Monthly Archives: November 2013

50 years ago JFK died for these words

“The very word "secrecy" is repugnant in a free and open society; and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies, to secret oaths and to secret proceedings. We decided long ago that the dangers of excessive and unwarranted concealment of pertinent facts far outweighed the dangers which are cited to […]

Google’s social network bot: How they launched the Arab Spring

The search giant Google has patented software which learns how you react on social networks. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-25033172  The software can mimic your usual responses to updates and messages from friends and relations. The software also analyses continuing interaction and flags messages that demand a more personal response. In a bid to help people cope Google envisions […]

White House censoring photographers press coverage of Obama

Photographers who cover President Obama are protesting the White House’s increasing practice of excluding them from events involving the president and then releasing its own photos or video. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/22/us/politics/photographers-protest-white-house-restrictions.html?ref=us On Thursday, the White House Correspondents’ Association and 37 news organizations submitted a letter to the press secretary, Jay Carney, protesting what photographers said amounted to […]

Ikea spying collects data on employees and customers in France

Prosecutors have placed three senior Ikea executives in France under investigation amid allegations that they authorized illegal spying on employees and customers. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/22/business/international/france-investigates-allegations-against-ikea-executives.html?ref=world The allegations first came to light in early 2012, when the French magazine Le Canard Enchaîné published what it said were emails between Ikea France executives and a private security company. According […]

South Africa bans photography of presidential compound

South African newspapers have published images of President Jacob Zuma’s residence, defying a government warning that this would break security laws. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-25049641  Mr Zuma’s Nkandla residence is at the centre of a row after it emerged that the government had used $20m (£12m) of taxpayers’ money to refurbish it. Cabinet ministers on Thursday said anyone […]

UK complicit in NSA warrantless data collection and storage

The UK allowed the US National Security Agency to keep the mobile phone numbers and email addresses of ordinary Britons from 2007, reports say. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-25028495?print=true UK Channel 4 News and the Guardian said existing rules were modified in 2007 to allow the US to keep information swept up incidentally about Britons not suspected of criminal […]

IT consultant uncovers LG Smart TV data spying

A UK-based IT consultant has detailed how his LG Smart TV was sending data about which channels were being watched and that some of its TVs send details about their owners’ viewing habits back to the manufacturer even if the users have activated a privacy setting. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-25018225 .His investigation also indicated that the TVs uploaded […]