Archive for the ‘Online privacy’ Category

Uh-oh: Hacker hits on Ashley Madison …

July 21, 2015

This may be bigger than the Feds having 20 or 30 million digital personnel files tapped by hackers.

Ashley Madison got hacked and over 37 million customer files have been taken hostage,

Just in case you’ve been living under a rock, Ashley Madison is a sleazy, Canadian based “online dating and social networking service” that “discretely” hooks up folks who are already in a relationship, i.e. married.

Some background:

The name of the site was created from two popular female names, “Ashley” and “Madison” … the site’s slogan “Life is short. Have an affair.”

The site has been around for about 15 years and gets about 125 million hits each month (pun intended).

Reportedly, 70% of the site’s members are guys … no surprise there.

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That’s the back-story … now for the “so what?” …

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Gotcha: Forget malware, now it’s “ransomware”

January 5, 2015

Let’s start the New Year on high note …

Just kidding.

NY Times ran a scary story yesterday on the latest online thievery.

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It’s called “ransomware”, and here’s how it works …

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Un-Gotcha: 10 ways to protect your online privacy …

June 21, 2013

Useful compilation from Forbes … some no-brainers, some new (to me).

Ranges from clearing browser cookies & history frequently to masking IP addresses.

Worth browsing.

click to view

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NetTrax: You can run, but you can’t hide …. MORE

June 14, 2013

Yesterday we posted about a company developing algorithms that comb through key factors including content of posts, and location, among others

…..  to provide a very to develop a identify and “unify social profiles” for users who may be using different names or handles on each of their social networks.

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The post elicited strong interest and 2 replies that I want to highlight.

The first is from Niv Singer, Chief Technology Officer at Tracx … the man, and the company referenced.

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SpyNet: CIA goes shopping at Amazon …

June 13, 2013

And, it’s not for books … it’s for cloud computing services.

Say, what?

The WSJ reports that Amazon is vying against IBM for a $600 million contract to set up a cloud-computing system for the CIA.

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Here are some highlights …

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Pssst: What’s your pet’s name?

June 11, 2013

According to Javelin Strategy & Research … 1 in 8 onliners post their pet’s name to social media sites, even though its a fairly common challenge question used to confirm identities.

More generally, Javelin warns that consumers’ social media and mobile behaviors may be putting them at greater risk.

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in 2011,  identity fraud increased by 13 percent … more than 11.6 million adults became a victim of identity fraud in the United States,

Javelin reports that “consumers are still sharing a significant amount of personal information frequently used to authenticate a consumer’s identity.”

Specifically,

  • 68 percent of people with public social media profiles shared their birthday information (with 45 percent sharing month, date and year);
  • 63 percent shared their high school name;
  • 18 percent shared their phone number;
  • 12 percent shared their pet’s name

All are prime examples of personal information a company would use to verify you

Source

“No direct access to our central servers” … hmmm.

June 8, 2013

Last Thursday, the Washington Post outted the Feds Internet monitoring program Prism.

For details see the Washington Post article: NSA slides explain the PRISM data-collection program

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On Friday, most of the Internet companies reported to be part of the Fed’s Prism monitoring program expressed outrage and denied their involvement.

Did you notice that practically all of the denials centered  on the same exact phrase:

That the companies didn’t provide the Feds withdirect access to our central servers”.

Hmmm … that raises some questions, doesn’t it?

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Online: Covering your online tracks …

December 20, 2012

It’s no secret that there are no secrets on the internet.

Google an item and related ads start appearing on seemingly all websites you visit.

Post something on Facebook, and suddenly ads become a lot more personal.

Pick up the phone during election season and the caller mysteriously knows your’ political hot buttons.

As we posted before, if you think that you’re being followed around on the net … you’re right.

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So how do you avoid having your browsing linked to your real identity online?

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