Privacy News Update, August 2018

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Local (PNW)

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8/31: Apple to require privacy policy on all apps

8/31: Spies still super upset they can’t get at your encrypted comms data

8/31: U.S. Government Claims China Using LinkedIn to Recruit Spies in America

8/31: TSA + CBP test new facial recognition tech & computed tomography scanners at LAX

8/31: Siri will show you your passwords if you ask

8/31: Apple will soon require all App Store apps to have a privacy policy

8/31: Are targeted ads stalking you? Here’s how to make them stop.

8/30: Mozilla changes Firefox policy from ‘do not track’ to ‘will not track’

8/30: Google reportedly bought Mastercard data to link online ads with offline purchases

8/30: Firefox’s New Browser Will Keep Brands From Stalking You

8/30: Firefox to block some technology that tracks you on the web

8/29: WSJ: Yahoo plans to scan users’ messages for data to sell to advertisers

8/28: Judge tosses suit against Southwest Airlines on fingerprints

8/28: How to opt out of Yahoo Mail’s invasive data scanning

8/28: Yahoo Mail scans your inbox for receipts, but its competitors don’t

8/28: Yahoo Mail is still scanning your emails for data to sell to advertisers

8/28: Cities Across The Country Are Installing “Free” Spying Smart City Kiosks

8/27: Chicago’s Electronic Surveillance of Food Trucks Is Ridiculous—and Probably Unconstitutional

8/27: Legal Circular Logic Prevails Regarding Utility Smart Meters In-home Searches

8/26: If No One Comes to Read Your Utility Meters, You Probably Have Problematic “Smart” Meters. Documentary “Take Back Your Power 2017,” Now Available for Free Viewing

8/24: Android data slurping measured and monitored

8/24: Welcome To The Minority Report: Thousands Of Stores Plan Facial Recognition Use For Anti-Theft

8/23: Venmo Considers Making It Harder to See What Other People Are Buying

8/22: Excuses, Excuses: Duke Energy on Their Smart Meters Catching Fire, Causing Appliances to Malfunction and Break, etc.

8/22: Android ‘Triout’ spyware records calls, sends photos and text messages to attackers

8/22: Facebook will pull its data-collecting VPN app from the App Store over privacy concerns

8/22: Smart meters could let government peek into your home, court warns

8/21: Big Tech turns saboteur to cripple new California privacy law in private

8/20: Comfortably numb: Americans are less worried about online security

8/20: 32,000 smart homes can be easily hacked due to misconfigured MQTT servers

8/20: Google sued over tracking user location amid privacy concerns

8/20: Skype’s promised end-to-end encryption finally arrives. Here’s how to use it

8/20: Before Using Birth Control Apps, Consider Your Privacy

8/20: LinkedIn Will Allow Economics Researchers to Mine Its Data

8/20: How’s that encryption coming, buddy? DNS requests routinely spied on, boffins claim

8/17: Most staffers expect bosses to snoop on them, say unions

8/17: I’ll be watching you

8/17: Schools Are Mining Students’ Social Media Posts for Signs of Trouble

8/16: Pokemon Go boosts child privacy with new Niantic Kids login

8/16: APNewsBreak: Google clarifies location-tracking policy

8/15: Vegas hotel room checks raise privacy, safety concerns at Def Con, Black Hat

8/15: Saint Louis University is placing 2,300 Echo Dots in student living spaces

8/14: Your smart air conditioner could help bring down the power grid

8/13: Google Tracks You Even If Location History’s Off. Here’s How to Stop It

8/13: How to find and delete Google’s tracking of your devices

8/13: Google Tracks Location Data Even When Users Turn Service Off, AP Report Finds

8/12: The Creative Ways Your Boss Is Spying on You

8/12: Hackers Found a (Not-So-Easy) Way to Make the Amazon Echo a Spy Bug

8/12: Hacking pacemakers, insulin pumps and patients’ vital signs in real time

8/11: Police Bodycams Can Be Hacked to Doctor Footage

8/9: Hey, roomie, I’m Alexa: Saint Louis University putting 2,300 Amazon Echo Dots in student housing

8/9: America’s top maker of cop body cameras says facial-recog AI isn’t safe

8/8: Smart Meters Raise Health, Privacy and Constitutional Concerns

8/8: Axon CEO Says Face Recognition Isn’t Accurate Enough for Body Cams Yet

8/7: Facebook: Hey Can We Pretty Please Maybe Have Lots of Your Banking Information Too?

8/6: Is Apple Really Your Privacy Hero?

8/6: Facebook to banks: give us our users’ financial data and we’ll let them bank with Facebook

8/5: Simple Steps to Protect Yourself on Public Wi-Fi

8/3: Cashing in on DNA: race on to unlock value in genetic data

8/3: DNA-testing companies like 23andMe sell your genetic data to drugmakers and other Silicon Valley startups

8/3: 23andMe’s Pharma Deals Have Been the Plan All Along

8/2: ‘Glaring Gap’ Seen in DNA Privacy Pledges by 23andMe, Ancestry

8/1: A collaboration between Google’s secretive life-extension spinoff and popular genetics company Ancestry has quietly ended

8/1: Sennheiser wants you to slap a giant wireless mic on your kids to record precious moments

8/1: Lawsuit: Sweeping Biometric Data Collection Keeps Immigrant Children Locked Up Longer

7/31: Facebook Shuts Off Access To User Data For Hundreds of Thousands of Apps

7/26: Track-suits: Tommy Hilfiger’s creepy new clothes know how much you wear them

7/26: The Ordinary License Plate’s Days May Be Numbered

7/17: Health Insurers Are Vacuuming Up Details About You — And It Could Raise Your Rates


Local (PNW):

8/6: Seattle City Council adopts nation’s strongest law to protect utility customer personal data

8/3: Property Tax Levy for Law Enforcement Fingerprinting System Could Lead to Facial Recognition

8/2: Concerns over facial recognition endanger a boring old levy


Govt (Fed):

8/24: Muslim American says US border agents seized her iPhone without explanation

8/24: Woman Sues Border Agents to Make Them Return Data They Seized From Her Phone

8/24: New facial recognition tech at US airport leads to first arrest

8/23: State Background Checks for Daycare Providers Part of Growing Federal Biometric Surveillance System

8/21: FBI Tried To Get Google To Turn Over Identifying Info On Hundreds Of Phone Owners

8/17: US reportedly pressuring Facebook to break Messenger’s encryption over MS-13 investigation

8/17: Privacy group tells FTC Google tracking violated 2011 order
8/16: Ajit Pai Knew FCC Cyberattack Was Fake for Seven Months but Kept Quiet

8/15: Omarosa-Trump Tapes Could Mean ‘Open Season on Privacy Rights’ in the Workplace, Attorneys Say (paywall)

8/9: Apple responds to Congress’ letter on data security and privacy

8/6: Battle lines drawn over US mass surveillance as senators probe NSA’s bonfire of phone records

8/1: Inspector General Says NSA Still Hasn’t Implemented Its Post-Snowden Internal Security Measures

7/31: U.S. Lawmakers Call for Investigation Into Use and Abuse of Face Recognition Tech

7/20: Senate Democrat Floats First Serious Proposals For Regulating Big Tech

7/28: Secret Quiet Skies surveillance program tracks citizens not suspected of wrongdoing

7/22: Open Gov’t Advocates Fear that Private Messaging Apps Are Being Misused by Public Officials To Conduct Business in Secret

6/29: NSA: Sorry, Sorry, Trying to Delete


Govt (States & Cities):

8/31: Why California’s Privacy Law Won’t Hurt Facebook or Google

8/29: The Fight Over California’s Privacy Bill Has Only Just Begun

8/27: Here’s How California Became The Most Secretive State on Police Misconduct

8/24: Despite California privacy law, marketers are still scheming to snatch personal data

8/24: Airbnb Sues New York City to Block User-Data Bill Over Privacy

8/22: California Committee Kills Bill to Help End Unchecked Police Surveillance

8/14: Security flaws in police body cameras open the devices to attack

8/3: How San Jose Airport uses facial recognition to speed lines

7/26: Police Are Seeking More Digital Evidence From Tech Companies


Policy & Opinion:

8/31: Full Body Searches shouldn’t be the price to ride Metro

8/29: How should we regulate facial recognition?

8/27: The Reach—and Limits—of Surveillance Capitalism

8/27: Responding to the “Nothing to Hide” Argument in Support of Mass Surveillance

8/26: Sunday in the Park with George Orwell

8/23: Welcome to the Age of Privacy Nihilism

8/21: Dear Conservatives, Police are Part of the Government Too

8/14: Why you need a better handle on the WhatsApp, Signal and Telegram apps

8/13: Taking on a Supporter of the Surveillance State

8/6: On the cruelty of ankle-monitors

8/6: Facebook Not Trustworthy: Om Malik



8/31: How Israel Spies on US Citizens

8/28: Philippines Plans ID System to Get Its Poorest Residents on the Map

8/24: Wickr may have a workaround for Russia’s crackdown on encrypted chat

8/23: Chinese Surveillance State Is Basically The US Surveillance Apparatus Minus The Constitutional Rights

8/22: wins pals with pledge not to keep hold of innocents’ mugshots and biometric data

8/15: London fuzz to get 600 more mobile fingerprint scanners

8/15: Here’s what Toronto’s smart neighborhood might actually look like

8/14: When’s a backdoor not a backdoor? When the Oz government says it isn’t

8/3: Probe Brit police phone-peeking plans, privacy peeps plead

8/2: China launches high-tech bird drones to watch over its citizens

8/2: ploughs cash into creaky police technology

8/1: Oz government offers privacy concessions on MyHealth Record

7/30: Court allows police to reveal acquittals during record checks (UK)

7/27: Canadian Malls Secretly Tracked Shoppers’ Age, Gender Using Facial Recognition Technology

