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Category Archives: Privacy

US Census Bureau purposely fudges location data in census to protect people’s privacy

Via Kottke – The U.S. Census Is Wrong on Purpose: “…Full census data is only made available 72 years after the census takes place, in accordance with the creatively-named “72 year rule.” Until then, it is only available as aggregated data with individual identifiers removed. Still, if the population of a town is small enough, and census data for that town indicates, for example, that there is just one 90 year old woman and she lives alone, someone could conceivably figure out who that individual is. So the census bureau sometimes moves people around to create noise in the data that makes that sort of identification a little bit harder…”

See also the U.S. Census: “Modern computers and today’s data-rich world have rendered the Census Bureau’s traditional confidentiality protection methods obsolete. Those legacy methods are no match for hackers aiming to piece together the identities of the people and businesses behind published data.  ​ A powerful new disclosure avoidance system (DAS) designed to withstand modern re-identification threats will protect 2020 Census data products (other than the apportionment data; those state-level totals remain unaltered by statistical noise). ​ The 2020 DAS is based on a framework for assessing privacy risk known as differential privacy. It is the only solution that can respond to this threat while maximizing the availability and utility of published census data…”

This Tiny Website Is Google’s First Line of Defense in the Patent Wars

Wired: “TDCommons is a free space for inventors to lay claim to breakthroughs without having to file a patent. Why is it so off the radar? A trio of Google engineers recently came up with a futuristic way to help anyone who stumbles through presentations on video calls. They propose that when algorithms detect a… Continue Reading

Pete Recommends – Weekly highlights on cyber security issues, February 17, 2024

Via LLRX –  Pete Recommends – Weekly highlights on cyber security issues, February 17, 2024 -Privacy and cybersecurity issues impact every aspect of our lives – home, work, travel, education, finance, health and medical records – to name but a few. On a weekly basis Pete Weiss highlights articles and information that focus on the… Continue Reading

Service Jobs Now Require Bizarre Personality Test From AI Company

404 Media: “Applying to some of the most common customer and food service jobs in the country now requires a long and bizarre personality quiz featuring blue humanoid aliens, which tells employers how potential hires rank in terms of “agreeableness” and “emotional stability.” If you’ve applied to a job at FedEx, McDonald’s, or Darden Restaurants… Continue Reading

What Is Focus Status on Your iPhone?

MakeUseOf – And How to Enable It – “Let everyone know you’re busy with Focus status on your iPhone. While Apple’s Focus feature is a great way to minimize distractions and silence notifications, you may unintentionally make your friends feel like you’re ignoring them at times. In such situations, you can use the “Share Focus… Continue Reading

DuckDuckGo’s privacy browser adds built-in password syncing

The Verge: “DuckDuckGo has added a new “Sync & Backup” feature to its privacy-first browser that will keep passwords, bookmarks, and favorites constant across all of your devices — without setting up an account. Falling right in line with its usual claims that it won’t track you or collect your data, the company says that… Continue Reading

Wyden Reveals Phone Data Used to Target Abortion Misinformation at Visitors to Hundreds of Reproductive Health Clinics

“U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., revealed today that an anti-abortion political group used mobile phone location data to send targeted misinformation to people who visited any of 600 reproductive health clinics in 48 states. In a letter to the Federal Trade Commission and Securities and Exchange Commission, Wyden urged the government to act quickly to… Continue Reading

OpenAI Gives ChatGPT a Memory

Wired [read free]: “…The promise and peril of the internet has always been a memory greater than our own, a permanent recall of information and events that our brains can’t store. More recently, tech companies have promised that virtual assistants and chatbots could handle some of the mnemonic load, by both remembering and reminding. It’s… Continue Reading

Pete Recommends – Weekly highlights on cyber security issues, February 11, 2024

Via LLRX – Pete Recommends – Weekly highlights on cyber security issues, February 11, 2024 – Privacy and cybersecurity issues impact every aspect of our lives – home, work, travel, education, finance, health and medical records – to name but a few. On a weekly basis Pete Weiss highlights articles and information that focus on… Continue Reading

Understanding the Privacy Practices of Political Campaigns: A Perspective from the 2020 US Election Websites

024 IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy (SP) Understanding the Privacy Practices of Political Campaigns: A Perspective from the 2020 US Election Websites Year: 2024, Pages: 91-91, DOI Bookmark: 10.1109/SP54263.2024.00091. Kaushal Kafle, William & Mary, USA ;  Prianka Mandal, William & Mary, USA  ; Kapil Singh, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center, USA ; Benjamin Andow,… Continue Reading