Google settles case with banker over 3,600 instances of online abuse



LONDON — Google says it will take “significant efforts” to remove abusive material about a businessman who brought the search giant to court over articles in search results he said made false allegations about him.

Daniel Hegglin, a former Morgan Stanley banker who used to live in London but now resides in Hong Kong, requested that Google block anonymously authored posts about him from its search results. His case first came before a court in July, and the settlement announced Monday before the trial was scheduled to begin. Had the case gone to trial and been decided in Hegglin’s favor, it would have set a precedent implying that Google would have to remove any result with false information from its search results. Read more…

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Digital Privacy Is “The New Frontier Of Human Rights”

surveillance camera The impact of mass, digitally-enabled state surveillance upon individuals’ privacy has been described as “the new frontier of human rights” by Member of the European Parliament, Claude Moraes, who was giving an annual lecture on behalf of the Centre for Research into Information, Surveillance and Privacy at the London School of Economics on Friday. Read More

Judge Unseals 500+ Stingray Records

An anonymous reader sends this excerpt from Ars Technica: A judge in Charlotte, North Carolina, has unsealed a set of 529 court documents in hundreds of criminal cases detailing the use of a stingray, or cell-site simulator, by local police. This move, which took place earlier this week, marks a rare example of a court opening up a vast trove of applications made by police to a judge, who authorized each use of the powerful and potentially invasive device According to the Charlotte Observer, the records seem to suggest that judges likely did not fully understand what they were authorizing. Law enforcement agencies nationwide have taken extraordinary steps to preserve stingray secrecy. As recently as this week, prosecutors in a Baltimore robbery case dropped key evidence that stemmed from stingray use rather than fully disclose how the device was used.

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Top NSA Official Raised Alarm About Metadata Program In 2009

An anonymous reader sends this report from the Associated Press: “Dissenters within the National Security Agency, led by a senior agency executive, warned in 2009 that the program to secretly collect American phone records wasn’t providing enough intelligence to justify the backlash it would cause if revealed, current and former intelligence officials say. The NSA took the concerns seriously, and many senior officials shared them. But after an internal debate that has not been previously reported, NSA leaders, White House officials and key lawmakers opted to continue the collection and storage of American calling records, a domestic surveillance program without parallel in the agency’s recent history.

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Amnesty International Releases Tool To Combat Government Spyware

New submitter Gordon_Shure_DOT_com writes Human rights charity Amnesty International has released Detekt, a tool that finds and removes known government spyware programs. Describing the free software as the first of its kind, Amnesty commissioned the tool from prominent German computer security researcher and open source advocate Claudio Guarnieri, aka ‘nex’. While acknowledging that the only sure way to prevent government surveillance of huge dragnets of individuals is legislation, Marek Marczynski of Amnesty nevertheless called the tool (downloadable here) a useful countermeasure versus spooks. According to the app’s instructions, it operates similarly to popular malware or virus removal suites, though systems must be disconnected from the Internet prior to it scanning.

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Human rights organizations launch free tool to detect surveillance software



More and more, governments are using powerful spying software to target human rights activists and journalists, often the forgotten victims of cyberwar. Now, these victims have a new tool to protect themselves.

Called Detekt, it scans a person’s computer for traces of surveillance software, or spyware. A coalition of human rights organizations, including Amnesty International and the Electronic Frontier Foundation launched Detekt on Wednesday, with the goal of equipping activists and journalists with a free tool to discover if they’ve been hacked.

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Artist attempts to photograph all the CCTV cameras in central London



LONDON — It has been described as the most surveilled city in the world, with thousands of cameras positioned across the city so perhaps it was only a matter of time before someone set out to photograph London’s CCTV network

That’s what artist James Bridle has been doing this month as part of a residency at the Hayward Gallery in the Southbank Centre, entitled The Nor, which is centred on paranoia, electromagnetism, and infrastructure.

Speaking to Mashable, Bridle said he started project because of a long-standing interest in “the increasingly complex technology and systems that underline life.” Read more…

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Amnesty, EFF, Privacy International Put Out Free Anti-Surveillance Tool

detekt Resistance is digital. Human rights charity Amnesty International is one of several organizations behind the release of a free, open source anti-surveillance tool called Detekt. Read More

Senator Al Franken is probing Uber



Travis Kalanick, your Senate investigation is arriving now.

After two days of bad press for Uber — starting with the revelation that one of its executives suggested investigating the private lives of journalists, continuing with a bizarre Twitter apology from Kalanick, and culminating with a blog post that raised more concerns than it quelled — the company has attracted the interest of Minnesota Sen. Al Franken.

“The reports suggest a troubling disregard for customers’ privacy,” writes Franken to the Uber CEO in his capacity as Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Privacy, Technology and the Law. “It appears that on prior occasions your company has condoned use of customers’ data for questionable purposes.” Read more…

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Uber Shows The Privacy Wars Are Revving Up

GodView.png Uber’s latest PR disaster doesn’t tell us anything we didn’t already know about the company. It is, after all, unabashedly named Uber. Translation: above. Aka: superior. Its brand is absolutely intended to embody and convey all the dastardliness required to get to that lofty perch uber alles. Read More