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Forums > Social Discussion > Google Chrome - and other privacy issues re. Google

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FireTom
Stargazer

Member Since: 20th Sep 2003
Total posts: 6650
Posted:Google seems to overtake Microsoft on the fast lane... unfortunately not in regards of courtesy but in regards of spying on its users...

Creating a full profile of me, based upon my browsing habits, is not what I prefer my browser to do and experts fear that at some stage I could be identified by what I enter and how I do it... much like a digital fingerprint.

So far I am using Google for most - if not all - of my searches, hence I am strongly reconsidering being part of a 'silent support group'...

I shalt look for alternatives to Google...

EDITED_BY: FireTom (1222664582)
EDIT_REASON: tile edited - topic expanded


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Stout
Stout

Pooh-Bah
Location: Canada
Member Since: 12th May 2004
Total posts: 1872
Posted:It's the Utila Dive Center...in the dive master section, I'm the guy bending over demonstrating the gear...

Of course I'd call you first, I was just demonstrating that "I know where you live" ( I usually follow that comment with "and I have sidewalk chalk' ) if, indeed that is your address. I was just guessing that's your real name. Would your cell phone company give me your real name ?

Yes, it would be a real effort to link your HoP posts to your real name, not impossible, but certainly beyond my capabilities. What I'd need is your IP address which (apparently) you can get from these postings....I read a demo on some other board where some guy took the post above him, determined the IP address and used some tool to link the IP address to the billing information attached to that IP address. I'd link to it, but it was a couple of years ago.

No other online identities ??? Me neither, really...well there is this board I troll every once and a while, but I only do it from a public computer as it's populated by really, really scary people. So no running around in lingerie on second life ? See, that's the sort of thing that I figure most people want to keep on the quiet, and I usually *assume* that's what most of the google chrome hoopla is about.

Wouldn't it be ironic...if I were using chrome, and they took yesterday's browsing history which involved school and workplace shootings and targeted me with various firearm and high capacity magazine adverts....

I understand your passion over privacy, I just think the browsing history thing is small potatoes when compared to the privacy invasions that can legally happen to you. I'm not sure about Canada, but I've read that all overseas calls placed from the US are recorded. This isn't to say that all those calls are recorded and listened to, because the manpower required for such a task would be huge...it comes into play if a person is being investigated, like the library card thing.

I'd actually be a pretty good criminal, I spend a lot of time looking into this sort of stuff and thinking of ways to maximise my off the gridness without compromising my convenience.

I'm convinced to the point that Google may go through with their profiling for profit idea, and hit me with target ads. As I said, I consider it a rather low on my privacy scale simply because, not only do I figure they have some sort of record of searches I've done ( and maybe links I've followed ?? ) but I know for sure my ISP has a record of all the sites I've visited....I asked them.

I'm basing my privacy concerns strictly in terms of the emotional impact various forms of invasion of privacy can take. The top one, the one with the most emotional impact would be the sudden, warrantless home search. Hummm...random public drug screening, like in Thailand. Do you really have that in Germany ? Try that around here and there'll be a huge public outcry....like the time the police tried using drug sniffing dogs to sniff out contraband in cars on a ferry...That was way too big brother for us and the public freaked.

International borders are another scene altogether, you shouldn't really expect any privacy there. Interestingly, I've heard more than a few Canadians boasting about how they got international flights that avoid the US.

I'll take a rain check on the tea, thank you smile hug I was actually hoping to make the InJuCo in 2009 but family commitments have me busy over the holiday season. Were it three weeks or a month later.....


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FireTom
Stargazer

Member Since: 20th Sep 2003
Total posts: 6650
Posted:Hey Stout, wave at picture grin Diving is just soo much fun!

Another brother lost by schedule - I really would reconsider, would I not have had printed and handed out 4k flyers with exactly that date on it... Oh my.

Yes, that's my address - but not my name. But even with that address in your hand you will have a hard time finding me. You'd be running around in an area of probably 5sqkm's with no road signs and no numbers anywhere, not to speak of missing name boards. You would have to ask so many people, that it's possible me spotting you way before you reach my doorstep... </offtopic>

However: I would guess that maybe most international calls from Canada get monitored - by computers.

My cellphone company would only disclose my RN if you had a warrant - and vice versa, if you had my RN you could get my number from them. Call register? Same. Bank account statements? Sure, all available with a warrant..

