Internet Freedom Has Taken a Hit During the Covid-19 Pandemic

Internet Freedom Has Taken a Hit During the Covid-19 Pandemic

And as all of this unfolds, new research indicates that the governments around the world have exploited the pandemic to expand their domestic surveillance capabilities and curtail internet freedom and speech.

States are finally starting to use the Covid-tracking tech Apple and Google built -- here's why

States are finally starting to use the Covid-tracking tech Apple and Google built -- here's why

New York and New Jersey both released Covid-19 alert apps this week, bringing the total to 10 states plus Guam which have published apps using technology from the Apple-Google partnership.

Drones, fever goggles, arrests: millions in Asia face 'extreme' Covid surveillance

Drones, fever goggles, arrests: millions in Asia face 'extreme' Covid surveillance

Other countries named in the report include Pakistan – ranked fourth highest in the risk analysis – where a “secretive militant-tracking surveillance system is being used to monitor coronavirus patients”.“Countries like China and Cambodia don’t need a reason to up their surveillance but Covid has accelerated the pace at which these types of technology can be abused,” says Sofia Nazalya, a senior human rights analyst at Verisk Maplecroft.

Ontario police used COVID-19 database illegally, civil rights groups find

Ontario police used COVID-19 database illegally, civil rights groups find

The Canadian Civil Liberties Association (CCLA) and the Canadian Constitution Foundation (CCF) said in separate reports that many services used the database to look at COVID-19 test results for wide geographic areas and sometimes pulled up personal information unrelated to active calls.

In South Korea, Covid-19 Comes With Another Risk: Online Bullies

In South Korea, Covid-19 Comes With Another Risk: Online Bullies

Governments, including those of Italy, Israel and Singapore, have used cellphone data to track potentially infected people and their contacts.Other than China, South Korea is virtually the only country in the world whose government has the power to collect such data at will during an epidemic, according to Prof.

Time for proof - Covid-19 strengthens the case for digital ID cards

Time for proof - Covid-19 strengthens the case for digital ID cards

In countries without a system of secure digital identities, the closure of bricks-and-mortar government offices and the shift of public services online have caused havoc (see article).Its “Aadhaar” biometric system has created digital identities for 1.3bn people.

Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook won't remove anti-vaccine posts despite Covid concerns

Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook won't remove anti-vaccine posts despite Covid concerns

Parker Molloy, a writer and cultural critic at Media Matters for America, said Facebook had proved itself an echo chamber when it allowed hundreds of inaccurate ads funded by pro-Trump organizations.

Apple and Google will alert you to COVID-19 contact

Apple and Google will alert you to COVID-19 contact

Apple and Google teamed up to develop push notifications that let iOS and Android users know if they might have been exposed to COVID-19.The companies announced the news on Tuesday and the effort is called Exposure Notifications Express.

Not All COVID-19 Tracking Apps Respect Privacy, But Some Pass the Test

Not All COVID-19 Tracking Apps Respect Privacy, But Some Pass the Test

Last week, Virginia launched a COVID-19-tracking app that allows users to discover if they've come into contact with people who have tested positive for the virus and to anonymously report their own status if they become infected.

COVID-19 contact tracing applications are privacy snares, Defcon

COVID-19 contact tracing applications are privacy snares, Defcon

COVID contact tracing apps boast the power of gathering personal data that exposes your activities, movements, and relationships.Experts believe governments must avoid this data-hungry mindset in contact tracing apps.

US claims two Chinese hackers targeted defense companies, dissidents, and coronavirus research

US claims two Chinese hackers targeted defense companies, dissidents, and coronavirus research

The US Justice Department has charged two alleged Chinese hackers with stealing trade secrets and other valuable data from companies worldwide, including firms working on COVID-19 treatments and vaccines.

Data Privacy In Times Of COVID-19

Data Privacy In Times Of COVID-19

If we look at countries like Taiwan, China and South Korea who were earliest adopters of technology we can say that while the tracing technology had not been able to completely control outbreak but it did surely help in reducing the time it took to map an infected person’s contacts and in some cases to even enforce quarantines.

White House reportedly orders hospitals to bypass CDC during COVID-19 data collection

White House reportedly orders hospitals to bypass CDC during COVID-19 data collection

The Trump administration is now ordering hospitals to send coronavirus patient data to a database in Washington, DC as part of a new initiative that may bypass the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), according to a report from The New York Times published on Tuesday.

Inside America’s Secretive $2 Billion Research Hub Collecting Fingerprints From Facebook, Hacking Smartwatches And Fighting Covid-19

Inside America’s Secretive $2 Billion Research Hub Collecting Fingerprints From Facebook, Hacking Smartwatches And Fighting Covid-19

Among the government’s wilder Mitre orders: a prototype tool that can hack into smartwatches, fitness trackers and home thermometers for the purposes of homeland security; software to collect human fingerprints from social media websites like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for the FBI; support in building what the FBI calls the biggest database of human anatomy and criminal history in the world; and a study to determine whether someone’s body odor can show they’re lying.

Stalkers are using video doorbells and other 'smart' devices to harass victims, say police chiefs

Stalkers are using video doorbells and other 'smart' devices to harass victims, say police chiefs

Stalkers hacked into smart devices including video doorbells to target their victims in their own homes during the Covid-19 lockdown, police chiefs have said.