7/27: Canada using DNA, ancestry websites to investigate migrants

7/24: WhatsApp Balks at India’s Demand To Break Encryption

7/24: GCHQ Spy Agency Given Illegal Access To Citizens’ Data



8/29: This Startup Is Building a Market to Help You Sell Your DNA Data

8/23: Wickr gets slicker with fresh network tricker: Privacy-protecting domain fronting alternative emerges

8/15: Mozilla-endorsed security plug-in accused of tracking users

8/12: Companies use seat sensors, infrared cameras to design new office space

8/10: Hackable Touchscreens Could Spy on Hotel Rooms and Meetings

8/9: The Sensors That Power Smart Cities Are a Hacker’s Dream

8/6: Consumer Reports now evaluates products’ security and privacy



8/28: Tenther Tuesday Episode 41: News from the Nullification Movement

8/14: Facebook, Cambridge Analytica and your privacy (The 3:59, Ep. 442)

8/10: Talking the hard questions of privacy and freedom with the Yale Privacy Lab podcast

8/9: Lions of Liberty Interview: Battling the Surveillance State

8/1: Interview: Defying the Surveillance State, Locally

7/31: Tenther Tuesday Episode 39: The Stalker Surveillance State is Getting More Aggressive

Privacy News Update, Aug-Sept 2016


9/29: Police surveillance: The US city that beat Big Brother

9/29: Complaints against cops down 93% thanks to bodycams – study

9/28: AP: Across US, police officers abuse confidential databases

9/22: I have found a secret tunnel that runs underneath the phone companies and emerges in paradise

9/21: Allo, privacy, are you there? Google keeps your messages forever

9/19: How Police Trace Cellphones in IEDs Like the Ones in NYC

9/12: Delete Google Maps? Go ahead, says Google, we’ll still track you

9/12: The Strange Way That People Perceive Privacy Online

9/11: When biometrics meets the boss: How some employee badges measure performance – and more

9/6: How surveillance capitalism tracks you without cookies

9/2: US cities promise to crack down on police surveillance tech

9/2: NBA’s Golden State Warriors sued for ‘mic snooping’ mobile app

9/1: Wall Street’s Next Frontier Is Hacking Into Emotions of Traders – Startups wielding sensors and algorithms promise a new era of surveillance.

9/1: British Defense Giant Offers Tactical Spy Trash Cans to American Cops

8/31: Your device’s light sensor may betray your privacy

8/31: FBI Director wants ‘adult conversation’ about backdooring encryption – How about f**k off – is that adult enough?

8/23: Privacy advocates rail against US Homeland Security’s Twitter, Facebook snooping

8/19: Hackers Trick Facial-Recognition Logins With Photos From Facebook (What Else?)

8/12: Boffins’ blur-busting face recognition can ID you with one bad photo

8/10: A New Wireless Hack Can Unlock 100 Million Volkswagens

8/1: The Jeep Hackers Are Back to Prove Car Hacking Can Get Much Worse

7/21: How car insurance companies spy on your mileage



9/30: Washington secretary of state calls for federal-level IDs to protect votes

9/28: As Seattle police embrace tech tools, privacy advocates raise concerns

9/22: Cops are raiding the homes of innocent people based only on IP addresses

9/20: Hot Button: Readers think Obama should pardon Edward Snowden (Letters to the Editor)

9/15: The ‘smart’ home products people are actually using (photos)

6/2: Seattle mayor proposes plan for acoustic gunshot detection technology to curb violence



9/20: Official policy on autonomous vehicles shows federal government wants to come along for the ride

9/16: Small, low flying drones the target of newfangled DARPA defense system

9/14: Launch of campaign to pardon Edward Snowden focuses on protecting whistleblowers

9/14: New state law expands tenant privacy in eviction suits (PA)

9/13: U.S. ‘quietly’ asking Silicon Valley for help accessing encrypted communications

9/13: Trump Just Said He Wouldn’t Spy on Americans. Here Are 4 Times He Vowed to Do So.

9/12: Leaked Stingray manual shows how easy warrantless mass surveillance can be!

9/12: AI Can Recognize Your Face Even If You’re Pixelated

9/4: How Baltimore Became America’s Laboratory for Spy Tech

9/2: Florida privacy law adds breach notification and strengthens compliance

9/2: We want GCHQ-style spy powers to hack cybercrims, say police (UK)

8/31: Encryption: FBI building fresh case for access to electronic devices

8/24: Just a little FYI: Small town ISPs want out of FCC privacy rules

8/24: Privacy officer finally appointed (NY State Dept. of Education)

8/16: Baltimore cops accused of violating FCC rules with Stingrays

8/16: Illinois AG orders emails disclosed, refuels privacy debate

8/2: White House loves drones

8/2: Judge blasts FBI for bugging courthouse, throws out 200 hours of recordings

7/15: Opt-out fees for Oklahoma smart meters approved

7/14: Big Privacy Ruling Says Feds Can’t Grab Data Abroad With a Warrant

7/12: North Carolina AG says body camera law needs fixing

7/12: Senator Franken is freaked out by Pokémon Go’s privacy practices

7/11: North Carolina holds police camera videos from public record

6/24: DHS wants to snoop on travelers’ Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts



9/28: Obamacare Big Brother-ism Is Far Worse Than ‘Poking Around Our Libraries’

9/21: A Step in the Right Direction on Data Privacy

9/20: As a source and patriot, Snowden deserves pardon: Washington Post opinion

9/19: Op-Ed Why President Obama should pardon Edward Snowden

9/18: Op-ed: Why Obama should pardon Edward Snowden

9/15: Congressional report slams NSA leaker Edward Snowden

9/14: Edward Snowden sets out the moral case for a pardon from Obama

9/14: Google’s become an obsessive stalker and you can’t get a restraining order

9/8: Microsoft’s tin ear for privacy

9/4: The Privacy Wars Are About to Get a Whole Lot Worse

9/1: There is No Encryption Debate

8/2: Do You Consent? Four Ways to Strengthen Digital Privacy



9/27: German Regulators Ban Facebook From Collecting WhatsApp Data

9/16: World’s largest internet exchange sues Germany over mass surveillance

9/16: Xiaomi phones are pre-backdoored; your apps can be silently overwritten (China)

9/15: Britain exploring national internet filter, official says (UK)

9/14: GCHQ’s ‘Great British Firewall’ raises serious concern – privacy groups (UK)

9/9: Brit spies and chums slurped 750k+ bits of info on you last year

9/9: UK police listened in to 9 percent more calls last year

8/24: French, German ministers demand new encryption backdoor law

8/10: Vancouver police confirm use of ‘stingray’ surveillance technology (Canada)

8/9: Thai telcoms regulator wants tourists to use location-tracking SIMs

8/6: Privacy warriors drag GCHQ into Euro human rights court over blanket spying, hacking (UK)

8/6: BBC detector vans are back to spy on your home Wi-Fi – if you can believe it (UK)

8/3: Oz stats bureau deploys a bot to harvest Twitter IDs (Oz)

7/29: Russia Finalizes Procedures for Collecting Encryption Keys

7/26: Europe gives Privacy Shield one year to work

7/26: European privacy body slams shut backdoors everywhere

6/14: Canada’s Surveillance Crisis Now Hiding In Plain Sight

6/10: Why the Privacy Commissioner Doesn’t Need Legal Reforms To Require Transparency Reports (Canada)



9/30: Q&A: The data your car collects and who can use it

9/28: Google, Dropbox the latest US tech giants to sign up to the Privacy Shield

9/28: Microsoft hails pointless Privacy Shield status for its cloud services

9/23: Audi wants its connected cars to improve the breed

9/20: Hackers Activate Tesla’s Brakes From Miles Away

9/19: Performance, management and privacy issues stymie SSL inspections, and the bad guys know it

9/19: Volkswagen establishes cybersecurity joint venture

9/16: Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey joins push to #PardonSnowden

9/8: Security an afterthought in connected home, wearable devices

9/6: How to control your privacy in Chromebooks vs. Windows 10

8/29: Woman shoots drone: “It hovered for a second and I blasted it to smithereens.”

8/26: How to keep Facebook from mining your WhatsApp data

8/24: All the Ways Your Wi-Fi Router Can Spy on You

8/18: Paranoid iPhone owners used a privacy tool that made them hackable

8/18: Windows 10 needs proper privacy portal, says EFF

8/16: Privacy lawsuit over Gmail will move forward

8/10: Copperhead OS: The startup that wants to solve Android’s woeful security

8/8: DARPA wants to build very low frequency wireless systems

8/6: Web companies can track you — and price-gouge you — based on your battery life

8/5: Comcast wants to charge you more for better privacy

7/26: Anti-theft kill switches in smartphones just got a little less creepy

7/21: Snowden Designs a Device to Warn if Your iPhone’s Radios Are Snitching

7/20: Now You Can Hide Your Smart Home on the Darknet

7/8: Facebook rolls out end-to-end encryption for Messenger app

7/2: Hacker Lexicon: What Is Full Disk Encryption?

6/1 Googling yourself will lead to personal privacy controls



9/26: Online Trackers Follow Our Digital Shadow By ‘Fingerprinting’ Browsers, Devices

9/17: A Former NSA Deputy Director Weighs In On ‘Snowden’

9/14: Edward Snowden Really Needs Oliver Stone’s Hero Movie Right Now

9/2: On the Wire Podcast: Bruce Schneier

8/30: Orwell was right: Oliver Stone on what makes Snowden exciting

7/15: How the Real Hackers Behind Mr. Robot Get It So Right

Privacy News Update, 11-3-15



11/2015:  If You’re Not Paranoid, You’re Crazy

10/27:  The Senate just passed a bill that could force tech companies to share your private messages with the government

10/26:  Apple is refusing to unlock an iPhone 5s for US law enforcement

10/25:  Where there is no police accountability, justice is tenuous….

