Bruce Schneier: "At SXSW earlier this month, CEO Eric Schmidt tried to reassure the audience by saying that he was 'pretty sure that information within Google is now safe from any government's prying eyes.' A more accurate statement might be, 'Your data is safe from governments, except for the ways we don't know about and the ways we cannot tell you about. And, of course, we still have complete access to it all, and can sell it at will to whomever we want.'"
In the autumn of 2020, the Tampa Bay Times published an investigation into the Pasco County Sheriff's Department, which was openly boasting about its new Minority Report-inspired intelligence gathering program. I wrote about it then, but here's a quick summary of how it works: First the Sheriff's Office generates lists of people it considers likely… READ THE REST
I'm a big fan of journalist Spencer Ackerman's work as a national security reporter, hardcore punk drummer, and scholarly Magneto apologist. He was part of the Pulitzer Prize-winning team at The Guardian that broke the news of the Snowden leaks, and has more recently worked as the senior national security correspondent for the Daily Beast.… READ THE REST
It's the 10th anniversary of when visual artist Kyle McDonald set up a webcam app on Macs at an Apple store that sent mugshots of shoppers to an online gallery [archive.org]. Apple's response was overbearing and censorial, firing out legal nastygrams citing the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act to get Tumblr to take it all… READ THE REST
There are rules to the internet. Unfortunately, many people don't really understand those rules until they transgress against them — wherein they pay the price. So if you're putting together a flyer or a blog post, you'll likely need an image to go with it. Assuming you didn't take a photo yourself, that means you… READ THE REST
It feels like not many of us use cash anymore, but that hasn't eliminated the need for that staple of American manhood — the wallet — anytime soon. Of course, the idea of what a wallet is has certainly been changing in recent years. Where leather billfolds used to be stacked thick with cash, cards, photos,… READ THE REST
If mobile devices had been around when the Boy Scouts were organized over 110 years ago, it feels likely that telling scouts to have a stable supply of standby power around in case of emergency would have been high on the essentials list. The Boy Scouts are all about being prepared — and that's pretty… READ THE REST