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ftc fines toy vendor vtech for violating child data privacy rules


today’s topics include the ftc fine internet of things toy vendor vtech received for a 2015 privacy breach; microsoft blocking downloads of its meltdown and spectre patches to certain devices; microsoft’s latest moves with cortana to keep pace with alexa and google assistant; and huawei bringing its mate 10 pro flagship smartphone to the united states.on jan. 8, the u.s. federal trade commission announced that vtech electronics will pay a settlement of $650,000 for violating children's privacy laws and the ftc act during a december 2015 data breach that exposed information on 5 million children.ftc commissioner terrell mcsweeny said, "we must remain mindful about how kids data is collected & used by toys & ... toymakers must comply [with coppa]." coppa is the children’s online privacy prot






vtech fined by ftc for iot toy data privacy breach


there is a price to be paid for not properly securing technology that leads a privacy data breach. on jan. 8, the u.s. federal trade commission (ftc) announced that it settled with vtech electronics over charges that it violated children's privacy law and the ftc act. vtech will pay a fine of $650,000 as part of the ftc settlement that comes from a december 2015 data breach that exposed information on 5 million children."as a parent, i know raising raising digital natives comes with a host of new challenges," ftc commissioner terrell mcsweeny wrote in a twitter message. "this case underscores that we must remain mindful about how kids data is collected & used by toys & that toymakers must comply w/ #coppa"further readingcoppa is the children’s online privacy protection act which became a l






vtech agrees to $650,000 fine over collecting children’s data


vtech electronics ltd. agreed to pay $650,000 to settle u.s. federal trade commission charges it didn’t obtain parental consent before collecting personal data from children who used its toys.the settlement, announced monday, requires the hong kong maker of educational toys, cordless phones and other products to run a data-security program audited by a third party. vtech didn’t admit to any violations of law as part of the settlement.the ftc began investigating vtech after the company disclosed a november 2015 data breach in which a hacker gained access to five million customer accounts. the data included more than 600,000 children’s accounts, many of which included photos and were linked to the physical addresses, according to jacqueline connor, a lawyer with the ftc.related vtech holding






vtech agrees to $650,000 fine over collecting children’s data


vtech electronics ltd. agreed to pay $650,000 to settle u.s. federal trade commission charges it didn’t obtain parental consent before collecting personal data from children who used its toys.the settlement, announced monday, requires the hong kong maker of educational toys, cordless phones and other products to run a data-security program audited by a third party. vtech didn’t admit to any violations of law as part of the settlement.the ftc began investigating vtech after the company disclosed a november 2015 data breach in which a hacker gained access to five million customer accounts. the data included more than 600,000 children’s accounts, many of which included photos and were linked to the physical addresses, according to jacqueline connor, a lawyer with the ftc.related vtech holding






vtech agrees to $650,000 fine over collecting children’s data


vtech electronics ltd. agreed to pay $650,000 to settle u.s. federal trade commission charges it didn’t obtain parental consent before collecting personal data from children who used its toys.the settlement, announced monday, requires the hong kong maker of educational toys, cordless phones and other products to run a data-security program audited by a third party. vtech didn’t admit to any violations of law as part of the settlement....






after breach exposing millions of parents and kids, toymaker vtech handed a $650


vtech, the maker of smart toys whose poor security practices exposed data from millions of parents and children, has been slapped on the wrist by the ftc to the tune of $650,000 and probation. it seems a light penalty for such a multifaceted failure affecting so many.the hong kong company makes a variety of “smart” toys, like watches and cameras, and parents and children were encouraged to set up profiles on vtech’s site with pictures and personal details. in november of 2015 a security researcher found that millions of those profiles could be accessed via one of the company’s websites.not only was the website itself not secure, but the data were not encrypted in transit or at rest, contradicting security claims made in vtech’s privacy policy. this is not just poor practice, it’s a violati






toy-maker vtech to pay $650,000 to settle ftc charges over children's privacy vi


an electronic toy-maker has agreed to pay $650,000 to settle charges from the federal trade commission that it collected personal information on hundreds of thousands of children without their parents knowing.vtech electronics, whose north american operations are based in arlington heights, says it did notify parents and the allegations are based on technical provisions of a children’s privacy law.the company also allegedly failed to protect the data it collected, allowing a hacker to gain access in late 2015, according to the complaint.the children’s privacy case was ftc’s first involving internet-connected toys, said tom pahl, acting director of the ftc’s bureau of consumer protection. it shines a light on the growing market, which is expected to reach $15.5 billion by 2022, up from an e






