It didn't take very long for this crap to happen...

The American Civil Liberties Union is championing the case of a Maryland corrections officer, Robert Collins, who does not believe his employer should have the right to scour his personal Facebook account as a condition of employment.

The ACLU's Maryland chapter sent this letter to state officials on Collins' behalf. According the ACLU, the Maryland corrections division has a "blanket requirement" that job applicants, as well as current employees undergoing recertification, provide the government with their social media account usernames and personal passwords for use in background checks...

Wow, it's finally happening. Just remember, "it is for our benefit"...

Collection of biometric data to allot a unique identification number (UID) by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) is all set to become a reality. Contrary to rumours that the biometric is just a gimmick by the Department of Census to deter people, the department has reiterated that will take place as soon as the date is fixed by UIDAI. “Biometric will take place. There is no reason for people to be afraid as it is for our benefit. We are expecting the dates shortly,” Director Census Operations Nagaland, Hekali Zhimomi said.

Biometric has already begun in the state of Manipur from today. In Nagaland it was proposed that the biometric be held simultaneously with phase-II of the Census operations but the department declined due to shortage of staff. The State government in a meeting earlier this month expressed interest to conduct the biometric at the earliest. It has written to the Centre to set the dates soon.

The biometric will take place circle wise. UIDAI officials along with Census enumerators and the biometric team will set up camps in villages. Biometrics such as photograph, fingerprints and probably Iris information will be added to the NPR for all persons aged 15 years and above. For those who are below 15, UID number will be linked to parents and guardians. After authentication, the details will be sent to UIDAI for de-duplication and issue of UID Numbers. The acknowledgement slip given to each household during phase-I of the Census operations must be produced for the biometric. If a person is found to be enumerated in two places, both will be rejected. The penalty for duplication will be as per the Schedule Registration Act, Government of India...
Sunday, February 20, 2011

With a wingspan of 6.5 inches and weighing in at no more than the weight of 9 dimes, it is amazing that this new UAV can carry its power supply, motor, communications unit, and video camera. This will revolutionize the thought behind a drone, of course not replacing the need for long range UAV’s, but now their capabilities can be used in closer quarters. Maybe to enter buildings ahead of troops or be flown around corners to foresee unknown defenses. Just another tool for the U.S. military...

Three large energy companies have been carrying out covert intelligence-gathering operations on environmental activists, the Guardian can reveal.

The energy giant E.ON, Britain's second-biggest coal producer Scottish Resources Group and Scottish Power, one of the UK's largest electricity-generators, have been paying for the services of a private security firm that has been secretly monitoring activists.

Leaked documents show how the security firm's owner, Rebecca Todd, tipped off company executives about environmentalists' plans after snooping on their emails. She is also shown instructing an agent to attend campaign meetings and coaching him on how to ingratiate himself with activists. The disclosures come as police chiefs, on the defensive over damaging revelations of undercover police officers in the protest movement, privately claim that there are more corporate spies in protest groups than undercover police officers...
Thursday, February 10, 2011

Recently, the digital world has been aflutter with news of the first-ever app approved by the Catholic Church – Confession, an app that helps Catholics prepare for the sacrament of confession by guiding the user through “a personalized examination of conscience”:

“To help those that are feeling guilty ready themselves for the sacrament of confession, the app provides a checklist of the Ten Commandments — along with mini-questions based on each — to help in compiling an inventory of malfeasance. The app even lets one add in non-traditional transgressions not already listed.”

One of the selling points of the app appears to be the password-protection feature, enabling you to lock out anyone who may try to find out about your sinnin’ ways. But what seems to be missing is what Little iApps, the developer of Confession, will do with the data they collect. According to reports, the app asks users to also provide information on their age, sex and marital status – paired with detailed information on the user’s transgressions, that’s a potentially detailed profile that would be quite attractive to marketers and others...

Why not create a direct feed from our iPhones? That would solve a lot of shit. Yes we can!!!

Washington, D.C. is proposing a plan that would add thousands of surveillance camera feeds from local businesses to the city's homeland security agency existing command center; the city already monitors more than 4,500 cameras placed in its public transportation system and schools; critics say that this is a poor use of resources and violates civil liberties; cities like New York, London, and Baltimore already employ this practice...
Thursday, February 03, 2011

If it didn't work in Egypt, it won't work anywhere...

Egypt’s sudden removal and equally sudden return to the web has given open Internet advocates a stockpile of new ammunition. The first target of this arsenal will be S.3480, a new version of an old piece of (failed) legislation. The “Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset Act” was first introduced in 2010. It didn’t work then, but Senators Lieberman (I-Conn), Collins (R-Maine) and Carper (D-Dela) think 2011 is the magic year.

This bill will hand control of privately owned computer networks over to the President during a “national cyber emergency”. There will be no court review needed for the executive branch to shut down any computers, networks and websites needed in order to “preserve the reliable operation of covered critical infastructure”...