Now, if you were a talented hacker, you could get all kinds of informations about all kinds of people - and here lies the rabbit in the peppers: How can Google (or Yahoo, or MS) guarantee my privacy?

Now, outside of criminal misconduct: You believe that it's only people hacking into the CIA and no hacker would currently be working for them? If one can hack into the CIA, there sure as heck are people who can hack into Google's...

The best way to protect privacy is to prevent such database from forming in the first place.

George Orwell's "1984" (by other means) had happened in Germany during the Nazi regime.

The public just needs enough reasons to believe.


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the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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FireTom
Stargazer

Member Since: 20th Sep 2003
Total posts: 6650
Posted:As to Google and privacy concerns:


Google Street views pricay issues at Wiki

Originally Posted By: WikiPrivacy advocates have objected to this Google feature, pointing to views found to show men leaving strip clubs, protesters at an abortion clinic, sunbathers in bikinis, cottagers at public parks, parents hitting their children, males picking up prostitutes and other activities, as well as people engaging in activities visible from public property in which they do not wish to be seen publicly.

Google maintains that the photos were taken from public property.

Before launching the service, Google removed photos of domestic violence shelters, and allows users to flag inappropriate or sensitive imagery for Google to review and remove.

When the service was first launched, the process for requesting that an image be removed was not trivial; however, Google has since changed its policy to make removal more straightforward.

Images of potential break-ins, sunbathers and individuals entering adult bookstores have, for example, remained active and these images have been widely republished.

One of Google's remedies to the concerns over privacy laws outside the United States has been a pledge to blur faces of people who are filmed. Google began blurring faces on 13 May 2008 and the images published since then, including the first launch of images in Europe on 2 June 2008, have all used face blurring.

In 2007, Google pledged not to identify faces or number plates in Australia. However, as of August 2008, it is still possible to view both.

I think it's a mistake to generally hail Google as "good by default". They do primarily act in their own best interest, not that of mankind or Internet users. If privacy issues would really be taken serious at Google, they would follow different policies.

This is not to demonize Google - but especially since I have faced this kind of ("fierce") resistance and ("slavish") support for Google </immense exxagerations> - I feel it is necessary to compile a set of facts in this thread about the privacy issues that Google does create worldwide.

EDITED_BY: FireTom (1222664241)


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Stout
Stout

Pooh-Bah
Location: Canada
Member Since: 12th May 2004
Total posts: 1872
Posted:Not only is it fun, but I can also go down there and dive as much as I want to free now that I've done my DM, I just have to take people with me. Unfortunately the yearly vacation to a tropical place is a more difficult thing to indulge in now that I have a child however my wife doesn't seem so against the idea if there's some sort of focus ( like spinning ) rather than just simply bagging off.

Eventually, we'll be able to take Stout jr, but I'm rather hesitant to drag him through third world countries right now seeing as how he's only 3.......he does spin staff though

I always assume my international calls are monitored ( not that I make that many. ) however I'm not "up to anything" so I just figure, that is someone is bored enough to listed in on what I'm saying, then they should really consider a career change. I also keep the idea of "keywords" in my head so I'd never refer to the tonne of cocaine by name, I'd just call it...." the shipment" > Likewise, I'd be hesitant to use the word kill in the same sentence as the president...like I did just now.


So we're on the same page when it comes to governments, warrants, and access to your "private" info ??

Sure, someone could hack into google, But what for ? They wouldn't get any useful information out of it. If it were MY personal privacy the hacker was interested in violating, why wouldn't the hacker just go for my computer instead ? After all what good would a list of visited internet sites do in the grand scheme of things. First thing I'd do is deny it was me visiting those sites. What you really want is incriminating photos or something like that ( a copy of my manifesto ? ) in order to get some real dirt. One other thing to keep in mind, that it's pretty easy to fake up photos and documents, so there's the "is it convincing? " factor to take into consideration too.

Interesting Wiki article, I had to search out "cottagers" as I'd never heard the term before and was thinking that if people are building cottages in public parks, then being photographed is the least of their worries ) OK, now I know. Those are all valid concerns around privacy, however it's not Google's problem. We've had this discussion on another thread ( Khan's IIRC ) about being photographed spinning in a public park and it all comes down to knowing what the local laws are. Around here, you can photograph, pretty much anybody doing pretty much anything and do pretty much any thing you want with that photo as long as it's used for "editorial" ( as opposed to commercial ) purposes.

