Privacy Blog

"Friends don’t let friends get spied on.' – Richard Stallman, President of the Free Software Foundation and longtime advocate of privacy in technology.

Legal Affairs

European Union’s Court of Justice Invalidates Data Sharing Under Privacy Shield Due to US Surveillance Procedures

Facebook and Company can no longer transfer data of European Union citizens under Privacy Shield because this undermines the data protection guaranteed by the GDPR. A landmark decision for privacy rights by the European Court of Justice invalidates Privacy Shield – a US-EU agreement. Privacy Shield was passed to give Silicon Valley tech companies easier access to the European market. This special arrangement for US companies is now null and […]

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How to Apply for Australian Citizenship

With all the political upheavals in the world, along with various economic sanctions amongst countries, many people are finding the idea of obtaining citizenship in a different country can be enticing. Australia is certainly one of the more appealing countries, especially for anyone who speaks English either as their native tongue or else is already fluent in English as a second language. Australia is one of the safest countries in […]

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Florida Becomes First State to Enact DNA Privacy Law, Blocking Insurers From Genetic Data

Florida on Wednesday became the nation’s first state to enact a DNA privacy law, prohibiting life, disability and long-term care insurance companies from using genetic tests for coverage purposes. Gov. Ron DeSantis signed House Bill 1189, sponsored by Rep. Chris Sprowls, R-Palm Harbor. It <strong>extends federal prohibitions</strong> against health insurance providers accessing results from DNA tests, such as those offered by 23andMe or AncestryDNA, to the three other insurers. Sprowls, […]

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Blockchain Can Provide the Right to Privacy That Everyone Deserves

Reuben Yap has just published an article that I believe everyone should read, especially our elected representatives. He writes (in part): “Contrary to popular belief, privacy is not for those with something to hide but with everything to lose. Authoritarian governments across the globe are increasingly using surveillance to control their citizens at the expense of personal freedoms and civil liberties. The privacy of one’s financial transactions is intricately linked […]

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Under This New Law, Cryptocurrency Could Become Illegal

I wrote about an absurd proposed piece of legislation 5 days ago at https://bit.ly/2VwfKhN. If passed, a new bill under consideration in the U.S. Senate will destroy personal, corporate, and most other private online communications. It will be a gift to credit card thieves, identity thieves, Facebook’s advertisers, as well as to local and foreign governments alike. In short, the bill proposes requiring “back doors” in all encrypted communications created […]

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Census Has New Method for Privacy but Researchers Want Proof

The Census Bureau claims to have improved its ability to provide accurate data without risking the privacy of its responses, but experts are concerned there isn’t time to test the method before the data is published. The tweaks to the new method are critical to an accurate population count, one that will affect legislative mapmaking and the distribution of $1.5 trillion in federal funds. “Unfortunately, the tabulation, documentation and quality […]

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Multiple “CIA Failures” Led to Theft of Agency’s Top-Secret Hacking Tools

Your tax dollars at work: the CIA developed all sorts of (mostly illegal) tools to spy on Americans and foreign citizens alike and the unwittingly allowed those tools to fall into the hands of anyone and everyone in the world. In early 2017, WikiLeaks began publishing details of top-secret CIA hacking tools that researchers soon confirmed were part of a large tranche of confidential documents stolen from one of the […]

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Use of Genealogy DNA in an Iowa Cold Case Conviction Was Unconstitutional, According to the Defense Attorney’s Claims

The state’s use of genetic testing to convict an Iowa man in a 40-year-old cold case was unconstitutional, according to a motion filed in Linn County court. Jerry Lynn Burns, 66, was found guilty in February of first-degree murder in the 1979 stabbing death of 18-year-old Michelle Martinko in Cedar Rapids. While waiting to receive the mandatory life sentence that comes with a conviction on that charge, Burns’ attorney has […]

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Canada Fines Facebook Almost $6.5 Million Over ‘False’ Data Privacy Claims

Here is still another article about Facebook claiming to offer privacy when, in fact, the company steals, saves, and resells the private information of all its users. According to Canada’s independent Competition Bureau, Facebook “made false or misleading claims about the privacy of Canadians’ personal information on Facebook and Messenger” and improperly shared data with third-party developers. According to the article, Facebook said it “did not agree” with the finding, […]

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California Needlessly Reduces Privacy During COVID-19 Pandemic

On March 17, 2020, the federal government relaxed a number of telehealth-related regulatory requirements due to COVID-19. On April 3, 2020, California Governor Gavin Newsom issued Executive Order N-43-20 (the Order), which relaxes various telehealth reporting requirements, penalties, and enforcements otherwise imposed under state laws, including those associated with unauthorized access and disclosure of personal information through telehealth mediums.

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