opposed is false." Great article (from a non-techie standpoint) on the coming promises of privacy tech.
posted by Skot on Feb 15, 2001 - 4 comments

Network Solutions sells out.

Network Solutions sells out. The once-monopoly has decided to pool all their domain name registration information and sell it to the spammers of the world. From their marketing website, "Taking advantage of our position as a market leader, we have organized our pool of over 15 million registered domain names into a customer database of over 5 million unique customers. Our data service offers access to the key decision-makers behind millions of leading Web businesses."

True, there is a privacy policy, and you can try and protect yourself following their instructions, but it would seem that once the cat's out of the bag... And, what's to keep someone from purchasing the database of email addresses, fax numbers, telephone numbers, and addresses and selling them off to someone else?
posted by warhol on Feb 15, 2001 - 35 comments

We'll forget it for you wholesale.

We'll forget it for you wholesale. Privacy portal company Safe Web sells powerful anonymizing software to the CIA. Which can then use it to spy on ? As well as for protecting their agents, of course . . . ;]
posted by aflakete on Feb 12, 2001 - 1 comment

I had a nightmare once that Fidel Castro hacked into my PC. Is this nightmare now a reality? Or is this just more goofy and dangerous cyberwar hype?
posted by tranquileye on Feb 9, 2001 - 5 comments

During the Super Bowl fans were subjucted to a "computerized police lineup"

During the Super Bowl fans were subjucted to a "computerized police lineup" as they were entering Raymond James Stadium. According to law enforcement officials, it was used to "scan the crowd for pickpockets and terrorists..." Now the ACLU has demanded that public hearings about its use be held in Tampa. Were local officials using a legitimate tool of law enforcement or were they acting like Big Brother?
posted by Bag Man on Feb 1, 2001 - 26 comments

FTC ends investigation of DoubleClick

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.
posted by mathowie on Jan 23, 2001 - 16 comments

Linux no longer foolproof?

Linux no longer foolproof? And a smile descened upon Redmond...
posted by mecawilson on Jan 22, 2001 - 21 comments

It's uncertain how important online privacy is to

It's uncertain how important online privacy is to President-elect George W. Bush. He indicated a general support for online privacy laws during the presidential campaign without indicating whether he leaned more toward industry self-regulation, technological solutions, legislative solutions, or some combination. A working document drafted by the Bush transition team on "technology proposals" echoes the same undefined support for online privacy. One analyst thinks his transition-appointments indicate a reference for industry self-regulation.
posted by jhiggy on Jan 19, 2001 - 0 comments

Contact information viewable with Alexa toolbar?

Contact information viewable with Alexa toolbar? Disturbing. Anyone with the Alexa toolbar installed can apparently see your address and telephone number, along with helpful information like maps to your home. This information is in the public record, but providing it instantly can only lead to more stalking incidents. You may want to follow Leia's advice and visit Alexa.com's site editor to make sure you're protected.
posted by jmcnally on Jan 11, 2001 - 16 comments

Privacy makes strides online.

Privacy makes strides online. I'm actually pretty amazed by the ruling - while I think this is a great thing, could it be used for evil?
posted by rich on Jan 9, 2001 - 3 comments

Privacy is an endangered species at work.

Privacy is an endangered species at work. Not that this is a surprise... but I'm wondering. Will we see a wave of MIS professionals who become conscientious objectors on this topic, similar to the responses engendered by 'defense' projects in the early days of computing?
posted by baylink on Jan 3, 2001 - 4 comments

Has anyone tried and tested Safe Web? Seems a lot simpler and easier (not to mention cheaper) than Anonymizer. Though you have to enter each address, so it's not for people wanting anonymity all the time. . .
posted by aflakete on Dec 20, 2000 - 6 comments

Judiciary Seeks Public Comment on Internet Access to Court Documents

Judiciary Seeks Public Comment on Internet Access to Court Documents "As federal courts make the transition from paper to electronic case files, the Judicial Conference of the United States is studying the privacy and security implications of vastly wider public access to court documents via the Internet. Public comment is sought."

