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February 27 2014

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Soup.io will be discontinued :(

Dear soup.io fans and users,
today, we have to share very sad news. Soup.io will stop working in less than 10 days. :(
It's breaking our heart and we honestly tried whatever we could to keep the platform up and running. But the high costs and low revenue streams made it impossible to continue with it. We invested a lot of personal time and money to operate the platform, but when it's over, it's over.
We are really sorry. Soup.io is part of the internet history and online for one and a half decades.
Here are the hard facts:
- In 10 days the platform will stop working.
- Backup your data in this time
- We will not keep backups nor can we recover your data
July, 20th, 2020 is the due date.
Please, share your thoughts and feelings here.
Your Soup.io TEAM
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February 24 2014

February 14 2014

NSA Fires Employee Who Allegedly Shared Password With Snowden

The NSA has fired an employee who stands accused of sharing his password to the agency's network with Edward Snowden

The employee is the first victim of the NSA's internal probe to determine whether anyone inside the agency is responsible for the leaks of thousands (or millions) of top secret documents. The NSA revealed the firing in a letter to Congress dated February 10, which was obtained by NBC News on Thursday.

The unnamed civilian employee, reportedly Snowden's supervisor, apparently gave Snowden his Public Key Infrastructure certificate to log onto the NSA network. That could have given Snowden access to documents he might not have otherwise had access to, wrote NSA director of legislative affairs Ethan Bauman in the letter. Read more...

More about Privacy, Surveillance, Us World, Us, and Nsa

February 13 2014

Ford Reveals GPS Privacy Practices

After SenAl Franken (D-Minn.) pressed Ford to clarify its use of GPS tracking in vehicles, the automaker sent him a letter about its privacy practices on Wednesday.

Jim Farley, Ford's executive vice-president of global marketing and sales, said at CES in January that the company's GPS system allows it to "know everyone who breaks the law." In response, Franken, who often focuses on privacy issues, asked Ford for clarification on its privacy practices

Franken's letter came on the heels of a U.S. Government Accountability Office report that found car companies need clearer privacy policies when it comes to handling consumer data produced by in-car navigation systems. Read more...

More about Cars, Privacy, Ford, Us World, and Us

February 11 2014

Google on NSA: We Need Rules, Transparency and Oversight

Google on Tuesday joined a coalition of more than 5,700 websites that are protesting the National Security Agency, endorsing specific legislation to reform and curb spying.

Google endorsed the USA Freedom Act, a sweeping proposal to limit NSA surveillance programs, according to a company blog post published early this morning. Along with other tech giants, Google had already shown support for the legislation in October.

"We strongly believe that government surveillance programs should operate under a legal framework that is rule-bound, narrowly tailored, transparent, and subject to oversight," wrote Susan Molinari, Google's vice president for public policy. Read more...

More about Google, Privacy, Surveillance, Us World, and Politics

February 08 2014

Google Forced to Post Privacy Warning on Its French Site

French netizens visiting Google France began seeing an unusual message on the search giant's usually bare homepage on Saturday. The message informs users that Google has been fined 150,000 euros (around $200,000) for violating French privacy laws.

France’s Commissions Nationale de l’Informatique et des Libertés (CNIL) imposed the fine, and the obligation to post the notice, in January. The decision (French) ended a probe into Google's privacy policy change, implemented by the company in 2012, when all its services' privacy policies were unified into one. After the change, Google combined user data across its different services like YouTube or Gmail Read more...

More about Google, Privacy, France, Tech, and World

January 31 2014

4 Things You Need to Know About Future NSA Director Michael Rogers

Vice Adm. Michael Rogers was confirmed as the new director of the NSA and the U.S. Cyber Command. He will succeed Gen. Keith Alexander, who's retiring in March, amid what many have described as the spy agency's worst crisis — courtesy of Edward Snowden — in its 61 years of existence

The Department of Defense confirmed his nomination on Thursday, but this was no surprise to anyone who had been paying attention to the process. In October, when Alexander announced his plans to retire, Rogers, was already mentioned as the leading candidate for the job.

