Recent Comments


Comment by moses allen on Can You Trust ScanGuard? (May 25, 2017 07:31 AM)
DOCTOR ALAHO YOU ARE GOD SENT TO HELP PEOPLE LIFE, I PRAY YOU WILL NOT DIE BEFORE YOUR TIME. This is real take it serious, who will believe that a her...
Comment by Joe on Geekly Update - 24 May 2017 (May 24, 2017 10:38 PM)
I fly the 737 for a living, so I watched the video embedded in the linked CNBC story with some considerable interest. As I suspected before I hit pla...
Comment by Valli on Replace Your Landline With MagicJack? (May 24, 2017 09:59 PM)
Over the years I have had three MJs because they would die for some reason and rather than waiting for Customer Service to send a replacement, I would...
Comment by Elizabeth on The New Google Voice: Love or Hate? (May 24, 2017 08:33 PM)
You have it right Gary in SE Wisconsin why would Google want to improve Voice when it was so simple to use the way it was especially for us Seniors ho...
Comment by SysOp404 on Geekly Update - 24 May 2017 (May 24, 2017 07:44 PM)
You can likely guess the thoughts of those of us taking cautionary stances on the latest land-based, self-driving vehicles that are always in the news...
Comment by Nezzar on Geekly Update - 24 May 2017 (May 24, 2017 05:10 PM)
gg pence: Thanks much for your excellent comments. They give all of us something to think about if this idiotic idea is ever attempted. ...
Comment by richierich on Geekly Update - 24 May 2017 (May 24, 2017 04:44 PM)
Great point gg. typos included...
Comment by A on Disqus: Bad for Public Discourse? (May 24, 2017 04:25 PM)
I also just read the comment above mine, and I have a question for @David Hodges. Say you were at a cocktail party, having a wide range of interestin...
Comment by David on 5-Point Tuneup For Hacker Defenses (May 24, 2017 03:58 PM)
Phil, VLC is a good viewer, and I haven't heard anything unsafe about it....
Comment by A on Disqus: Bad for Public Discourse? (May 24, 2017 03:48 PM)
Great article, thank you! I had been generally suspicious of Disqus previously, and your detailed article confirmed it. The current 'conventional wis...

Privacy Articles

 

Are Your Messages Visible to Hackers?

Secure messaging apps are in the news following Wikileaks release of CIA documents suggesting the spy agency has ways of evading smartphone security features. If your phone isn’t secure, your messaging app should be. But which messaging apps can you rely on? Read on to find out.

...

Are Ultrasonic Beacons Tracking You?

A year ago, alarms were raised about Silverpush, a tool that enables tracking of users across devices and targeted marketing. The concern was that users were given no notice that they would be tracked. The FTC issued a warning letter to app developers who use Silverpush, and the privacy advocates went silent. Now, they’re back, with more complaints about Silverpush and other firms that use “audio beacons” to track and target consumers. What action should you take? Read on...

...

Is Everything Tracking You?

Richard Dabate might have gotten away with murder if not for his wife’s Fitbit exercise tracker. He told police that a tall, obese man who sounded like Vin Diesel invaded their home and shot his wife, Connie, in the head with a .357 Magnum pistol that Dabate had purchased months earlier. But Connie’s Fitbit tracker revealed that she had been walking hours after the time of her murder as described by her husband. This begs the question... what other devices may be tracking where you go, and what you do? Read on...

...

Are Your Devices Listening and Recording Everything?

As the Internet of Things (IoT) expands, many people are becoming concerned about which of these “smart” devices are listening to them, what they are recording, what is transmitted to their creators, and how to stop the eavesdropping. So-called “digital assistants” such as Apple’s Siri, Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa are under heightened suspicion because they are voice-activated. Are these tools always listening, recording, and sharing our private conversations with unknown parties? Read on for answers...

...

[PRIVACY] Is Google Spying On Students?

Educational technology, or “ed tech,” has taken over American classrooms as thoroughly as Burmese pythons have taken over the Florida Everglades. With the overwhelming invasion of laptops, Chromebooks, cloud-based and desktop apps has come a host of new concerns about student privacy and just what early exposure to technology does to kids.

...

Is Online Privacy History?