10/24:  Federal judge dismisses Wikimedia lawsuit against NSA mass surveillance program

10/20:  ‘Your Genome Isn’t Really Secret,’ Says Google Ventures’s Bill Maris

10/19:  How one Austrian student took on American tech companies over privacy — and won

10/19:  License Plate Reader Companies Lose Case Seeking To Have Anti-ALPR Law Declared Unconstitutional

10/15:  How the NSA can break trillions of encrypted Web and VPN connections

10/14:  Entrepreneur donates $1 million to fight anti-terror law C-51

10/13:  Verizon Is Watching: Company Expands Data-Tracking Program

10/13:  No, Hillary, Edward Snowden Didn’t Have Whistleblower Protections

10/13:  DARPA wants vanishing drones

10/11:  Tech Firms Laud Obama’s Retreat on Encrypted-Data Law

10/9:  California Approves A Sweeping Digital Privacy Law

10/8:  Pittsburgh City Council seeks to ban drones from city parks

10/7:  Private database lets police skirt license plate data limits

10/7:  The Suit You Will Need to Avoid Surveillance in the Future

10/7:  Jimmy Wales and Former NSA Chief Ridicule Government Plans To Ban Encryption

10/7:  Ask Slashdot: Where Can I Find “Nuts and Bolts” Info On Cookies & Tracking Mechanisms?

10/6:  Google defends Android Auto’s data collection after critical Motor Trend report

10/5:  Snowden: I’d go to prison to return to US

10/2:  Homeland Security seizes Stockton mayor’s electronics at SFO

10/1:  Hidden GPS devices to track suspects raise legal concerns

10/1:  RFID chips in driver’s licenses. What could go wrong?

10/1:  Chip And PIN Meets Facial Recognition: Chipping Away At Privacy, Pinning You Down In A Database

9/30:  Microsoft ‘Addresses’ Windows 10 Privacy Concerns By Simply Not Mentioning Most Of Them

9/29:  FBI and DEA Under Review For Misuse of NSA Mass Surveillance Data

9/29:  How the FBI Hacks Around Encryption

9/29:  Edward Snowden joins Twitter, immediately gets more followers than NSA

9/28:  Covert Electronic Surveillance Prompts Calls for Australian ISPs Not Ready For Mandatory Data Retention Transparency

9/26:  America’s most secretive court invites its first outsider

9/24:  Police Program Aims to Pinpoint Those Most Likely to Commit Crimes

9/24:  Postal Service Failed to Protect Personal Data in Mail Surveillance, Report Says

9/24:  Snowden Treaty Launched: Effort To Get Countries To End Mass Surveillance

9/21:  The Other Big Brother

9/17:  Committee vote on police heat sensors signals cooperation between police, privacy activists

9/16:  Library’s Tor relay—which had been pulled after feds noticed—now restored

9/11:  Citi analysts have an idea they call ‘the Feed,’ and it could revolutionize the insurance industry

9/11:  How the Government Surveils Cellphones: A Primer

9/11:  Spy Industry Leaders Befuddled Over ‘Deep Cynicism’ of American Public

9/9:  Siri is always listening. Are you OK with that?

9/8:  Apple, Microsoft tussle with feds over access to user data

8/31:  Are your apps acting creepy? New approach to phone security could tip you off



10/14:  Microsoft looks to stop bike crashes before they happen, testing Minority Report-style predictive intelligence

10/12:  City of Seattle unveils new privacy program to ‘build public trust’ about use of personal information

10/7:  Inside the Seattle Police Department’s new real-time crime center

10/7:  Researchers build extra brainy smart homes to monitor aging adults

10/2:  Boeing drone helps fight Washington state wildfires in latest demonstration of UAV technology

9/21:  Seattle to Get $600K Cut of Obama Administration’s Body Cam Program

9/18:  Seattle using drivers’ cellphones to track traffic flow

9/18:  Wyden, Bonamici draft legislation to guard student privacy after University of Oregon records leak

9/11:  Police body cameras show more than just the facts

9/9:  ‘Smart bus’ system gives Spokane riders real-time information

9/8:  Law Professor: Tech Companies Are Our Best Hope At Resisting Surveillance



10/29:  Warrant to search phone did not allow opening folder unlikely to contain evidence sought, court rules

10/29:  Fourth Circuit grants rehearing, eliminates split, on cell-site surveillance

10/29:  Second Circuit declines to reach Fourth Amendment issues in bulk metadata program

10/28:  In Congress, Drones Represent Money, Freedom — And A Security Threat

10/22:  FBI director: Planes not for mass spying

10/21:  Helicopter (and drone?) surveillance and the Fourth Amendment

10/21:  23andMe releases transparency report, revealing how often cops ask for customers’ DNA

10/20:  Body Cameras Are Everywhere, But Recordings Remain Locked Up Tight

10/20:  Apple CEO Defends Encryption, Opposes Government Back Door

10/16:  Cops are asking and 23andMe for their customers’ DNA

10/16:  You don’t need to tear up your boarding pass and eat it after you fly

10/10:  New Jersey judge warns police videos will be kept secret

10/9:  Brown rejects driver’s licenses to ease border crossings

10/9:  California’s Paparazzi Have Had Their Wings Clipped A Bit

10/9:  US boosts privacy protection on health insurance website

10/8:  Obama administration opts not to force firms to decrypt data — for now

10/6:  Thanks to the NSA, Data Sharing With Europe Just Got a Little Harder

10/6:  Carson says he’s glad for Snowden revelations but questions methods

9/28:  Police bid to keep most body camera footage private rejected

9/25:  Lawmakers consider student social media privacy bill

9/25:  In fascinating legal case, judge rules defendants can’t be forced to unlock their smartphones

9/22:  Legislation Requiring Tech Industry To Report Terrorist Activity Dropped

9/22:  Feds award $1 million grant to help purchase SAPD body cameras

9/21:  George W. Bush Tried To Retroactively Declare Illegal, Unconstitutional NSA Surveillance Legal, Because He Said So

9/15:  Minnesota cities press for body-camera footage restrictions

9/12:  Austin officials approve funding for police body cameras

9/9:  Director of national intelligence: Snowden forced “needed transparency”

9/9:  City Of Boston Left License Plate Data Unprotected And Unencrypted

9/2:  Indiana State Police won’t give up stingray records due to “terrorism” risk

8/27:  City of San Jose Looking To Attach Automatic License Plate Readers To Garbage Trucks

8/24:  Police Regularly Use Stingrays Without A Warrant To Find Petty Criminals, Then Try To Hide That Fact



10/16:  In 2016, if California cops get hacked, lose your license plate data, you can sue

10/14:  Q.&A.: Guarding Personal Data From Abuse by Insiders

10/14:  Living with Technology: Keeping an eye on digital security

10/13:  Digital Privacy, in the U.S. and Europe

10/12:  A Law That Hides Police Misconduct From the Public

10/9:  European Ruling is Merely a Symbolic Victory for Privacy

10/7:  The government and privacy advocates can’t agree on what ‘strong’ encryption even means

10/6:  Verizon’s Sneaky Zombie Cookies Now Being Used Across The Entire AOL Ad Empire

9/25:  A Q&A with Edward Snowden

9/16:  Tech that hangs on your every word raises privacy questions

9/15:  An elegy for privacy, common sense and John Gibson: Leonard Pitts

9/14:  N.H. Public Library Reconsiders Support For Anonymous Internet Network Tor



11/1:  Theresa May says ‘contentious’ parts of web surveillance plan dropped

10/20:  Ireland’s privacy regulator is going to investigate Facebook after a landmark ruling by Europe’s highest court

10/18:  U.K.’s Mounting, Controversial Video Surveillance

10/16:  UK Politicians To Hold ‘Emergency Debate’ After Spy Tribunal Says GCHQ Is Permitted To Put Them Under Surveillance

10/15:  Despite exposure, new nations joining cyberespionage game

10/15:  Medical record privacy breaches an ‘epidemic’ in Alberta,’ says commissioner (CA)

10/12:  Australian ISPs Not Ready For Mandatory Data Retention

10/12:  Turnbull’s mutual respect campaign to kick off with taking away privacy (AU)

10/6:  Critics raise data privacy concerns in Trans-Pacific Partnership deal (CA)

10/6:  EU Privacy Ruling May Disrupt U.S. Tech Firms, Spy Programs

9/24:  Thailand aims to build its own Great Firewall of Internet censorship

9/23:  Russia’s Plan To Crack Tor Crumbles

9/22:  Government-Mandated Parental Spyware Found To Be Leaking Personal Data At An Alarming Rate (SK)

9/14:  Telco Giant Vodafone Looked At Journalist’s Phone Records To See Who Was Leaking Info To Her (AU)

9/13:  Ask Slashdot: Best Country To Avoid Government Surveillance?

9/1:  Turkey Arrests Journalists For Using Encryption

8/25: UK surveillance “worse than 1984,” says new UN privacy chief

8/25:  Malaysia To Introduce RFID Tracking For Every Vehicle



11/2:  Dreading those drones

11/2:  Barbie is back, but can she be trusted?