isps can sell your data without permission


last week, the u.s. senate voted to reject the federal communications commission's (fcc) soon to be implemented privacy framework that would’ve stopped internet service providers (isps) from selling your data without permission. it's now cleared the house, as well, in a 215 to 205 vote that would eliminate the fcc’s new privacy rules. now only president trump can stop this bill, but chances that he would do so are slim.isps to use your data unhindered by privacy ruleslast fall, the fcc voted to increase privacy protections for broadband customers because over the past few years multiple isps have been tracking users' browsing habits across the web without consent. this has prompted some small fines from the federal trade commission (ftc) and fcc, but ultimately isps could still attempt to






what the repeal of online privacy protections means for you


here’s what to know about congress’ move to dismantle online privacy rules, and what you can do to try to safeguard your online data.san francisco — congress on tuesday moved to dismantle online privacy rules created during the obama era. the rules, which were scheduled to take effect this year, would have required internet providers to get permission before collecting and selling a customer’s online information, including browsing activities.what does this mean for your privacy and what can you do? here’s what to know.q: what online privacy rules did congress overturn?a: congress voted to overturn rules created by the federal communications commission in october that required broadband providers to get your permission before collecting private data on your online activities and offering i






how to find out what trump's favorite big data machine knows about you / boing b


cambridge analytica is a dirty, dementor-focused big data research outfit that provided the analysis and psych profiles that the trump campaign used in its electioneering; because its parent company is in the uk, it is required (under eu law) to send you its dossier on you for £10. various privacy advocates have been trying to get cambridge analytica to comply with uk privacy rules for some time; the company has finally started obeying the law, and personaldata.io's paul-olivier dehaye lays out a roadmap for forcing the company to cough up yet more of the data it holds on us and the psychological profiles it has derived from this data. dear data compliance team at scl group, under the purview of eu data protection directive 95/46/ec and data protection act 1988, i wish to: know whethe






the latest: toyota's self-driving buses to serve as stores


las vegas — the latest on the ces technology show in las vegas (all times local):11:40 a.m.toyota says it's developing self-driving mini-buses that can serve as bite-sized stores.these vehicles will drive themselves to places where potential buyers can try on clothes or shoes or pick through flea market items. they can also give employees fully functional office space on their commute.the project, unveiled at the ces gadget show monday, is still in the conceptual stage. a concept vehicle is still being developed and will be tested in the 2020s. a version is also expected to make an appearance at the 2020 olympics in tokyo.the japanese automaker is partnering with amazon, uber, pizza hut, mazda and chinese ride-hailing firm didi on what it is calling the e-palette alliance.toyota president






congress may have voted to kill the fcc's privacy rules, but your data still rem


why it matters to you the recent voting against the fcc's privacy rules had nothing to do with enabling the use of user data by third parties, but preventing two independent government agencies from regulating the same privacy issue.in the next step to “tame” what is now considered as an overreaching federal communications commission, the house voted to nuke privacy rules created by the independent agency that regulated an internet service provider’s use and sale of subscriber data. the decision follows one made by the senate last week, which narrowly voted to repeal the privacy rules.several organizations contacted digital trends just after the house vote became public calling the government “racist” because eliminating the fcc’s privacy rules would have a huge impact on people of differe






trump repeals fcc privacy rules, but isps' 'fairness' argument weak


white housepresident trump signed the s.j.res. 34 bill into law, officially overturning the fcc privacy framework that would have required internet service providers (isps) to obtain consent before tracking their customers online and then selling access to that data to advertisers. repealing the fcc’s privacy protectionsthe fcc privacy rules required broadband providers such as comcast, at&t, and verizon to obtain consent before using precise geolocation, health and financial information, and browsing history for advertising purposes. the previous fcc leadership thought that obtaining such information without consent is unacceptable and made it so that broadband customers would have to opt-in before such data collection from the isps occurs.however, with the rules overturned, broadband pro






emanuel administration clears bribe-paying red light camera vendor to bid on con


a tribune investigation also revealed how the emanuel administration ordered the new camera vendor to issue tickets even when yellow light times dipped below the three-second minimum requirement, how emanuel's new speed camera program has tagged drivers in school zones without the legally required evidence of a child present, and how many of the most lucrative speed cameras were placed on major thoroughfares where few pedestrians are hit by speeding cars.all told, the controversial automated traffic enforcement programs have raised more than $600 million in [email protected] @davidkidwell1