So if I'm going to go out a cruising in the park wink It would be in my best interests to run from anyone I see approaching me with a camera rather than stand there saying things like "you can't do that", 'cause, I'd actually be wrong.

Is Google being forced to do face blurring ? Or are they doing it voluntarily in reaction to public complaint ? Which brings us back to that end user experience thing.


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FireTom
Stargazer

Member Since: 20th Sep 2003
Total posts: 6650
Posted:Free dives? I wouldn't exactly call the responsibility for a group of divers "free" - but it's a tempting condition/ works pretty much everywhere, no? But in Goa you don't want to go diving, you'd have more fun trying to find the exit of a football stadium, blindfolded (viz=miserable) Next time I got 3 months spare, I will upgrade from my current "Rescue"... re. Stout Jr.: they have no 3yr olds in 3rd world countries? Just teasing, I'm the last one advocating ppl to travel, really... at least to India or 3rd world countries.

Here is whatt a C-Net article has to say about Google Street View

Originally Posted By: cNetGoogle's recently unveiled Street View stunned many with its photos of the unsuspecting, from a man climbing a front gate to another walking out of a strip club, but it's hardly the first time the company has compiled a massive database of material that some would want to remain private. Indeed, Google has for years been storing every Web search and analyzing the topics of Gmail so it can serve customers with related advertisements.

But now that Google is serving up images from the sky with Google Earth, creating street-level images with Street View and tracking customer behavior in cyberspace, some are starting to ask: how much is enough? As blogger Michael Rasmussen wrote in a comment about Street View on the Boing Boing blog, "Damn right, it's creepy."

Saturday, the British activist group Privacy International released a scathing report that said the company is "hostile to privacy" and ranked it the lowest out of nearly two dozen major Web sites when it comes to privacy issues.

Google Maps Street View was singled out. "Techniques and technologies (are) frequently rolled out without adequate public consultation (e.g. Street level view)." Google also has a "track history of ignoring privacy concerns," the report said. "Every corporate announcement involves some new practice involving surveillance."

In addition to Google's "aggressive use of invasive or potentially invasive technologies and techniques," the bad grade was given because of the "diversity and specificity" of Google's products and the ability to share data between them, as well as the company's market dominance and number of users.

And I side it: "It's damn creepy to get G-oogled!" wink

Asked the question "Are you worried about Google invading your privacy?" a total of
44.2% of 4295 voters feel the same: "Yes, definitely!"
25.7% would say "Not at all" and
only 13% regard "It's worth the trade-off for the information I get."

Whether or not Google responded to civil lawsuit or bowed to peer pressure alone is a difference, but at this point I undertake quite some effort to compile the facts already - and to me it's not that much the motif, but the result that really matters.

Of course it needs to be mentioned that Google is undertaking efforts to protect users privacy, has troubles to understand many of the concerns and claims to be facing false accusations or misunderstandings.

What am I worried about, when I got no dead bodies in my basement? For instance if there would be someone hacking Google and finding out that a (presidential) candidate is surfing sleazy websites, publishes it and he looses the race, just because of that. As to put it on an extreme.

Originally Posted By: cNetthe bad grade was given because of the "diversity and specificity" of Google's products and the ability to share data between them, as well as the company's market dominance and number of users.

Cross referencing between Google products makes it such a powerful tool.

Have you seen "Eagle Eye"? Even if not, it should be obvious that the more you do know about an individual, the more power you have in hands to manipulate or even control it. I'm just mentioning it as I have only seen it a few days ago (on an IMAX sccreen eek )

Lengthy post again - I guess we're the only ones left in this discussion anyway shrug Generation Y - oh Y rolleyes


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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simta
simta

compfuzzled
Location: hastings
Member Since: 11th Apr 2006
Total posts: 1182
Posted:https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/8782
br>
add-on for firefox to make it look like google chrome


"the geeks have got you" - Gayle

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FireTom
Stargazer

Member Since: 20th Sep 2003
Total posts: 6650
Posted:Now *that* is sexy .... whistles - thanks for that, Simta.

the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Stout
Stout

Pooh-Bah
Location: Canada
Member Since: 12th May 2004
Total posts: 1872
Posted:I don't mind taking people diving, it's pretty easy really except when you get these obsessive camera guys who do "whatever it takes" to get the shot/clip. I just tell 'em that there's a depth I won't go below, and I'll only bang on my tank so many times and it's their choice to pay attention...and no...I won't go into the chamber with them if there's an accident.

