All Data privacy stories

Granholm on Colonial Pipeline: "These hacks are not going to stop"

Photo: Axios

Hacks such as this week's breach of the Colonial Pipeline will continue to occur and pose risks in the future, warned Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm at an Axios Event on Thursday.

Why it matters: It was announced on Wednesday that the pipeline will be restarting operations, after a five-day-long gas crisis gripped many states in the southeast U.S.

Businesses fall into transatlantic privacy hole

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

U.S. companies have begun to face costly problems abroad while they wait for American and European partners to hammer out a new privacy deal after the EU voided a key international pact last year.

What they're saying: U.S. businesses that operate internationally say they've lost "tens of millions" of dollars thanks to the legal logjam, according to Jules Polonetsky, CEO of the Future of Privacy Forum, an industry-backed nonprofit. "European companies are being cautious and not going ahead with transactions until there is clarity."

Ina Fried, author of Login
Apr 7, 2021 - Technology

Apple's stricter rules on digital tracking to take effect soon

Photo: Eva Hambach/AFP via Getty Images

Beginning with iOS 14.5, due out in the next couple of weeks, iPhone apps will have to ask users for permission to track their digital activity.

Why it matters: Only if a user gives permission will apps have access to the unique advertising identifier assigned to each device. Apple will also take action against apps that try to fingerprint individual devices via other methods.

Ina Fried, author of Login
Updated Apr 5, 2021 - Technology

ACLU says it shares user data with Facebook, a frequent target of criticism

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifying to a House panel. Photo: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The American Civil Liberties Union is raising eyebrows after updating its privacy policy to note that it is sharing data with Facebook, one of the companies whose policies it often criticizes.

Why it matters: The move shows that even many organizations that don't like Facebook nonetheless find it an effective way to reach people online.

Personal data of 500 million users surfaces in leak that Facebook calls "old"

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg remotely testifying before a House Judiciary Subcommittee in July 2020. Photo: Mandel Ngan/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

A leaker said Saturday they are providing personal information on 533 million Facebook users, including phone numbers, locations, birthdates and other data.

The latest: Though the data is resurfacing, the issue connected to the leaked data was "found and fixed" in August 2019, a Facebook spokesperson told Axios in a statement.

Ina Fried, author of Login
Apr 2, 2021 - Technology

Scoop: Group wants Spotify to abandon effort to predict mood, gender

Photo illustration: Lorenzo Di Cola/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Digital civil rights group Access Now is sending a letter to Spotify CEO Daniel Ek imploring the company to abandon a technology it has patented to detect emotion, gender and age using speech recognition, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: While many of us in theory want our computers to understand who we are and what we want, the industry too often doesn't think through how its innovations will affect different kinds of people or what harm its collection of data can cause.

Mar 24, 2021 - Technology

Slack rolls back parts of its new DM feature over harassment concerns

Photo: Illustration by Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Slack rolled out its private-message-anyone feature Wednesday and immediately faced backlash.

The big picture: The company now says it's removing the ability to include a message with a request to connect to prevent harassment and abuse.

Mar 12, 2021 - Technology

Sen. Bill Cassidy: Congress should balance privacy and medical data

Photo: Axios

Congress is considering legislation that would make data gathered from people's smart gadgets, such as watches, be treated as private health information, yet still be used for medical research, Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA) told Axios on Friday in a virtual event.

Why it matters: Data from smart devices can be instrumental in achieving medical advances but also pose privacy concerns. Cassidy noted that health insurers could use unregulated information from such gadgets to deny coverage to a person whose data indicates they may have a medical condition.

Privacy laws push online ads beyond tracking

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Tech giants, under pressure of new privacy laws, are dismantling some of the engines that drive targeted online advertising — even as consumers are doing more shopping online than ever, thanks to the pandemic.

Driving the news: Tuesday, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam signed a new privacy law allowing consumers to opt out of having their data processed for targeted advertising. Meanwhile, Google made clear that after it finishes phasing out third-party cookies over the next year, it won't introduce other forms of identifiers to track individuals as they browse the web.

Cyber CEO: Next war will hit regular Americans online

Any future real-world conflict between the United States and an adversary like China or Russia will have direct impacts on regular Americans because of the risk of cyber attack, Kevin Mandia, CEO of cybersecurity company FireEye, tells "Axios on HBO."

What they're saying: "The next conflict where the gloves come off in cyber, the American citizen will be dragged into it, whether they want to be or not. Period."