privacy and security

FTC: Data Broker Sells ‘Staggering’ Amount of Sensitive Info on Americans

A recently unsealed court filing by the FTC accuses massive data broker of Kochava of selling a “staggering” amount of sensitive information on Americans gathered from a wide variety of sources including smartphone apps. Data brokers like Kochava promise their customers a “360-Degree perspective” on individuals, which the government alleges happens without the consent of consumers.

spy with binoculars

Identity Management Software Giant Okta Suffers Hack

Okta, an identity and authentication management software company whose products are widely used in business and education, has fallen victim to a security breach where hackers accessed sensitive customer information through its customer support management system.

Participant hold their laptops in front of an illuminated wall at the annual Chaos Computer Club (CCC) computer hackers' congress, called 29C3, on December 28, 2012 in Hamburg, Germany. The 29th Chaos Communication Congress (29C3) attracts hundreds of participants worldwide annually to engage in workshops and lectures discussing the role …

RICO Lawsuit: H&R Block, Facebook, and Google Passed Around Private Data ‘Like Candy’

A class action lawsuit has been filed against H&R Block, Facebook (now known as Meta), and Google, accusing the companies of scheming to illicitly install trackers on H&R Block’s website used scan and transmit sensitive tax data, which was allegedly used for targeted advertising and refining Facebook’s AI algorithms. As one attorney explained, “It’s like your income tax guy handing your pay stubs and tax returns over to a marketing firm.”

Mark Zuckerberg Facebook creepy smile

Sick and Twisted: Scammers Target Parents with AI-Generated Copies of Their Children Begging for Help

A sophisticated and twisted new phone scam is targeting parents in New York City, with fraudsters utilizing advanced AI to mimic the distressed voices of their target’s children. One woman who was scammed by a call seeming to come from her 14-year-old daughter crying and claiming to have been arrested explains, “I’m aware it was really stupid – and I’m not a stupid person – but when you hear your child’s voice, screaming, crying, it just puts you on a different level.”

distressed woman on phone

State Department Emails Compromised by China Following Microsoft Hack

Hackers purportedly linked to the Chinese government infiltrated the State Department after hacking a Microsoft employee earlier this summer, pilfering around 60,000 emails from the inboxes of 10 employees, revealing sensitive information including travel itineraries and diplomatic deliberations.

Hacker in a dark hoody sitting in front of a notebook with digital Chinese flag background and binary streams cybersecurity concept

Boss of Private Messaging App Signal Labels AI as ‘Surveillance Technology’

Meredith Whittaker, the president of private messaging app Signal, shed light on the intrinsic link between AI and Big Tech’s surveillance capitalism, emphasizing the profound implications of the technology on privacy and user data during her appearance at TechCrunch Disrupt 2023. Whittaker went so far as to label AI as “surveillance technology,” which may be why the Silicon Valley Masters of the Universe are rushing to integrate AI into everything they do.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg closeup

MGM Hit with Cyberattack that Crippled Casino Giant’s Systems

MGM Resorts International is in crisis management mode as a significant cybersecurity breach forces the shutdown of various systems, including its main website, online reservations, and in-casino services. Legions of gamblers were shocked when even the casino giant’s slot machines stopped working temporarily.

a gambler at slot machine

Chinese Hackers Breached the Email of Government Officials by Cracking a Microsoft Engineer’s Account

Chinese hackers broke into a Microsoft engineer’s corporate account, leading to the unauthorized access of email accounts belonging to senior U.S. officials, casting a shadow over the tech giant’s cybersecurity measures. The hack occurred in June, but the company just completed an internal investigation that pointed the finger at its own sloppy security practices.

China - Top government leaders told NPR that federal agencies are years behind where they could have been if Chinese cybertheft had been openly addressed earlier. Bill Hinton Photography/Getty Images

Privacy Nightmare: New York City Subway’s Payment System Could Expose Travelers’ Movements to Crooks

A feature on the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) website, designed to allow New York City subway riders to check their travel history, has come under scrutiny for posing a significant privacy risk. As one privacy expert explains, “Obviously this is a great fit for abusers who live with their victims or have physical access, however brief, to their wallets.” 

People walk along the train platform at the Second Avenue subway station on November 09, 2021 in New York City. On Friday Congress passed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, a $1.2 trillion infrastructure package, as part of President Joe Biden's economic agenda. The bill, which is slated to be …

Pornhub Blocks Access in States Including Arkansas and Virginia in Response to Age Verification Laws

In a sweeping response to new age verification laws in various states, Pornhub has blocked access to its adult content in Arkansas, Virginia, and other locations, igniting a debate over online privacy, child safety, and governmental regulation. The pornography company bizarrely argues that asking users to prove they are at least 18 years old “will put children and your privacy at risk.”

creepy dude in pornhub shirt

‘Grossly Irresponsible:’ Security Experts Blast Microsoft’s Cloud Security Practices

Microsoft’s cloud security, particularly its Azure platform, has come under severe criticism for what security experts are calling negligent and irresponsible handling of security vulnerabilities. The CEO of one security firm explains, “What you hear from Microsoft is ‘just trust us,’ but what you get back is very little transparency and a culture of toxic obfuscation.”

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella

Masters of the Universe: Google Says It Will Scrape Everything Posted Online to Train AI

Google has announced that it now reserves the right to scrape virtually all content posted online to enhance its AI tools. The internet giant’s privacy policy now doesn’t just describe how the Masters of the Universe will use all your personal data in its products to generate ad revenue, but also explains it considers the entire internet fair game for its relentless data collection systems.

Sundar Pichai, senior vice president of Chrome, speaks at Google's annual developer conference, Google I/O, in San Francisco on 28 June 2012

Careful What You Tell AI: Hackers Target Private Info of ChatGPT Users

The increasing popularity of OpenAI’s AI chatbot, ChatGPT, has led to a surge in cybersecurity threats, with over 101,000 compromised ChatGPT account login credentials found on dark web marketplaces in the past year. Compromised accounts put ChatGPT users’ privacy at risk because the system keeps a record of chats which may include sensitive information and personal data.

cyber hacker

WSJ: Twitter Is Still Swarmed by Bots, Despite Elon Musk’s Claims

Despite Elon Musk’s claims following his takeover of Twitter, the social media platform continues to grapple with the persistent issue of fake and spam accounts, according to recent research. One Princeton professor explains, “It’s clearly the case that bad bots remain pervasive on Twitter.” 

Elon Musk and a Twitter logo are seen in this illustration photo in Warsaw, Poland on 30 November, 2022. The revamped Blue Twitter subscription might not be available as in-app purchase on Apple devices when it eventually relaunches. The decision presumably was made so that Twitter can dodge Apples 30 …

Illinois Hospital Closes Due to Devastating Ransomware Attack

In an unprecedented event in the healthcare industry, St. Margaret’s Health in Spring Valley, Illinois, is set to close its doors, partially due to a crippling ransomware attack that occurred in 2021. This marks the first time a hospital has publicly attributed its closure to a cyberattack. One administrator explained the extent of the cyberattack, saying,  “You’re dead in the water. We were down a minimum of 14 weeks. And then you’re trying to recover. Nothing went out. No claims. Nothing got entered. So it took months and months and months.” she said.

A nurse prepares isolation rooms for any suspected cases of bird or swine flu at the Sarjito hospital on May 1, 2009 in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. The World Health Organisation has issued a phase five Swine Influenza Virus (SIV) pandemic warning following the outbreak with positive reports of the virus spreading …