congressional action overturning fcc privacy rule changes nothing


news analysis: the federal communications commission had already voted to withdraw data privacy rules for internet service providers well before congress voted to overturn them.the frantic reports in the general news media about a u.s. house of representatives vote on march 28 to terminate federal communications commission rules concerning internet users' data privacy nearly rose to the level of fake news.those reports claim that a whole series of protections granted by the fcc are being taken away, and that internet users in the us are losing privacy protections. that’s not correct.those reports are incorrect is because the rules never took effect. they were scheduled to go into effect in april, but the fcc put them on hold. the only actual change is that now they will never take effect,






congress dismantles internet privacy rules, allowing isps to sell your web histo


the u.s. house of representatives has followed the senate in voting to repeal privacy rules that can prevent broadband providers from selling customers’ internet-browsing histories and other data without their permission.on tuesday, the house voted 215-205 to do away with the privacy rules that the u.s. federal communications commission passed last year. the rules had yet to come into effect.they require broadband carriers to first obtain opt-in approval from customers before using and sharing their sensitive personal information, such as web browsing history, geo-location data and what applications they've used.however, the new trump administration and republicans have opposed the rules, claiming they go too far to regulate the internet industry. the senate's vote happened last week.on tu






accuweather updates its ios app to address privacy outcry


responding to privacy concerns, accuweather is out with a new version of its ios app that removes a controversial data sharing behavior. earlier this week, security researcher will strafach called attention to the practice in a medium post and users took to twitter to announce their intention to dump the app in droves.“accuweather’s app employed a software development kit (sdk) from a third party vendor (reveal mobile) that inadvertently allowed wi-fi router data to be transmitted to this third-party vendor,” the company wrote in a statement accompanying the app update. “once we became aware of this situation we took immediate action to verify the operation and quickly disabled the sdk from the ios app. our next step was to update the ios app and remove reveal mobile completely.”for its pa






accuweather updates its ios app to address privacy outcry


responding to privacy concerns, accuweather is out with a new version of its ios app that removes a controversial data sharing behavior. earlier this week, security researcher will strafach called attention to the practice in a medium post and users took to twitter to announce their intention to dump the app in droves.“accuweather’s app employed a software development kit (sdk) from a third-party vendor (reveal mobile) that inadvertently allowed wi-fi router data to be transmitted to this third-party vendor,” the company wrote in a statement accompanying the app update. “once we became aware of this situation we took immediate action to verify the operation and quickly disabled the sdk from the ios app. our next step was to update the ios app and remove reveal mobile completely.”for its pa






fcc halts internet privacy rule that imposes data security requirements on broad


the federal communications commission on wednesday voted to halt an internet privacy rule that would have imposed data security requirements on broadband providers. the move, by a 2-1 vote, came after the agency’s new republican chairman, ajit pai, indicated last week that he opposed the provision and broader privacy rules because they imposed tougher restrictions on high-speed internet providers than on websites and social networks. with the backing of the fcc’s other republican, michael o’rielly, the fcc issued a stay of the data security requirements before they were set to go into effect thursday. democrat mignon clyburn voted against halting the rules. the stay will allow the fcc to consider formal requests from trade groups representing internet service providers to reconsider the pr






in a reversal, fcc rolls back some of its privacy rules


why it matters to you while previous fcc rules sought to protect consumers from isps, the new administration doesn't seem to agree with these guidelinesthe fcc is under new leadership, and it’s looking to scale back some of the privacy regulations of the previous administration. on friday, the newly appointed chairman of the federal communications commission asked the organization to delay a set of the privacy rules that was initially slated to take effect next week. these rules in particular were meant to protect customers’ personal information from internet service providers by regulating how isps could collect this data.in a statement, the new chairman, ajit pai, noted “the best way to protect the online privacy of american consumers is through a comprehensive and uniform regulatory fra






fcc blocks rules that stop internet providers from secretly selling your data


fcc chairman ajit pai. (image: file photo)federal officials have moved to block rules set out by the obama administration requiring internet providers to protect customer data -- a day before they were expected to come into effect.the rules would have prevented internet providers, such as at&t, comcast, and verizon, from selling customer data without their consent. trump's fcc begins net neutrality attack president trump's assault on net neutrality has begun — with ajit pai leading the way.advertisers are increasingly pushing to gather more information on consumers, such as gender and race, as well as browsing history and the websites they visit, to better target advertising, the rules, set out in october 2016, would impose stronger restrictions on internet providers who wish to provide cu






