TikTok star shares “uncomfortable” amount of data Amazon has on her, including thousands of audio recordings

TikTok star @my.data.not.yours has uploaded a video clip for her fans documenting all the information collected by Amazon about her through some of her devices. She relates that she requested all the data that Amazon has on her and the report came back … Continue reading TikTok star shares “uncomfortable” amount of data Amazon has on her, including thousands of audio recordings

Hackers can remotely kill hospital patients with drug pumps, IT expert discovers

Serious alarm is finally being raised over drug pumps in thousands of hospitals around the world being vulnerable to hacking. RT spoke to the security expert whose previous warnings were ignored – until he proved hackers could kill patients remotely. … Continue reading Hackers can remotely kill hospital patients with drug pumps, IT expert discovers

Bill Gates on AI doomsday: ‘I don’t understand why we aren’t concerned’

Reuters / Fabrizio Bensch Artificial intelligence poses a real threat to humankind, Bill Gates warns, and he “does not understand” those who are not concerned with this notion. But Microsoft’s head of research, Eric Horvitz, says the fears are exaggerated. Gates has joined the camp of experts like Stephen Hawking and Elon Musk who believe that further development of artificial intelligence could endanger our civilization. As someone who has been at the cutting edge of technological progress for the last 40 years, Gates was asked on his Ask Me Anything thread on Reddit about “machine superintelligence” posing an “existential threat” to us all. Artificial intelligence poses … Continue reading Bill Gates on AI doomsday: ‘I don’t understand why we aren’t concerned’

Justice Dept spying on millions of US drivers – report

Reuters/Mike Blake The US Justice Department has been covertly gathering and storing hundreds of millions of records about American motorists for a national database, The Wall Street Journal reported. The database can track the movements of vehicles across the country. Government documents, as well as former and current government officials, confirmed to the Journal that the license plate-tracking program was initially used by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to seize cars, money, and other assets associated with drug trafficking. Use of the database has grown, however, to include hunting for vehicles linked to other possible crimes, including kidnapping, killings, and rape. Additionally, … Continue reading Justice Dept spying on millions of US drivers – report

California cops sign contract to begin using massive biometric database

Reuters/Shannon Stapleton ​The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department – the fourth largest local policing agency in the United States – has taken another step towards building the biggest biometric database outside of the FBI’s by inking a new $24 million contract. NEC Corporation of America – a Texas-based IT firm that provides biometric services to commercial entities, law enforcement groups, and governments around the globe – announced on Monday that it’s been awarded a multi-year contract by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department to provide the agency with specialized, state-of-the-art policing services, including high-tech facial recognition software. Previously published paperwork out of … Continue reading California cops sign contract to begin using massive biometric database

FCC chair likely to take Obama’s lead on net neutrality

Reuters / Thomas Peter Speaking at an electronics show, the United States’ top telecom regulator dismissed complaints that tougher regulations would discourage providers from upgrading their networks, seemingly indicating he will back tough net neutrality regulations. Federal Communications Commission Chairman … Continue reading FCC chair likely to take Obama’s lead on net neutrality

Whites the new minority in America by 2044

Ethan Miller / Getty Images / AFP New population projections by the US Census Bureau show that whites will become a minority by 2044. The US will be home to a youthful, growing minority population juxtaposed against an aging, slow-growing, and soon to be declining white population. The new projections from the Census Bureau show two trends for American’s population: a long-term decline for the nation’s white population – which will make up 49.7 percent of the population by 2044 – and a growth of minorities such as Asians, Latinos, and multiracial persons. In fact, the Latino, Asian, and multiracial … Continue reading Whites the new minority in America by 2044

Fight against terror should not trump privacy rights – Human Rights Commissioner

European Council’s Commissioner for Human Rights, Nils Muižnieks (Image from wikipedia.org) National security concerns, including the fight against global terror, don’t justify US and UK intelligence services’ clandestine and indiscriminate mass surveillance programs, the Commissioner for Human Rights at the Council of Europe has warned. In a pointed challenge to Britain and America, the Council’s Commissioner for Human Rights, Nils Muižnieks, called for increased transparency and more robust democratic oversight of intelligence agencies’ surveillance techniques. He also demanded the terms of ‘Five Eyes’ – a cross-border intelligence-sharing pact between Britain, America, Australia, New Zealand and Canada – be published promptly. … Continue reading Fight against terror should not trump privacy rights – Human Rights Commissioner

Dragnet: Justice Dept gets airborne to spy on thousands of American cellphone users

The Justice Department building is seen in Washington (Reuters / Gary Cameron) New disclosures show the Justice Department is engaged in dragnet surveillance using aircraft equipped with a device that mimics a cellphone tower and scoops up data from thousands of mobile phone users to hunt for criminal suspects. The US Marshals Service program operates Cessna aircraft from five metropolitan airports, all equipped with a fake cellphone tower device that can trick phones into reporting their unique registration information, according to disclosures first reported by The Wall Street Journal. During a single flight, the dragnet data collection will scoop up identifying information … Continue reading Dragnet: Justice Dept gets airborne to spy on thousands of American cellphone users

JP Morgan Chase cost US taxpayers millions, had them pay for settlement – Matt Taibbi

