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The Data Drop News for Friday, January 14, 2022

Updated: Feb 8, 2022

Facebook reveals how it really collects and uses your data with new Privacy Center. Amazon Sued Over Biometric Covid Checks. E.U. Parliament Told to Fix Illegal Export of COVID-19 Data to US. Companies propose scanning content pre-encryption to fight CSAM. Facebook is shutting down its facial recognition software. Plus, the latest in privacy-enhancing technology.

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Facebook reveals how it really collects and uses your data with new Privacy Center

Facebook has announced that it has launched a new Privacy Center feature that aims to provide an insight into what the app does with people's data. Currently only available for a small number of US users, Facebook parent company Meta plans to roll it out further in the coming months.

The Privacy Center feature will be located under Settings and then Privacy.

Amazon Sued Over Biometric Covid Checks

Amazon is being sued for unlawfully collecting facial geometry scans of workers in its US warehouses as part of the COVID-19 health check procedures.

District Judge Mary Rowland recently declined to dismiss the proposed class action, in which a former employee alleges that the e-commerce company collected his facial and other data without proper consent under the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act.

E.U. Parliament Told to Fix Illegal Export of COVID-19 Data to U.S.

The European Data Protection Supervisor has given the EU Parliament one month to fix the iIllegal export of COVID-19 data.

The office detected a privacy flaw that allowed lawmakers’ COVID-19 test data to be illegally sent to the U.S. via tracking cookies owned by Google and digital payments company Stripe.

Companies propose scanning content pre-encryption to fight CSAM

Three UK-based companies working on a project to detect child sexual abuse material before it reaches encrypted environments have claimed that pre-encryption scans for such content can be carried out without compromising privacy.

The work relates to the Safety Tech Challenge Fund which was launched in September 2021 in support of the UK's draft Online Safety Bill.

Facebook is shutting down its facial recognition software

Facebook again!

The social media company has said that it plans to stop using facial-recognition software used to identify people in photos and videos. The move is a major shift for a company known for collecting vast amounts of data about its billions of users.

Survey: Most Americans Mistrust Big Tech and Want Regulation

According to a new survey conducted by the Washington Post-Schar School, Americans don’t trust social media services with their information, with 64% saying the government should do more to restrict Big Tech companies.

An overwhelming majority say they think tech companies don’t provide people with enough control over how their activities are tracked and used.

Idea of national patient IDs revives privacy fight

The US Congress may be close to getting a decades-long ban on using federal funds to develop healthcare IDs lifted.

Such unique identifiers have been billed as a way to reduce clinical mix-ups and improve patient safety and data sharing, while fortifying a patchwork medical privacy system. However, opponents say a patient identifier could infringe on privacy and allow the government to track a person's medical history.

We hate it: This implantable microchip stores your COVID vaccine status

A Swedish company has created a microchip that allows users to carry their COVID vaccine passport under their skin. When the implant is scanned with a smartphone, their COVID-19 vaccination details and test results can be viewed as a PDF.

According to the managing director of Dsruptive Subdermals, the startup behind the implant; "They can never tell your location, they're only activated when you touch them with your smartphone, so this means they cannot be used for tracking anyone's location."


PET News

The latest in privacy-enhancing technology

Signal’s CEO steps down as questions about its privacy-first image loom large

Moxie Marlinspike, the founder of messaging app Signal, has announced that he’s stepping down as the CEO of the company. The resignation comes amid allegations that employees have growing concerns about adopting a new crypto-currency that could be used to support anonymous criminal transactions.

Communication apps like Signal are being subject to increasing pressure from governments worldwide who want to surveil these networks for law enforcement and national security reasons.

DeepIntent Receives Patent for Technology that Enables Marketers to Reach Precise Patient Populations in a HIPAA-Compliant, Privacy-Safe Manner

In an announcement that sounds a bit like Google Floc for healthcare, DeepIntent, a healthcare advertising startup, has announced that the company has been granted a patent for its Patient Modeled Audiences technology that enables pharmaceutical advertisers to reach patient audiences in a privacy-safe way.

AMD's new privacy app goes the extra mile to keep your screen safe

Chipmaker giant AMD has announced that it will be releasing a new privacy app later this year to help keep prying eyes away from computer screens through a new collaboration with the head and eye tracking technology company Eyeware Tech SA.

The app will enable private screen viewing by allowing people to blur or darken the parts of a screen a they aren't looking at.

Proofpoint Buys AI-Powered Data Protection Startup Dathena

Proofpoint, the California-based email security vendor, has acquired Singapore-based Dathena. The deal is intended to help organizations better understand information risk and eliminate data loss through artificial intelligence-based data classification.

Ethereum Privacy Startup Aztec Raises $17M in Paradigm-Led Series A

Privacy startup Aztec has raised $17M in Series A funding to further its efforts to bring programmable privacy to Web 3 transactions.

The company offers privacy-first "zero-knowledge rollups" which aim to solve key scalability challenges associated with Ethereum transactions.


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