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Category Archives: E-Records

Government Is Using Most Vulnerable People to Test Facial Recognition Software

Slate – Our research shows that any one of us might end up helping the facial recognition industry, perhaps during moments of extraordinary vulnerability. “If you thought IBM using “quietly scraped” Flickr images to train facial recognition systems was bad, it gets worse. Our research, which will be reviewed for publication this summer, indicates that the U.S. government, researchers, and corporations have used images of immigrants, abused children, and dead people to test their facial recognition systems, all without consent. The very group the U.S. government has tasked with regulating the facial recognition industry is perhaps the worst offender when it comes to using images sourced without the knowledge of the people in the photographs. The National Institute of Standards and Technology, a part of the U.S. Department of Commerce, maintains the Facial Recognition Verification Testing program, the gold standard test for facial recognition technology. This program helps software companies, researchers, and designers evaluate the accuracy of their facial recognition programs by running their software through a series of challenges against large groups of images (data sets) that contain faces from various angles and in various lighting conditions. NIST has multiple data sets, each with a name identifying its provenance, so that tests can include people of various ages and in different settings…”

Google user data collection is extensive, massive and lucrative

Google Data Collection, Professor Douglas C. Schmidt, Vanderbilt University August 15, 2018: “Google is the world’s largest digital advertising company.1It also provides the #1 web browser, the #1 mobile platform,3and the #1 search engine4worldwide. Google’s video platform, email service, and map application have over 1 billion monthly active users each.5Google utilizes the tremendous reach of… Continue Reading

Firefox Send – Free File Transfers while Keeping your Personal Information Private

Firefox Send, send.firefox.com. “Send is a free encrypted file transfer service that allows users to safely and simply share files from any browser. Additionally, Send will also be available as an Android app in beta later this week. Now that it’s a keeper, we’ve made it even better, offering higher upload limits and greater control… Continue Reading

A new way to track Web censorship under Trump: Gov404

Sunlight Foundation Web Integrity Project: “Today, WIP is launching Gov404: The Web Integrity Project’s Censorship Tracker, a new tool to track unjustified removals of online resources and reductions in access to content across the federal government. Why are we aggregating these unjustified removals? As the government itself states in its Office of Management and Budget’s… Continue Reading

US Government Will Be Scanning Your Face At 20 Top Airports

BuzzFeedNews: “In March 2017, President Trump issued an executive order expediting the deployment of biometric verification of the identities of all travelers crossing US borders. That mandate stipulates facial recognition identification for “100 percent of all international passengers,” including American citizens, in the top 20 US airports by 2021. Now, the United States Department of… Continue Reading

New on LLRX – US takes tentative steps toward opening up government data

Via LLRX – US takes tentative steps toward opening up government data – At the beginning of this year, President Trump signed into law the Open, Public, Electronic and Necessary Government Data Act, requiring that nonsensitive government data be made available in machine-readable, open formats by default. As researchers who study data governance and cyber… Continue Reading

Better Reporting of Government-wide Data Would Increase Transparency and Facilitate Oversight

Fees, Fines, and Penalties: Better Reporting of Government-wide Data Would Increase Transparency and Facilitate Oversight GAO-19-221: Published: Mar 7, 2019. Publicly Released: Mar 7, 2019. “Federal agencies collect hundreds of billions of dollars annually in fees, fines, and penalties, such as national park entry fees and penalties for violations of federal telemarketing law. Government-wide data… Continue Reading

Americans and Cybersecurity

Pew Report – Many Americans do not trust modern institutions to protect their personal data – even as they frequently neglect cybersecurity best practices in their own personal lives. “Cyberattacks and data breaches are facts of life for government agencies, businesses and individuals alike in today’s digitized and networked world. Just a few of the… Continue Reading

Pwned Passwords

“Pwned Passwords are 551,509,767 real world passwords previously exposed in data breaches. This exposure makes them unsuitable for ongoing use as they’re at much greater risk of being used to take over other accounts. They’re searchable online below as well as being downloadable for use in other online systems. Read more about how HIBP protects… Continue Reading

New on LLRX – Nothing Artificial About It: How Law Firms (Really) Use AI in Practice

Via LLRX – Nothing Artificial About It: How Law Firms (Really) Use AI in Practice – Ed Walters, CEO of Fastcase, talks about how the new age of law firm innovation is changing legal services by moving from anecdotal to data-driven insights and thus providing better-informed guidance for clients. Walters also identifies the value of… Continue Reading

Here are the data brokers quietly buying and selling your personal information

FastCompany: “It’s no secret that your personal data is routinely bought and sold by dozens, possibly hundreds, of companies. What’s less known is who those companies are, and what exactly they do. Thanks to a new Vermont law requiring companies that buy and sell third-party personal data to register with the Secretary of State, we’ve… Continue Reading

Mail and Wire Fraud: A Brief Overview of Federal Criminal Law Updated

Via FAS – Mail and Wire Fraud: A Brief Overview of Federal Criminal Law Updated, February 11, 2019. “The mail and wire fraud statutes are exceptionally broad. Their scope has occasionally given the courts pause. Nevertheless, prosecutions in their name have brought to an end schemes that have bilked victims out of millions, and sometimes… Continue Reading