Posts Tagged ‘privacy’

Google’s privacy policy under fire

Monday, October 15th, 2012

Reports indicate that the pooling of data by Google is a breach of privacy laws, according to EU data protection commissioners.

The changes mean that what was once separately collated data via its services such as YouTube & Google+, is now tied together.

You can read more at the Sydney Morning Herald.

Online site probes new privacy fears

Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

SMH reports that the website is a directory which links names and phone numbers, to addresses.  It has caused the Australian Communications and Media Authority to investigate whether it constitutes a privacy breach.

The service, created by an Australian man living overseas, not only links to phone numbers which may otherwise be unlisted, but also asks users to login using their Facebook details, which is arguably also using private information.

James (first name given only), the maker of the site, wants to create an i-Phone Ap for this service too.

Future smartphones may read our minds

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

Sydney Morning Herald reports today that developing technology for smartphones are working on ‘psychic’ smartphones.  Intel researchers are working on a prototype application with Fodor’s Travel, which learns your favourite foods, where you like to visit and other such information using your GPS searches, and then makes recommendations when you visit new cities.

The techies have to train computers to look at ‘hard sensors’ data (location, voice patterns, temperature etc) and combine them with soft sensors such as calendar appointments.  Obviously, privacy issues will arise which will also need to be dealt with as the software is developed further.

Almost scarily, Intel reports that is looking even further, a computer that can read your thoughts!

Internet sales of illicit substances circumvent Australian Customs

Thursday, July 22nd, 2010

The internet has allowed makers and suppliers of ‘legal highs’ which may contain illicit substances, to sell their goods directly to the public online.

Sydney Morning Herald today reports that Australian Customs faces new problems with emerging technology, as it is difficult to monitor, and exposes a potentially wider section of the public to drugs.  Some of the pills are simply caffeine-based, whereas others contain ingredients such as ephedrine, one of the precursors of methamphetamine. They are sent through the post and Customs said “many packages are opened and assessed each day”, but not every package can be opened.

Customs does not have the legal authority to shut down online sites selling the drugs but has forced some of the websites to include import restrictions warnings.

Are arcade games teaching children to be gamblers?

Monday, July 5th, 2010

A complaint from anti-gaming establishments is that clubs which install arcade games are encouraging children to be gamblers at an early stage, thereby ‘grooming’ them to be problem gamblers as adults.

Independent senator Nick Xenaphon is encouraging the federal government to take action on this point, as there is no legislation handling it in the meantime.  Mr Xenaphon believes that while parents play the pokies inside a club, the kids are getting the same ‘training’ on arcade games not far away.

The Productivity Commission appears to be in agreement with Mr Xenaphon, in its report on gambling which states that “minors should not…be exposed to gambling areas within venues”.  Unfortunately, the report did not continue on to make further recommendations about fixing this problem.

To read the full article, click here.