Online privacy took a step backwards this week, as the U.S. Congress passed legislation that would block privacy rules recently adopted by the Fderal Communications Commission. Read on to find out who may be watching what you do online, how that information can be bought and sold, and what you can do to protect your privacy...

...

Avoiding Online Tax Scams


“The avoidance of taxes is the only intellectual pursuit that still carries any reward,” observed economist Milton Friedman many years ago. Today, we can add “tax scams” to that list. Just as Americans gear up for the tax season, so do fraudsters all over the world. Here are the biggest cons to watch out for in 2017...

...

Can You Delete Yourself From The Internet?

They say, “The Internet never forgets,” but can you at least give it amnesia? Perhaps there's a magical USB Neuralyzer that you could plug into your computer, to wipe every trace of you from the entire Internet. Alas, it’s not that easy. Here's what you would have to do in order to disappear from the online world...

...

A Hemisphere of (YOUR) Information

If you thought the NSA had the largest collection of citizens’ digital communications, think again. That honor belongs to AT&T, which has been archiving the metadata of all phone and email traffic that passes through its global network since at least 2007. Read on to learn what this metadata can be used for, and who it's being sold to…

...

Will a VPN Make You Safer Online?

A reader asks, “Do I need a VPN to be secure online? Should I subscribe to a VPN service, such as SaferWeb? What is a VPN, anyway?” Read on to learn about virtual private networks, and find out if you need one...

...

The FBI Wants To Hide Your Face

I used to think of the FBI as the good guys. Defenders of the law, and all that sort of stuff. Now it seems like just another politicized government agency, with their (metaphorical) guns aimed at the very laws they are sworn to uphold. Sometimes I even wonder if the KGB has been reincarnated as the FBI. The topic of today's article is one such occasion…

...

Things You Should NEVER Share Online

Two major trends are in conflict on the Internet. “Security” is big these days; it’s more important than ever to protect yourself against ever-increasing cyberthreats. “Sharing” is equally big, thanks to companies like Facebook and Twitter which make money when you share your thoughts, experiences, and other life-stuff with strangers. But security and sharing do not mix well. Here's what you need to know...

...

Should You Be Allowed To Sell Your Privacy?

Is your privacy (your online activities, the websites you visit, your interests and other personal data) for sale? Would you voluntarily give your internet service provider permission to use that information for marketing purposes, in exchange for a discount on your monthly bill? The FCC wants your opinion on this question…

...

Verizon + Yahoo = Trouble For Consumers?

Verizon proposed on July 25 to buy Yahoo’s core assets - search, mail, instant messaging, and editorial content - for $4.83 billion. The long-anticipated deal is expected to close in early 2017, marking the end of a venerable Internet pioneer as an independent entity. But the deal could have negative consequences for consumers. Read on for the full story...

...

Data Brokers: What Do They Know About You?

The Internet has made it easy for you and me to collect enormous amounts of information about nearly any subject; that is indisputably a good thing. However, when it comes to the multi-billion-dollar business of collecting and selling data about other people, that use of the Internet can take a sinister turn. Read on for the scoop on “data brokers" and how they operate…

...

Google Wants To Track You More, But It’s Optional

If you have a Google account, you’ve probably received notice recently of a new “optional” set of tools for controlling how your web searches, YouTube viewing, Gmail, and other Google activities are shared with advertisers. The new features also include the ability to exercise finer control over what ads you see, and make it easier to “kill” ads you don’t want to see. Should you “opt in” or leave things as they are? Read on...

...

The Noose Around Privacy is Tightening...

“There’s a monster on the loose! He’s got our heads into a noose! And he just sits there, watchin’....” Steppenwolf’s tedious (9 minutes, 15 seconds) song, “Monster/Suicide/America,” was released in 1969 and did not break any Billboard records. But the lyrics of this lament and protest song read as if they were written yesterday. They are prophetic and troubling. Read on to learn how the U.S. government is working to make privacy history...

...

The FBI Wants Your Browsing History

The Obama administration is pushing to amend existing privacy law in a way that critics argue would allow the government access to internet browsing histories and other metadata -- without needing a warrant. Privacy advocates and tech firms are resisting this move. Here’s what you need to know and do…

...

[PRIVACY] What Does Google Know About You?

