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Digital Privacy

March 7, 2019
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The sitcom "Happy Days" was pretty much doomed when the Fonz, wearing swim trunks and a leather jacket, stepped into that waterski and jumped a shark. That episode now epitomizes the over-reach that sends television shows on a downhill trajectory.

The Internet of Things (IoT) found a still better foothold in consumer households with Amazon's recent ...

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March 5, 2019
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A newly enacted Vermont law offers a glimpse at companies engaged in the compiling and selling of individual user data.

Under H.764 (Act 171), third-party data brokers (companies with no prior relation or interaction with consumers) are required to register with the state. Other requirements include disclosing whether consumers can opt out from their data collection, if there are any restrictions on how data is...

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March 1, 2019
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The Federal Trade Commission fined the popular social media and video sharing service TikTok a record $5.7 million for illegally collecting the personal data of children under 13.

TikTok, known until recently as Musical.ly, allowed users to upload brief videos of themselves lip-syncing popular songs and boasted at least 65 million users in the United States, a “significant percentage,” according to the FTC ...

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February 21, 2019
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As Brexit looms, the UK and the EU can still agree that Facebook needs to be reined in.

A report published earlier this month by the U.K. Digital, Culture, Media and Sport committee likened the social media company to “‘digital gangsters’ in the online world, considering themselves to be ahead of and beyond the law.” The committee came to the conclusion that Facebook knowingly violated U.K....

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February 18, 2019
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Facebook’s long string of privacy scandals may (finally) have some meaningful repercussions by way of a multi-billion dollar fine from the Federal Trade Commission.

The social media giant has been under investigation by the FTC since March 2018 in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, which affected 87 million users and may have been a pivotal influence in the 2016 election...

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February 4, 2019
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"What happens on your iPhone stays on your iPhone." That was the message Apple emblazoned in huge letters on the flank of Springhill Suites Marriot in Las Vegas. The gigantic billboard loomed large over the "what happens here, stays here" cityscape a stone's throw from the Strip and the 2019 ...

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January 28, 2019
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It’s Data Privacy Day, so here are a few quick and easy data privacy related activities you can do to protect your identity and finances:

Check your privacy settings on social media: Between Cambridge Analytica, Google +, and many other social... Read More
January 28, 2019
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Sidewalk Labs, a subsidiary of Google’s parent company Alphabet, is the go-to story for Data Privacy Day with its new “user-friendly” tool called Replica, which allows city planners see “how, when, and where people travel in urban areas.”

The Intercept’s explainer details a troubling use of consumer data. “Thanks for all you do,” could be Replica initiative’s tagline, since it seems...

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January 14, 2019
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AT&T and T-Mobile announced that in March 2019 they would stop selling user location data to third parties. The announcements came on the heels of a Motherboard article that reported on the ability to track individual cellular phones via “location aggregator” companies with access to mobile customer information.

Cellular location data was sold...

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December 13, 2018
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A group of fifteen U.S. Senators have introduced a federal privacy bill called the Data Care Act, which has set its sights on the implementation of nationwide privacy standards that would apply to websites, apps, and online content providers. The goal: safeguard consumer data.

“People have a basic expectation that the personal information they provide to websites and apps is well-protected and won’t be used against them,” said Senator Brian Schatz (D-HI) who spearheaded the bill. “...

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