congressional action overturning fcc privacy rule changes nothing


meta title: news analysis: the federal communications commission had already voted to withdraw data privacy rules for internet service providers well before congress voted to overturn them.the frantic reports in the general news media about a u.s. house of representatives vote on march 28 to terminate federal communications commission rules concerning internet users' data privacy nearly rose to the level of fake news.those reports claim that a whole series of protections granted by the fcc are being taken away, and that internet users in the us are losing privacy protections. that’s not correct.those reports are incorrect is because the rules never took effect. they were scheduled to go into effect in april, but the fcc put them on hold. the only actual change is that now they will never t






facebook fined by french privacy watchdog over data


france’s privacy watchdog on tuesday slapped facebook inc. with a €150,000 ($165,616) fine, alleging the social media giant’s 2015 privacy policy breaches french data protection rules. facebook compiles massive amounts of personal data for targeted advertising without granting users the option of objecting, the watchdog said. the regulator also accused facebook of collecting data on users’ browsing activity on third-party websites...






senate votes to let internet providers sell your web history


photo by brandan hoffman/stringer.today, the us senate voted 50-48 to overturn broadband privacy rules that would have required internet service providers get consumer consent before selling their web browsing data to advertisers or other data companies.advertisementthe rules, which passed in october of last year, govern the collection and selling of private data by isps like verizon, comcast, or at&t. those rules would have required internet providers to ask for permission before selling data about your usage, like web browsing history and location, as well as data about finances, health, app usage, and more. the senate just voted against it.essentially, your isp would need your approval before they could tell advertisers what web sites you like, what apps you use, where you’re at, or any






the senate just voted to let internet providers sell your web history


photo by brandan hoffman/stringer.today, the us senate voted 50-48 to overturn broadband privacy rules that would have required internet service providers get consumer consent before selling their web browsing data to advertisers or other data companies.advertisementthe rules, which passed in october of last year, govern the collection and selling of private data by isps like verizon, comcast, or at&t. those rules would have required internet providers to ask for permission before selling data about your usage, like web browsing history and location, as well as data about finances, health, app usage, and more. the senate just voted against it.essentially, your isp would need your approval before they could tell advertisers what web sites you like, what apps you use, where you’re at, or any






the senate just voted to let internet providers sell your web history


photo by brandan hoffman/stringer.today, the us senate voted 50-48 to overturn broadband privacy rules that would have required internet service providers get consumer consent before selling their web browsing data to advertisers or other data companies.advertisementthe rules, which passed in october of last year, govern the collection and selling of private data by isps like verizon, comcast, or at&t. those rules would have required internet providers to ask for permission before selling data about your usage, like web browsing history and location, as well as data about finances, health, app usage, and more. the senate just voted against it.essentially, your isp would need your approval before they could tell advertisers what web sites you like, what apps you use, where you’re at, or any






police identify 13 people arrested in berkeley demonstrations


berkeley police identified 13 people arrested during a protest sunday that drew thousands of people to the city's martin luther king jr. civic park and sparked violence between far-left and far-right demonstrators. one officer was injured during an arrest and several others were struck with paint, according the berkeley police department. paramedics treated six people; two were taken to a local hospital for treatment. those arrested include: seth vasquez, 25, of berkeley, was arrested on suspicion of violating park rules and security rules for city buildings.mark misohink, 23, of berkeley, was arrested on suspicion of violating park rules and security rules for city buildings.james dominic, 23, of oakland, was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit a crime.kristopher wyrick, 39, of






los angeles times


assemblyman sebastian ridley-thomas is greeted by activists at the state capitol.ge. (rich pedroncelli / ap) assemblymen sebastian ridley-thomas (d-los angeles) and frank bigelow (r-o’neals) have agreed to pay fines to the state’s political watchdog agency for violating campaign finance rules, according to documents released monday.ridley-thomas has agreed to pay $3,500 in fines to the state fair political practices commission for failing to properly report contributions he received for his 2014 election.he failed to report a contribution of $7,000 from the international brotherhood of electrical workers local 11, within 10 days as required by campaign finance rules, according to a report by the commission’s enforcement staff. he also failed to disclose contributions of $1,000 from pg&e an






senate may kill broadband privacy rules as soon as next week


the broadband consumer privacy rules, a set of protections that would require internet service providers to get permission before collecting sensitive data from customers, could be targeted for elimination under the congressional review act (cra), according to open internet advocacy group public knowledge. the consumer privacy protections passed by the federal communications commission last october are…






