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Old 2020-05-09, 20:42   #221
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Screen New Deal: Under Cover of Mass Death, Andrew Cuomo Calls in the Billionaires to Build a High-Tech Dystopia | Glenn Greenwald, Intercept
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It has taken some time to gel, but something resembling a coherent Pandemic Shock Doctrine is beginning to emerge. Call it the “Screen New Deal.” Far more high-tech than anything we have seen during previous disasters, the future that is being rushed into being as the bodies still pile up treats our past weeks of physical isolation not as a painful necessity to save lives, but as a living laboratory for a permanent — and highly profitable — no-touch future.

Anuja Sonalker, CEO of Steer Tech, a Maryland-based company selling self-parking technology, recently summed up the new virus-personalized pitch. “There has been a distinct warming up to human-less, contactless technology,” she said. “Humans are biohazards, machines are not.”

It’s a future in which our homes are never again exclusively personal spaces but are also, via high-speed digital connectivity, our schools, our doctor’s offices, our gyms, and, if determined by the state, our jails. Of course, for many of us, those same homes were already turning into our never-off workplaces and our primary entertainment venues before the pandemic, and surveillance incarceration “in the community” was already booming. But in the future under hasty construction, all of these trends are poised for a warp-speed acceleration.

This is a future in which, for the privileged, almost everything is home delivered, either virtually via streaming and cloud technology, or physically via driverless vehicle or drone, then screen “shared” on a mediated platform. It’s a future that employs far fewer teachers, doctors, and drivers. It accepts no cash or credit cards (under guise of virus control) and has skeletal mass transit and far less live art. It’s a future that claims to be run on “artificial intelligence” but is actually held together by tens of millions of anonymous workers tucked away in warehouses, data centers, content moderation mills, electronic sweatshops, lithium mines, industrial farms, meat-processing plants, and prisons, where they are left unprotected from disease and hyperexploition. It’s a future in which our every move, our every word, our every relationship is trackable, traceable, and data-mineable by unprecedented collaborations between government and tech giants.

If all of this sounds familiar it’s because, pre-Covid, this precise app-driven, gig-fueled future was being sold to us in the name of convenience, frictionlessness, and personalization. But many of us had concerns. About the security, quality, and inequity of telehealth and online classrooms. About driverless cars mowing down pedestrians and drones smashing packages (and people). About location tracking and cash-free commerce obliterating our privacy and entrenching racial and gender discrimination. About unscrupulous social media platforms poisoning our information ecology and our kids’ mental health. About “smart cities” filled with sensors supplanting local government. About the good jobs these technologies wiped out. About the bad jobs they mass produced.

And most of all, we had concerns about the democracy-threatening wealth and power accumulated by a handful of tech companies that are masters of abdication — eschewing all responsibility for the wreckage left behind in the fields they now dominate, whether media, retail, or transportation.

That was the ancient past known as February. Today, a great many of those well-founded concerns are being swept away by a tidal wave of panic, and this warmed-over dystopia is going through a rush-job rebranding. Now, against a harrowing backdrop of mass death, it is being sold to us on the dubious promise that these technologies are the only possible way to pandemic-proof our lives, the indispensable keys to keeping ourselves and our loved ones safe.
And a same-topic tweet from GG:

One of the creepiest and most dystopian things I’ve seen since the pandemic began: a terrifying camera-equipped remote-controlled robot patrols Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park in Singapore to — for now — warn about social distancing. Look at the fear. Story: https://t.co/12QfT1mcyZ pic.twitter.com/hBGUhmC7N7

— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) May 8, 2020


And Edward Snowden, from March, executive summary: "any new invasive or undemocratic power a govt exercises during the pandemic it will keep and use for other reasons once the pandemic recedes."