Google provides a cornucopia of useful services: search, email, cloud storage, productivity tools, and much more. Virtually all of them are free for personal use, and not very expensive for businesses and other organizations. But free stuff comes with a price. Read and learn what's in your Google dossier, and how to limit what information is collected...

...

Do Shortened URLs Endanger Privacy?

URL-shortening services can be convenient, but using them with online mapping or cloud services can create security holes that allow hackers access to a user’s data, or life details you thought were private. Read on to learn about URL shorteners and how you might be exposed...

...

Who's Watching When You Surf the Web?

Is it Google, Microsoft, the NSA, or that sketchy guy always parked in front of your house? Perhaps, but would you be surprised to learn that your Internet Service Provider (ISP) can see almost EVERYTHING you and your family do online? And that they can legally compile and sell that valuable information to marketers? The FCC has proposed new rules to regulate how ISPs can use customers’ data for marketing and advertising purposes. If you think that's a darned good idea, read on...

...

[IoT] Things That Should NOT Be Connected To The Internet

The Internet of Things (IoT) promises to be the biggest explosion of mostly useless stuff since domain names first went on sale. You name it, and someone is giving it an IP address. But in the headlong rush to connect every particle of matter on Earth to the Internet, we really need to pause and consider all the things that should not be connected…

...

[PRIVACY] The Encryption War Just Got Real

On February 16, 2016, a federal magistrate judge ordered Apple to help the FBI unlock an iPhone that belonged to the San Bernardino killers, in furtherance of the investigation into that terrorist act. The next day, Apple refused to comply with the judge’s order, setting up a legal battle that will surely end only at the U. S. Supreme Court. Here's what you need to know, and how it affects YOUR privacy rights…

...

Can Online Voting Ever Work?

Three ballot initiatives have been proposed in California that would require the State to offer online voting in government elections. It seems like a natural application for Internet technology; it might even increase voter participation by making voting more convenient. If we can shop, bank, and trade stocks online, why can’t we vote online? Read on...

...

Who Lost Your Data In 2015?

It’s probable that your personal data was leaked this year. In 2015, over one billion personal records were illegally accessed, up 54% from the previous year. The stolen data included financial and medical data, email addresses, Social Security Numbers, and more sensitive information. Learn more and find out if YOUR personal info was leaked...

...

Is Your Smart TV Spying On You?

Smart TVs promise to enhance your viewing experience by connecting your television to the Internet. Streaming video, easier program searches, and interactive features sound great. But what if your TV is watching you? Read on to learn if your new-fangled TV is up to something sneaky...

...

Did the FBI Pay Carnegie-Mellon to Hack Tor?

The November 13 terrorist attacks in Paris have sparked renewed debate about government surveillance, encryption, and anonymous Web services such as the Tor Project. Coincidentally, just two days before the Paris tragedy, the Tor Project accused the FBI of paying “at least $1 million” to Carnegie-Mellon University researchers for the identities and activity logs of Tor users. Here's the bigger story...

...

All Your Privacy Are Belong to Us

The U.S. Congress is poised to enhance citizens’ privacy and cybersecurity protections... with a new law that blows gaping holes in existing privacy and cybersecurity protection laws. Yes, you read that right. Now read on to learn more about CISA -- the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act…

...

Microsoft Responds to Windows 10 Privacy Concerns

Windows 10 has come under suspicion of covert privacy invasions since shortly before it was released at the end of August. Most (but not all) of that is overblown hype, so Microsoft is making an effort to clarify the muddy privacy waters. Here's what you need to know…

...

Tweak Your Microsoft and Google Privacy Settings

Lots of people are worried about what information Microsoft, Google and other companies are collecting about them as they use the Internet, and how that data is being used. Read on to learn about the tools that Microsoft and Google offer to let you view and change your privacy settings...

...

Medical Identity Theft On The Rise

Your credit and bank account balance are not the only valuables that identity thieves are after. As health care costs have soared, so have incidents of “medical identity theft” in which crooks steal the credentials that enable one to obtain health care and sell them to other crooks. Here's what you need to know...

...

Is AVG Selling YOU?