police identify 13 people arrested in berkeley demonstrations


berkeley police identified 13 people arrested during a protest sunday that drew thousands of people to the city's martin luther king jr. civic center park and sparked violence between far-left and far-right demonstrators. one officer was injured during an arrest and several others were struck with paint, according to the berkeley police department. paramedics treated six people; two were taken to a hospital for treatment. those arrested include: seth vasquez, 25, of berkeley, was arrested on suspicion of violating park rules and security rules for city buildings.mark misohink, 23, of berkeley, was arrested on suspicion of violating park rules and security rules for city buildings.james dominic, 23, of oakland, was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit a crime.kristopher wyrick, 39,






privacy opponents are using a sneaky trick to help isps sell your data


photo: apdo you know what your internet service provider is doing with your data? you probably know that it can see the sites you’re visiting, but have you ever thought about whether it’s selling that information to advertisers? anti-regulation officials are planning to make sure your isp never has to tell you.advertisementin october 2016, the fcc enacted privacy rules that would require isps to get users’ consent before it sold their information to advertisers, as well as to keep customer data secure and to inform them of data breaches. the rules classified customer information into sensitive and non-sensitive data. for non-sensitive data, like how much data you use, customers would still have to opt out of allowing it to be sold, but for sensitive data, like social security numbers, geol






election panel fines ex-milpitas mayor too ‘busy’ for campaign finances


an investigation report from the california fair political practices commission probing election violations by former milpitas mayor jose esteves paints a picture of a candidate who did not want to be inconvenienced by the details of his campaign’s finances.last month, esteves, who termed out of office last year following six years as the city’s mayor, was fined $6,000 for violating state election laws by paying for campaign expenses from a non-election account during his 2012 mayoral bid. the fppc voted unanimously on consent on march 16 to approve esteves’ fine.during its investigation, the fppc learned esteves did not have a role in the campaign’s record keeping “because he was so busy.”“esteves was not very particular in making sure he received a receipt or an invoice for (a) campaign






the senate nuked the fcc's rules preventing isps from selling your private data


why it matters to you if the rules are revoked, internet service providers may have the ability to sell your private data to anyone.in october, the federal communications commission (fcc) established broadband privacy rules that require internet service providers (isps) to obtain consent from subscribers before selling their private data to third-party advertisers. however, on thursday, the u.s. senate voted to eliminate those rules under the congressional review act of 1996, a law giving congress the right to repeal federal regulations.the vote was essentially the republican party versus the democratic party, with the republicans winning the vote, 50 to 48. note that the republican party now controls congress and is now the majority party in the fcc. the fcc created its broadband privacy






users to get more data privacy options with windows 10 update


microsoft promises to give users more control over their personal data and visibility into how it's used when the windows 10 creators update arrives on april 11.however, eager windows 10 users can manually initiate the installation starting today if they don't wish to wait for the automatic windows update.in light of recent controversies surrounding weak or absent enforcement of data privacy rules, how companies collect and use their customers' information has become a hot-button issue among consumers who are concerned about the privacy and security of their personal data.faced with intensifying criticism in the days leading up to president donald trump's signing of the repeal of the federal communications commission's (fcc) internet privacy rules, cable tv and internet provider comcast pu






senate votes 50-48 to allow isps to sell your data


the u.s. senate voted 50-48 to eliminate the fcc's new privacy rules, which were supposed to go into effect soon. killing these rules would mean that isps will be able to freely track your online behavior and then sell your data to advertisers.






german court rules parents must turn over their kids for torrenting


photo: gettya german court has ruled on a copyright infringement case that dates back to 2011 and the verdict has disturbing consequences for parents. the ruling found that parents must identify their child by name as the one responsible for downloading a ... or they will be held responsible for the violation.advertisementa series of recent cases have been defining how germany’s legal system will handle parents who claim to have not been involved in illegal file-sharing but are being pursued by copyright claimants. the latest involves a claim brought by universal music group regarding the illegal downloading of rihanna’s 2011 album loud. the parents received a notice from universal demanding payment. the parents said they weren’t really fans of ri-ri but one of their three children was res






here come the new eu rules on data privacy


about five months from now, sweeping new privacy regulations are taking effect in europe, and they will reverberate far beyond the eu. what do u.s. companies need to do to prepare for general data protection regulation?the wall street journal’s jeff stone spoke with two experts to get a handle on the issues: justin antonipillai, founder and chief executive of wirewheel and previously acting undersecretary at the department of commerce; and ajay arora, ceo and co-founder of data-security firm vera....