Further down they tell you that it'll cost 7 cents a page, even online. From the same folks who waited years to put up Supreme Court dockets and opinions on the official site.
posted by thescoop on Nov 15, 2000 - 6 comments


ELECTION: A note of sanity on voting systems

ELECTION: A note of sanity on voting systems from Lauren Weinstein's well-worth reading Privacy Digest; it notes the inherent weak spots in all voting tally systems, and compares manual to machine and electronic ones.
posted by baylink on Nov 11, 2000 - 3 comments

Excellent, in-depth analysis

Excellent, in-depth analysis of "spyware" used by insidious and horrible software entities such as RealPlayer. Written by my hero and yours, Steve Gibson.
posted by Succa on Oct 16, 2000 - 14 comments

Invasion of privacy may be offset by cheaper insurance

Invasion of privacy may be offset by cheaper insurance If this doesn't scare the hell out of you you don't drive a car.

Sure it is an excellent idea for fleet management and for personal security.

But do we really want insurance companies to know everything about our driving habits and whereabouts? Think about it. They can dictate your rate based on your speed, and ultimately can base your claim on data collected while you were driving. Big insurance is one of the most financial powerful forces out there, next to big tobacco. They are already invasive, requiring blood samples and medicals for life policies. Imagine if they could collect the intimate details of our daily lives.
posted by daddyray on Sep 24, 2000 - 12 comments

Another innovation from Digital Convergence:

Another innovation from Digital Convergence:
In addition to having a pretty much useless product, CueCat's product-release-to-privacy-violation rate is spectacular! To quote their email:

Dear :CueCat member,
We've been alerted to a security breach in our system that may have exposed certain members' names and email addresses. As one of the members who may be susceptible, we want to explain to you how you may be affected and what we are doing to rectify the situation. (more...)
posted by anildash on Sep 17, 2000 - 1 comment

Western Union's site

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?
posted by mathowie on Sep 10, 2000 - 8 comments

Does Amazon deserve my statistics?

Does Amazon deserve my statistics? I knew this was coming but I was hoping that it would all turn out for the better and Amazon would come to their senses. So the question is, are Wish Lists worth my data? Will ownership of my spending habits, phone number, address, credit card, browsing habits, and email address become the new price for using the Internet as a consumer?
posted by Brilliantcrank on Sep 5, 2000 - 3 comments

Amazon's new privacy policy

Amazon's new privacy policy makes any information you give them a saleable asset. I could have sworn that I saw a link to Amazon's new policy here on MeFi, but now I can't find it. Anyway, when I saw the link my first question was how the old and new policies differed. Then a friend pointed me at this CNNfn article. Whaddy think? Gives me the creeps...
posted by silusGROK on Sep 4, 2000 - 4 comments

"Keeping track of the kids is easy

"Keeping track of the kids is easy in this smart kidswear concept which incorporates GPS-driven locators and miniature camera's allowing parents to ensure they're safe, while a computer game console worn on the sleeve keeps the kids happy." As a parent, I would pay any price to avoid actually watching or playing with my child. Where do I order?
posted by rcade on Aug 16, 2000 - 20 comments

Wish I'd Said That Dept.

Wish I'd Said That Dept.
If the privacy-invaders are going to collect so much information on me, why can't they seem to USE IT?
posted by wendell on Jul 21, 2000 - 4 comments

It is time for Louis Freeh to lose his job.

It is time for Louis Freeh to lose his job. Carnivore, indeed. This has got to stop.
posted by baylink on Jul 16, 2000 - 10 comments

Fresh net-privacy hell.

Fresh net-privacy hell.
posted by aflakete on Jul 11, 2000 - 12 comments

"Netscape is using SmartDownload to eavesdrop,"

"Netscape is using SmartDownload to eavesdrop," I thought Microsoft was the ONLY evil!
posted by Mick on Jul 6, 2000 - 6 comments

Oh, now this is just great.

Oh, now this is just great. Going into bankrupcy, the most valuable property that a lot of failed dot-coms have is all the information they've collected about their customers in the mean time, like names and addresses and phone numbers and credit card numbers and purchasing patterns and loads of other stuff. In order to appease creditors, three of them are actively trying to sell off their databases right now. What makes that interesting is that they had previously promised never to reveal that information to anyone.
posted by Steven Den Beste on Jun 29, 2000 - 10 comments

Does it bug anyone else

Does it bug anyone else that if you have a MetaFilter account with cookies enabled, it automatically enters your password (which can be read in view source)???
Personally I think this is a very bad thing, as I've visited metafilter at the library a few times..
posted by Bane on Jun 28, 2000 - 15 comments

how in the world did this article, which basically repremands readers from making assumptions about and being intrusive into the private lives of memoirists, end by propositioning dave eggers? i mean really, wtf? the author of the piece, lorri gottlieb, ought to be ashamed of herself.
posted by palegirl on Jun 16, 2000 - 9 comments

Identity swapping makes life relative

Identity swapping makes life relative

Do any of you do the Safeway Card Shuffle? I think I probably would, but then again the level of tracking where I live is currently negligible, so it isn't yet an issue. How about where you live?