AVG, the maker of free antivirus software used by millions, has published a new simplified one-page privacy policy shines a spotlight on what data they collect from you, along with how and when they're allowed to sell it. Are they violating your privacy and selling your personal info to the highest bidder? Let's take a look...

...

New Microsoft Spyware On Windows 7 and 8?

Microsoft introduced new Data Collection and Telemetry features in Windows 10 that raised privacy concerns and tarnished the new OS’ rollout. Some users reacted by deciding to stick with Windows 7 or 8.1. But now Microsoft has pushed out four updates to those older versions that are accused of adding Win 10’s “spying” capabilities to those versions as well. Here's the scoop…

...

Can Cops Poke Into Your Facebook Stuff?

Facebook just lost a court challenge that would have prevented police and other law enforcement officials from rummaging through the information that users post on their social media accounts. Is Facebook now a champion of privacy rights, or is something else going on here…?

...

Yes, The Feds Can Read Your Email (and more)

If you need some motivation to catch up on reading your email, consider this: the U.S. federal government can read any unopened email you’ve left on an email provider’s server without obtaining a search warrant. The full story is even more disturbing, but there's something you can do about it. Read on...

...

Best Mobile Security and Privacy Apps

The world has gone mobile, in case you hadn’t noticed. Smartphone unit shipments exceeded PC shipments way back in the 4th quarter of 2010, and there’s no going back. But there’s been a mass migration of hackers to the mobile terrain, too. Here's what you need to know about mobile security…

...

Who Has Your Back?

The fifth annual “Who Has Your Back?” report has been published by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, highlighting the companies that do the best and worst jobs of resisting government demands for users’ data and keeping users informed of such demands. Here's the scoop...

...

FCC Cracks Down On Robocalls

It was a busy week for the Federal Communications Commission. But the thing that most people will cheer is a set of new “declaratory rulings” clarifying the rights of landline and mobile phone users when it comes to automated calls and texts from marketers. Read on to learn about new tools you can use to fight back against telemarketers…

...

Time To Worry About Facial Recognition?

Facial recognition software has been a simmering privacy concern for over a decade. Cameras may be scanning your face and noting your presence, in public places, stores, and even in church! Is it time to start worrying seriously about this Big Brother surveillance technique? Read on for some startling facts...

...

IMPORTANT: Google Security and Privacy Dashboard

Google’s “My Account” dashboard got a major overhaul recently. The dashboard, from which users can manage security, privacy, and user preference settings for many Google properties, grew haphazardly over time until it resembled a bulletin board in a laundromat, with unrelated pages stuck together randomly. The new dashboard is much cleaner and easier to navigate. I recommend every Google user go through them from end to end...

...

Are Bluetooth Beacons Tracking You?

The world is about to be flooded with hidden Bluetooth “beacons” that communicate wirelessly with phones and tablets carried by passersby. The beacons will provide you with helpful information and tempting offers. They will also provide their owner with valuable demographic data about you and your travels. Here's what you need to know...

...

Free Tools for Anonymous Web Browsing

Lately, a number of government figures have declared their opposition to citizens’ use of encryption and other techniques to evade surveillance. Nobody wants the bad guys to win, but the good guys deserve privacy, and in some cases, anonymity. Let's take a look at some free tools that help with that...

...

Time to Start Encrypting Your Stuff?

Fear of hackers and government snoops drives many people to encrypt their data. There are lots of tools you can use to encrypt data, and many of them are free (for personal use, at least). Here are some of the most popular encryption tools...

...

Are You Encrypting Your Email?

Interest in email encryption has skyrocketed since Ed Snowden revealed the NSA’s widespread surveillance of electronic communications. Here is the low-down on email encryption, and some methods of doing it.

...

Facebook Embraces Privacy and Simplicity (Not)

Yet another Facebook policy update is coming on January 1. This one, according to the company, is all about reassuring Facebook members that they are in control of their personal data. Reactions to this claim fall into three camps: the skeptics, the paranoid, and the co-conspirators in Facebook’s plot to pull the wool over members’ eyes. Here's what you need to know...

...

Spy-Proofing Your Mobile Devices

James Comey is terribly concerned that he won’t be able to get Apple or Google to crack your phone’s password for him. The FBI Director is calling upon Congress for a “regulatory or legislative fix” that will preserve law enforcement’s ability to coerce the cooperation of tech companies in searching your computers, phones, and other personal effects.

