PATH: BS | Privacy

Man Sues 1-800-Flowers for Uncovering Affair

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A married man is suing 1-800-Flowers for $1 million for revealing that he was cheating on his wife. Just deserts? Sheer stupidity? Or the worst customer service ever?

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All New US Passports Will Include Hidden RFID Chips

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Starting in 2008 all U.S. Passports will have an RFID chip hidden within them, allowing your personal information to be read secretly through the air without you even knowing. Can you do anything about that? Maybe.

READ MORE | 1 comment since 2007-08-31 15:01:10 | Comment on this Article

DEFCON Blows The Lid Off Undercover NBC Reporter; Sends Her Away

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[News Media]
Let's say you're a blond producer for NBC, and you think you're going to disguise yourself and infiltrate one of the country's largest conventions of computer hackers & security professionals and try to get people to confess to committing crimes.

What happens then, when you're sitting in the audience and they announce a fun new game for everyone to participate in, called, "Identify the undercover NBC reporter trying to make us all look bad."

READ MORE | 1 comment since 2008-03-07 01:00:55 | Comment on this Article

US Wants Your Religion, Politics, Sexual Pref To Enter Country

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Highly sensitive information about the religious beliefs, political opinions, and even the sex life of Britons travelling to the United States is to be made available to US authorities when the European Commission agrees to a new system of checking passengers.

The EC is in the final stages of agreeing a new Passenger Name Record system with the US which will allow American officials to access detailed biographical information about passengers entering international airports.

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Dry Grass And It's Your Ass

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[Mean People]
A 70-year-old Utah woman has been released from jail after being arrested for failing to water her lawn and refusing to give a police officer her name. A police officer enforcing Orem, Utah's nuisance ordinance against neglected yards (it's unclear which ordinance might cover the roughing-up of little old ladies) knocked on Betty Perry's door a couple of day's ago and she opened up to see what was going on. Big mistake.

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Homeland Security Department Loses Employee Data

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The Transportation Security Administration has lost a computer hard drive containing Social Security numbers, bank data and payroll information for about 100,000 employees.

On the bright side, the TSA has promised they'll enroll their employees in a free credit-monitoring service. Woot!

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If You Shopped At TJ Maxx or Marshalls, Time For New Credit Card

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[Get-Rich-Quick]
At least 45.7 million credit and debit card numbers were stolen by hackers who broke into the computer systems at the TJX Cos. in Framingham and the United Kingdom and siphoned off data over a period of several years, making it the biggest breach of personal data ever reported, according to security specialists.

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eBay Scammers Are Out Of Control

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[Get-Rich-Quick]
The legitimate eBay community is apparently up in arms about a recent infestation of scams and fraudulent activity online. Rumor has it every time the mainstream media tries to do a story on this issue, the story suddenly disappears and then you see a bunch of eBay commercials on the network *cough* CNN *cough*

A special "eBay phish kit" is now being sold on the black market. This kit is complete with all the tools a scammer needs to set up a phony eBay look-alike site to skim peoples user IDs and passwords. It even includes assorted product images for fake auctions to get the unsuspecting user to click his identity away (or whisk the user off eBay and to whatever nefarious site you want to promote).

The new technique is called "Pharming" and it is rampant and after more than four months, the folks at eBay seem incapable of stopping it.

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FBI Constitutional Privacy Violations May Top 3,000

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The Justice Department's inspector general told a committee of angry House members yesterday that the FBI may have violated the law or government policies as many as 3,000 times since 2003 as agents secretly collected the telephone, bank and credit card records of U.S. citizens and foreign nationals residing here.

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FBI Wiretapping Scandal Widens

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A front-page Washington Post article reports that the FBI's illegal use of wiretap/record requests was known inside the FBI but continued anyway.

In essence, the FBI and our nation's telecommunications companies have secretly created a framework whereby the FBI can obtain -- instantaneously and without limits -- any information it asks for. The Patriot Act already substantially expanded the circumstances under which the FBI can obtain such records without the need for subpoenas or any judicial process, and it left in place only the most minimal limitations and protections. But it is those very minimal safeguards which the FBI continuously violated in order to obtain whatever information its agents desired, about any Americans they targeted, with literally no limits of any kind.

