C-51 is sweeping in scope, including granting Canadian intelligence agencies CSIS and CSE new authority for offensive online attacks, as well as allowing these agencies to obtain significant amounts of information held by the Canadian government. The open-ended internal information-sharing exceptions contained in the bill erode the relationship between individuals and their government by removing the compartmentalization that allows Canadians to provide the government some of their most private information (for census, tax compliance, health services, and a range of other purposes) and trust that that information will be used for only its original purposes. This compartmentalization, currently a requirement of the Privacy Act, will not exist after Bill C-51 comes into force.

“The Bill further empowers CSIS to take unspecified and open-ended ‘measures,’ which may include the overt takedown of websites, attacks on Internet infrastructure, introduction of malware, and more all without any judicial oversight. These kinds of attacks on the integrity and availability of the web make us all less secure.

If your argument against my opposition to invasion of my privacy by corporations and government is “What do you have to hide”, I want you to put up a webcam in your bedroom that livestreams to facebook and a government agency of your choice 24/7. 

You have nothing to hide, after all, do you?


(by Lee Fang || @lhfang)

Documents obtained by The Intercept indicate that security staff at the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota used a fake Facebook account to monitor local Black Lives Matter organizers, befriend them, and obtain their personal information and photographs without their knowledge.

Evidence of the fake Facebook account was found in a cache of files provided by the Mall of America to Bloomington officials after a large Black Lives Matter event at the mall on December 20 protesting police brutality. The files included briefs on individual organizers, with screenshots that suggest that much of the information was captured using a Facebook account for a person named “Nikki Larson.”

Metadata from some of the documents lists the software that created them as belonging to “Sam Root” at the “Mall of America.” A Facebook account for a Sam Root lists his profession as “Intelligence Analyst at Mall of America.”

The fake Larson account featured a profile photo that a Google reverse image search shows is identical to a photo associated with a woman who is Facebook friends with Root.

The account, previously found at this url, was deleted soon after The Intercept contacted the Mall of America for this story.

On December 11, as news of the planned Black Lives Matter protest began to spread, the “Nikki Larson” account was updated with a banner image of an (apocryphal) Martin Luther King Jr. quote: “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” At some point, the Larson account “liked” the Black Lives Matter Minneapolis Facebook group.

After the December 20 protest, the city charged 11 protesters with six different criminal misdemeanors. The city and mall are seeking over $65,000 in restitution for police and mall expenses.

Information collected from Facebook was used by the Mall of America security team to build dossiers on each activist. A document on Nekima Levy-Pounds, one of the activists charged by the city, includes screen grabs of  her Facebook account. Levy-Pounds, professor of law at the University of St. Thomas, told The Intercept that the Larson account befriended her in December.

Another dossier profiling activist Lena Gardner contains pictures, a timeline listing where to spot her in videos from the protest taken by protestors and by Mall of America security, as well as information scraped from her social media accounts. Similar documents were created for at least eight other activists.

The Larson account appears to have been created in 2009, and had 817 friends, many of whose pages showed they were involved in Minnesota political activism. The account also “liked” Facebook groups associated with Ferguson activists, the American Indian Movement Interpretive Center, Occupy Minneapolis, SumOfUs, the SEIU Minnesota State Council, and Communities United Against Police Brutality, among others.

(Read the complete article via TheIntercept  ↳ here)

Dutch court suspends metadata surveillance law over privacy

“A Dutch court has moved to scrap a national data retention law requiring telcos and ISPs to store customer metadata for police investigations because it would violate fundamental EU privacy rights.”

First reported by (David Meyer/Tech.eu) Original article: http://tech.eu/news/dutch-court-suspends-data-retention-law/

From the article: “When Europe’s highest court struck down the EU’s Data Retention Directive, it didn’t invalidate EU countries’ national metadata snooping laws — but it did set a handy precedent.On Wednesday, a court in the Hague suspended the Dutch data retention law, which forced telcos in the Netherlands to retain their customers’ communications metadata for perusal by the authorities, because it infringes on people’s rights to privacy and data protection.This followed a challenge to the law by civil rights groups such as Privacy First, the Dutch journalists’ and lawyers’ associations, and telcos such as BIT and Voys Telecom.”

____Our take;

This is a monumental moment in the privacy movement worldwide as it sets a president for other European union nations to point to in many of the lengthy court battles being fought on related issues.

It is also important because the netherlands is a major internet country with many internet users and it has a hugely important impact on peplum worldwide due to the fact that the netherlands is one of the countries with the most web hosting,VPS and dedicated servers,data centers and hosting companies running from it so along with privacy victory for a significant population of the internet it also will have ramifications for the better of hundreds of millions of people such as websites or services being hosted or co-located in the netherlands so direct NSA and other agencies spying will take a decent blow not just to netherlands citizens but to all the things geographically connecting from the netherlands.