I understand the concerns about Google street view, but what about all those other cameras out there ? Chances are most of those other cameras are private with the footage only coming to light if something happens. For instance, a year ago we had a pedestrian struck in a crosswalk and the whole thing was caught by a security camera in a nearby bar? That camera was part of a program called "Barwatch" which records the image of everyone entering the bar...just in case there's an "incident"

I suppose someone could use Google streetview to "keep an eye on" say...a sleazy bar, to see who enters and exits, but you'd really have to have a lot of time on your hands if you're looking for dirt on people that way.

I'd have answered yes to the questionnaire about privacy concerns and Google on that survey, just to send a message. But here I am, citing my idea that I don't really think it's a "bad" thing when held up to other privacy issues, after all, most of my browsing, ) searching ) history is based around research for discussion forums so it would be not only difficult, but woefully inaccurate for Google to try and profile me for targeted advertising.

The only two "things" I've researched in the past week or so have been 1 ) a 1994 Dodge Dakota pickup truck...because a friend of mine just bought one and I was curious as to how much of a deal he got....2) a specific type of gun..because one of those was used in a school shooting and there were calls that this thing should be banned...I wanted to know why, specifically this gun should be banned seeing as it was a semi automatic. ( turns out this thing fires pistol ammo, and it'll take a 10 round pistol clip which circumvents out no high capacity magazines laws )

So based on those two searches, google no doubt thinks I'm a redneck ( who's also into Homeopathy, Feminism and buying wholesale quantities of frozen fish ...OK there was a third search for a "thing" )

One problem Google may have with their profiling for targeting ads is those profiles are/may going to be inaccurate.

Another problem is the pron....Suppose I spend the day checking out hot college cuties and the next day I'm surfing non pron sites yet get targeted ads for pron...I'm going to be pissed, especially if someone is shoulder surfing and is aware of Google's MO.....busted. I'd be looking for another search engine pretty quick.

I haven't seen Eagle Eye..but our local paper describes it as " an ultra paranoid thriller" I did Google it though..

This is where I was going to post a link to a recent Washington Post article stating that. in the past, employers would Google a potential employees name just to see what came up, but are now going straight to social networking sites like Facebook and Myspace instead....looking for what information those candidates freely reveal about themselves. I'll post it if I can find it again.


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_Aime_
_Aime_

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Hastings
Member Since: 2nd Jan 2004
Total posts: 4172
Posted:Originally Posted By: FireTomNow *that* is sexy .... whistles - thanks for that, Simta.

just part of the cross-pollination that is occuring because you have two OSS browsers around.

i actually took the add-on off soon after installing it because i noticed a significant slowdown, plus my desktop looks sexy anyways laugh3

[/simta]

EDITED_BY: _Aime_ (1222786445)
EDIT_REASON: wrong login


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FireTom
Stargazer

Member Since: 20th Sep 2003
Total posts: 6650
Posted:Aimee: how could it get better than a black latex suit and maiden accessories, smiling at the camera? wink You don't need that Chrome-plugin to improve sexiness wink

Stout - now I had a nice post worded out and it didn't paste here... I try to reconstitute it...

Even though I personally might have nothing to hide, civil rights are a concern (to me). I'm coming from a background where government surveillance was omnipresent and therefore bred a default suspicion against government authorities.

Such suspicion kept Germany from joining the Iraq disaster and would have prevented the current economical crisis, too.

One reason why I've (safely) been able to push my personal Autobahn record to a whacking 270k's/hour is that these boards are missing:


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Why am I concerned about Street View? Because face recognition programs are improving, so is computing power and we're at the dawn of the grid. Maybe it soon will be possible to scan the entire Flickr, Facebook, Myspace archive for a face, within minutes.

It will be harder to cut back existing opportunities if we're not starting now - try looking at it like you're looking at your son. Once you allow him to form a certain habit - just because you are too busy to care in time - it'll be very hard to get rid off it.

I predict a time, where we will have to regulate the amount and the styles of commercial ads, because they will become omnipresent, more aggressive and more custom tailored. We might become prey to subtle manipulation on such a scale.

I for my part prefer to raise my voice as soon as awareness arises.

Sure, there are benefits. Sure there might be heightened security... but will the result really justify the means?

PS: I've experienced too many %$ censored %/$ heads to take more of them with me. They may as well stay on the surface... wink

EDITED_BY: FireTom (1222795613)


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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