Do Not, I Repeat, Do Not Download Onavo, Facebook’s Vampiric VPN Service

Onavo Protect, the VPN client from the data-security app maker acquired by Facebook back in 2013, has now popped up in the Facebook iOS app itself, under the banner “Protect” in the navigation menu. Clicking through on “Protect” will redirect Facebook users to the “Onavo Protect – VPN Security” app’s listing on the App Store. …

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Your Facebook Data Is Creepy as Hell

Since 2010, Facebook allows you to download an archive file of all your interactions with the network. It’s a 5-click easy process that your grandmother can do (more details below). Inside the .zip, lies an ‘index.html’ page that acts as a portal to your personal data. Visually, it looks like an ad-free stripped down version of …

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Fitness trackers report their location and map the Burning Man festival in the Nevada desert. Screenshot of Strava Heat Map

Your Mobile Phone Can Give Away Your Location, Even If You Tell It Not to

U.S. military officials were recently caught off guard by revelations that servicemembers’ digital fitness trackers were storing the locations of their workouts – including at or near military bases and clandestine sites around the world. But this threat is not limited to Fitbits and similar devices. My group’s recent research has shown how mobile phones …

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Fitness Tracking App Accidentally Reveals Secret US Military Bases, CIA “Black” Sites

An interactive online fitness tracking map published in November of 2017 which compiles a running history of the location and routes of 27 million fitness-device users has unwittingly revealed the location, staffing, patrol routes and layout of U.S. and foreign military bases around the world. San Francisco based fitness company Strava posted their "global heatmap" to their website, containing …

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7 Popular Devices That Spy On You Without Your Permission

The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) wrote a letter to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) asking them to look at technology from the likes of Microsoft, Google, Amazon and others, citing the “always on” technology as being “worrisome”. Yahoo Finance report: EPIC fears the average consumer isn’t aware that some of these devices are actually …

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Chinese students work on the Ares, a humanoid bipedal robot designed by them with fundings from a Shanghai investment company, displayed during the World Robot Conference in Beijing. (AP/Ng Han Guan)

Who and What Will AI Serve? US and China Give Very Different Answers

Speaking to a group of students in September, Russian President Vladimir Putin made a bold proclamation. “Artificial intelligence is the future,” he said, stating that this is a fact “not only for Russia but for all humankind. It comes with colossal opportunities, but also threats that are difficult to predict. Whoever becomes the leader in …

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Romans of the Decadence (1847), by Thomas Couture, as updated to parody Silicon Valley’s male-dominated sexual and sexist culture. Photo Illustration by Darrow.

“Oh My God, This Is So F—ed Up”: Inside Silicon Valley’s Secretive, Orgiastic Dark Side

About once a month, on a Friday or Saturday night, the Silicon Valley Technorati gather for a drug-heavy, sex-heavy party. Sometimes the venue is an epic mansion in San Francisco’s Pacific Heights; sometimes it’s a lavish home in the foothills of Atherton or Hillsborough. On special occasions, the guests will travel north to someone’s château …

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Why Are We Still Using Facebook?

Facebook has acknowledged what multiple studies have already confirmed – the social network has a tendency to make users depressed, stressed, and envious. After years of studies pointing to negative experiences for users of Facebook, the social media giant has finally conceded that users may experience periods of sadness or depression. “In general, when people …

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Sneaky Cryptocurrency Mining Malware Loapi Can Literally Melt Your Phone

Cybersecurity firm Kaspersky Lab has exposed a powerful malware that infiltrates smartphones to secretly mine cryptrocurrency and carry out DDoS attacks. Loapi, the malicious software, is so power-hungry that it can overheat your battery and fry your phone. The virus physically destroyed the Kaspersky Lab test phone just two days after being infected with it. …

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