...

EVIL: Perma-Cookies and Your Privacy

Verizon has quietly developed a way to track its mobile data customers’ web activity and the use of certain apps, and sell that private information to advertisers. It’s done without customers’ consent and there’s no way to turn it off. Are you mad yet? Read on!

...

10 TIPS: Identity Theft Protection

A new study shows that identity fraud is increasing, affecting over 13 million U.S. consumers in the past year. Big spikes were noted in 'new account fraud' and 'account takeover fraud' -- two of the most damaging types of ID theft. In addition, a series of massive data breaches at major corporations leaves consumers vulnerable to phishing and other forms of fraud. Poor password practices are a factor as well. Read on for my tips on avoiding fraud and identity theft...

...

Is Your Flashlight App Spying On You?

Almost every app you install on a mobile device or a social media network asks for permission to access some of your private user data; many also ask to perform actions on your behalf, such as writing to your Facebook timeline or Twitter feed. Sometimes it’s obvious that an app needs the permission it’s requesting in order to work at all. But how can you tell when an app’s request for permission is unreasonable, suspicious, or malicious?

...

The Solution to NSA Snooping?

Thanks a lot, you dirty traitor, Ed Snowden. Even though the clowns in Washington can't decide if, when, or how to protect American citizens from the prying eyes of the NSA, FBI and CIA, Snowden's revelations have prompted several Internet heavyweights into taking action on Internet privacy while they dither. Here's what's going on, and how you can benefit from it...

...

When Big Data Meets Big Healthcare

“Hello, Mr. Jones, this is Mary from Dr. Smith’s office. We notice that you’ve been buying a lot of Twinkies lately and we think you should come in for a blood sugar checkup.” How would you feel if you received such a phone call from your doctor’s office – alarmed, outraged, betrayed? Well, brace yourself because this is The Next Big Thing in health care...

...

Do Health Apps Endanger Privacy?

Healthcare is one of the fastest-growing industries thanks to two factors: A younger health-conscious generation enamored with gadgets, and an aging population increasingly conscious of its frailty and mortality. More and more data is being collected to improve health through smartphones, smartwatches, websites, and other connected means. But that wholesome trend also creates opportunities for data brokers to invade your privacy and sell your most intimate secrets. Here's what you need to know...

...

The Right to be Forgotten?

Every time Mario Costeja Gonzalez googled his name, the second result was a link to a 1998 newspaper article that detailed his many debts and the forced sale of his home. Mario was tired of having that old news thrown up in his face; after all, those debts were paid in full long ago. So Mario sued Google. Here's what happened next...

...

Are Passwords Obsolete?

Passwords have been our main line of defense against information bandits since the earliest days of computing. “The thin typed line” of alphanumeric characters is all that stands between most of us and identity theft, raided bank accounts, extortion, and a host of other crimes. But the line is crumbling and it’s time for something new...

...

NSA Hacks Entire Internet! Film at 11

The latest 'revelation' about the NSA is echoing throughout the mainstream media – or the mainstream FUD Factory, as I have come to call it. (FUD stands for Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt.) It has come to this: I trust an email from an exiled Ethiopian prince more than I trust a CNN report, and I don’t trust Ethiopian princes at all. Here's my analysis...

...

Getting Personal: Siri, Google Now, and Cortana

Smartphone personal assistant apps are becoming more involved in our daily lives. They watch, listen, and then offer a variety of information that's supposed to make your life easier. But are they getting a bit TOO personal? Let's look at the offerings from Apple, Google, and some rumors about Microsoft's upcoming personal digital assistant app...

...

New Silent Phone Protects Your Privacy

Privacy and security are heightened concerns for many smartphone users in the wake of revelations about government surveillance. The top-tier phone manufacturers are not doing much to address these issues yet, but at least one startup company is. Learn more about Silent Circle and the Blackphone...

...

What is the Internet of Things?

During and after the recent Consumer Electronics Show, the number of Google searches for the phrase, 'Internet of things' skyrocketed. If you are one of the many people wondering what that buzzphrase means, you’ve come to the right place. Here is what the Internet of Things, or IoT, is all about, and why it’s a big deal...

