THE

Posts Tagged ‘Privacy’

Police to begin iPhone iris scans amid privacy concerns

In Americas, Big Brother on July 21, 2011 at 6:34 pm

By Reuters

Dozens of police departments nationwide are gearing up to use a tech company’s already controversial iris -and facial-scanning device that slides over an iPhone and helps identify a person or track criminal suspects.

The so-called “biometric” technology, which seems to take a page from TV shows like “MI-5” or “CSI,” could improve speed and accuracy in some routine police work in the field. However, its use has set off alarms with some who are concerned about possible civil liberties and privacy issues.

The smartphone-based scanner, named Mobile Offender Recognition and Information System, or MORIS, is made by BI2 Technologies in Plymouth, Massachusetts, and can be deployed by officers out on the beat or back at the station.

An iris scan, which detects unique patterns in a person’s eyes, can reduce to seconds the time it takes to identify a suspect in custody. This technique also is significantly more accurate than results from other fingerprinting technology long in use by police, BI2 says.

When attached to an iPhone, MORIS can photograph a person’s face and run the image through software that…

Full article…

Advertisements

Denmark police propose ban on anonymous Internet use

In Big Brother, Europe News, Tech on June 28, 2011 at 3:42 pm

By Amy Lee

Imagine if the police knew exactly what you do online: All the porn sites you scan secretly, the vitriolic comments you leave on blogs, the number of hours you spend playing Farmville.

In Denmark, police have recommended to Parliament that it create laws that make it impossible for citizens to surf anonymously. According to Danish-language blog Computerworld Denmark, the proposal is intended to help investigate terrorism.

In the proposal, locations providing open Internet, like cafes and libraries, would have to confirm a user’s identity, with some form of official ID, before letting them get online. Companies may also have to register and verify users’ identities before providing access, as well as retain records of user logs.

Danish law already requires that ISPs store user data for at least a year, as an anti-terrorism measure. The proposal suggests that with such information, police would be able to see who exactly is on the network, where they go, and who they talk to.

Such a move would have serious privacy implications. But another problematic facet of the proposal is in the nature of online identity itself. 4Chan founder Christopher Poole recently defended web anonymity against…

Full article…

Why “security” keeps winning out over privacy

In Big Brother on June 4, 2011 at 4:24 am

By Daniel J. Solove

Far too often, debates about privacy and security begin with privacy proponents pointing to invasive government surveillance, such as GPS tracking, the National Security Agency surveillance program, data mining, and public video camera systems. Security proponents then chime in with a cadre of arguments about how these security measures are essential to law enforcement and national security. When the balancing is done, the security side often wins, and security measures go forward with little to no privacy protections.

But the victory for security is one often achieved unfairly. The debate is being skewed by several flawed pro-security arguments. These arguments improperly tip the scales to the security side of the balance. Let’s analyze some of these arguments, the reasons they are flawed, and the pernicious effects they have.

The All-or-Nothing Fallacy
Many people contend that “we must give up some of our privacy in order to be more secure.” In polls, people are asked…

Full article…

Privacy lost: The amazing benefits of the completely examined life

In Big Brother, Tech on May 6, 2011 at 11:04 am

By PCWorld

It’s time to stop complaining and star appreciating the advantages of the open-source you.

Your iPhone’s tracking you. Your game network just surrendered all your personal data. And your mom is posting your potty-training videos on Facebook. Like many of us, you’re laboring under the delusion that privacy matters–that there’s such a thing as too much (public) information. It’s time to get over it! Soon we’ll all recognize the positives of exposing every aspect of our lives. What a relief it will be when we’ve finally revealed everything and have nothing left to hide. Herewith, the potential benefits of our upcoming, privacy-free utopia:

• Better security, plus entertainment, 24/7: Tune into the airport security “Grope-cam” channel.

• Lose weight through public shaming. Live feed of your personal calorie-intake monitor. And all of your followers can heckle and haze you between bites.

• Never wonder about the location of your wayward spouse again: All citizens’ locations are now tracked on GoogleMaps, via surgically imbedded cell phone/GPS…

Full article…