11/2015:  Playing Defense Against the Drones

10/26:  How to make sure no one can search through your old Facebook posts

10/23:  Your anonymous cell phone data might be used to break up traffic jams

10/23:  NFL wins federal approval to film with drones

10/19:  Apple Suspends Hundreds of Apps For Stealing Personal Data From a Million Users

10/15:  To boost privacy, Yahoo Mail eliminates need for passwords

10/14:  Hotspot Shield Creator Is on a Mission to Outflank the Censors

10/13:  The GranitePhone Thinks Your Privacy Is Worth $850

10/13:  How To Find and Delete Everything You’ve Ever Said to Google Now

10/8:  DuckDuckGo CEO calls out Google and says it’s ‘a myth you need to track people to make money’

10/7: ​ FAA seeks $1.9M fine against drone photography company

10/4:  7 Questions To Ask Your Boss About Wellness Privacy

9/29:  BlackBerry releases first photos of Android-powered Priv phone

9/29:  Apple: Here’s how we try to protect your privacy

9/29:  Phone makers aren’t doing enough to protect your privacy, says CEO of security-conscious GranitePhone

9/28:  Microsoft reaffirms privacy commitment, but Windows will keep collecting data

9/27:  Silent Circle Blackphone 2 review

9/24:  IBM’s Watson Is Now Analyzing Your Vacation Photos

9/22:  Lenovo Collects Usage Data On ThinkPad, ThinkCentre and ThinkStation PCs

9/14:  Fresh from Google Glass partnership, VSP eyes high-tech wearables

9/14:  Invizbox Go aims to make mobile privacy painless over any Wi-Fi

9/14:  Live-In Laboratory May Help Older Adults Live Independently Longer

9/8:  This Fake Baby Car Seat Is Designed to Help Governments Spy on People

9/7:  Apple’s Privacy Policies Are Keeping Data Scientists Away

8/31:  Microsoft accused of adding spy features to Windows 7, 8

8/31:  Google OnHub review—Google’s smart home Trojan horse is a $200 leap of faith



10/19:  Here’s how to keep your information private on the internet (video)

10/10:  You Think the NSA Is Bad? Meet Former CIA Director Allen Dulles.

10/8:  Part Exhibitionism, Part Surveillance

9/29:  This Art Installation Tests How Much You Value Your Personal Data

9/20:  Art that shows us what mass surveillance actually looks like

Privacy News Update, 6-22-15


6/2015: Who Has your Back? EFF’s annual corporate privacy report

6/20: The snitch in your pocket: making sense of Stingrays

6/19: Google Criticized For ‘Opaque’ Audio-Listening Binary In Debian Chromium

6/18: FBI says in secret that secret spy Cessnas aren’t secret – Men in black shrug off criticism of warrantless domestic spyplane fleet

6/18: Why Apple, Yahoo, Adobe And Dropbox Received Perfect Scores On EFF’s Annual Privacy Ranking

6/16: Push for facial recognition privacy standards hits roadblock

6/15: Privacy Advocates Walk Out in Protest Over U.S. Facial Recognition Code of Conduct

6/16: Taser Is Charging Stunning Fees to Handle Police Video

6/10: School Lunch Program Scans Student Thumbprints For ‘Tracking Purposes’

6/10: How’s My Driving? The Insurer Knows

6/9: U.S. tech companies expected to lose more than $35 billion due to NSA spying

6/9: Audi CEO’s Privacy Appeal Takes Aim at Google’s Car Push

6/5: Periscope shares your exact location in global map

6/5: What to look out for in Britain’s new surveillance bill

6/5: How my doppelgänger used the Internet to find and befriend me

6/4: NSA’s use of ‘back-door searches’ against hackers is reformers’ next target

6/4: Phone Carriers Tight-Lipped On How They Will Comply With New Surveillance Law

6/4: Edward Snowden Is Not Going Away

6/3: The NSA’s Bulk Collection Is Over, but Google and Facebook Are Still in the Data Business

6/3: Obama Admin Seeks Revival of Lapsed NSA Spying Program

6/3: The War Over NSA Spying Is Just Beginning

6/3: Under New Rules, NSA To Again Access Americans’ Phone Records

6/3: Sen. Patrick Leahy: ‘Our Privacy Is Part Of Our Security’

6/3: Staying safe on public Wi-Fi

6/2: How you can track the FBI’s spy planes

6/1: Why We Can’t Trust the NSA (And Why That’s a Crisis)

6/1: Americans Say They Want The Patriot Act Renewed … But Do They, Really?

6/1: Google streamlines privacy controls, analyzes your security settings

5/29: As Police Body Cameras Increase, What About All That Video

5/29: A little-known Yelp privacy setting tells businesses your gender, age and hometown

5/28: Facebook Messenger Is Following You

5/28: That Cessna Flying Over Your House May Be Sending Photos to the Tax Assessor

5/27: Questions Remain About How To Use Data From License Plate Scanners

5/27: Yahoo Ordered to Face Group Privacy Suit Over Scanned E-Mail

5/18: Your Boss Is Now Tracking You at Home



6/15: Time for SPD officers to wear body cameras ‘is now,’ federal monitor says

6/15: SPD Monitor Declares Reforms “Well Underway,” Calls for Body Cams Now

6/11: Gov. Brown signs legislation making conversations between alleged campus sexual assault survivors and victims’ advocates confidential

6/9: David Sarasohn: Oregon’s senators led way on privacy protection (OPINION)



6/21: California’s Obamacare exchange to collect insurance data on patients

6/20: Jindal kills bill allowing cops to automatically scan plates

6/20: Revealed: How DOJ Gagged Google over Surveillance of WikiLeaks Volunteer

6/20: Lawmakers consider UW student email privacy (Wyoming)

6/18: Lawmakers consider citizen privacy (Wyoming)

6/18: Many L.A. building records now just a few clicks away

6/17: New Senate Bill Would Require Warrants for Federal Aerial Surveillance

6/16: US Lawmakers Demand Federal Encryption Requirements After OPM Hack

6/13: California bill brings needed protections to digital privacy

6/12: NSA Backdoor Searches Would End if House Amendment Survives

6/12: Anti-surveillance steamroller still rolling through Congress

6/12: Face Recognition Tech Pushes Legal Boundaries

6/11: U.S. Senate Democrats Block Cybersecurity Liability Measure

6/11: Patriot Act Reform Curbed NSA; Cybersecurity Bill Would Empower It

6/9: Congress: We Didn’t Know the FBI Was Creating a Small Surveillance ‘Air Force’

6/9: White House Asks FISA Court To Ignore 2nd Circuit’s Decision On Bulk Surveillance

6/9: Exclusive: U.S. Tech Industry Appeals to Obama to Keep Hands Off Encryption

6/9: Undetectable NSA-linked hybrid malware hits Intel Security radar

6/8: The Computers Are Listening – NSA Won’t Say If It Automatically Transcribes American Phone Calls in Bulk

6/6: Hackers Are Next on Government-Spyware Company’s List of Targets

6/5: Maryland law grants students social media privacy rights

6/5: US government responds to latest hack: give us more power over data collection

6/4: The US Secretly Expanded Domestic Spying While Praising Transparency

6/2: The Patriot Act Is Changing. Here’s What That Means for Your Privacy

6/1: How the Government Will Spy on You If the Patriot Act Dies

5/17: How Will The Next President Protect Our Digital Lives?



6/17: Edward Snowden Supports Apple’s Public Stance On Privacy

6/17: Beware the Listening Machines

6/17: Women Are Starting To “Lean In” To Data Privacy Careers

6/16: Should Edward Snowden Trust Apple To Do the Right Thing?

6/15: Adjusting to a World Where No Data Is Secure

6/14: Amazon Publishes Opaque Transparency Report

6/10: In The Information Debate, Openness and Privacy Are The Same Thing

6/10: Do Women Make Better Privacy Professionals?

6/10: What Apple’s Tim Cook Overlooked in His Defense of Privacy

6/9: If the FBI has a backdoor to Facebook or Apple encryption, we are less safe

6/8: Internet users care about their privacy but have given up on safeguarding it

6/8: The Online Privacy Lie Is Unraveling

6/8: The ‘devious defecator’ case shows why employers should never ask for DNA

6/6: Surveillance laws are being rewritten post-Snowden, but what will really change?

6/5: You’re Way Less Apathetic About Privacy Than You Realize

6/3: Surveillance reform explainer: can the FBI still listen to my phone calls?

6/2: Sacrifice privacy for national security? #tellusatoday

6/1: Mercury News editorial: Privacy fight is far from over

6/1: Guest commentary: Encryption, the next battle between security and privacy

5/30: Let gridlock bury mass surveillance, preserve U.S. right to privacy

5/29: If NSA surveillance program ends, phone record trove will endure



6/19: Germany Sees Privacy Road Block to EU Plan on Tax Rulings

6/18: Search Delisting Appeals ‘Working Efficiently’, Say European Regulators

6/18: Metadata: Australians’ phone and internet details accessed 334,658 times in 2013-14

6/15: How the Budget Bill Quietly Reshapes Canadian Privacy Law

6/15: Police Scanning Every Face At UK Download Festival 133

6/15: European Ministers Agree To Disagree On Data Protection Reform

6/14: Santander To Track Customer Location Via Mobiles and Tablets

6/14: There is no real case for a snooper’s charter – but that won’t stop it

6/13: Germany Abandons Investigation Into NSA Spying on Chancellor Merkel

6/13: Theresa May keeps snooper’s charter secret

6/12: Google Must Expand Privacy Delistings, Says French Watchdog

6/11: Indie review of UK surveillance laws: As you were, GCHQ – Government pressing on with Snoopers’ Charter

6/11: Downing Street faces fight over call to strip ministers of surveillance powers

6/11: U.K. Review Backs Mass Surveillance But Wants Judges To Sign Warrants

6/11: UK Terrorism Law Watchdog Calls for Major Surveillance Overhaul

6/10: Fake Mobile Phone Towers Operating In The UK

6/10: The German Government’s Surveillance Hypocrisy

6/9: European Cloud Companies Play Up Privacy Credentials

6/8: After U.S. Freedom Act, U.K. Spy Agencies Face Fresh Legal Challenge Over Domestic Dragnets

6/7: GCHQ continues to use data techniques outlawed in US, say campaigners

6/5: Merkel Says Facebook Is ‘Nice,’ Like a Washing MachineU.K. Review Backs Mass Surveillance But Wants Judges To Sign Warrants

6/3: America curbs state snooping, Britain gives the green light

6/2: Secret report urges treaty forcing US web firms’ cooperation in data sharing

6/2: Google hit with antitrust complaint over banned privacy app



6/20: Banjo’s ability to track events in real time gives clients competitive edge

6/19: DuckDuckGo Sees Massive Growth In Post-Snowden World

6/19: To take the wheel, robot cars must pry it from my cold dead hands

6/18: Drone Startups Grab Record Cash as Kleiner, FF Venture Seek Wins

6/17: Nowy Friends Is A P2P Social Radar App That Does Not Log Your Location

6/17: Google’s Nest targeting ‘thoughtful’ homes with new products

6/17: Google’s Nest launches new home camera, smoke detector

6/16: Bing to encrypt search traffic by default

6/15: Non-creepy social networks make it to your smartphone

6/11: Samsung, LG smartwatches give up personal data to researchers

6/9: Why it took us so long to match Apple on privacy – a Google exec explains

6/8: Apple Stresses User Privacy At WWDC

6/6: ‘Responsive street furniture’ in cities could boost accessibility

6/2: Are You Willing To Share Your Wearables Data With Your Boss?