...

What is Google Up To?

Google has been on a buying spree lately, snapping up other companies left and right. But the acquisitions are not what you might expect; not smartphone makers, Web services, ad networks, or search-related software developers. No, Google is investing in artificial intelligence, robots, and smart gadgets for the home. Here's some speculation about how all those things might fit together...

...

What Does The NSA Know About You?

All the talk about NSA spying makes people nervous. You may be wondering, 'What does the NSA really know about me?' The spy agency isn’t telling, of course. But we can look at what's know, what's possible and infer the extent of any dossier the NSA may or may not have on little old you...

...

Does Email or IP Address Reveal my Physical Location?

A reader asks: 'Can someone track a user (name, home address, etc.) simply by having their email or IP address? I'm asking because I posted to an online forum, and both my email and IP address were displayed publicly. Does that give others the ability to find my actual geographic location? Can I be tracked down in any way?' Read on to learn the answer to this common question...

...

Your Face in a Google Ad?

On October 11, Google announced changes to its Terms Of Service (TOS) that take effect November 11. If you continue to use any Google services, you agree to be bound by the new terms. So what’s new? Most importantly, Google wants to put your face in their ads. Learn how to avoid that, and see what else is new in the TOS...

...

Clean and Sanitize Your PC With PrivaZer

PrivaZer is a hard drive clean-up utility on steroids. It gets rid of junk files and wipes away traces of activity that could compromise your privacy. Maybe you think that sounds like some other program you've been using, but trust me, PrivaZer does MUCH more. Read on to learn how it works, and why you should try it...

...

Are You Being Fingerprinted Online?

Cookies are crumbling. Those bits of code that Web sites deposit on your hard drive are becoming less useful to marketers, and others wanting to track what you do online. But there's a new web tracking technology that can't be easily detected or blocked. Here's what you need to know about browser fingerprinting...

...

Mugshot Malpractice?

Getting arrested is bad. Getting your mugshot on the nightly news is worse. Getting your mugshot on the Internet forever and in multiple places is the worst. Is it time to rein in commercial mugshot Web sites? Read on to learn more...

...

SnapChat and Your Personal Privacy

We've all heard of people who regretted sending embarrassing photos or videos to others. SnapChat is a messaging app for iPhone and Android that promises 'no regrets' because the things it sends are deleted within 10 seconds of being viewed. Or are they? Read on for some surprising information about Snapchat, and some tips on protecting your privacy...

...

FREE: Encryption Tools to Protect Your Data

With the U.S. government ignoring the 4th Amendment, data breaches in the news every week, and identity thieves everywhere, more and more people are wondering how to protect their data and personal information. The answer is encryption, and it's no longer rocket science. Here's what you need to know about using encryption...

...

Can the Feds Read Your Email?

You might be shocked to learn that there's very little to prevent government snoops from peeking into your email. But a U.S. Senate committee has just approved greater protection against surreptitious and warrantless searches of people’s electronic communications. Here's what you need to know about email privacy...

...

Is This the End of Anonymity?

A new device that's poised to hit the market soon may turn privacy into a relic of the past. No, it's not the local police or the federal government spying on you this time. It could be anyone walking down the street. Read on to learn about the gadget that combines cool with the potential for creepy...

...

Is Your Web Browsing Really Private?

Every time you use the Web, you leave traces of your activity in many places. Some of that is the way the Internet was designed, and some is a little more tricky. If you're interested in hiding your online tracks with web privacy tools, read on...

...

TEN TIPS: Identity Theft Protection

A new study shows that identity fraud increased in both 2011 and 2012, affecting over 5% of U.S. adults. Big spikes were noted in 'new account fraud' and 'account takeover fraud' -- two of the most damaging types of ID theft. And those damages amount to about twenty billion dollars a year, reason enough for any consumer to be on guard. Read on for my tips on avoiding fraud and identity theft...

...

Can The Boss See What I Do Online?

If you're like most people, you do a little personal web browsing at work. Maybe you check your email, pop into Facebook, or do a little online shopping at lunch time. But have you ever wondered... can your employer see what websites you visit? Here's what you need to know about employee internet monitoring...

...

