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Technology


  • The 10 Dumbest Risks You Can Take With a SmartphoneBlog, Privacy, Technology

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    If you think of your smartphone as just a phone, rather than a very powerful mini-computer that happens to make phone calls, you may be cruising for a world of pain. That’s because the amount of sensitive data many of us store on our phones is truly staggering. A smartphone provides us direct access to our savings and checking accounts. It may store our passwords to Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, even our email accounts. The phone […]

  • 9 Ways Disconnecting Doesn’t Make You Any SaferBlog, Technology

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    A funny thing happened on my way from Los Angeles to Washington, D.C. this week, I found myself on a flight without Wi-Fi. The prospect of being unplugged for more than four hours on a flying machine without the ability to communicate with (or distract) colleagues, with zero information from the outside world — let’s just say I almost lost it. I had two newspapers and a book by my favorite fiction writer, Vince Flynn, […]

  • The Great iPhone ID Caper: What Really Happened?Blog, Privacy, Technology

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    If you’re someone who cares about your privacy, these are indeed strange times. When everything from your iPhone to your iPad (and every derivation in between) is secretly tracking your every move from behind its colorful screen, when advertisers gather enough information about you to know you’re pregnant even before your parents do, it’s clear that we are living in a twilight zone. What we think we know about staying safe, and what we actually […]

  • The Profound Failure of Congress on Cybersecurity (and Why You Should Care)Data Security, Government, Blog, Privacy, Technology

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    On August 2, Congress did it again. They acknowledged the looming threat of cyberwarfare while discussing the Cybersecurity Act of 2012, and then they “kicked the can down the road.” It’s what they do best. The “Party of No” hurt us all on a critically necessary piece of cyber-security legislation, and continued the U.S. Senate’s proud tradition of failing to do anything to deal with our absolute vulnerability to an attack by state-sponsored hackers and […]

  • Hackers: If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Pay ‘Em Like BankersData Security, Blog, Technology

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    So what’s it worth to you to prevent world-wide economic collapse, or even a major interruption of essential services, like power or water? These are not hypothetical questions. Nor will they be caused by the Eurozone disaster, a double-dip recession, the disintegration of institutions deemed “too big to fail,” or government spending run amok. I am talking about cybergeddon — or the endgame of cyber warfare. A concept well-worn in national security organization conference rooms […]

  • Did Facebook’s Privacy Problems Foretell the IPO?Blog, Privacy, Identity Theft, Technology

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    For anyone who plays the stock market — and I confess I do from time to time — the drama that unfolded over the past couple of weeks surrounding the Facebook IPO reminded me of the “give them bread and circuses philosophy” of the Roman Empire, except this time the Empire kept the bread. The whole thing is so, well… Facebook. We should have seen it coming. Facebook’s approach to its IPO was consistent with […]

  • The New American Pie: Breached, Tracked and Strip SearchedData Security, Blog, Privacy, Identity Theft, Technology

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    For those of us who care about privacy, these past seven days have truly sucked. With relatively little fanfare in the midst of a cacophonous (that means “noisy,” Senator Santorum) parade of news, three significant events seriously undermined our constitutional right to privacy and highlighted (in a muted sort of way) the extent to which new business practices and perhaps the second oldest human inclination (criminality) have continued the relentless assault on our individual rights […]

  • Children and data

    Playstation Invasion: Child Identity Theft is No GameData Security, Blog, Identity Theft, Technology

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    By now almost everyone I know (and millions of people I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting yet) has read or heard about Sony’s announcement last week that its PlayStation network was hacked and that the Personal identifying Information (PII) of potentially 77 million individuals worldwide has been compromised. Then, earlier this week, Sony notified us that there’d been a second breach. This one involved the accounts of 25 million members of Sony Online Entertainment, […]

  • Herding Cats: Regulating Online TrackingData Security, Blog, Privacy, Technology

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    There was a time, when the World Wide Web was young, that many entrepreneurs counted on the idea they could make money the old-fashioned way–by charging cyber-customers on a per-use basis, the same way they charged traditional brick-and-mortar patrons. Most print magazines, for example, felt they could make a seamless transition from paid print subscriptions to paid Internet subscriptions. Newspapers believed that some of their traditional departments, such as classifieds, would become huge profit centers […]

  • The Michaels & Fox Data Breaches: Coincidence or Cohesion?Data Security, Blog, Privacy, Identity Theft, Technology

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    Well, two fascinating—and repellant—things happened in the last few days, which but for the broadest possible subject matter connection, would seem to be unrelated. On May 6, a group calling itself LulzSec hacked Fox Entertainment network computers and released personal information about people from the database of potential contestants for the popular Fox show “X Factor.” Five days later, the same group announced in quite caustic terms that it also had hacked Fox.com computers to […]

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