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Category Archives: E-Records

How to Download Everything Amazon Knows About You (It’s a Lot)

Likehacker – “Alexa has been keeping tabs on you. Here’s how to see what it knows. Here’s a fun thought experiment; picture the amount of personal data you think tech companies keep on you. Now, realize it’s actually way more than that (hmm, maybe this isn’t that fun). Even as privacy and security become more talked about in consumer tech, the companies behind our favorite products are collecting more and more of our data. How much? Well, if you want to know the information, say, Amazon has on you, there is a way to find out. And it’s a lot. To be clear, data collection is far from an Amazon-specific problem; it’s pretty much par for the course when it comes to tech companies. Even Apple, a company vocal about user privacy, has faced criticism in the past for recording Siri interactions and sharing them with third-party contractors. The issue with Amazon, however, is the extent to which they collect and archive your data. Just about everything you do on, with, and around an Amazon product or service is logged and recorded. Sure, you might not be surprised to learn that when you visit Amazon’s website, the company logs your browsing history and shopping data. But it goes far beyond that. Since Amazon owns Whole Foods, it also saves your shopping history there. When you watch video content through its platforms, it records all of that information, too. Things get even creepier with other Amazon products. If you read books on a Kindle, Amazon records your reading activity, including the speed of your page turns (I wonder if Bezos prefers a slow or fast page flip); if you peered into your Amazon data, you might find something similar to what a Reuter’s reporter found: On Aug. 8 2020, someone on that account read The Mitchell Sisters: A Complete Romance Series from 4:52 p.m. through 7:36 p.m., completing 428 pages. (Nice sprint.)..”

EPIC Urges Postal Service to Reverse Plans to Expand Law Enforcement Access to Customer Data

“In comments to the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), EPIC urged the agency to reverse a system of records expansion that would pull data from U.S. Postal Service customers for use by the law enforcement wing of the Postal Service. The proposed modification would give the USPIS access to information used for package tracking and other services,… Continue Reading

IRS Will Require Facial Recognition Scans to Access Your Taxes

Gizmodo: “Online tax filers will soon be required to submit a selfie to a third-party identity verification company using facial recognition tech in order to file their taxes or make IRS payments online. Starting this summer, users with an IRS.gov account will no longer be able to log in with a simple username and password.… Continue Reading

Secret Ways to Reach an Actual Person in Customer Service

Likehacker: “In a world that seems increasingly determined to keep us apart, we’re all bound together by at least one universal experience: the frustration of talking to a real person on the phone at a customer service call center. Whether we want to complain, resolve a problem, or simply get information, call center interactions can… Continue Reading

The ‘Brussels Effect’ of the EU’s ‘AI Act’ on Data Privacy Outside Europe

Greenleaf, Graham, The ‘Brussels Effect’ of the EU’s ‘AI Act’ on Data Privacy Outside Europe (June 7, 2021). (2021) 171 Privacy Laws & Business International Report 1, 3-7, UNSW Law Research, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3898904 “The European Commission’s publication of a proposal for a Regulation on Artificial Intelligence (also described as an ‘AI Act’) is… Continue Reading

The true cost of Amazon’s low prices

Vox/Recode: “On the heels of yet another year of record sales, Amazon is dealing with a couple of unwelcome updates in the new year. The Senate Judiciary Committee has announced it will soon be marking up the American Innovation and Choice Online Act, an antitrust bill targeting Amazon and other Big Tech companies. This follows… Continue Reading

Law Enforcement and Technology: Using Social Media

CRS Report – Law Enforcement and Technology: Using Social Media, January 11, 2022: “As the ways in which individuals interact continue to evolve, social media has had an increasing role in facilitating communication and the sharing of content online—including moderated and unmoderated, user-generated content. Over 70% of U.S. adults are estimated to have used social… Continue Reading

US government urges organizations to prepare for Russian-sponsored cyber threats

Tech Republic: “Cyberattacks sponsored by hostile nation-states are always a major concern, for governments and organizations. Using advanced and sophisticated tactics, these types of attacks can inflict serious and widespread damage, as we’ve already seen in such incidents as the SolarWinds exploit. As such, organizations need to be vigilant for such attacks and make sure… Continue Reading

Legal Matters: The Legal Context of Health Informatics in Global Pandemics

Kaplan, Bonnie, Legal Matters: The Legal Context of Health Informatics in Global Pandemics (November 12, 2021). Kaplan, B. Legal Matters: The Legal Context of Health Informatics in Global Pandemics, Context Sensitive Health Informatics: The Role of Informatics in Global Pandemics, eds. R Marcilly, L Dusseljee-Peute, CE Kuziemsky, X Zhu, P Elkin, Am- sterdam: IOS Press,… Continue Reading

Pete Recommends Weekly highlights on cyber security issues, January 9, 2022

Via LLRX – Pete Recommends Weekly highlights on cyber security issues, January 9, 2022 – Privacy and cybersecurity issues impact every aspect of our lives – home, work, travel, education, health and medical records – to name but a few. On a weekly basis Pete Weiss highlights articles and information that focus on the increasingly… Continue Reading