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Monthly Archives: April 2018

TomTom Privacy – a Good Model!

So I previously posted the disgusting Garmin Privacy policy. There is a fine alternative. TomTom.  (I have no financial interest in TomTom and do not sell their products. I just want to show an alternative)

Firstly they state clearly the principles

TomTom is all about where you are and getting to where you want to be. We help you achieve more. Sometimes we’ll need to know some things about you in order to help you. While we collect and use your data, we fully understand that you value your privacy.

We believe privacy is about freedom and being able to decide for yourself who uses your data and how. This is why we have established our Privacy Principles:

1. We will always keep you fully informed about your data

We make sure you understand which data from or about you we use, why we use it, how long we use it and who can use it.

2. We enable you to remain in control of your data

We consider the data from or about you to be yours. We only use it for the purposes for which you have given it to us, or for which we collected it from you. You can opt out or opt in at any time using our software and websites.

3. We protect your data

Your data is yours. We keep it that way by protecting it as best as we reasonably can to prevent it from falling into the wrong hands.

Read the whole thing HERE. Unlike Garmin their default is privacy

We will not share your data with others without asking you for permission first, unless there is a legal obligation that prohibits us from asking.

Say YES to TomTom and shame on Garmin

Garmin: Your Privacy Matters (NOT!)

So here is the latest privacy update to come out in the wake of all the Facebook flack. This one is terrible.

Garmin Privacy Policy Full Text Here

Personal data that is processed when you use your Garmin auto navigation device or app:

If you use a Garmin auto navigation device or app and provide your consent, then Garmin will collect and upload from your device data such as location, speed, direction, and time and date of recording. If you provide your consent when asked, then Garmin may also share this aggregated data with or sell this data to third parties to enhance the quality of the traffic, parking and other features enabled by content providers.

Oh great Garmin – Why is the default to violate your user’s privacy? Where is the link to OPT OUT?

Personal data that is processed when you use location features on your Garmin device or app:

If you elect to use location-based services, such as weather, traffic information, fuel prices, movie times, and local event information, on your Garmin app or device, then the physical location of your device will be collected, in order for Garmin or our providers to provide you with such location-based services.

No Consent option??

Basically Garmin the deal is this. We have high prices for your products and your default is to monetize this further by stealing and selling our personal information as the default.

Sorry – Just say NO to Garmin

Where Countries Are Tinderboxes and Facebook Is a Match

If you have a facebook account and have a shred of decency, you should delete your facebook account. If your businesses on facebook, get off and send the message. This company needs to be buried as they are out of control and have serious blood on their hands. Stop supporting them.

“A reconstruction of Sri Lanka’s descent into violence, based on interviews with officials, victims and ordinary users caught up in online anger, found that Facebook’s newsfeed played a central role in nearly every step from rumor to killing. Facebook officials, they say, ignored repeated warnings of the potential for violence, resisting pressure to hire moderators or establish emergency points of contact.”


False rumors set Buddhist against Muslim in Sri Lanka, the most recent in a global spate of violence fanned by social media.

MEDAMAHANUWARA, Sri Lanka — Past the end of a remote mountain road, down a rutted dirt track, in a concrete house that lacked running water but bristled with smartphones, 13 members of an extended family were glued to Facebook. And they were furious.

A family member, a truck driver, had died after a beating the month before. It was a traffic dispute that had turned violent, the authorities said. But on Facebook, rumors swirled that his assailants were part of a Muslim plot to wipe out the country’s Buddhist majority.

“We don’t want to look at it because it’s so painful,” H.M. Lal, a cousin of the victim, said as family members nodded. “But in our hearts there is a desire for revenge that has built.”

The rumors, they believed, were true. Still, the family, which is Buddhist, did not join in when Sinhalese-language Facebook groups, goaded on by extremists with wide followings on the platform, planned attacks on Muslims, burning a man to death.

But they had shared and could recite the viral Facebook memes constructing an alternate reality of nefarious Muslim plots. Mr. Lal called them “the embers beneath the ashes” of Sinhalese anger.

We came to this house to try to understand the forces of social disruption that have followed Facebook’s rapid expansion in the developing world, whose markets represent the company’s financial future. For months, we had been tracking riots and lynchings around the world linked to misinformation and hate speech on Facebook, which pushes whatever content keeps users on the site longest — a potentially damaging practice in countries with weak institutions.

Time and again, communal hatreds overrun the newsfeed — the primary portal for news and information for many users — unchecked as local media are displaced by Facebook and governments find themselves with little leverage over the company. Some users, energized by hate speech and misinformation, plot real-world attacks.

A reconstruction of Sri Lanka’s descent into violence, based on interviews with officials, victims and ordinary users caught up in online anger, found that Facebook’s newsfeed played a central role in nearly every step from rumor to killing. Facebook officials, they say, ignored repeated warnings of the potential for violence, resisting pressure to hire moderators or establish emergency points of contact.

Read the full article

Yahoo Mail – The “OATH” to spy and track you

“Yahoo is now part of Oath, the media and tech company behind today’s top news, sports and entertainment sites and apps.”

