The latest lawsuit filed against social networking giant Facebook may ultimately lead to change in how social networks can collect and use our communications, but in the meantime serves to highlight the obsolescence and vagueness of the legislation that protects the personal data we share via social networks and email.
Re/code reports that Facebook will face a class-action lawsuit that accuses it of violating users’ privacy by scanning the messages that they send to other users of the social network. U.S. District Judge Phyllis Hamilton dismissed some state-law claims against the company but denied Facebook’s bid to dismiss the lawsuit, which will now seek to establish how routine the process of scanning messages is to the tech firm’s business.
Facebook has argued that the alleged scanning of users’ messages was covered by an exception under the federal Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) for interceptions by Read more…
Glenn Greenwald (Reuters / Ueslei Marcelino)
The NSA’s ultimate goal is to destroy individual privacy worldwide, working with its UK sidekick GCHQ, journalist Glenn Greenwald warned an EU inquiry, adding that they were far ahead of their rivals in their “ability to destroy privacy.”
Greenwald, the former Guardian journalist renowned for publishing Edward Snowden’s leaks, criticized EU governments’ muted response to the revelations about the NSA’s mass espionage. Most governments reacted with “apathy and indifference” to reports that ordinary citizens were being spied upon, Greenwald said, pointing out that EU politicians only took action when they discovered that they themselves were being targeted.
“I think western governments have inculcated people to accept that privacy does not really have much value,” said Greenwald, adding it was “to get populations accustomed to violations of their privacy.”
Greenwald testified before the European Parliament’s Committee on Civil Liberties and Home Affairs via a video link, contributing to an inquiry into the NSA’s surveillance on Read more…
Image by Google
As tensions worsen among privacy-focused email users amid the escalating scandal surrounding government surveillance, a brief filed by attorneys for Google has surfaced showing that Gmail users should never expect their communications to be kept secret.
Consumer Watchdog has unearthed a July 13, 2013 motion filed by Google’s attorneys with regards to ongoing litigation challenging how the Silicon Valley giant operates its highly popular free email service.
The motion, penned in hopes of having the United States District Court for the Northern District of California dismiss a class action complaint against the company, says Gmail users should assume that any electronic correspondence that’s passed through Google’s servers can be accessed and used for an array of options, such as selling ads to customers.
“Just as a sender of a letter to a business colleague cannot be surprised that the recipient’s assistant opens the letter, people who use Web-based email today cannot be surprised if their emails are processed by the recipient’s [email provider] in the course of delivery,” the motion reads in part. “Indeed, ‘a person has no Read more…