A Closer Look At Cookies

I often get email from people who misunderstand or fear browser cookies. And that's no wonder, given all the false and misleading information that's out there. Since 1996, I've been working to dispel the cookie myths, and neither the technology nor my opinion of cookies has changed much since then. Read on for a closer look at the good, the bad, and the crumbly aspects of web browser cookies...

...

Is Google's Privacy Policy Evil?

On March 1, Google will replace over 60 product-specific privacy policies with one unified and slimmed-down privacy policy (just over 2,000 words). The new policy makes it clear that Google will combine information gathered about users through all of its services (search, Gmail, YouTube, Docs, etc.) in order to improve services and deliver better-targeted ads. Some folks have a problem with this, for reasons that are not very clear to me...

...

Ten Identity Theft Protection Tips

A friend of mine lost thousands of dollars because of an identity theft scammer. That person was arrested, but undoing the damage has been difficult, time-consuming and expensive. Can you give me some practical tips to help defend against identity theft?

...

Is Your Email Really Private?

If you ever get the paranoid feeling that someone is reading your email, your suspicions probably focus on nefarious hackers or the government. But it's much more likely that an email voyeur is someone close to you. Your spouse, your boss, or a nosey parker who runs the computers at work may be peeking at your email...

...

I Always Feel Like Somebody's Watching Me

Just about everything you do on the Internet is being watched by someone. Well, maybe watching isn't the best word to describe it, but you still might be surprised at how much of your online activity is logged, tracked or accessible for review. If that bothers you, bone up on these anonymous web browsing techniques...

...

Who's Watching You On the Web?

Every time you use the Web, you leave traces of your activity in many places. Some of that is the way the Internet was designed, and some is a little more tricky. If you're interested in hiding your online tracks with web privacy software, read on...

...

I Just Googled Myself, And I Feel Fine!

Have you ever Googled your name or phone number? In an age of powerful search engines, social media, and changing attitudes about privacy, you might be shocked to see what a casual searcher can learn about you. If you're okay with that level of transparency, then fine. If not, read on for some tips on what you can do about it...

...

Is Your Smartphone Telling Secrets?

I recently heard that some mobile phones tag all photos with the GPS coordinates where they were taken. Is this true, and if so, what can be done about this privacy exposure?

...

Should I Install a Keylogger?

A reader wrote to ask how he can hack into the email account of the woman he's thinking about marrying, ostensibly to see if she's gold or a gold-digger. One way to satisfy this curiosity is called a keylogger. But that opens up a bunch of ethical and legal issues. Should you install a keylogger to spy on someone else?

...

Has Your Identity Been Stolen?

If you're lucky, you'll know immediately when your identity has been stolen. A missing wallet or purse sets off an instant alarm. But many victims of identity theft don't learn of it until months after the fact, when enormous damage has been done to their finances and credit. Here's what to look for if you're concerned about possible identity theft...

...

Social Network Surveillance

You can't have too many friends is a proverb coined long before Facebook arrived. The fact is, you certainly can have too many friends on Facebook, Twitter, Myspace and LinkedIn, especially when you don't know who they really are...

...

What is Digital Forensics?

Digital forensics - computer forensics in older terminology - is the discovery, recovery, and investigation of digital information. You will usually hear the term digital forensics in connection with the investigation of a crime. But it also applies to recovery of an accidentally deleted file, or a forgotten password. You might be surprised to learn what kinds of information can be discovered through digital forensics...

...

RFID and Personal Security

I understand that RFID chips are being embedded in passports, debit cards and other identification cards. Is there any truth to the rumor that hackers with special equipment can swipe my personal info as I walk by?

...

Remove Phone Listing

I just did a search for my phone number on Google and was shocked at the results that popped up. It showed my full name, street address and a map of my neighborhood with a big arrow pointing to my house! One more click and it showed a satellite photo of my house. I could see the car in the driveway and the dog in the back yard. How can I remove my personal information from Google and other online phone directories?

...

Employee Internet Monitoring

Providing employees with Internet access at work is a necessity for many businesses. But employers must monitor employees' Internet use, and control it. Employee Internet monitoring and control is a touchy subject. Here's what you need to know...

...

Do Identity Theft Protection Services Work?

