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Is WIRE a threat to Privacy?

Posted by Alexander Hanff on December 4, 2014

This week saw the launch of Skype Co-Founder Janus Friis’ new social communications application, WIRE.  There has been a great deal of noise about it in the press which is to be expected given Friis’ pedigree.  One of the points being made is that WIRE is based in Switzerland and complies with EU privacy laws, […]

European privacy regulators clarify right to be forgotten

Posted by Kevin on November 28, 2014

The European Article 29 working party of national data protection regulators has issued guidelines on the European Court’s so-called right to be forgotten ruling, effectively closing some of the loopholes. Perhaps the most important of the opinions is that the ruling applies to all domains available in the EU and not just European domains. Thus, […]

UK government continues its attack on privacy

Posted by Kevin on November 27, 2014

The UK government is continuing to demonize internet companies, almost suggesting that they are the cause of successful terrorist attacks. In a report by the Intelligence Committee into the murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby it suggests that Facebook should have detected and reported the single known incidence of one of the murderers showing his hand […]

Update on FTC penalties against TRUSTe

Posted by Alexander Hanff on November 22, 2014

As many people will know I was in Brussels earlier this week delivering two presentations at the IAPP Europe Data Protection Congress.  I was there to talk about encrypted email in the first session and mobile privacy (more specifically the risks BYOD pose to corporate networks, data and infrastructure) in the second session. On Wednesday […]

Is hacktivism a valid form of political dissent?

Posted by Kevin on November 16, 2014

RedHack, a Turkish left-leaning hacker collective, has posted a video on Vimeo demonstrating what it claims to be the deletion of Türkiye Elektrik İletim A.Ş. (electricity supply) customer accounts to the tune of TRY 1.5 trillion (or more than £400 billion!). This is not an example of Robin Hood. No money has been stolen from […]

Taking Back My Privacy – DIY Secure Phone

Posted by Alexander Hanff on November 14, 2014

Over the last week I decided to start a new project mostly as a proof of concept but also down to curiosity as to how easy/difficult it would be – I decided to try to make myself a secure phone. Hardware-wise it was fairly simple, I have an old HTC Desire handset which has been […]

Protect your Privacy from as little as 7p per day

Posted by Alexander Hanff on November 10, 2014

How many of you use mobile data? Have you read the terms and conditions of your mobile contract? If you have you will be aware that pretty much every mobile carrier in the world grants themselves permission to read your emails, monitor which web sites you visit and a whole host of other privacy invading […]

Westin’s “Privacy Segmentation” critiqued.

Posted by Alexander Hanff on November 9, 2014

Professor Alan Westin was a privacy giant with research dating back to the 1960s and a professional career seen by many privacy professionals as paramount to the development of the current legal regime regarding privacy and data processing. It is without question that Westin dedicated his life to privacy law but his research was often private […]

Google and Differential Privacy – RAPPOR

Posted by Alexander Hanff on November 8, 2014

There is a great deal of press coverage this week about Google’s announcement at CCS 2014 that they are working on a new project called RAPPOR (PDF) which reportedly uses techniques from the 1960s based around differential privacy. This is good news, or would be if it meant Google were becoming more ethical with regards […]

Putin bans Apple!

Posted by Kevin on November 6, 2014

Watch for the headlines in the western press over the next few days: Putin retaliates over western sanctions by banning Apple. That’s not quite what is happening. It is true that as things stand Russians will not be able to use iPhones and iPads from 1 January 2015 — but that’s not because Apple has […]