..and behind overt violations of your privacy

This includes: analyzing content and information when you use our services (including emails, instant messages, posts, photos, attachments, and other communications), linking your activity on other sites and apps with information we have about you, and providing anonymized and/or aggregated reports to other parties regarding user trends. …sharing Data with Verizon. Oath and its affiliates may share the information we receive with Verizon.

Verizon – another bad actor when it comes to privacy and acting like a monopoly

And of course, like Facebook, they buy other data sources, combine it and build a profile on you

Information from Others. We collect information about you when we receive it from other users, third-parties, and affiliates, such as:

When you connect your account to third-party services or sign in using a third-party partner (like Facebook or Twitter).
From publicly-available sources.
From advertisers about your experiences or interactions with their offerings.
When we obtain information from third-parties or other companies, such as those that use our Services. This may include your activity on other sites and apps as well as information those third-parties provide to you or us.
We may also receive information from Verizon and will honor the choices Verizon customers have made about the uses of this information when we receive and use this data.

The details — full privacy policy here

Just say no to Yahoo and OATH which includes AOL


Roku has updated their privacy policy. It is awful.

B. Information collected automatically

When you use the Roku Services, we and our partners may use unique device identifiers, cookies, pixel tags, web beacons and other similar technologies to receive and store information on an automated basis.

What this means

[They} collect usage data such as your search history (including letters you key in for searches, and utterances provided if you choose to use voice-enabled functions such as voice search (if available on your Roku Device)), search results, content and advertisements you select and view, including through use of automatic content recognition technology (ACR) (see “Smart TV Experience and ACR on Roku TVs” (Part I, Section B-4) and “Choices regarding Smart TV Experience and ACR on Roku TVs” (Part IV, Section E), below), and content settings and preferences, channels you add and view, including time and duration in the channels, and other usage statistics….

Third parties who provide us with analytics services for the Roku Services may also automatically collect some of the information described above, including, for example, IP address, access times, browser type and language, device type, device identifiers and Wi-Fi information…

We may receive data about you from data providers and combine it with the data that we collect from you.

You don’t like, They will charge you a fee

If you have a Roku account, you may view and update certain contact and billing information we have about you by logging into your account on If you otherwise wish to ask for access, correction, or deletion of any of your personal information held by us or a change in the way we use your information (for which we reserve the right to charge you a fee, as permitted by applicable law), please contact us at: However, Roku may decline requests that are unreasonable, prohibited by law, or are not required to be honored by applicable law.

Oh and this cop out…

At this time there is no accepted standard for how to respond to Do Not Track signals, and we do not respond to such signals.

After all this I logged into my Roku account and tried to find the privacy and/or opt-out links. Not there! The only way is to reset your identifier, but that is temporary as the new identifier starts a new collection process.

Bottom line — use a NON Smart TV and build your own KODI box.

Full ROKU Privacy statement is here for the US

Still Using Yahoo Mail? Maybe time to stop


Yahoo and AOL’s privacy policy lets them plunder your emails for ads

TECH COMPANY and porridge ingredient for lispers Oath has updated its privacy policy, and it seems it’s all policy and no privacy.

As you may recall, Oath is a group of companies made up primarily of Yahoo and AOL. Keen to find some way of making some actual ruddy money, it appears that targeted adverts in its mail services are going to be a big part of it.

If we’ve learned one thing over the past month or so, it’s that targeted adverts require access to users’ personal data.

And sure enough, the new privacy policy introduces ‘scanning’ of emails for the purposes or finding just the right thing to annoy you with.

Let’s look at some of the really scary bits.

Firstly it says that it “analyses and stores all communications content, including email content from incoming and outgoing mail,” so it can “deliver, personalise and develop relevant features, content, advertising and Services.”

Yahoo did that already, but now it applies to AOL too.

If there was any clearer indication that this is a bad thing, it’s that Google had already stopped doing this for Gmail as a reflection of public opinion turning against this invasion of privacy.

The Oath group can also “analyse your content and other information (including emails, instant messages, posts photos, attachments, and other communications),” and even check up on your spending habits with the somewhat chilling analysis of “user content around certain interactions with financial institutions.”

The company says that it has automated systems to take out anything to identify you, but at the same time, those same systems are going to be used potentially to identify and tag your pictures. So… what’s up with that?

The fact that the company has decided to do this now, when the issue is so embedded in the news already and moral panic is rising, suggests that Oath has no choice in doing something like this to maintain profitability.

Thing is, you do. Yahoo, particularly, has been a security nightmare for a long time over its email service and if you’re still using it, then perhaps its time to take another look at whether it’s time to take a step back and question if it’s time for a change.

Whois is dead as Europe hands DNS overlord ICANN its arse


In a letter [PDF] sent this week to DNS overseer ICANN, Europe’s data protection authorities have effectively killed off the current service, noting that it breaks the law and so will be illegal come 25 May, when GDPR comes into force.

The letter also has harsh words for ICANN’s proposed interim solution, criticizing its vagueness and noting it needs to include explicit wording about what can be done with registrant data, as well as introduce auditing and compliance functions to make sure the data isn’t being abused.

ICANN now has a little over a month to come up with a replacement to the decades-old service that covers millions of domain names and lists the personal contact details of domain registrants, including their name, email and telephone number.