More about Privacy, Surveillance, Us World, Us, and Nsa

January 30 2014

Terror Suspect Challenges NSA Warrantless Surveillance in Court

The first-ever terror suspect who found out evidence gathered by the NSA was used to build the case against him is challenging the surveillance program's constitutionality. This challenge is one of the first of its kind and the case could end up being decided in the Supreme Court.

Jamshid Muhtorov, a Colorado resident originally from Uzbekistan, filed a motion in a federal court in Denver on Wednesday. His lawyers argue that the evidence gathered through a warrantless NSA surveillance program violates his constitutional rights enshrined in the Fourth Amendment, which protects against unlawful search and seizure Read more...

More about Privacy, Surveillance, Us World, Us, and World

January 26 2014

The Beginner's Guide to Whisper

“Share your thoughts. Make new friends! Be yourself,” encourages Whisper’s promo video, above.

The free iOS and Android app Whisper, which launched May 2012, lets users post and receive messages and secrets anonymously. The startup calls itself a “private, anti-social networking app” because it does not save, store or collect any information — including names, emails or phone numbers — about users, in order to protect their anonymity

The messages are called “whispers,” and they look similar to a meme, stylized card or Instagram overlay. Essentially, they're images with superimposed text Read more...

More about Apps, Social Media, Features, Privacy, and Apps Software

January 23 2014

Edward Snowden: 'I Never Stole Any Passwords'

Edward Snowden denied ever stealing any passwords or persuading his former NSA colleagues to surrender him their credentials.

Reuters in November reported that Snowden had tricked between 20 and 25 of his former colleagues at an NSA base in Hawaii to give him their logins so he could access the trove of top-secret documents that revealed countless surveillance programs over the past few months.

"I never stole any passwords, nor did I trick an army of co-workers," he said during a live chat, directly refuting the Reuters story that alleged the contrary. Snowden referred to the report as "simply wrong." Read more...

More about Privacy, Surveillance, Us World, Us, and World
U.S. Privacy Watchdog: NSA Bulk Phone Records Collection Is Illegal

An independent government privacy watchdog has declared that the NSA bulk phone metadata program, used to collect the phone records of virtually all Americans, is illegal and should end, as it has had "minimal" impact on terrorism investigations.

These findings, included in a 238-page report by the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB), are yet another blow to perhaps the most controversial NSA program revealed by top secret documents leaked by Edward Snowden. The report is scheduled for release on Thursday, but it was leaked to the New York Times and The Washington Post

More about Privacy, Surveillance, Us World, Us, and Nsa

January 21 2014

Someone Sent a Mysterious Mass Text to Protesters in Kiev

As mass riots continued on the streets of Kiev, protesters, as well as other people in the area, received a mysterious text message on Monday evening.

"Dear subscriber, you are registered as a participant in a mass disturbance," the message read, as first reported by The New York Times

"Dear subscriber, you are registered as a participant in a riot” @radiosvoboda saw it live as it came in last night pic.twitter.com/uyqRKhiC5f

— RFE/RL (@RFERL) January 21, 2014

The text came from a number only identified as 111, but the Times suggests Ukrainian authorities were behind it. The country's Interior Ministry, however, denied sending the messages, as later reported by The Guardian. But regardless of who was responsible for the SMS messages, how did they do it? How did they pinpoint only certain cellphones in a specific area? Read more...

More about Privacy, Surveillance, Us World, World, and Ukraine

January 18 2014

5 Things Obama Failed to Address in the NSA Speech

President Barack Obama, in a long-awaited speech Friday, proposed a series of changes to the NSA surveillance activities that have cause an uproar of the last few months. He did, however, fail to address a series of important changes that his administration's internal review panel suggested

What follows are five things that Obama either said won't change or didn't address at all during his NSA speech.

1. The other bulk data collection programs

The phone metadata program, which allows the NSA to collect and store virtually all Americans' phone records in a database that its analysts can then query, is coming to an end. Obama supported the proposal, set forth by its internal review panel, to move the database out of NSA's hands Read more...