6/2: Google offers users portal to delete data

6/1: Go Check Up On Your Google Privacy Settings in the New Accounts Page

5/28: Android M And Chrome Are Doing Something Great For Users

5/29: When Are Employee Wellness Incentives No Longer Voluntary?

5/28: Uber Broadens Rider Privacy Policy, Asks for New Permissions

5/26: Lost Explorers: The unrealized vision of Google Glass

5/16: Live Video Apps Like Periscope Make Life Even Less Private



6/19: Jeremy Hutchinson talks to Alan Rusbridger – books podcast

6/17: Democracy in the Dark: A Book Talk with Frederick A.O. Schwarz, Jr.

6/3: Infiltrating ‘The Dark Net,’ Where Criminals, Trolls And Extremists Reign

5/29: Law, Privacy and Surveillance in Canada in the Post-Snowden Era

Privacy News Update, 5-24 part 1


5/8: Airport Security Advances Clash With Privacy Issues

5/8: Useful data, from L.A. County? There must be some mistake

5/8: Get ready for Android M, for “more privacy”

5/7: The philosophy of privacy: why surveillance reduces us to objects

5/7: Of Snowden and the NSA, only one has acted unlawfully – and it’s not Snowden

5/7: What To Say When the Police Tell You To Stop Filming Them

5/6: Drummond: How valuable a policing tool is ShotSpotter?

5/6: LinkedIn serves up resumes of 27,000 US intelligence personnel

5/6: Here’s What’s Wrong With the USA Freedom Act

5/6: Police union sues over cellphone searches after rowdy party

5/6: Librarians Versus the NSA

5/4: US Gov’t Will Reveal More About Its Secret Cellphone Tracking Devices

5/4: Privacy and the Profit Motive

5/3: It’s Your Right to Film the Police. These Apps Can Help

5/1: WikiLeaks Finally Brings Back Its Submission System for Your Secrets

5/1: ‘Just follow the damn Constitution!’ FBI, DoJ skewered over demands for crypto backdoors

5/1: Protecting Users’ Location Data From An Unconstitutional Search

5/1: The NSA’s greatest hiring strength is students, but resistance is growing

4/30: Smartphone app from ACLU of California aims to preserve videos of police

4/28: Automated Vehicle Occupancy Detection Knows Exactly Who’s in Your Car

4/26: Declassified Report From 2009 Questions Effectiveness of NSA Spying



5/7: Editorial: Public work on private devices must remain public

5/5: Oregon House approves bills clarifying filming of police

4/30: Oregon House passes bill targeting insurance confidentiality

4/30: Alex Alben appointed to Washington state privacy office



5/11: Court: Border search of businessman’s laptop ‘unreasonable’

5/10: GOP candidates divided over renewing USA Patriot Act

5/10: 5 things to know about the NSA court ruling

5/8: New US attorney general refuses to drop Microsoft foreign data warrant

5/8: Did judge who ruled NSA phone dragnet illegal call Snowden a whistleblower?

5/8: James Comey: the Man Who Wants To Outlaw Encryption

5/8: Deadline May Force Compromise on U.S. Surveillance Law

5/8: Bowser: Vote on police-camera funds would likely precede one on rules (DC)

5/8: Legislature approves employee privacy bill (CT)

5.8: Wilmington mayor orders study on police body cameras (Del)

5/8: Republicans Make Dubious Claims in Defense of NSA Surveillance

5/7: NSA surveillance ruled illegal

5/7: Senate passes first Minnesota rules on police body cameras

5/7: Nevada lawmakers continue reviewing drone privacy bill

5/7: FBI admits providing air support to Baltimore Police during Freddie Gray unrest

5/7: Bill Would Let Companies Secretly Record Some Phone Calls (California)

5/7: Court Rules NSA Bulk Data Collection Was Never Authorized By Congress

5/7: Santa Clara County Opts Against Buying Stingray Due To Excessive Secrecy

5/7: Santa Clara County drive to acquire cellphone tracker derailed

5/7: Cost for Cleveland police body camera program could rise

5/6: Walnut Creek police: Body cameras, yes; drones, no

5/6: Virginia Man Sues Police Over License Plate Database

5/6: Supreme Court: Warrantless drug-sniffing dogs OK in condos

5/6: CNN and FAA Team Up to Test Drones

5/6: Stamford considers surveillance cameras downtown, in parks (CT)

5/5: Colorado effort to limit drone surveillance fails

5/5: Creeps Embrace a New Tool: Peeping Drones

5/5: Court: warrantless cellphone tracking not illegal search

5/5: Gov. Baker: Police body cameras raise privacy concerns (MA)

5/5: Court’s Reversal Leaves Phones Open to Warrantless Tracking

5/5: New Louisiana public school student ID system developed

5/3: State is trying police cameras but still needs to build trust

5/3: Regulators ordered to reopen dispute over smart meters

5/1: Mayor eclipses sheriff’s plan for body cameras (SF, CA)

5/1: The Pentagon Could Soon Share Americans’ Data With Foreign Militaries

5/1: Senate approves social media password bill (NH)

5/1: Unrest in Baltimore means big business for Taser

5/1: NSA-restraining US law edges closer to reality, leaves just 6.81 billion under mass surveillance

5/1: Secret law is a ‘direct threat’ to Americans’ privacy, says NSA whistleblower

4/30: NSA is so overwhelmed with data, it’s no longer effective, says whistleblower

4/30: The FBI is fighting a losing battle over phone snooping

4/30: Mayor Ed Lee says SF cops will be wearing body cameras

4/30: Public-safety reform package includes body cams for SF cops, but no date announced

4/29: Why the US government reckons it should keep phone network kill-switches a secret

4/29: Paranoid about the NSA? The case for dumping cloud’s Big 3

4/28: LAPD board OKs body camera policy despite opposition

4/28: Assembly bill seeks ban on smart TVs becoming ‘Big Brother’ (California)

4/28: San Jose: Police auditor wants more sunshine on internal misconduct probes

4/28: Why Crypto Backdoors Wouldn’t Work

4/28: WHY can’t Silicon Valley create breakable non-breakable encryption, cry US politicians

4/27: Quoted: Privacy concerns over police body cameras

4/27: Divided Police Commission approves rules for LAPD body cameras

4/24: Looking for laxatives, miss? Shoppers stalked via smartphone Wi-Fi

4/20: New York City Just Outlawed Running Credit Checks on Job Applicants



5/8: Government Arrogance on Surveillance

5/8: Intelligence Gathering, Secrecy and the Congress Problem

5/7: Contra Costa Times editorial: Court is right Congress must fix NSA spying

5/7: Why the NSA decision matters

5/7: The Illegal Phone-Data Sweeps

5/7: Second Circuit rules, mostly symbolically, that current text of Section 215 doesn’t authorize bulk surveillance

5/7: Snowden vindicated in court’s ruling against secret laws: Bloomberg View

5/6: Urging police to wear cameras is just the first step: Our view

5/6: Balance privacy with public good: Another view (Florida)

5/6: The USA Freedom Act: A smaller Big Brother

5/5: Eleventh Circuit rules for the feds on cell-site records — but then overreaches

5/4: Justice Dept. review of cell-phone tracking needs to go further

5/2: How fear and self-preservation are driving a cyber arms race

4/26: Internet Privacy Is The Wrong Conversation



5/8: Privacy Breach Blowin’ in the Wind (Canada)

5/7: Red-faced Germans halt NSA cooperation after Euro spying revealed

5/6: Pressure Mounts on Merkel to Explain German Role in N.S.A. Espionage

5/6: Familiar Swing to Security Over Privacy After Attacks in France

5/6: French Version of ‘Patriot Act’ Becomes Law

5/4: Telstra breached privacy law by refusing to give customer his metadata

5/4: Framework aims to embed privacy culture in Australian organisations

5/1: Encryption backdoors are like TSA luggage-locks for the Internet

4/30: France wants to make les citoyens’ health data available to world+dog

4/29: Your new car will dob you in to the cops if you crash, decrees EU

4/29: Stop the war between privacy and security – EU data watchdog

4/29: Facebook says EU’s privacy investigations hurt innovation, economy

4/6: The mere idea of regaining privacy sends law enforcement into a tizzy



5/8: Web Served: How to make your site all-HTTPS, all the time, for everyone

5/8: Dropbox Moves Accounts Outside North America To Ireland

5/8: How to permanently delete your dating profiles on Tinder, Hinge and Match

5/7: Choc Factory finds 84,000 ad injectors targeting Chrome

5/7: Business Travelers Want to Be Left to Their Own Devices

5/7: Flier beware: Airlines aren’t clear about their photography policies

5/7: Drone use poised to expand to newsrooms despite FAA limits

5/7: Fake privacy gadgets, from Anonabox to Sever: Fighting a strange and profitable epidemic

5/6: Scared of Self-Driving Cars? They’re a Lot Closer Than You Think

5/6: Encrypted Chat App Wickr Creates New Non-Profit Arm, Nico Sell Steps Down As CEO To Lead It

5/6: High-tech sensors help kids keep eye on aging parents

5/6: We’re Closer to an Encrypted Internet than You Think

5/5: Android tool catches apps silently pumping hundreds of ad, tracking servers red-handed

5/4: Would You Like to Ride in a Car That Drives Itself?