“Ordinary people lost enormous amounts of money” when JP Morgan Chase sold millions in faulty loans – and taxpayers still paid a big chunk of its billion-dollar settlement with the government, investigative journalist Matt Taibbi told RT. In recent story published in Rolling Stone, Taibbi detailed how a former JP Morgan employee Alayne Fleischmann helped the Justice Department in its investigation against the bank. Eventually, a $9 billion settlement was reached. However, that agreement did not require the bank to admit guilt for fraud – and it all came about to keep the information Fleischmann divulged from surfacing. Speaking with … Continue reading JP Morgan Chase cost US taxpayers millions, had them pay for settlement – Matt Taibbi

DARPA’s Atlas robot learns karate (VIDEO)

Engineers at Google-owned Boston Dynamics have released a new video of its human-like robot, Atlas, and the machine’s demonstrated ability to maintain a karate stance may someday earn it a black belt in martial arts. Still from youtube video (DRCihmcRobotics) Engineers at Google-owned Boston Dynamics have released a new video of its human-like robot, Atlas, and the machine’s demonstrated ability to maintain a karate stance may someday earn it a black belt in martial arts. Boston Dynamics isn’t exactly building a ninja robot by any means, but a video released this week of Atlas mimicking the maneuvers made famous by … Continue reading DARPA’s Atlas robot learns karate (VIDEO)

Google data collection worries Americans more than NSA

AFP Photo Americans may not like the fact that the National Security Agency is collecting data on their phone calls and emails, but it turns out they are even more concerned over another surveillance threat: Google. READ MORE: ‘Google grown big & bad’: Assange reveals company & its founder’s links to US govt In a survey conducted by the consumer feedback service Survata, the company asked internet users just how angry they would be if they discovered various groups or individuals had gained access to essentially all of their personal data online.  “To evaluate this, we polled over 2,500 respondents … Continue reading Google data collection worries Americans more than NSA

St Louis protesters clash with police ahead of ‘Weekend of Resistance’

Protesters link arms after blocking an intersection after a vigil in St. Louis, Missouri, October 9, 2014. (Reuters/Jim Young) Activists against police brutality are calling for support in St Louis for an upcoming “Weekend of Resistance.” Protests in the city reignited following the killing Wednesday of an African American teen by a white police officer. Following the death of Vonderrick Myers Jr., in which a police officer allegedly shot the 18-year old black teenager 17 times, a wave of clashes has erupted between law enforcement and protesters in the city for two consecutive nights, with hundreds of protesters taking to … Continue reading St Louis protesters clash with police ahead of ‘Weekend of Resistance’

FBI forces police departments across the US to keep quiet about cellphone spying gear

Reuters / Robert Galbraith Not only are local police departments across the United States increasingly relying on so-called StingRay devices to conduct surveillance on cell phone users, but cops are being forced to keep quiet about the operations, new documents reveal. Recent reports have indicated that law enforcement agencies from coast to coast have been turning to IMSI-catcher devices, like the StingRay sold by Florida’s Harris Corporation, to trick ordinary mobile phones into communicating device-specific International Mobile Subscriber Identity information to phony cell towers — a tactic that takes the approximate geolocation data of all the devices within range and … Continue reading FBI forces police departments across the US to keep quiet about cellphone spying gear

Congress won’t touch NSA reform until after midterms, may wait until 2015 – report

As the November midterm elections inch closer, the chances of Congress taking up a widely supported bill that would reform the National Security Agency’s mass surveillance program are gradually shrinking. In a new report by the National Journal, multiple unnamed sources said the reform bill – dubbed the USA Freedom Act – is not a priority for Congress as it returns from recess. While one Senate aide said it is “extremely unlikely” that lawmakers will consider the bill in September, it is also unclear if any action will be taken at all during the rest of the year. Instead, members of … Continue reading Congress won’t touch NSA reform until after midterms, may wait until 2015 – report

Thousands of Germans rally to end government spying

A woman wearing a mask depicting German Chancellor Angela Merkel stands behind a mock telescope during a “Freiheit Statt Angst” (Freedom instead of Fear) protest calling for the protection of digital data privacy and the reigning in of digital surveillance practices, in Berlin August 30, 2014. (Reuters/Thomas Peter ) The rally in Berlin against federal surveillance gathered thousands of people under the motto ‘Freedom not fear,’ who were calling for stricter control of German intelligence agencies. The organizers said about 6,500 demonstrators, a broad coalition of pro-transparency, anti-surveillance and civil rights groups including the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Reporters Without Borders, … Continue reading Thousands of Germans rally to end government spying

New app reveals how your smartphone can spy on you without permission (VIDEO)

Your Android phone can be turned into a microphone without your permission or knowledge. All that’s needed are the gyros in your phone that measure orientation. Stanford researchers have shown how to rewire them to pick up sound waves. Together with the defense firm Rafael, they created an Android app called Gyrophone, which shows just how easy it is to get the vibrating pressure plates used by the gyroscope to pick up vibrations of sound at frequencies in the 80-250Hz range – the base frequencies of the human voice.  “We show that the MEMS gyroscopes found on modern smartphones are … Continue reading New app reveals how your smartphone can spy on you without permission (VIDEO)