Disturbing Congress Documents Reveal Even MORE Things That Facebook Knows About You

It's no secret that Facebook collects information on all its users. The Cambridge Analytica scandal in April brought the extent and depth of this data acquisition to the public eye, leading Congress to request Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to appear before them. Senators asked the company over 2,000 questions, which Facebook has now answered. And it appears there's a lot of ways in which the social media platform can track us that many people might not be aware of.

Links to the documents with the questions and answers are included in the article.
Review | Hands off my data! 15 default privacy settings you should change right now


Say no to defaults. A clickable guide to fixing the complicated privacy settings from Facebook, Google, Amazon, Microsoft and Apple.
Or don't use F, G, A, M & A...
The easiest solution for all these privacy issues seems not to be obvious for the most people: Quit using them!
In Win For Privacy Rights, Court Says Police Need Warrant To Search Area Around Home

The Supreme Court reversed a conviction that came after an officer looked at a motorcycle under a tarp outside a private residence — without a warrant.
Can Your Smart Home Appliances Snitch on You?

In the age of Alexa, new questions arise about how your smart devices could be used by police.

No, I have no connection to themarshallproject.org, :-)
How a “location API” allows cops to figure out where we all are in real time

The digital privacy world was rocked late Thursday evening when The New York Times reported on Securus, a prison telecom company that has a service enabling law enforcement officers to locate most American cell phones within seconds. The company does this via a basic Web interface leveraging a location API—creating a way to effectively access a massive real-time database of cell-site records.
Thanks for sharing

The Golden State Killer Is Tracked Through a Thicket of DNA, and Experts Shudder
by By GINA KOLATA and HEATHER MURPHY on The New York Times
Big Brother Meets Black Mirror in the Middle Kingdom

Imagine a world where everything you ever do or say is watched and rated by invisible eyes.

That’s why the only good system is an agnostic one, built with checks and balances to crush any group that tries to seize it for their own dark designs. That’s the reason I stand behind decentralized systems, so no one power can force-feed their warped ideology down everyone’s throats. Even if a system is built by the most enlightened men and women who ever walked the face of the Earth eventually someone with very different desires will come to power. And they will find every way to exploit the weaknesses of any poorly designed system for their own advantages.
Palantir Knows Everything About You

Peter Thiel's data-mining company is using War on Terror tools to track American citizens.
Thanks for sharing.
How to save your privacy from the Internet’s clutches

Another week, another massive privacy scandal. When it’s not Facebook admitting it allowed data on as many as 87 million users to be sucked out by a developer on its platform who sold it to a polit…

Quite a long list of suggestions at the end of the article.
Cops Around the Country Can Now Unlock iPhones, Records Show

A Motherboard investigation has found that law enforcement agencies across the country have purchased GrayKey, a relatively cheap tool for bypassing the encryption on iPhones, while the FBI pushes again for encryption backdoors.
They're back! 'Feds only' encryption backdoors prepped in US by Dems

US lawmakers are yet again trying to force backdoors into tech products, allowing Uncle Sam, and anyone else with the necessary skills, to rifle through people's private encrypted information.
“Who cares, I have nothing to hide” — Why the popular response to online privacy is so flawed

“It’s important to acknowledge that privacy isn’t about hiding — it’s about having and exercising more agency over who sees our personal information,” said Rebecca Ricks, a Mozilla fellow and technologist, in an email exchange with Mic. “So much of our social, networked lives is contextual: There are conversations I have with my friends that I wouldn’t want my family to see. There is information I give my bank that I wouldn’t want a hacker to see. Strengthening privacy controls means improving trust and communication online.”
I figure there is many ways to define "integrity" but one way I read about is that integrity is the process of sharing information that defines you in a social context. The information about me defines me and I need to be in control over that.

As it turns out this process is crucial for the human being and the ability for humans socially interact. It has nothing to do with secrets.

