The press review catalogues press articles related to la Quadrature's issues, compiled by its volunteers.
See also our French press review.
[TheRegister] Leaked: The UK's secret blueprint with telcos for mass spying on internet, phones – and backdoors
The UK government has secretly drawn up more details of its new bulk surveillance powers – awarding itself the ability to monitor Brits' live communications, and insert encryption backdoors by the backdoor.
In its draft technical capability notices paper [PDF], all communications companies – including phone networks and ISPs – will be obliged to provide real-time access to the full content of any named individual within one working day, as well as any "secondary data" relating to that person. [...]
There is no mention of the technical capability notices paper existing either on the Home Office website or on the Gov.uk consultation website. And the only reason we know about it is presumably because someone at one of the few companies that have been sent the draft rules decided to tell Open Rights Group about it. [...]
Did you feel a sudden loss of Internet freedom in February 2015 ? That's when the Federal Communications Commission imposed net neutrality rules that prevent Internet service providers from discriminating against websites and other online services. And that's when Americans lost their Internet freedom—according to the current FCC chairman, Ajit Pai.
Pai, a Republican and former Verizon lawyer, opposed the net neutrality rules when Democrats held the commission's majority, and he quickly got to work dismantling the rules after being appointed chair by President Donald Trump. To convince the public that the FCC should eliminate rules it passed two years ago, Pai's office yesterday issued a press release titled, "Restoring Internet freedom for all Americans." [...]
But consumer advocacy groups and Web companies urged the FCC to preserve net neutrality rules, saying they are crucial for giving online businesses access to customers and for letting Internet customers use the applications and websites of their choice. Advocacy group Free Press published an updated list of incidents in which ISPs interfered with Internet content in the years before Title II net neutrality rules were implemented. [...]
It’s official : the country’s top regulator of the internet wants to end net neutrality. Specifically, Federal Communications Commission chair Ajit Pai plans to repeal changes that gave the agency the authority to enforce net neutrality protections—that is, rules requiring internet service providers to treat all internet traffic equally. But he won’t likely be able to do so without a big legal fight. [...]
The FCC will vote on—and given its Republican majority, likely pass—the proposal during an open meeting May 18. But that will only start what promises to be a lengthy battle for the future of net neutrality. To truly torpedo the requirements, Pai will have to make the case that he’s doing so for good reason.
A 1946 law called the Administrative Procedure Act bans federal agencies making “capricious” decisions. The law is meant, in part, to keep regulations from yo-yoing back and forth every time a new party gained control of the White House. The FCC successfully argued in favor of Title II reclassification in federal court just last summer. That effort means Pai might have to make the case that things had changed enough since then to justify a complete reversal in policy. [...]
[TheVerge] US Senate votes to let internet providers share your web browsing history without permission
The US Senate has voted to overturn consumer-friendly internet privacy rules that would have prevented internet providers from sharing your web browsing history without permission.
The privacy rules, passed last year by the FCC, required internet providers like Comcast, Verizon, and AT&T to get each customer’s permission before sharing personal information like which websites they visit. But internet providers want to be able to sell that data and use it to target ads, so they’ve been vocal about opposing the rules since around the time President Trump took office. [...]
“This resolution is a direct attack on consumer rights, on privacy, on rules that afford basic protection against intrusive and illegal interference with consumers' use of social media sites and websites that often they talk for granted,” Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) said in the Senate today ahead of the vote. [...]
While the US government is giving ISPs free rein to track their customers’ Internet usage for purposes of serving personalized advertisements, some Internet users are determined to fill their browsing history with junk so ISPs can’t discover their real browsing habits. [...]
Electronic Frontier Foundation Senior Staff Technologist Jeremy Gillula is skeptical but hopes he’s wrong. “I'd love to be proven wrong about this,” he told Ars. “I'd want to see solid research showing how well such a noise-creation system works on a large scale before I trust it." [...]
ISPs want to become bigger players in the online advertising market dominated by companies like Google and Facebook, which face less strict “opt-out” rules than the opt-in rule that would have applied to ISPs. [...]
Smith agreed with Gillula that creating browser noise “isn’t a full solution, and that counters are possible,” but he remains optimistic that it can be an important tool for preserving user privacy alongside initiatives like HTTPS Everywhere and other privacy-protecting technologies. [...]
On Thursday afternoon, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), the country's federal telecom regulator, dropped a bombshell ruling on the status of net neutrality—the principle that all web services should be treated equally by providers. And, blessedly, it's good news.
The CRTC ruled that "[internet] service providers should treat data traffic equally to foster consumer choice, innovation and the free exchange of ideas," a CRTC news release states. What this means is that service providers won't be able to privilege certain services over others—say, YouTube or Apple Music—by letting you use them without dinging your data plan. This is a practice generally known as "zero-rating" or differential pricing. [...]
The CRTC's decision is welcome news as its sister organization in the US, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), is right now starting to roll back some of its previous commitments to net neutrality. [...]
FCC chairman Ajit Pai said today that net neutrality was “a mistake” and that the commission is now “on track” to return to a much lighter style of regulation.
“Our new approach injected tremendous uncertainty into the broadband market,” Pai said during a speech at Mobile World Congress this afternoon. “And uncertainty is the enemy of growth.”
Pai has long been opposed to net neutrality and voted against the proposal when it came up in 2015. While he hasn’t specifically stated that he plans to reverse the order now that he’s chairman, today’s speech suggests pretty clearly that he’s aiming to. [...]
Researchers have found a way to connect the dots between people’s private online activity and their Twitter accounts—even for people who have never tweeted. [...]
Companies that compile user profiles generally do so pseudonymously: They may know a lot of demographic details about you, but they don’t usually connect your behavior to your individual identity. But a group of researchers at Stanford and Princeton developed a system that can connect your profile to your name and identity, just by examining your browsing history.
When the team tested the technique on 400 real people who submitted their browsing history, they were able to correctly pick out the volunteers’ Twitter profiles nearly three-quarters of the time. [...]
Privacy campaigners said the vulnerability is a “huge threat to freedom of speech” and warned it can be used by government agencies to snoop on users who believe their messages to be secure. WhatsApp has made privacy and security a primary selling point, and has become a go to communications tool of activists, dissidents and diplomats. [...]
The security backdoor was discovered by Tobias Boelter, a cryptography and security researcher at the University of California, Berkeley. He told the Guardian: “If WhatsApp is asked by a government agency to disclose its messaging records, it can effectively grant access due to the change in keys.” [...]
Professor Kirstie Ball, co-director and founder of the Centre for Research into Information, Surveillance and Privacy, called the existence of a backdoor within WhatsApp’s encryption “a gold mine for security agencies” and “a huge betrayal of user trust”. She added: “It is a huge threat to freedom of speech, for it to be able to look at what you’re saying if it wants to. Consumers will say, I’ve got nothing to hide, but you don’t know what information is looked for and what connections are being made.” [...]
[...] Members of “Generation Z” can spend up to nine hours a day sharing photos on Instagram, consuming “content” on YouTube and talking to friends on Snapchat. (Just don’t ask them to get excited about Facebook.)
But how much do these teens understand what they’ve agreed to give up when they start an account with those sites ? [...]
Most of those children have no idea what their privacy rights are, despite all of them agreeing to terms and conditions before starting their social media accounts, Afia said. The task force, which included experts from the public and private sector, worked for a year and released its report Wednesday. [...]