Google has announced that Gmail will always use an encrypted HTTPS connection, encryption was implemented back in 2010 as a default option, for users sending and checking their email starting today. According to Google, this means that no one will be able to listen in if using Gmail on public Wi-Fi, phone, tablet, or computer.
There must not be anything to watch on cable, hence anyone can think of another reason why hackers are finding themselves so restless these days. In addition to Kickstarter suffering a security breach in recent days, Forbes acknowledged on Facebook that it was targeted in a digital attack in which its publishing platform was compromised, along with the email address of every single registered user.
A number of websites such as Reddit and the Electronic Frontier Foundation have put up banners urging Internet users to join one another in an effort to fight back against mass surveillance. The anti-spying initiative has been dubbed 'The Day We Fight Back' by a broad collection of activist groups, companies, and online platforms that are also seeking to honor and celebrate the late Aaron Swartz, an activist and technologist who helped spur a victory over the Stop Online Piracy Act two years ago.
Rovio responds to reports of NSA taking advantage of leaky apps
Several news agencies on Monday reported that the National Security Agency and its U.K. counterpart (Britain's Government Communications Headquarters) have been working together to collect data from dozens of so-called "leaky" smartphone apps, including Rovio's popular Angry Birds game. Top secret documents claim these apps transmit all kinds of user information over the web, which spy agencies scoop up and store. Having been called out specifically by several reports, Rovio issued a statement denying it collaborates with any spying organization.
Surely by disconnecting your PC from the Internet and bashing your cable modem with a hammer you'll be safe from the prying eyes of the National Security Agency (NSA), right? Wrong. Like a bad sci-fi movie that keeps unveiling unlikely technologies, it's now being reported that the NSA has been using radio waves to tap into offline PCs since at least 2008.
Today marks the first day of a brand new year, but if you have plans of traveling abroad, be advised that the same old laws apply. That includes the government's right to search and seize your electronic devices without a warrant. The controversial law comes up in headlines every once in a while, and is again making the rounds after a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit challenging the policy.
By far the biggest revelation of 2013 was that of the U.S. government's overreaching National Security Agency (NSA) and its PRISM surveillance program. Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden blew the whistle on the government's ability to spy on various forms of communication by leaking several documents to the press, and since doing so, new information keeps coming out. One of the most recent reports claims the NSA routinely intercepts computer deliveries in order to exploit vulnerabilities to aid with spying.
Eight companies collaborate on an open letter to Washington
Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Twitter, Yahoo, Aol, and LinkedIn have teamed up to call for global government surveillance reform. Rival companies and services are working together to put pressure on Washington to start the path towards reforming government surveillance and maintaining individual privacy.
If privacy is one of your main concerns online (and it very well should be given the goings-on lately), Twitter's latest move should please you considerably. The microblogging platform announced on Friday it has taken on "perfect forward secrecy" across its multiple platforms. It may sound a little hard to believe, but the aim is to keep outside organizations from snooping on encrypted traffic.
There's even more than what Google's allowed to show
Everything changed when news of the U.S. government's PRISM spying program came to light. In an instant, we went from assuming our dealings online were mostly kept private (or as private as we wanted them to be) to knowing that virtually nothing is out of bounds, not even instant messaging conversations. The government will contend all this snooping is in the best interest of national security, which also happens to be the same reason why Google can't share certain statistics with us. What the company is able to share, however, is pretty staggering.