We have all been in or seen the situation where mother shows old photos for our girlfriend or mature friends, photos that show a person we are no more and views of that person that we'd rather not shared right now. In this particular case Mother violates my right to decide what information my associated shall see and how I shall be perceived.

I know that the book was written by a Swedish author, first name Erik (as is mine) and it is most sure 10 years+ since I read it. Sadly I am unable to find the book again. The author wrote about how ordinary stores collects information via membership and 5% discount and how they sell it and abuse it otherwise. He was well ahead of his time.
I finally had a chance to read about what all this hubbub is about...

Facebook’s Surveillance Machine
by By ZEYNEP TUFEKCI on The New York Times
The House That Spied on Me


In December, I converted my one-bedroom apartment in San Francisco into a “smart home.” I connected as many of my appliances and belongings as I could to the internet: an Amazon Echo, my lights, my coffee maker, my baby monitor, my kid’s toys, my vacuum, my TV, my toothbrush, a photo frame, a sex toy, and even my bed.
Good read, thanks.

What Data Does Windows 10 Send to Microsoft?
by Techquickie on YouTube

Your Windows 10 installation is probably sending quite a bit of information to Microsoft. Just what sorts of things are being sent, and could they be used to identify you or your activities?
Back in the day we used to move images around with dd, but you had to be aware of and transfer data in exact multiples of the block size. I figured by using startup disk creator I wouldn't have to try and find any documentation about the blocksize of my Chinese USB stick. And after having Microsoft thwart several of my earlier efforts I also didn't want to do it over yet again. So yes you can use dd, but if you've got a device with an unusual blocksize (something besides an exact multiple of 512) you're going to have to know what that is.
  last edited: Thu, 08 Feb 2018 11:21:17 -0500  
but you had to be aware of and transfer data in exact multiples of the block size.
Indeed, the blocksize can make troubles. After using "dd" to create the last bootable USB I tried to re-format it again and run into errors caused by different block sizes. I think It was something like "the partation table says blocksize XY but the real physical block size is YZ".

I will remember and try "your" startup disk creator the next time. Thanks for the hint.
At my kid's school , I help maintian all of the office computers and network. They have painfully slow internet because of the remote location.

I can always tell when one of the Windows 10 computers is doing its thing (uploading data) because no one else can access the internet. At first I thought it was a network issue but my router tells me exactly who is the culprit.  Windows 10 Desktop every time.

I think I have them convinced to downgrade to Windows 7 pro,
Big Brother on wheels: Why your car company may know more about you than your spouse.


Privacy experts believe tens of millions of Americans are already being monitored by automakers.

I'm really hoping my 20 year old car hangs in there for many more years.
Max Schrems at CCC: “Privacy Shield goes down as soon as EU Courts deliberate” – Nextcloud


In a Dutch interview, Max Schrems, the Austrian lawyer who successfully sued Facebook and got the Safe Harbour agreement between US and Europe thrown out, said he is convinced Privacy Shield will “encounter the same fate.”
How Email Open Tracking Quietly Took Over the Web

You give up more privacy than you might think each time you open an email.
  last edited: Wed, 13 Dec 2017 14:28:34 -0500  
I have had my mail program on text-only for years, but this is concerning... at least I am sure I have not yet received a tracked conversational email.
In Thunderbird, I have the option set not to accept remote content by default. So, at least I'm not being tracked by the emails from unknown sources that I delete out of hand (most of which have already been eliminated by the spam filter). I'm sure I'm being tracked by some senders I do want to get email from.

At work, we have been swapping our customer email correspondence over to a email service that does this sort of thing so that we know our notices have been delivered, so I can appreciate that there are some legitimate uses. If we have a legal requirement to send a notice, it is useful to have proof of delivery.
Big data meets Big Brother as China moves to rate its citizens


The Chinese government plans to launch its Social Credit System in 2020. The aim? To judge the trustworthiness – or otherwise – of its 1.3 billion residents
Very interesting article.
Somehow I'm not surprised. But I didn't think this kind of things would happen this soon.