READ MORE | 1 comment since 2007-03-19 22:31:20 | Comment on this Article

Canadian Company Wants To Photograph Every House In U.S.

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[Get-Rich-Quick]
Photographers from a Canadian company are going house to house, shooting pictures of the roughly 300,000 houses in metropolitan Tucson, Arizona.

It's part of an effort to photograph and appraise every house in the country, creating a database that can be sold to banks and insurance companies.

I wonder if everyone is particularly keen on this Canadian company taking pictures of their house and selling them to the highest bidders?

READ MORE | 1 comment since 2007-02-07 14:49:47 | Comment on this Article

Bush Says U.S. Mail Can Now Be Opened Without Warrants

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President Bush quietly has claimed sweeping new powers to open Americans' mail without a judge's warrant.

Bush asserted the new authority Dec. 20 after signing legislation that overhauls some postal regulations. He then issued a "signing statement" that declared his right to open mail under emergency conditions, contrary to existing law and contradicting the bill he had just signed, according to experts who have reviewed it.

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Your Cell Phone Is A Bug

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The FBI appears to have begun using a novel form of electronic surveillance in criminal investigations: remotely activating a mobile phone's microphone and using it to eavesdrop on nearby conversations.

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Just When You Thought Your Network Was Secure

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Check out this video from England demonstrating what people can find out from you in very short order... and you thought you were taking precautions so nobody could get access to your computer or data right?

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A Great Place for Online Sex

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You can't make this stuff up, folks...it seems that the Foley story just keeps getting more and more icky. Now the investigative reporters at ABC News have discovered that Congressman Foley (R-Florida) was engaging in a little online sexual banter...including description of the extected payoff of such banter...while on the floor of the House of Representatives, awaiting a vote to increase funding for the Iraq war.

READ MORE | 1 comment since 2006-11-01 23:49:29 | Comment on this Article

Now Big Brother Can Talk!

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Britain has one security camera for every 14 of its citizens--over 4 million in all. Middlesbrough has extended the functionality of these cameras so that the operators can actually talk to those they watch. The mayor, an ex-cop whose service nickname was Robocop, says that "there's been too much spoken about human rights, too much about civil liberties of the wrongdoers."

READ MORE | 2 comments since 2006-10-05 12:05:39 | Comment on this Article

Craigslist Ad Responders Revealed

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[Mean People]
A guy who identifies himself as Jason Fortuny, a 30 year old network administrator, posted a graphic ad on Seattle's Craigslist, pretending to be a woman wanting some BDSM sex.

Not surprisingly, many men responded, many with photos and more than a few with pics of their genitals.

Some used their work accounts, provided their real names and gave out their cellphone numbers. One looks to be a contractor for Microsoft, while another used a .mil address to reply.

Fortuny, whose MySpace profile says he likes to "push people's buttons" then posted all the photos and correspondence online.

I'm sure nothing bad will come of this...

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JP Morgan-Chase Accidentally Loses 2.6 Million Users' Data

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About 2.6 million current and former Circuit City credit card account holders are being notified by credit card vendor Chase Card Services that five computer data tapes containing their personal information were mistakenly identified as trash and thrown away by Chase personnel in July.

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The Freaky World of Peoples' Revealed Search Results

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[Dubious Research]
By now most know about AOL's "mistake" of releasing a portion of their search data to the public for research purposes. Even a cursory glance at the so called "anonymous" data (where users were identified with a number), it became obvious people reveal quite a bit about themselves and their social network when using search engines, and this data, in almost any form, could be considered a substantive privacy invasion.

Nonetheless, the data was put online and undoubtedly never to be easily removed, and has prompted many sites to sift through the torrid search queries to reveal a veritable cornucopia of weird and bizarre people... How bizarre? Well, read more if you're brave...

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Bush's Warrantless Wiretaps Ruled Unconstitutional

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[Good News]
A federal judge ruled today that the government's warrantless wiretapping program is unconstitutional and ordered an immediate halt to it.

U.S. District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor in Detroit became the first judge (of hopefully many, who aren't so afraid as to uphold the Constitution) to strike down the National Security Agency's program, which she says violates the rights to free speech and privacy.

Score another one for the ACLU!

READ MORE | 5 comments since 2006-08-24 01:22:07 | Comment on this Article

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