Many people are concerned about identity theft these days, with good reason. If someone assumes your identity they can commit crimes for which you are blamed; raid your bank accounts; even ruin your employment prospects. With so much at stake, many people are paying over $20 a month for identity theft protection services. But are they wasting their money? Here's the scoop…

...

Facebook Privacy Settings

Facebook faces a mutiny from its millions of users. The company has outraged, exasperated, and frightened almost every user who has paid any attention to recent changes in his or her Facebook connections and privacy settings. If you are not paying attention, you should. Here's why, and what you need to do...

...

Protect Yourself From Identity Theft

A friend of mine lost over $50,000 because of an identity theft scammer. That person was arrested, but undoing the damage has been difficult, time-consuming and expensive. Can you give me some practical tips to help defend against identify theft?

...

Alternatives To Lifelock

I'm considering LifeLock identity theft insurance, but are there other companies I should consider? And I've heard about do-it-yourself identity theft protection... is that a realistic alternative?

...

How to Hide Your IP Address

I'm concerned about my online privacy, so I want to hide my IP address. How can I do this?

...

Privacy Software

I'm concerned about threats to my privacy while using my home computer. Can you recommend any good tools to help me use my computer and navigate the web safely, without compromising my privacy?

...

Private Browsing

Most web browsers now have a 'private browsing' mode which is supposed to eliminate your tracks while surfing the web. How well does this work in practice, and which browsers support the private browsing feature? Read on to find out...

...

Search Privacy

I've heard that Google keeps a log of everything that people search for. If this is true, can I delete my search history? Who else is keeping track of what I search for?

...

Is Privacy History?

What information about you is publicly available on the Web? In the past, only government agencies and businesses with a 'need to know' were able to access personal information. Today, Internet search engines allow almost anyone to find information about friends, co-workers, job applicants, etc. What information that YOU thought was private is available online?

...

Facebook Privacy

I've switched from Myspace to Facebook because I was unhappy with the privacy controls there, and I've been told that Facebook lets you control this much better. Would you please go over the Facebook privacy settings and recommend which ones I should focus on?

...

Computer Privacy At Work

Can the boss really see when you're surfing the Internet at work? Can the geeks from the IT Department monitor everything you do on your PC? Are any of them keeping tabs on those last twenty minutes of your lunch hour when you're playing Solitaire?

...

Sued For Downloading?

More and more, people are asking me if they can get sued by the entertainment industry for downloading, music, movies, games or television shows. The answer is YES, maybe. Read on and learn how to download safely, and avoid the snares of the RIAA, MPAA and copyright lawyers...

...

Do Not Call Registry

I keep getting emails from friends about adding my cell phone to a Do Not Call registry. Looks like a scam to me... Is the Do Not Call Registry for real, and if so, should I put both my home and cell phone numbers in it?

...

What is RFID?

I understand that RFID involves some sort of computer chip that can identify objects and their locations. What exactly can be tracked with RFID and are there any privacy concerns I should know about?

...

Background Checks

I note there are several sites that one may 'check out' someone. Is there any way one may find out if he/she has been 'checked out'? Your tips help this old Senior stay up to date!

...

Is Google Desktop Evil?

I got a warning from a friend who told me not to use the Google Desktop program. He says it will secretly make copies of my personal files and send them to Google's own servers, and from there they could be made available to the government. Is this true?

...

Identity Theft

Remember that 1995 movie The Net, starring Sandra Bullock? Okay, I didn't see it either. Somehow I couldn't imagine Sandra as a software engineer after watching her in While You Were Sleeping. But I digress... the movie was a story about a growing problem today -- identity theft. Read on to learn how it happens, and try my 12-step program to protect yourself.

...

Keystroke Logging

A friend of mine believes that her husband is chatting through email and IM's with other women. Is there any way to track the IM's or emails on her home computer?

...

Is Your Printer Spying on You?

I've heard that some printers embed a secret coded dot pattern on each printed page, and that if you decode the dots, you can determine the owner of the printer and the exact time the page was printed. That sounds like a privacy violation -- is it true?

...

Clearing Browser History

How do I clear the list of sites visited in my web browser? There are some nosy people in my office and I don't want them to be able to see what web sites I have visited.

...



.
.
Copyright © - by - All Rights Reserved
Privacy Policy