Ask any IT professional about security and you can almost always prepare yourself for a story or three about people using strongly encrypted passwords such as ‘password’ or ‘admin’. Or if it is a particularly good day, helping people understand that encrypted functions exist… Here is story from CBC.ca about how fallible people actually are when it comes to all this new fangled technology.
“Insecam.com, a new website, is broadcasting online private security camera footage from thousands of spots across Canada — all without the knowledge of the people who own and operate the cameras.
Insecam.com has (Read more…)
This and that for your Sunday reading.
- Will Hutton rightly slams David Cameron for his antisocial view of taxes and public institutions – which should of course sound all too familiar in Canada: Believe the prime minister and it is morality, rather than economics, which requires him to cut taxes. In an important article in the Times last week that was factually incorrect, philosophically incoherent and economically bonkers, David Cameron set out the Tory credo. He was wrong on all counts. Trying to argue why every reader should vote Conservative, he instead revealed the darkness of the blind alley (Read more…)
Canada’s provincial and federal privacy commissioners are warning the Harper government against using the recent shootings in Ottawa and Quebec as a pretext to attack Canadians’ fundamental rights.
The post Harper’s new terror laws must respect Canadians’ fundamental rights: watchdogs appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.
Award-winning investigative journalism site ProPublica showcases effective tools for protecting online privacy through blocking tracking software.
The post Privacy Tools: How to Block Online Tracking appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.
For those wondering, my Leader-Post column was on hiatus last week, but will return this week.
In the meantime, I’ll point back to this post and column as introductory reading for Janet French’s new report on SaskTel’s disclosure of customers’ personal information to government authorities. (And I’ll add here one comment which didn’t make it into the report: as a provincial Crown corporation, SaskTel is subject to additional provincial privacy laws which give consumers some extra means to challenge the collection, use and disclosure of their personal information.)
This and that for your Tuesday reading.
- Mike Konczal and Bryce Covert write that an effective solution to wealth inequality shouldn’t be limited to redistributing individual income or assets, but should also include the development of a commonwealth which benefits everybody: Instead of just giving people more purchasing power, we should be taking basic needs off the market altogether.
Consider Social Security, a wildly popular program that doesn’t count toward individual wealth. If Social Security were replaced with a private savings account, individuals would have more “wealth” (because they would have their own financial account) but less actual security. (Read more…)
“Most Canadians would be surprised to learn that Canada is hosting the latest round of TPP negotiations this week in Ottawa,” says University of Ottawa Prof Michael Geist
The post Secret TPP talks in Ottawa: Harper has “something to hide” appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.
Note how this looks a bit like the Death Star?
Welcome to the post-Facebook Politics, Re-Spun website!
You will not find a Like/Recommend button at all anymore. Anywhere. We’ve even stripped it from the ShareThis ribbon. We’re so nasty!
Because Facebook is the devil. And Big Brother. And a menace to social networking.
They spent most of the last decade encouraging people and groups to network for free in Facebook. Bait.
Then the switch? They have essentially crippled organic sharing without us paying to boost content to all our likers/followers.
We were so stupid to assume (Read more…)
by: by: MICHAEL GEIST | June 17, 2014
Having had the benefit of a few days to consider the implications of the Supreme Court of Canada decision in Spencer, the Senate last night proceeded to ignore the court and pass Bill S-4, the Digital Privacy Act, unchanged. The bill extends the ability to disclose subscriber information without a warrant from law enforcement to any private sector organizations by including a provision that allows organizations to disclose personal information without consent (and without a court order) to any organization that is investigating a contractual breach or possible violation of any (Read more…)
Miscellaneous material to start your week.
- Buttonwood weighs in on the disproportionate influence of the ultra-rich when it comes to making policy choices which affect all of us: But the analysis backs up earlier work by Larry Bartels of Princeton, author of a book called “Unequal Democracy”, and the general thesis of the late political scientist, Mancur Olson, that government can be in hock to special interests. This may be truer in America than elsewhere since its campaign-finance laws are so liberal: $6 billion was spent on the 2012 elections. This system forces candidates to spend much of their (Read more…)
The non-profit organization Law School Admission Council (LSAC) based in the United States was penalized $7.7 million USD to compensate over 6000 students from the past 5 years for application to accommodate. Prior practice included Law School Admission Test (LSAT) scores being “flagged” on law school applications if accommodation for extra time was applied during examination. The decision impacted domestic United States schools and many other schools abroad where they accepted LSAT scores with law school applications. The United States Department of Justice claimed of “widespread and systemic discrimination” by the LSAC where they intervened with the Americans with (Read more…)
Here, on how Justin Trudeau seems to have taken up the cause of unaccountable executive power even from his third-party place in the House of Commons.
For further reading…- For some of the background on of the Libs’ entitlement hangover following the Cons’ taking power, see here (insisting that Parliament has no place in approving of military engagement) and here (criticizing the Accountability Act as a response to their actions while in power).- Josh Wingrove reports on the attempt by privacy experts to challenge the Cons’ appointment of Daniel Therrien. And Lisa Austin highlights some of the (Read more…)
by: MICHAEL GEIST | June 4, 2014
In recent years, it has become fashionable to argue that Canadians no longer care about their privacy. Supporters of this position note that millions of people voluntarily post personal information and photos about themselves on social media sites, are knowingly tracked by Internet advertising giants and do not opt-out of “targeted” advertising from telecom companies. Yet if the past few months are any indication, it is not Canadians that have given up on privacy. It is the Canadian government.
My weekly technology law column (Toronto Star version, homepage version) notes the public (Read more…)
Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.
- Neil Irwin highlights the reality that top-heavy economic growth has done nothing to reduce poverty in the U.S. over the past 40 years: In Kennedy’s era, [the "rising tide lifts all boats" theory] had the benefit of being true. From 1959 to 1973, the nation’s economy per person grew 82 percent, and that was enough to drive the proportion of the poor population from 22 percent to 11 percent. But over the last generation in the United States, that simply hasn’t happened. Growth has been pretty good, up 147 percent per capita. (Read more…)
Miscellaneous material for your Monday reading.
- David Graeber writes that unfettered capitalism will never tame itself, but will instead need to be countered by a sufficiently strong counter-movement to seriously question its underpinnings. And Thomas Frank follows up with Graeber about the warped incentives facing workers as matters stand now: I think the spotlight on the financial sector did make apparent just how bizarrely skewed our economy is in terms of who gets rewarded and for what. There was this pall of mystification cast over everything pertaining to that sector—we were told, this is all so very complicated, you (Read more…)
Here, on how Canada’s telecommunication providers and government agencies are each showing next to no regard for the privacy of consumers – and how the Cons want to make matters worse by allowing for far more sharing within the corporate sector.
For further reading…- Again, reporting on the Privacy Commissioner of Canada’s investigation can be found here and here, with the response from the telecoms available in PDF here. – Bruce Schneier discusses the U.S.’ plan to privatize the surveillance state here. – Finally, the Cons’ amendments to the federal private-sector privacy legislation is here. (Read more…)