5/4: Facebook Opens Up Platform, Tramples All Over User Privacy

5/4: Free Android apps quietly connect to thousands of user tracking, ad sites

5/1: Mozilla Begins To Move Towards HTTPS-Only Web

4/30: Telescreen watch: Vizio adds spyware to its TVs

4/30: Smart devices have confusing policies, may be tracking you

4/30: Once a Forgotten Child, OpenSSL’s Future Now Looks Bright

4/28: Your smartphone may be tracking your every move

4/28: Facebook is breaking some apps, but it’s a good thing for privacy

4/27: Bodyprint could let you unlock your phone with your ear print

4/25: As Health Apps Hop On The Apple Watch, Privacy Will Be Key



5/8: ‘Deep Web’ director Alex Winter on the mystery of Ross Ulbricht

5/3: Bruce Schneier’s Data and Goliath – solution or part of the problem?

4/30: 1970s Researchers Predicted Debit Cards Would Be Great For Surveillance

Privacy News Update, 4-25-15


4-3: In New Video, Congressman Explains Why His Fellow Lawmakers Couldn’t Be Trusted with NSA Oversight

4-3: The Unlikely Effort To Build a Clandestine Cell Phone Network

4-3: Is Big Brother Watching Our Campuses?

4-2: TrueCrypt’s Security Audit Is Finally Done, with (Mostly) Good Results

4-2: Trevor Paglen’s photos put government spying in spotlight

3-31: How to opt out of Verizon’s ‘supercookie’ tracking program

3-31: Tech companies are sending your secrets to crowdsourced armies of low-paid workers

3-27: Periscope’s Future of Citizen Journalism Tested on Its First Day

3-27: The Monsanto Privacy Model? Monsanto and Farmer Organizations May Be Forging New Path to Data Cooperation

3-26: Deployment of Controversial Urban Sensor System Aided by Aggressive Lobbying

3-25: As the Snowden leaks began, there was “fear and panic” in Congress

3-26: Passphrases That You Can Memorize — But That Even the NSA Can’t Guess

3-25: More Than 20 States Ask Court to Keep RadioShack From Selling Customers’ Personal Data

3-25: NSA Doesn’t Need to Spy on Your Calls to Learn Your Secrets

3-25: Yahoo rejected only 5 percent of government data requests in United States

3-24: State Laws Start Catching Up to Police Phone Spying

3-24: When your car spies on your mechanic

3-24: Public Records Request Returns 4.6M License Plate Scans From Oakland PD

3-23: Stingray snared him, now he helps write rules for surveillance device

3-19: Data and Goliath: Four Ways You Can Protect Yourself From Digital Surveillance

3-12: How Harper’s “anti-terror” bill ends privacy in Canada



4-2: Court: Investigation Of Public Employees Not Private

4-3: Banning speech close to home

3-23: WaLeg Day 71: Voting rights, marijuana, mental health, drones. . .



4-3: NSA’s Former General Council Talks Privacy, Security, and Snowden’s ‘Betrayal’

4-3: DHS Wants Access To License-plate Tracking System, Again

4-2: Snowden, PRISM fallout will cost U.S. tech vendors $47 billion, less than expected

4-2: Lawmaker, ACLU push bill on police license plate readers

4-2: Texas bill would bar gun ownership status in medical record

4-2: The FBI Has Its Own Secret Brand of Malware

4-2: Legislature OKs voluntary REAL ID driver’s licenses

4-2: Snapchat got more than 400 legal requests for user data in 4 months

4-1: How Big Business Is Helping Expand NSA Surveillance, Snowden Be Damned

3-31: LAPD expects to start deploying body cameras this summer

3-31: Supreme Court Rules Government GPS Trackers Can Break Fourth Amendment

3-31: Pentagon Personnel Now Talking on ‘NSA-Proof’ Smartphones

3-30: Group blasts governor over proposed privacy amendments

3-30: Supreme Court questions involuntary human GPS monitoring

3-30: Feds Demand Reddit Identify Users of a Dark-Web Drug Forum

3-30: NSA Considered Ending Phone Spying Before the Edward Snowden Leaks

3-28: As Santa Clara County procures ‘stingray’ cell tracker, increased scrutiny surrounds potentially invasive device

3-27: Police body camera bill clears Connecticut committee

3-27: FAA, Anchorage police investigate drone complaints

3-27: This Is How TSA Decides if You Might Be Acting Like a Terrorist

3-26: As crypto wars begin, FBI silently removes sensible advice to encrypt your devices

3-26: Arizona House revives effort to meet REAL ID standards

3-26: Silicon Valley powers: Let mass spying die in May 2015 – it’s bad for privacy (and business) – Citizens’ personal information is all OURS, say tech giants

3-26: Privacy Critics Go 0-2 With Congress’ Cybersecurity Bills

3-26: Google joins Apple, others in calling for spying controls, as Patriot Act vote nears

3-26: Court Accepts DOJ’s ‘State Secrets’ Claim to Protect Shadowy Neocons: a New Low

3-26: FBI Denies Intentionally Deleting Encryption Tips from Its Website

3-25: Amazon’s drone approval obsolete
3-25: California bill requires warrant for stingray use

3-25: Latest Assault on Net Neutrality Launched at Telecom Industry-Funded Think Tank

3-25: PATRIOT Act axed, NSA spying halted … wake up, Neo, it’s just a dream in the US House of Reps

3-25: Wisconsin lawmakers discuss regulation of drones

3-24: Bill would impose privacy restrictions on Nevada drones

3-24: To explain stingrays, local cops cribbed letter pre-written by FBI

3-24: $1B TSA Behavioral Screening Program Slammed As “Junk Science”

3-24: House Panel Tries to Ease Privacy Fears With New Cybersecurity Legislation

3-23: In Congress, New Attention To Student-Privacy Fears

3-22: Key Democrat: Congress Won’t Tackle NSA Reform Before Cybersecurity

3-16: ICE Tells Reporter Its Secretive Drone Program Isn’t Newsworthy



4-6: Is Privacy Obsolete?

4-3: When must search engines concede the “right to be forgotten”?

4-2: When Will the NSA Stop Spying on Innocent Americans?

4-2: Getting past the zero-sum game online

4-2: Using Patient Data to Democratize Medical Discovery

3-31: Why ‘The Nation’ Is Suing the Federal Government

3029: Acceptance of a semi-public digital life worries some privacy advocates

3-29: Acceptance of a semi-public digital life worries privacy advocates

3-29: Ignorance could be bliss for next generations of business

3-24: How smartphone users are making silly and unsafe choices



4-2: South Korea’s Invasion of Privacy

4-2: Britain Used Spy Team to Shape Latin American Public Opinion on Falklands

3-31: Encryption is the REAL threat – Head Europlod

3-31: Thanks for the data retention, tech sector

3-31: Facebook ‘tracks all visitors, breaching EU law’

3-30: Mexico’s Journalists Grab a Tech Shield as their Fight Against the Establishment Escalates

3-30: Encrypted communication ‘biggest problem’ in tackling terrorism, Europol warns

3-30: New Canadian Counterterrorism Law Threatens Environmental Groups

3-27: Telstra begins preparing for data-retention regime
3-27: Snowden meets Swedish lawmakers in Moscow

3-27: Google Loses Bid to Block U.K. Users’ Breach-of-Privacy Lawsuit

3-27: UN sets up privacy rapporteur role in wake of Snowden leaks

3-26: Inquiry Launched into New Zealand Mass Surveillance

3-26: Australia outlaws warrant canaries

3-26: New data world order: government can read every Australian like an open book

3-25: Connected cars perfect for harvesting personal data, report warns

3-25: Location-tracking resolution not in data-retention Bill scope: Brandis

3-25: Netanyahu’s Spying Denials Contradicted by Secret NSA Documents

3-24: Facebook data privacy case to be heard before European Union court

3-24: A Conversation About Bill C-51: How the Anti-Terrorism Bill Undermines Canadian Privacy

3-23: Documents Reveal Canada’s Secret Hacking Tactics

3-22: UK Government Admits Intelligence Services Allowed To Break Into Any System

3-19: Why the cookies law wasn’t fully baked – and how to avoid being tracked online



4-4: How to stay safe online: CNET’s security checklist

4-3: Keep snapping selfies, says Snapchat: Cops NEVER ask us for ’em

4-3: Facebook suggests more privacy tips for keeping user accounts secure

4-3: Will Smart Clothing Amp Up Your Workout?

4-3: Microsoft Will Remove “Do Not Track” As The Default Setting In Its New Browsers

4-2: TrueCrypt audit shows no evidence of NSA backdoors

4-2: Invizbox (hands-on): Another flawed Tor “privacy” router debuts

4-1: Chevrolet’s 2016 Malibu is smarter, lighter, and keeps tabs on your kids

3-30: AT&T wants $139 a month, or your privacy, for superfast Internet

3-27: AT&T’s plan to watch your Web browsing—and what you can do about it

3-25: Uber To Turn Into a Big Data Company By Selling Location Data

3-23: Roar of Bombers Replaced by Drone Buzz in North Dakota

3-23: Gyroscope Wants To Help You Track Everything About Yourself And Share It With The World

3-23: Cisco SPA300/500 IP Phones Vulnerable To Remote Eavesdropping

3-19: Opera Buys SurfEasy To Add Secure VPN Services To Its Browser Software



3-31: Data and Goliath, book review: A handbook for the information age

3-30: Book Review: Future Crimes

3-24: ‘We The People Have A Lot Of Work To Do’ Says Schneier In A Must-Read Book On Security And Privacy

Privacy News update, 12-20-14


Dec 15: Verizon’s New, Encrypted Calling App Plays Nice With the NSA

Dec 15: How Identifiable Are You On the Web?

