Facebook’s lead EU regulator is asking questions about its latest security fail

Facebook’s lead data protection regulator in Europe has confirmed it’s put questions to the company about a major security breach that we reported on yesterday. “The DPC became aware of this issue through the recent media coverage and we immediately made contact with Facebook and we have asked them a series of questions. We are […]

Mental health websites in Europe found sharing user data for ads

Research by a privacy rights advocacy group has found popular mental health websites in the EU are sharing users’ sensitive personal data with advertisers. Europeans going online to seek support with mental health issues are having sensitive health data tracked and passed to third parties, according to Privacy International’s findings — including depression websites passing […]

Apple still has work to do on privacy

There’s no doubt that Apple’s self-polished reputation for privacy and security has taken a bit of a battering recently. On the security front, Google researchers just disclosed a major flaw in the iPhone, finding a number of malicious websites that could hack into a victim’s device by exploiting a set of previously undisclosed software bugs. […]

Facebook succeeds in blocking German FCO’s privacy-minded order against combining user data

Facebook has succeeded in blocking a pioneering order by Germany’s Federal Cartel Office earlier this year that would have banned it from combining data on users across its own suite of social platforms — Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp — without their consent. Pioneering because the antitrust regulator had liaised with EU privacy authorities during a […]

WebKit’s new anti-tracking policy puts privacy on a par with security

WebKit, the open source engine that underpins Internet browsers including Apple’s Safari browser, has announced a new tracking prevention policy that takes the strictest line yet on the background and cross-site tracking practices and technologies which are used to creep on Internet users as they go about their business online. Trackers are technologies that are […]

Facebook’s human-AI blend for audio transcription is now facing privacy scrutiny in Europe

Facebook’s lead privacy regulator in Europe is now asking the company for detailed information about the operation of a voice-to-text feature in Facebook’s Messenger app and how it complies with EU law. Yesterday Bloomberg reported that Facebook uses human contractors to transcribe app users’ audio messages — yet its privacy policy makes no clear mention […]

Most EU cookie ‘consent’ notices are meaningless or manipulative, study finds

New research into how European consumers interact with the cookie consent mechanisms which have proliferated since a major update to the bloc’s online privacy rules last year casts an unflattering light on widespread manipulation of a system that’s supposed to protect consumer rights. As Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into force in May […]

Don’t miss this epic Twitter fight between the IAB’s CEO and actual publishers

Grab popcorn. As internet fights go, this one deserves your full attention — because the fight is over your attention. Your eyeballs and the creepy ads that trade data on you to try to swivel ’em. In the blue corner, the Internet Advertising Association’s CEO, Randall Rothenberg, who has been taking to Twitter increasingly loudly […]

Google ordered to halt human review of voice AI recordings over privacy risks

A German privacy watchdog has ordered Google to cease manual reviews of audio snippets generated by its voice AI.  This follows a leak last month of scores of audio snippets from the Google Assistant service. A contractor working as a Dutch language reviewer handed more than 1,000 recordings to the Belgian news site VRT which […]

Europe’s top court sharpens guidance for sites using leaky social plug-ins

Europe’s top court has made a ruling that could affect scores of websites that embed the Facebook ‘Like’ button and receive visitors from the region. The ruling by the Court of Justice of the EU states such sites are jointly responsible for the initial data processing — and must either obtain informed consent from site […]