Privacy News Online | Weekly Review: June 19th, 2020

Privacy News Online | Weekly Review: June 19th, 2020

A report by the International Digital Accountability Council (IDAC) examined 108 global COVID-19 tracing and tracking apps to examine data protection levels.Norway to stop Covid-19 track and trace app following warning from data protection watchdog.

Bahrain, Kuwait and Norway contact tracing apps among most dangerous for privacy

Bahrain, Kuwait and Norway contact tracing apps among most dangerous for privacy

Bahrain, Kuwait and Norway have rolled out some of the most invasive COVID-19 contact tracing apps around the world, putting the privacy and security of hundreds of thousands of people at risk, an Amnesty International investigation reveals.

Norway to halt COVID-19 track and trace app on data protection concerns

Norway to halt COVID-19 track and trace app on data protection concerns

OSLO (Reuters) - Norway will halt its COVID-19 track and trace app and delete all data collected so far after criticism from the Norwegian Data Protection Authority, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH) said on Monday.

The Privacy Perils of Contact Tracing in Libraries

The Privacy Perils of Contact Tracing in Libraries

Yet, as communities struggle with the COVID-19 pandemic, libraries are faced with requests or demands to institute contact tracing, monitoring who comes into the library and restricting access to those who don’t provide their personal information.

UK govt publishes contracts granting Amazon, Microsoft, Google and AI firms access to COVID-19 health data

UK govt publishes contracts granting Amazon, Microsoft, Google and AI firms access to COVID-19 health data

In May, a broad-based campaign group wrote to UK health secretary Matt Hancock calling for greater openness in the government's embrace of private-sector tech companies contracted to provide a data store and dashboards as part of the NHS response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Your boss wants you to take a Covid-19 test. There's software for that

Your boss wants you to take a Covid-19 test. There's software for that

As more employers reopen their offices, stores, and warehouses, a growing number of health tech companies are pitching smartphone apps and other tools to help them bring employees back to work safely in the Covid-19 era.

Privacy News Online | Weekly Review: May 29th, 2020

Privacy News Online | Weekly Review: May 29th, 2020

OpenSAFELY is a secure analytics platform that allows health information for COVID-19 analysis that allows the health information of millions of patients be shared without violating their privacy.Google Chrome version 83 includes new privacy and security updates as well as features delayed from version 82.

Report finds massive drop in Canadians’ willingness to disclose personal information for free online services

Report finds massive drop in Canadians’ willingness to disclose personal information for free online services

The report will help inform policy discussions ahead of the Canadian Internet Governance Forum, which has been rescheduled to November 24th and 25th due to COVID-19.Overall, the report shows Canadians growing anxiety about cybersecurity-related issues, including a significant drop in their willingness to disclose personal information for better content and services online.

Local News Stations Run Propaganda Segment Scripted and Produced by Amazon

Local News Stations Run Propaganda Segment Scripted and Produced by Amazon

Local news stations across the U.S. aired a segment produced and scripted by Amazon which touts the company's role in delivering essential groceries and cleaning products during the COVID-19 pandemic, and its ability to do so while "keeping its employees safe and healthy.".

Fraudulent Ads Exploit COVID-19 Fears on Disney’s ESPN.Com

Fraudulent Ads Exploit COVID-19 Fears on Disney’s ESPN.Com

Fraudulent Ads Exploit COVID-19 Fears on Disney’s ESPN.Com. Scam advertisements across major media outlets originate from DoubleClick and Xandr/AppNexus.Unfortunately, other media outlets aren’t doing the same thing, and fake ads are spreading across major news sites that receive millions of visitors every month.

Everbridge CEO: We Can Play Critical Role in Covid-19 Contact Tracing

Everbridge CEO: We Can Play Critical Role in Covid-19 Contact Tracing

Everbridge's products are used by governments and companies to assess risks such as terrorism and cyber-attacks and determine which they need to worry about; locate assets, customers and others that could be harmed; provide automated "standard operating procedures" to manage and respond to problems; and analyze how past threats were handled to create a better response for the next ones that come along, according to the CEO.In response to Covid-19, Everbridge launched a coronavirus data feed, said Meredith.

OpenSAFELY: more proof that tackling the coronavirus pandemic does not require privacy to be compromised

OpenSAFELY: more proof that tackling the coronavirus pandemic does not require privacy to be compromised

For example, Vint Cerf, widely recognized as one of the creators of the Internet, has recently written an article for the Indian site Medianama entitled “Internet Lessons from COVID19“, in which he warns: Variations of the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) are propagating around the world with good intent although implementation has shown some unintended consequences, not least of which may be the ability to share health information that would assist in finding a vaccine against SARS-COV-2.

A flood of coronavirus apps are tracking us. Now it’s time to keep track of them.

A flood of coronavirus apps are tracking us. Now it’s time to keep track of them.

So to help monitor this fast-evolving situation, we’re gathering the information into a single place for the first time with our Covid Tracing Tracker —a database to capture details of every significant automated contact tracing effort around the world.

Privacy News Online Week in Review (May 15th, 2020)

Privacy News Online Week in Review (May 15th, 2020)

As an example, North Dakota released a COVID-19 contact tracing app that is centralized and based on location data tracking – and has only seen 3% of its population use it.

Hungary suspends some GDPR privacy protections as part of COVID-19 “state of emergency”

Hungary suspends some GDPR privacy protections as part of COVID-19 “state of emergency”

The ruling party doesn’t seem to understand why the entire world is upset by the overreach of power and the fact that the state of emergency doesn’t have a set date to end.

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