And how does this tie in to online privacy, like advertising cookies and programs like RealPlayer and GoZilla that track and report where you've been and what you've been doing?
posted by lia on Jun 8, 2000 - 8 comments

Bye bye online privacy

Bye bye online privacy The RIP Bill goes through the Lords this week. Watch as the UK's ISPs and e-commerce ventures up sticks to the US and Ireland. John Naughton has been providing a commentary on its passage (he's well-briefed by the good people at STAND) and how it's such an insidious piece of work.
posted by holgate on Jun 4, 2000 - 1 comment

This information

This information was supposed to be private, wasn't it?
posted by thirteen on May 29, 2000 - 12 comments

"Real" has done it again.

"Real" has done it again. For the third time they've embedded surreptitious monitoring capability into one of their programs.

"Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me." What do we do for the third time? (A tactical nuke seems indicated.)
posted by Steven Den Beste on May 22, 2000 - 16 comments

Say goodbye to personal liberty

Say goodbye to personal liberty if this bill gets passed. A bill aimed at fighting drugs on and off line will limit your freedom of speech, allow police to enter your house with a warrant but not telling you what it's for. One step closer to the Police state. And one heck of a supreme court case in the wings.
posted by eljuanbobo on May 9, 2000 - 3 comments

What a perfect followup...

What a perfect followup... I had just been going to post the NYTimes Magazine story on privacy in the Internet age, when I noted the SDB story I'd be following.
posted by baylink on May 3, 2000 - 0 comments

Never, NEVER, NEVER tell someone

Never, NEVER, NEVER tell someone "Sure, you can use my computer while I'm on vacation!"
posted by Steven Den Beste on May 3, 2000 - 22 comments

A new child privacy law is in effect

A new child privacy law is in effect, what do you think?
posted by tiaka on Apr 21, 2000 - 1 comment

Privacy? What's that? We all know that most of the new 'free' Internet Access Providers pay the bills by selling ads that you're forced to read, and some of them are selling information about *you* to other people. Well, along comes Predictive Networks, who are going to sell information about your surfing even if you're paying the freight. Be Afraid. Be Very Afraid.
[ from Lauren Weinstein's Privacy Digest ]
posted by baylink on Apr 21, 2000 - 2 comments

Forget about privacy on the net.

Forget about privacy on the net. If you thought that being tracked by Doubleclick was a grosse invasion of privacy, imagine what it would be like if your employer was given open access to your home computer.
posted by Ms Snit on Mar 22, 2000 - 0 comments

I'll believe this

I'll believe this when DoubleClick changes their darn policy. Sure, they've also recently said they'll postpone their new identifying database. How about to "never"?
posted by mrmorgan on Mar 8, 2000 - 0 comments

SiegeSoft

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.
posted by mathowie on Mar 5, 2000 - 0 comments

Just when you thought it was safe to go back on the web.

Just when you thought it was safe to go back on the web. Now it turns out that the damned ad companies can inadvertantly learn a LOT about you that you didn't realize you were telling them.

You know, I'm really glad I use AtGuard and have closed off DoubleClick and FocaLink and all those other guys in my firewall by blocking their IPs. (It's now part of the Norton Internet Security 2000 package, and I recommend it highly.)

From me, they learn nothing because they never even see the requests.
posted by Steven Den Beste on Mar 2, 2000 - 17 comments


Yahoo! is being sued. The plaintiffs claim that Yahoo!'s use of cookies violates Texas anti-stalking laws.
posted by tdecius on Feb 14, 2000 - 3 comments

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?"
posted by mathowie on Feb 10, 2000 - 5 comments

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.
posted by mathowie on Feb 9, 2000 - 1 comment

Mobiltrak

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.
posted by mathowie on Jan 31, 2000 - 0 comments

Net advertising behemoth DoubleClick has been quietly buying up marketing databases to allow it to match up your DoubleClick cookie with your name and address. Time to opt out.
posted by jjg on Jan 25, 2000 - 5 comments

Danger Will Robinson, Real knows what music you listen to!

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.
posted by mathowie on Nov 1, 1999 - 1 comment

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