Dec 8: Judge Posner: it should be illegal to make phones the government can’t search – a policy discussion from Cory Doctorow

Dec 10: We know you love privacy, Judge Posner. We just wish you’d share



Dec 16: ACLU chapters focusing on hot-button issues

Dec 15: Oregon marijuana grower loses appeal challenging privacy of utility records

Dec 15: Oakland cops disciplined 24 times for failing to turn on body-worn cameras

Dec 15: Tech and Business Groups Rally Behind Microsoft’s Data Privacy Battle

Dec 15: Tech companies join Microsoft in email warrant case against US government

Dec 15: SPD’s Body Cameras Won’t Record Everything. Policy Gets Mixed Response.

Dec 14: Police tout benefits of surveillance cameras

Dec 14: Privacy is not dead: Microsoft lawyer prepares to take on US government

Dec 12: Bush Government Argued Spying Justified Privacy Intrusion

Dec 12: Minnesota lawmakers ponder growing drone use

Dec 11: Congress Passes Bill Allowing Warrantless Forfeiture of Private Communications

Dec 11: Cell phones exempt from the automobile search exception, Ninth Circuit rules

Dec 11: Anonymous Programmer and Unlikely Police Records Activist Agrees to Be Named

Dec 10: Bush era haunts Obama

Dec 9: How an Anonymous Programmer Became One of Seattle’s Most Effective Activists

Dec 9: Obama’s Plan for Better Policing: The Good, the Bad, the Body Cameras

Dec 9: Ninth Circuit hears NSA program challenge

Dec 9: Wash. justices to consider warrantless searches

Dec 9: Pierce Transit buses will have security cameras starting next year

Dec 8: FISA Court Extends Section 215 Bulk Surveillance For 90 Days

Dec 7: Cost and logistical issues limit local police interest in body cameras

Dec 6: Tracking miles as gas tax alternative raises fairness, privacy concerns

Dec 5: DOJ Launches New Cybercrime Unit, Claims Privacy Top Priority

Dec 5: Body cameras for police: Portland on cusp of outfitting 600 officers, other metro departments not far behind



Dec 15: Edward Snowden calls Amazon’s encryption practices ‘morally irresponsible’

Dec 13: Where Tech Giants Protect Privacy

Dec 13: Hidden devices scrutinize employees

Dec 13: Body cameras aren’t going to fix policing

Dec 11: Teaching About Cybersecurity: Taking Steps to Improve Online Safety and Prevent Data Breaches

Dec 10: Wolverton: New tracking technology raises privacy concerns

Dec 9: Complaint Says Ring Pop Campaign Violated Children’s Privacy

Dec 8: Man, the Government Sure Likes to Blame Shit on Tor

Dec 8: What Bad, Shameful, Dirty Behavior is U.S. Judge Richard Posner Hiding? Demand to Know.

Dec 8: Balancing Act: Even Sarah Palin’s kids deserve privacy

Dec 8: Trial over Puyallup’s use of jail cameras underway

Dec 7: Body camera use abuts privacy issues

Dec 7: Neglecting the Lessons of Cypherpunk History

Dec 7: Spies can’t make cyberspace secure AND vulnerable to their own attacks

Dec 4: The Cost of the “S” In HTTPS

Nov 28: What have we learned from the Uber privacy debate? Open thread



Dec 15: Dutch watchdog demands privacy changes from Google

Dec 15: Govt Docs Reveal Canadian Telcos Promise Surveillance Ready Networks

Dec 11: Canada court: Police can search a suspect’s phone

Dec 11: Freedom of information laws upheld by two men working from home

Dec 11: Australia’s security agencies quiet on metadata definition

Dec 10: DoJ’s extra-territorial data demands: now Ireland is baulking

Dec 9: Data-retention costs report kept confidential

Dec 8: Google Fights to Stop Lawsuit Over ‘Clandestine’ Cookies

Dec 8: MPs get go-ahead to challenge snooping law

Dec 7: The Stasi-like data retention law affects us all. It should make you furious

Dec 5: Taiwan: Top tech giants must stop playing fast and loose with privacy



Dec 15: 4 seconds of body cam video can reveal a biometric fingerprint, study says

Dec 12: Tacoma cybersecurity company predicts major Internet changes

Dec 12: Tracker, pixel, spyware, snitch: How to shop in secret

Dec 10: The flying fungus: NASA’s biodegradable drone that flies and dies

Dec 10: Now you can change all your passwords automatically

Dec 9: Your Favorite Anonymous App Is Not Anonymous At All

Dec 9: MAGID ON TECH: Tips for approaching ‘anonymous’ apps

Dec 9: Blackphone launching world’s first privacy-focused app store

Privacy News Update, 8-30-14


WIRED: How to Save the Net


8-27 Secret Surveillance In Tacoma: Police Collecting Cell Phone Records

8-27 Tacoma police admit to cellphone surveillance, say they don’t keep data

8-26 Documents: Tacoma police using surveillance device to sweep up cellphone data

8-23 GeekWire Radio: How cops are moving to the cloud, and what it means for public safety

8-17 Q&A with Ron Wyden, a stalwart defender of open Internet


8-30 Police agencies want access to applicants’ social-media passwords

8-29 Congress Needs to Rein in the Security State the Way We Have in Maine

8-29 Google Accord With Harvard Tie Fails Judge’s Smell Test

8-29 Smartphone kill switch mandate raises privacy, civil liberty concerns

8-28 The Executive Order That Led To Mass Spying, As Told By NSA Alumni

8-28 Is Big Brother the best way to build trust between cops and citizens?

8-28 Bill would crack down on paparazzi drones

8-27 Microsoft lobbies vacationing D.C. decision-makers with full-page ads in Martha’s Vineyard and Outer Banks newspapers

8-27 Homeland Security Arms Local Cops With Super Spy Bug

8-27 Big Shoulders, Big Data: Chicago Putting Up Sensors All Over Town

8-27 DoT Proposes Mandating Vehicle-To-Vehicle Communications

8-27 We Must Secure America’s Cell Networks—From Criminals and Cops

8-27 Bill requiring warrants for drone use among those OKd by Legislature

8-26 NSA shares metadata with many other agencies using “Google-like” ICREACH tool, Snowden leaks show

8-26 Super Cali signs a kill-switch, campaigners say it’s atrocious

8-26 How Cops and Hackers Could Abuse California’s New Phone Kill-Switch Law

8-25 NSA built search engine to crawl, share data

8-25 850 Billion NSA Surveillance Records Searchable By Domestic Law Enforcement

8-25 The Surveillance Engine: How the NSA Built Its Own Secret Google

8-23 Military gear for police scrutinized

8-23: Indiana police move cautiously on use of drones

8-22 Honorable spies anonymously leak NSA/GHCQ-discovered flaws in Tor

8-22 Tor Exec Claims NSA Agents Supply It With Vulnerability Information

8-21 The NSA Is Scaring People Away From Tor

8-21 The FTC’s Controversial Battle To Force Companies To Protect Your Data

8-21 Anti-spying coalition launches campaign against LAPD drones

8-19 Arkansas men file lawsuit over police encryption

8-18 A first step in reining in the NSA

8-18 How to End Militarized Policing

8-18 What should the White House seek in its next privacy czar? Someone who can explain the internet

8-16 EFF guide to cell phone use for US protesters

8-14 Forcing America’s Weaponized Police to Wear Cameras

7-14 An FBI Counterterrorism Agent Tracked Me Down Because I Took a Picture of This

5-5 No One Opposes All Surveillance: False Equivalence on the NSA


8-29 Ireland’s Data Privacy Regulator Will Have Global Sway

8-28 Top beak: UK privacy law may be reconsidered because of social media

8-28 Oz fed police in PDF redaction SNAFU

8-27 Australia and US to share information on travelers

8-27 Australian authorities don’t want to track web surfing, but they do want bandwidth data

8-21 Venezuela proposes fingerprinting shoppers

8-19 German Intelligence Spying On Allies, Recorded Kerry, Clinton, and Kofi Annan

8-8 Public Wi-Fi users in Russia will have to log on with ID, reports say

8-8 Facebook privacy “class action” shifted from one Austrian court to another

8-6 More than 20,000 people are now suing Facebook in Europe over privacy


8-29 Local lawyers take a scientific approach to data security

8-29 Security Flaw In Gay Dating App Grindr Reveals Precise Location Of 90% Of Users

8-29 Apple Has Banned Advertisers From Using Your Health Data

8-29 Will Apple Satisfy Regulators Over HealthKit Data Privacy?

8-29 The Accidental Phone Tap

8-29 Kaspersky backpedals on ‘done nothing wrong, nothing to fear’ blather

8-28 Your Cellphone Company Says Your Location Info Is Private. Think Again.

8-28 Why Google Banned A Privacy Tool Called ‘Disconnect Mobile’ From The Android App Store

8-28 Protecting your kid’s data starts with you

8-28 Google building fleet of package-delivering drones

8-27 Dragoncon cosplayers team up with EFF to fight for anonymity

8-27 ​Google goes public with security audits to ease corporate concerns

8-27 Indian Teen’s Secret Girlfriend Stays Hidden With Hike App

8-26 This Man Has Nothing to Hide—Not Even His Email Password

8-26 Sensors let Alzheimer’s patients stay at home, safely

8-25 How cellphone apps track your every location

8-25 Systems That Can Secretly Track Where Cellphone Users Go Around the Globe

8-24 Full-body scanners? One day entire jetliners might be scanned

8-24 For sale: Systems that can secretly track where cellphone users go around the globe

8-22 Should Cities Have Zoning For Drones?