More about Barack Obama, Privacy, Surveillance, Us World, and Us

January 17 2014

Privacy Advocates Sound Off on Obama's Proposed NSA Reforms

U.S. President Barack Obama laid out his plan for reforming the National Security Agency's widely-derided surveillance tactics Friday, after months of pressure to do so from privacy advocates, technology companies and fellow elected officials.

The global debate on government surveillance, fueled by documents leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, is now more than seven months old. Obama first promised to enact changes to NSA policies in August, two months after the Snowden leaks went public. Since then, technology industry leaders, high-level government officials and privacy groups have all urged Obama to make wholesale changes to NSA programs in a timely manner. Read more...

More about Barack Obama, Privacy, Surveillance, Twitter, and Us World
What Obama's NSA Reforms Mean for Your Data

After more than six months of constant NSA leaks, President Barack Obama announced a series of what senior administration officials referred to as "the most significant" reforms to surveillance programs since Obama took office.

In some ways, Obama's proposals were more aggressive than rumors indicated. While recognizing that the NSA bulk collection programs were not abused, Obama said the NSA should not hold the database of virtually all phone calls made by Americans, and ordered a series of other changes across the board.

Obama recognized that the phone metadata program has "never been subject to public debate," and that's why it needs to change. Read more...

More about Barack Obama, Privacy, Surveillance, Us World, and Politics
Obama Announces Major NSA Reforms

U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to implement several changes to the National Security Agency's controversial surveillance tactics in a speech on Friday.

The speech comes in response to a global debate on government surveillance sparked by a series of reports revealing far-reaching, secret NSA spying programs. Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, who leaked a trove of secret documents to journalists early last year, has been the media's primary source of information for these reports

A number of reports throughout the week speculated on the specific reforms that Obama will discuss in the speech. Mainly, he is expected to address the NSA's controversial bulk collection and storage of telephone metadata Read more...

More about Video, Barack Obama, Privacy, Surveillance, and Us World
Scoring Obama's NSA Speech, Point by Point

Privacy advocates will be keeping score during Barack Obama's speech on government surveillance Friday, during which he will reportedly announce an overhaul to the NSA's metadata program.

After months of reports on NSA surveillance based on leaked secret documents, Obama is expected to announce reforms to the agency's procedures. In anticipation of Obama's speech, the Electronic Frontier Foundation published a scorecard that the group will use to keep track of Obama's speech.

The graphic (below) includes 12 of what the EFF calls "common-sense fixes that the President could — and should — announce," as well as a column to mark a score for each reform Read more...

More about Barack Obama, Privacy, Surveillance, Us World, and Us
What to Expect From Obama's Speech on NSA Surveillance

The NSA's secrets have been leaking like a faucet since June. Now, after months of consideration, U.S. President Barack Obama is going to do something about it

Obama plans to deliver a speech on government surveillance on Friday at 11 a.m. ET in which he will allegedly overhaul the NSA's metadata program. (We will live stream the speech on Mashable.)

Reuters reported:

Obama will say he has decided that the government should not hold the bulk telephone metadata, a decision that could frustrate some intelligence officials. In addition, he will order that effectively immediately, "we will take steps to modify the program so that a judicial finding is required before we query the database," said the senior official, who revealed details of the speech on condition of anonymity. Read more...

More about Barack Obama, Privacy, Surveillance, Us World, and Us

January 16 2014

The NSA Gathers Almost 200 Million Texts Every Day

The NSA collects nearly 200 million text messages per day through a secret program called Dishfire, according to a new report in The Guardian. The agency described the collected messages as a "goldmine to exploit" for all kinds of personal data.

Documents leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden revealed the dragnet message collection program. The NSA uses these messages to extract the senders' and recipients' personal data such as location information, financial activity and contact details, according to the report published Thursday.

More about Privacy, Text Messages, Surveillance, Mobile, and Us World
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