Mind Matters News and Analysis on Natural and Artificial Intelligence

CategoryData Privacy

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Your Browser CAN Be Secure

If you are willing to think beyond Google

The place to begin, however, is with a simple rule of thumb: if a system is convenient, you are probably trading your information for that convenience. If you want to reduce your “digital exhaust,” you will need to do things that are a little less convenient.

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Cash For Your Data Won’t Solve Big Tech Privacy Issues

It seems like such a great idea… at first. But how do you know what the data is really worth?

Privacy is a fundamental right tied to the person, rather than something on which a price tag can be placed, which can be sold for a fistful of dollars.

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Escaping the News Filter Bubble: Three Simple Tips

Spoiler: Reduce the amount of information big providers have about YOU

Over time, unnoticed bubbles form ever more effective barriers against alternative information, maybe information you need. But getting out requires only a few simple steps.

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Facebook Gets Rich Off What We Tell Our Friends

Social media pioneer David Gelernter also has a proposal for sharing the wealth more fairly

Yale University computer science prof David Gelernter, “a leading figure in the third generation of artificial intelligence” (Edge.org). social networks pioneer, and Unabomber survivor, discusses his idea in a podcast at The Federalist Radio Hour.

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Photo by Brett Jordan
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Pop-Ups? Just Say “No” — and Close Those Tabs

Making the internet work for YOU means, among other things, getting control of who can follow you around

If allowing these notifications sounds like a perfect avenue for an attacker, that’s because it is. This attack surface is a very large hole in the security of your computer.

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How Far Has AI Mindreading Come?

Further than we may think. And some trends are troubling
It’s becoming easier all the time to read signals from the human brain. But there are few or no safeguards, even in the free world, on who has a right to use the information and how. Read More ›
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China: What You Didn’t Say Could Be Used Against You

An AI voiceprint could be used to generate words never said
Given the Chinese government’s loose interpretation of “counterterrorism” actions, there is a concern that such voice cloning could be used to incriminate religious minorities or those who do not show appropriate loyalty to the governing CCP. Read More ›
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Boys and girls playing Chinese whispers, whispering game or message relay

Should You Pay For a Virtual Private Network (VPN)?

Here's what a VPN can and can't do for you

In some cases, specifically when you are using public wireless services, using a VPN can add measurably to your privacy and security. But VPNs are not a “silver bullet” in solving the many security and privacy issues users face today.

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Superior Artificial Intelligence Wining Chess Concept

Confirmed: DeepMind’s Deepest Mind Is on Leave

The chess champ computer system just never made money
Co-founder Mustafa Suleyman is a philosopher and social justice activist who hoped to use the technology for fundamental transformations. But his AI ethics board lasted about seven days at Google. Read More ›
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The Machine Knows You Are Angry

Okay, it knows if your facial muscles are twisted in a certain way… does the difference matter?
Five accomplished scientists representing different camps reviewed over a thousand studies of machine emotion recognition. Essentially, there seems no clear science basis for the claims made. Read More ›
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The Internet’s Structure Builds In Privacy Flaws

The Domain Name resolver knows every service you visit, and every service those services rely on, as you move around the internet

How can you create a directory that anyone can access and yet keep what everyone is asking for private? Short of moving to a paper-based DNS system (think, a stack of New York City-size telephone directories), there isn’t a good answer within the present system.

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Many Parents Ignore Risks of Posting Kids’ Data Online

The lifelong digital footprint, which starts before birth, makes identity theft much easier
The recently discovered “design flaw” in Facebook’s Messenger app, aimed at kids, was a wake-up call. Keeping a child’s data out of the wrong hands is just part of good parenting today. Read More ›
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You Think You Have Nothing To Hide?

Then why are Big Tech moguls making billions from what you and others tell them?

The bottom line is this: if you think you don’t have anything to hide, then you don’t understand how the modern data economy really works, nor the impact of being caught in a riptide of public opinion.

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Chinese Technocracy Surges Ahead with AI Surveillance

So what do the reservations expressed, about “the soul” and “love,” really mean?

Both big tech entrepreneurs Kai-Fu Lee and Jack Ma seem to believe in souls but do not believe that souls can be trusted with freedom, the way governments can.

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Is Data Privacy a Luxury Now?

In an age of constant connectedness and digital monitoring, access to privacy is becoming the new digital divide. Can you afford it?

The people most likely to know how to protect their privacy are the well-informed. In an information society in the free world, as an information analyst notes, “well-informed” tends to correlate with well-educated (which in turn correlates with being better off).

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Why You Can’t Just Ask Social Media To Forget You

While we now have a clear picture of the challenges current social media pose to peoples and cultures, what to do is unclear

Stan Horaczek explains how you can download what social media and information brokers know about you but, he cautions, “Set aside lots of time and extra hard-drive space.”

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George Gilder: Cloud Computing Is Reaching Its Limits

The “cloud” isn’t something ethereal “up there,” Gilder reminds us; it is giant factory floors of computers

Gilder, tech philosopher and author of Life after Google: The Fall of Big Data and the Rise of the Blockchain Economy, argues that the regime of huge data centers, all parked by bodies of water, is coming to an end.

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Random Thoughts on Recent AI Headlines: Google Gives Away “Free” Cookies…

Also, why AI can't predict the stock market or deal with windblown plastic bags

A good rule of thumb is that unexpected outcomes increase exponentially as a function of AI complexity.

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Ad Exec Quit the Industry Over Big Tech’s Relentless Snooping

He was shocked by the brazen attitude to invasion of privacy
As George Gilder warns, if social media are not charging us for the service, it is because we are the product. Their surveillance, in order to maintain profitability, becomes the price we pay for being the product. Read More ›