Categories
Security & Privacy

Schneier on Corona Tracing

Bruce Schneier, well known cryptologist and security researcher, has a few thoughts on corona tracing apps on his blog. Spoiler: he doesn’t like the idea.

His article is revolving around efficiency much more than privacy, concluding that such apps won’t work in the first place.

Categories
Security & Privacy

Privacy in the Platform Economy

Privacy in the Platform Economy: In the tracking business, access to the customers desktop was in firm hands of Google and Facebook. Until recently!

SnakeOil promises people security to get them install software that’s capable of eavesdropping ssl and all other access to a computers interaction. Quite obvious to see this is a good source to profile a users behavior. A violation of users privacy for the sake of security. You sure all read the fineprint in the anti virus software, right?

Now apparently, somebody in the SnakeOil industry figured that out. A recent leak disclosed Avast Antivirus leverages their market access to almost hald a billion user profiles and devices to package up this insight. “every search” that promises ‘Every search. Every click. Every buy. On every site.’. Of course the target audience is the same as for marketing- and tracking clients.

Source: vice.

See also:

https://twitter.com/josephfcox/status/1221796061678694401
Categories
Security & Privacy

Twelve Million Phones, One Dataset, Zero Privacy

Twelve Million Phones, One Dataset, Zero Privacy

is part one of One nation, tracked, an New York Times investigation series of smart phone information tracking and by Stuart A. Thompson and Charlie Warzel, within their privacy project. The research covers multiple topics, only starting out with an analysis of the potential contained in smartphone tracking information.

What we learned from the spy in your pocket.

Twelve Million Phones, One Dataset, Zero Privacy

The authors analyse a large dataset of location information from New York and Washington, DC, cell phone users. With the analysis, the article debunks myths about data privacy. The key takeaway of the analysis, to my interpretation are:

Twelve Million Phones - One Mobile Phone User in Munich
Mobile Phone User – Munich
  1. Data is not anonymous – the authors successfully identified a Senior Defense Department official and his wife. And this was possible during the Women’s March. According to authors, nearly half a million descended on the capital for this event. (Other sources only mention one hundred thousand attendants)
  2. Data is not safe – the authors point out complex relationships of companies in the tracking business. Complexity makes it impossible to ensure ownership. There is no foolproof way for anyone or anywhere in the chain to prevent data from falling into the hands of a foreign security service.
  3. Affected persons cannot consent – the authors criticism seems reasonable. Virtually all companies involved with tracking require user consent. And even cell phones make the geo-tracking feature visible to users. Only barely anyone in the business makes purpose transparent. In other words, no company prominently announce how they package and sell data or insight.

One Nation, Tracked

The article is a creepy read, but worth the time spending. The series One Nation, Tracked continues with 6 other parts:

  1. discussing how to Protect Yourself
  2. National Security, which is for the the US in the article.
  3. details on How it works
  4. individual spying in One Neighborhood
  5. Protests is about how this business betrays democracy
  6. And offers Solutions through privacy rights.

Source: Opinion | Twelve Million Phones, One Dataset, Zero Privacy – The New York Times

Categories
Internet & Cloud

Edge vs. Chrome: A new Browser War

The new Edge browser, built on the same open source code as Google Chrome, contains a new Tracking Prevention feature that blocks third-party trackers and, at the Strict setting, many ads. My tests show that one in four items blocked are from Google.

Source: Edge vs. Chrome: Microsoft’s Tracking Prevention hits Google the hardest

Categories
Business & MBA Internet & Cloud Security & Privacy

Behavioral advertising efficiency

Researchers from U Minnesota, UC Irvine and CMU took a look into “behavioural based advertisement”, a segment that requires heavy tracking of users across websites through cookies. A report of their findings is here: Online Tracking and Publishers’ Revenues: An Empirical Analysis. Money quote:

Empirical analysis of behavioral advertising finds that surveillance makes ads only 4% more profitable for media companies

They found that despite the 40% “ad-tech” premium charged by behavioral ad companies, the ads only added about 4% the media companies that published them, meaning that behavioral advertising is a losing proposition.

Source: Boing Boing

Categories
Business & MBA

Leap Motion acquired by Ultrahaptics

The 2010 founded AR and VR company, that was leading in hand tracking devices for VR usage had a few moments that made the tech-headlines. According to many sources, Apple tried to acquire the company twice, with the second attempt as recently as 2018. Past week, the company sold for $30 million.

Today, we’re announcing a strategic deal with Ultrahaptics that combines the two companies and solidifies our collective role as the world’s leading spatial interaction company.

Source: Leap Motion and Ultrahaptics Join Forces – Leap Motion Blog

Categories
Internet & Cloud Product, Projekt & Agile

Fixing issues in Software

So machen Profis das.

Categories
Internet & Cloud

Inaudible sounds to track you for ads.

Following the recent debate about ad-technology and how annoying it is and advertisers insight, you may have though it could only get better from there. Turns out, it can be worse if these claims about tracking through inaudible sounds from ads hold true.

Privacy advocates warn feds about surreptitious cross-device tracking.

Quelle: Ars Technica

Even though I’d consider this inacceptible from a consumers perspective, I’d be very curious about the (audio) technology and the kind of insight this provides, from a marketing perspective. Just consider a TV-Ad broadcasting this signal to a room full of people, for one the signal would sure be difficult to detect. And then, all devices carry the same cookie, making it difficult to identify individuals…

Categories
Uncategorized

eMail. Still.

Year 2015. Still eMail is the predominant means of communication. Everybody hates it, most companies make an effort to ban it. Atos wanted to go email free, Telekom shuts off their servers, Daimler even deletes email for people on vacation. Even I receive emails, saying “I need this, but I cannot answer”, quoting the “email free day policy”. Despite all effort, nobody succeeds.

Why? Unclear. While I think email should be banned myself, I have difficulties offering a better option. But I develop a feeling for why this is happening. This morning somebody mentioned he’ll be posting into a slack.com channel. That company claims to simplify communication, make teamwork less painful and busy, all searchable. As if nobody else tried that. And even if slack.com does a good job in what they aim for, they are just another solution.

In my personal, active use are trello.com, Pocket, Salesforce chatter. While my company introduces a community, colleagues swear on private Facebook groups or WhatsApp for simplified communication. Not to mention the tools customers and businesspartners are using. Popular among these are Jive, Atlassian Jira, SAP Jam, but not limited, I’ve seen self hosted communities, bug trackers and ticketing tools.

It’s difficult to keep track of all these tools. But they all send notifications through email.

Which tool do you use to communicate?

Categories
Internet & Cloud Web and Analytics

Lightbeam

Vor etwa einem Jahr hatte ich hier ja schon einmal Collusion. Lightbeam scheint dir Weiterentwicklung davon zu sein.