8-22 Hack attack: Apps can spy on other apps

8-22 Not so Secret? How a hack could have killed app’s anonymity

8-22 Fitbit to stop selling data without consent

8-21 Wear This Device So the Boss Knows You’re Losing Weight

8-21 Boffins propose security shim for Android

8-21 Why Predictive Shopping Might Be Bad For The Future

8-21 Researchers create privacy wrapper for Android Web apps

8-21 Stealing encryption keys through the power of touch

8-20 Survey: Half of shoppers don’t want to be tracked

8-20 There Is No Privacy On The Internet Of Things

8-19 Think crypto hides you from spooks on Facebook? THINK AGAIN

8-19 Why A Philosopher Teaches Privacy

8-19 Privacy Is Completely And Utterly Dead, And We Killed It

8-19 Aphex Twin promotes both new album and Tor through Deep Web publicity push

8-15 Lower Your Car Insurance Bill, at the Price of Some Privacy

8-7 Eavesdropping with a camera and potted plants


8-29 Book review: ‘What Stays in Vegas,’ about personal data privacy, by Adam Tanner

8-27 Leaving Money and Privacy on the Table
‘What Stays in Vegas,’ by Adam Tanner

Privacy News Update, 8-10-14

Aug 10: For some firms, NSA eavesdropping means business

Aug 10: Sen. Schumer Asks FTC To Probe Use Of Data Collected By Fitness Technology

Aug 9: Crypto Daddy Phil Zimmerman says surveillance society is DOOMED

Aug 8: Everything You Need to Know About the New USA FREEDOM Act

Aug 7: Snowden Wins Three-Year Extension of Russian Residency

Aug 7: LAPD want to crack down on civilian drones after police station incident

Aug 6: New leaker disclosing U.S. secrets, government concludes

Aug 6: US Homeland Security data possibly stolen in cyberattack

Aug 6: Why The Gmail Scan That Led To A Man’s Arrest For Child Porn Was Not A Privacy Violation

Aug 6: San Jose Police issue apology, release additional docs claiming FAA immunity

Aug 5: Visit the Wrong Website, and the FBI Could End Up in Your Computer

Aug 5: Missouri voters approve digital privacy protection

Aug 5: US terrorism database doubles in recent years

Aug 5: San Jose: Police apologize for drone secrecy, promise transparency

Aug 5: Barack Obama’s Secret Terrorist-Tracking System, by the Numbers

Aug 4: Rogue cellphone tracker alarms Seattle privacy activists

Jul 31: It’s About the Lying

Jul 30: Are New Advanced Electric Meters Gonna Fry Your Brain?

Aug 8: Leaked docs show spyware used to snoop on US computers

Aug 8: UK Police Won’t Comment On The Tracking of People’s Phone Calls

Aug 7: Spying revelations lead to German encryption boom

Aug 7: WhatsApp Age Blunts Australia Data Retention Plan, Turnbull Says

Aug 4: Snowden latest: NSA targets Gaza, pumps intelligence to Israel

Aug 4: wants public sector to rip up data protection law

Aug 4: NSA leaker Thomas Drake says Oz security reforms are ‘scary’

Aug 10: Silent Circle’s Blackphone Exploited at Def Con

Aug 10: Google Boosts Secure Sites in Search Results

Aug 10: Minority Report: Confronting Privacy Issues In Big Data Gathering

Aug 10: F-Secure: Xiaomi Smartphones Do Secretly Steal Your Data

Aug 10: Lavabit founder’s DarkMail needs help to cross finish line

Aug 9: John McAfee Airs His Beefs About Privacy In Def Con Surprise Talk

Aug 9: Def Con attendees get tips on how to detect, escape surveillance

Aug 9: Want a safe car? Check its cyber safety rating

Aug 8: Facebook Messenger Switch Controversy Is Part Misunderstanding, Part Mistrust

Aug 8: Protecting privacy while gathering health data

Aug 8: Microchips Will Be Implanted Into Healthy People Sooner Than You Think

Aug 7: Yahoo teams up with Google on encrypted webmail

Aug 6: Unmanned surveillance aircraft maker Insitu takes flight with new CEO

Aug 6: How Hackable Is Your Car? Consult This Handy Chart

Aug 6: Google using its clout to widen use of encryption

Aug 6: Facebook Data Privacy Class Action Now Oversubscribed

Aug 5: BAD VIBES: High-speed video camera records your voice from trash

Aug 4: Your fitness tracker is a SNITCH says Symantec

Aug 4: Want To Work Without Prying Eyes? Try Wearing a Body Sock

Jul 31: A High-Tech New Way for Your Boss to Follow You Everywhere

Jul 29: Forget Glass. Here Are Wearables That Protect Your Privacy

Aug 5: The High Price That Surveillance Costs the Press and Our Democracy

Aug 4: Insurance giants creating massive database of patient records

Number Six

Big Brother takes the wheel

This is VERY scary, and should be banned by states generally.  At minimum, provide the ‘opt-out’ option at NO COST to the consumer! – Number Six

From Salon:

Big Brother takes the wheel

Your insurance company wants to install a device in your car to track your every decision and move. Be afraid

By David Sirota

Your chipper TV friend Flo, otherwise known as Progressive’s ubiquitous shill, wants you to be excited — very excited. As you’ve probably learned from her gratingly effervescent commercials, she and her Big Brothers in the insurance biz want you to see the latest Orwellian scheme not as a privacy-destroying step to justify raising your government-mandated car insurance premiums. Instead, she wants you to see her “patented, proprietary” device “from the future” as a great innovation aimed at saving you money.

And yet, as the federal government this week takes a big step toward possibly mandating “black boxes” for new cars, and as more car firms like Progressive pressure you (and potentially soon require you) to put tracking bugs in your vehicle, serious questions are now swirling around so-called “telematics-based insurance” — questions that Flo doesn’t want you to ask. She purports to have all the answers, shrouding this complex surveillance system in her squeaky voice, wide smile and promises of car-insurance utopia — almost as if she were deliberately parodying the saccharine avatar of an autocratic mega-corporation in a dystopian sci-fi flick. But despite the TV ad barrage, the questions nonetheless persist because the tracking system is both so invasive and so arbitrary.

To appreciate that disturbing reality, consider this dispatch about how the system works:

Richard Hutchinson, the usage-based insurance manager at Progressive, says the SnapShot works on algorithms that use your driving style to predict how likely you are to have an accident, and how expensive it will be if it happens. Normal insurance plans use dozens of set variables like age and gender to calculate rates, but the SnapShot taps into literally thousands of dynamic inputs including how fast and what time of day you drive. The device captures data in one-second intervals. One of the most revealing stats: how much you brake and how often. Over-braking is a key indicator of an accident-prone driver…

In the end, (Thilo Koslowski, an automotive analyst with Gartner) says the major hurdle is the Big Brother effect. While (the system) might seem innocuous, once there’s a way to capture how you drive and transmit the results to a home base, the next step could be to monitor your daily commuting route and force you to take a different, theoretically safer, way.

If this seems eerily familiar, that’s because it follows earlier evidence that the 2002 film “Minority Report” was less fantasy than spot-on prophecy. In that film, humans have developed technology to fight “pre-crime” — that is, to stop crimes before they occur, and punish people as criminals for allegedly preparing to commit said crimes.

“Telematics-based insurance” is simply the insurance-industry realization of that technology — a technology that can punitively charge you higher rates for embracing driving styles and geographic routes that supposedly mean you are about to incur collision costs, even if you haven’t actually incurred said costs yet, and even if you never will incur said costs in the future. Essentially, the insurance firms are combining data from the past with real-time data from your car to presuppose that if you brake in a certain style, commute on a certain road, or drive in other myriad ways deemed “risky” but legal, there’s a higher chance that you will get into an automobile accident. So rather than charge you a higher premium after you incur those accident costs, the companies are looking to punitively charge you beforehand à la a Department of Pre-crime.

What’s wrong with such a system? The assumptions baked into the algorithms, that’s what. Yes, your particular braking method may be idiosyncratic, and actuarially, that may indeed suggest you are more likely to crash at some point. But citing generalized odds to assume that you in particular will definitely crash in the future — and to then act on that assumption by charging you higher premiums in the present — is both illogical and predatory, forcing you to pay for accidents you haven’t yet been involved in, or may never be involved in in the first place.

Of course, Flo and other insurance-industry spokespeople like her insist that the system today only exists to give customers premium discounts for “good” driving (however arbitrary that definition of “good” is), but not to raise premiums for “bad” driving. However, if and when the devices become a prerequisite for insurance — which many experts say will soon happen — we would likely see a system in which the “standard” premium is inflated, and the “discounts” for “good” driving only slightly reduce premiums. That is, we would likely see a system in which the technology stealthily raises overall premiums for everyone.

What can be done about all this? Fox reports that some states “currently have specific mandates that prevent insurance companies from requiring” the tracking devices. That’s a good first step, but the regulation is easy for the industry to get around with punitive pricing schemes — the kind that will hold a proverbial gun to the consumer’s head and make the devices a de facto obligation.

No, the only real protection is for states to ban insurers from using these devices to charge higher premiums. It’s a rather simple legislative initiative; a state could simply say that a licensed insurer cannot raise a customer’s premium unless that customer incurs a financial outlay by the insurance company (say, via a collision).

Insurers will no doubt say that’s an unacceptable government intervention into the “free market.” But, then, so too is the government requirement that all drivers buy the car insurance industry’s products. And if states are going to use statutory power to force people to be the insurance industry’s customers, which is a huge financial boon to insurance companies, then in exchange it’s more than fair to require those companies to adhere to some basic consumer-protection rules.

Without such rules, Flo or another one of her Big Brothers will probably soon be in your car — whether you like it or not.