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Facial recognition: tech giants take a step back

Last week, a few major tech companies informed the public that they will not provide facial recognition software to law enforcement. These companies are concerned about the way in which their technology might be used. What happens when software that threatens our privacy falls into the hands of organization which we no longer trust? In general, being aware of tracking software causes a feeling … [Read more...]

Malwarebytes teams up with security vendors and advocacy groups to launch Coalition Against Stalkerware

Today, Malwarebytes is announcing its participation in a joint effort to stop invasive digital surveillance: the Coalition Against Stalkerware. For years, Malwarebytes has detected and warned users about the potentially dangerous capabilities of stalkerware, an invasive threat that can rob individuals of their expectation of, and right to, privacy. Just like the domestic abuse it can enable, … [Read more...]

CEOs offer their own view of a US data privacy law

Last week, the chief executives of more than 50 mid- and large-sized companies urged Congress to pass a national data privacy law to regulate how companies collect, use, and share Americans’ data. Buried deep within the chief executives’ recommendations for such a law, presented as a policy framework for guidance, was a convenient proposal: Private individuals should not be allowed to sue … [Read more...]

The lucrative business of Bitcoin sextortion scams

After a quiet period following a surge in late 2018 to early 2019, the online blackmail scheme known as sextortion scams are back on the radar and on the uptick. According to a report from Digital Shadows, a leading UK-based cybersecurity company that monitors potential threats against businesses, there are several resources available to embolden novice criminals to a life of extortion. These … [Read more...]

Changing California’s privacy law: A snapshot at the support and opposition

Last week, the corporate-backed, legislative battle against California privacy met a blockade, as one Senate committee voted down and negotiated changes to several bills that, as originally written, could have weakened the state’s data privacy law, the California Consumer Privacy Act. Though the bills’ authors have raked in thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from companies … [Read more...]

Consumers have few legal options for protecting privacy

There are no promises in the words, “We care about user privacy.” Yet, these words appear on privacy policy after privacy policy, serving as disingenuous banners to hide potentially invasive corporate practices, including clandestine data collection, sharing, and selling. This is no accident. It is a strategy. In the US, companies that break their own privacy policies can—and do—face … [Read more...]

Google’s Nest fiasco harms user trust and invades their privacy

Technology companies, lawmakers, privacy advocates, and everyday consumers likely disagree about exactly how a company should go about collecting user data. But, following a trust-shattering move by Google last month regarding its Nest Secure product, consensus on one issue has emerged: Companies shouldn’t ship products that can surreptitiously spy on users. Failing to disclose that a product can … [Read more...]