Last fiddled with by ewmayer on 2020-05-10 at 19:52
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Old 2020-05-16, 23:46   #222
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The Confessions of Marcus Hutchins, the Hacker Who Saved the Internet | WIRED

Reading about the WannaCry worm's global depredations and "heroic lone hacker figures it out", what occurred to me was "where was the NSA in all this?" After all it was their leaked malware, based on multiple 0-day exploits they'd found and decided not to share with Microsoft so they could be patched, which led directly to WannaCry. Anyone? Bueller?
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Old 2020-06-02, 12:07   #223
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After a prominent number theory professor labelled my refusal to use Whatsapp as "religious" (in a negative sense)
and I started missing important communications, it felt like time to compromise a little.
I have found a non-smart mobile phone running KaiOS with official support for basic Whatsapp messaging.
And it even has a removable battery!
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Old 2020-06-02, 12:36   #224
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick View Post
After a prominent number theory professor labelled my refusal to use Whatsapp as "religious" (in a negative sense)
and I started missing important communications, it felt like time to compromise a little.
I have found a non-smart mobile phone running KaiOS with official support for basic Whatsapp messaging.
And it even has a removable battery!
You are now being tracked by FB. Welcome to the machine.
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Old 2020-06-19, 21:07   #225
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Exclusive: Massive spying on users of Google's Chrome shows new security weakness - Reuters

My sister's twin boys will begin 6th grade in the Fall, and their to-be-middle school requires all the kids to use Chromebooks. I just e-mailed her:

"You're gonna wanna disable the boys from being to DL apps on their Chromebooks - if they want one, make them go through you, by way of you having admin permissions on the devices. (If their school hasn't put out a detailed guide for such secure-setup of the laptops *they* require kids to use, give them an earful - that should be front and center in term of what they provide parents with.)"

Gah, f*cking Google - so evil. Their direct spying on everything users of their products do is bad enough, but they "share" with a buttload of "interested 3rd parties", and further leave giant security holes in whatever they touch. All resulting from an overriding cult of "your data are everyone's data" mentality.
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Old 2020-06-20, 17:09   #226
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Thanks, Google, for installing covid-19 spyware on my phone without any notification. Settings-->google-->covid-19.

The next time I buy a mobile it is going to be Linux!
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Old 2020-06-20, 19:10   #227
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paulunderwood View Post
Settings-->google-->covid-19.
On my end, it only says that there is a special API for other Apps availible. It has not installed anything on its own.

Maybe that's country-specific.
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Old 2020-06-20, 21:32   #228
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kruoli View Post
On my end, it only says that there is a special API for other Apps availible. It has not installed anything on its own.

Maybe that's country-specific.
In Europe it seems lawmakers actually take digital privacy seriously, and regulators regularly hand out hefty (I mean in the sense even behemoths like GOOG feel the sting) fines to malefactors. At least that's my sense - perhaps there are country-specific differences there, as well?
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Old 2020-06-25, 11:38   #229
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https://cyberlaw.stanford.edu/blog/2...arn-it-bill-ok
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Dubbed the “Lawful Access to Encrypted Data Act of 2020” (acronym: LAED [...]), the bill is an actual, overt, make-no-mistake, crystal-clear ban on providers from offering end-to-end encryption in online services, from offering encrypted devices that cannot be unlocked for law enforcement, and indeed from offering any encryption that does not build in a means of decrypting data for law enforcement.

The new bill applies to operating systems and apps and messaging and chat and social media platforms and email and cloud storage and videoconferencing and smartphones and laptops and desktops and your Xbox, and probably voting machines and IoT devices – basically any electronic device with just 1 GB of storage capacity. It isn’t just aimed at Apple, Google, Facebook, Signal, and the like, though it certainly applies to them; it goes well beyond, to include everyone from Box and Dropbox, to the full range of Microsoft’s products, to OEM handset manufacturers.
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Old 2020-06-25, 13:14   #230
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Quote:
Originally Posted by retina View Post
I remember when it was illegal for PGP to be exported from the US. Nonetheless it happened. I was one of a team of Europeans which transcribed a copy of its source code

It had been printed in an OCR-friendly font, check-summed on each line and page, shrink-wrapped but not bound into a book. Banning a MIT-Press publication was a step too far for the US authorities.

What I am saying is that those who need strong encryption will continue to receive it, supported by activists who believe that anyone who wants it (note the change of verb) should be able to use it.

Last fiddled with by xilman on 2020-06-25 at 13:16 Reason: very minor tidying.
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Old 2020-06-25, 13:18   #231
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xilman View Post
I remember when it was illegal for PGP to be exported from the US.
I also remember the Clipper chip.

In fact, I remember rather a lot of pertinent material, quite a bit of which I am not at liberty to disclose. Let's just say that regular cellphones give no privacy at all from essentially anyone with a software defined radio and some terabytes of disk space but that some satellite telephony is markedly better protected, though perhaps not against major nation states.

Last fiddled with by xilman on 2020-06-25 at 13:23
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