It also helps preserve and protect a few major privacy industries such as VPN providers the netherlands hosts a massive portion of VPN servers and VPN connectivity.The netherlands is also probably the largest destination of “seed box” servers downloading or uploading bittorrent traffic as well as Usenet servers and companies,websites,NZB indexes,emule sites,DCC hubs and a major portion of all peer to peer related services and traffic.

so the netherlands making the right decision has helped its citizens and the citizens of every internet connected country in a fairly major way and it also worth noting that with their close economic,cultural and political ties that Belgium another major EU internet country will at some point in the next few years take the same route which will protect its people and like the netherlands many others by default as belgium has a much smaller but still large hosting infrastructure. 

"If I tap on it you can see my flight information, my seat number, everything you need to check in, including a bar code that I can use to just wave in front of the scanner and get through security." — Apple Watch presenter.

I fear for this sort of technology in our political climate, to be honest. They even talk about having your health information available at the flick of a wrist, your biometric data, etc. If you ask me, this is just asking the State to step in and mandate something like this. “Smart” technology, along with the ever-growing, likely non-stop, trend of economic and social electronic transactions, poses a threat to privacy and information security.

Social networks are overwhelming!

Even an AI like Patch is overwhelmed by the amount of effort it takes to keep in touch with people. You can’t always look good on Skype while you’re tweeting and posting selfies to Facebook and Instagram.

I don’t even know how she finds the time to eat anything. And to groom her fur.

[If you feel like joining us on Hangouts (not Skype), sign up here: Hangouts link]

Keep reading


Drone Blinding

Demo for digital privacy tool Cyborg Un Plug shows how it can be set up to disconnect cameras on nearby drones:

Cyborg Unplug is an anti wireless-surveillance system for the home and workplace. It detects and kicks selected devices known to pose a risk to personal privacy from your wireless network, breaking uploads and streams.

In this lab test we look at a flying surveillance device, also known as drones.

You can find out more about Cyborg Un Plug here

I think we need to take a minute and talk about shipping.


You can ship whoever you want but you CAN NOT assume it’s cannon and make your ship uncomfortable. THEY ARE PEOPLE not dolls or TV show characters. Please don’t make assumptions please stop making posts saying _____ ship is real when it’s not please respect their privacy!

Photo by Francois Proulx (Creative Commons).

We all know we’re being tracked online. For the most part, we’re really pretty comfortable with it. We joke about how weird it is to have ads follow us around the internet, how it’s spooky the way Google divines what you’re interested in. It’s bigger than spooky. I would argue that being tracked by companies has made us worry less about being tracked by the government. We used to get really upset if the FBI taped a microphone to the side of a phone booth and eavesdropped on one guy! Now, the government collects data on all of us and we shrug it off. Social media has made us more comfortable with surveillance of all kinds.

Companies like Facebook and Google now set the cultural conversation about what privacy entails. And for some people, there’s much more at stake here than the prices of a new binder from Staples or a Capital One credit card. The constant tracking is a civil rights issue. The idea that “if you don’t do anything illegal online, you don’t have anything to worry about” just doesn’t hold true for some communities.

The upcoming documentary The Feeling of Being Watched takes a look at FBI surveillance in a small town that’s ironically named Justice, Illinois. The town has a big Arab-American population and something weird is clearly going on. The film’s trailer explains that Justice residents endured all kinds of privacy invasions, including a sketchy surveillance van cruising their neighborhoods.

I didn’t know about this until incident until someone pointed me to The Feeling of Being Watched. I have to wonder, wouldn’t this have been major national news a generation ago? We’ve come a long way from getting upset about taping microphones to phone booths. But maybe we don’t talk about privacy as much because surveillance doesn’t impact us all equally. While we’re all tracked, only some of us pay the price.

Keep reading “How Social Media Makes Us Feel Less Upset About Surveillance” by Sarah Mirk at BitchMedia.org.

Al Jazeera: Canada doesn’t need a US-style surveillance state

Thanks to leaks by National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden, we now know that the modern U.S. security state makes Big Brother from George Orwell’s “1984” look quaint. Thanks to the Conservative administration of Stephen Harper, Canada is heading quickly in the same direction. Bill C-51, currently under debate in Parliament, represents the most sweeping threat to Canadian civil liberties yet.

The Tories have long emphasized the danger of domestic terrorism, but there is little evidence that Canada faces an imminent threat. And only six Muslims were involved in planning terrorism on U.S. soil in 2014, the fewest since 2008. The exact figures for Canada are unknown, but they are almost certainly even lower.

The government’s actual motivation appears to be political opportunism. Last fall, polls showed Harper and the Conservatives badly trailing Justin Trudeau and the Liberal Party. Then in October, Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, a troubled Quebec Muslim man, killed a soldier at the National War Memorial in Ottawa. Later that month, Martin Rouleau killed a soldier in Quebec. Harper wasted no time in announcing that his administration would quickly pass laws to bolster public safety. Since then, his position in the polls has improved steadily.

Continue Reading.