Edward Snowden is the gift that keeps on giving. After walking out on the NSA with a ton of secret documents detailing the extent that the agency and their partners were digging into ordinary people’s lives he started to release them. Even after the first and very damaging release of documents Snowden promised that there was more and worse to come. We have seen some pretty bad things coming from the classified document stash including a report that was recently published by Der Speigel.
It would seem that some in the judicial branch of the US government feel that privacy is not really about protecting citizens from unjustified surveillance. They also do not seem to have any fear of the US becoming a place where the government has powers that extend beyond the ones granted by the US constitution. At least this is the opinion of one US Judge; Judge Richard Posner. The interesting thing is that Posner has made more than a few statements in favor of individuals including condemning the existing copyright system and the way that the copyright lobby is trying to enforce it.
Microsoft had a brief moment in the sun with the release of Windows 10 after the less than stellar market performance of Windows 8.x. However, it seems they are determined to make sure that they screw things up as it was uncovered that the EULA (End User License Agreement) for the Windows 10 Technical Preview allowed them access to a little more than they would usually need for a Beta program.
We have more news from the Snowden front as Der Spiegel reports one a joint NSA, GCHQ program dubbed treasure map. Although the program was originally revealed by the NY Times in late 2013 it was originally described as a network mapping program with no surveillance application. This claim is no longer holding up as more and more information come out about the two agencies plans to map the entire internet in real time.
The big news today is that Google is preparing to encrypt their search data. They are planning to automatically encrypt not only the connections, but the information sent back to the user. On the surface this would seem to be a big step towards preventing people like the NSA from finding out what we do on the internet and it would be in line with consumer demands for more protection from spying eyes. The question is, will this move actually do anything or is it all just a feel good PR event.
On Monday at the South by Southwest show infamous NSA whistle blower Edward Snowden talk via a live video conference. By all accounts the hall where the conference was held was packed as people were very interested to hear what Snowden had to say. For those of you that might not know, or need reminding Edward Snowden was a contractor to the NSA and is responsible for leaking information about multiple, highly-classified and potentially illegal (unconstitutional) surveillance programs being run on US Citizens and also on foreign diplomats.
After the discovery of mass surveillance by the famous whistleblower Edward Snowden, numerous products with an emphasis on protecting users' privacy appeared on the market. One of them comes from smartphone company FreedomPop and it's called Privacy Phone. Devices that protect privacy often come at a hefty price, but Privacy Phone corrects this complaint and will arrive on the market with a price tag of $189.
Lately the news has had a few articles about how companies like Microsoft, Google, and Yahoo etc. are pushing the government for radical changes to their surveillance policies and demanding better protections for their customers. We have seen new ads focused on explaining how important our data is to them (and in some cases how the other guys are abusing it). The groups lining up and demanding change are many of the same companies that Edward Snowden’s bevy of leaked documents claimed were working hand in hand with the NSA to allow for mass spying on peoples’ data and that in cases where they were not directly cooperating lax security practices allowed for easy retrieval of user information.
According to new information provided to the media by Edward Snowden, American National Security Agency (NSA) has set a malicious software into more than 50,000 computer networks of the world.
Microsoft has announced that from next year they will automatically encrypt the origin of e-mail sent through its services Office 365. The new option, called Office 365 Message Encryption, will allow users to automatically send encrypted e-mail messages to recipients outside their organization.