Wednesday, 21 Nov 2018
Category: national security

Smart home makers hoard your data, but won’t say if the police come for it

A decade ago, it was almost inconceivable that nearly every household item could be hooked up to the internet. These days, it’s near impossible to avoid a non-smart home gadget, and they’re vacuuming up a ton of new data that we’d never normally think about. Thermostats know the temperature of your house, and smart cameras […]

Apple rebukes Australia’s “dangerously ambiguous” anti-encryption bill

Apple has strongly criticized Australia’s anti-encryption bill, calling it “dangerously ambiguous” and “alarming to every Australian.” The Australian government’s draft law — known as the Access and Assistance Bill — would compel tech companies operating in the country, like Apple, to provide “assistance” to law enforcement and intelligence agencies in accessing electronic data. The government […]

Unbiased algorithms can still be problematic

Creating unbiased, accurate algorithms isn’t impossible — it’s just time consuming. “It actually is mathematically possible,” facial recognition startup Kairos CEO Brian Brackeen told me on a panel at TechCrunch Disrupt SF. Algorithms are sets of rules that computers follow in order to solve problems and make decisions about a particular course of action. Whether […]

China splits the internet while the U.S. dithers

There are few stories as important right now as the internet being ripped asunder by the increasing animosity between the U.S. and China. Eric Schmidt, the former chairman of Alphabet, said last week at a private event in San Francisco that “I think the most likely scenario now is not a splintering, but rather a […]

Trump’s new cyber strategy eases rules on use of government cyberweapons

The Trump administration’s new cyber strategy out this week isn’t much more than a stringing together of previously considered ideas. In the 40-page document, the government set out its plans to improve cybersecurity, incentivizing change, and reforming computer hacking laws. Election security about a quarter of a page, second only to “space cybersecurity.” The difference […]

Watchdog says 2020 Census systems are riddled with security flaws

With a census just two years away, the Census Bureau has a cybersecurity problem. That’s a key takeaway from the congressional watchdog, the Government Accountability Office, which oversees the government’s spending. In a new report published Thursday, the non-partisan agency said that the government’s Census Bureau has only a few months to fix thousands of […]

T-Mobile quietly reveals uptick in government data demands

T-Mobile has revealed an uptick in the number of demands for data it receives from the government. The cellular giant quietly posted its 2017 transparency report on August 14, revealing a 12 percent increase in the number of overall data demands it responded to compared to the previous year. The report said the company responded […]

UK surveillance regime dealt another blow in court

The UK government has suffered yet another defeat in the courts over a surveillance regime that critics have dubbed a ‘Snooper’s charter’. Today the UK High Court agreed with several aspects of digital and civil rights group Liberty’s crowdfunded legal challenge to a portion of the UK’s 2016 Investigatory Powers Act that gives the state […]