In an effort to ease the holiday weekend of those affected, the FTC announced that the effective date of the Red Flag Rules has been delayed until December 31, 2010. This announcement may have a familiar feel to you (January 1, 2008, November 1, 2008, June 1, 2010?). Click here to read at the FTC web site, of read the full text by clicking "Continue Reading" below. Happy Memorial Day.Continue Reading...
Everyday we all read about the latest threat to our privacy. Facebook tricks you into sharing your private, life details and Facebook staff is fed up. The computer in your car can be hacked to disable your brakes. Google collected wi-fi hotspot data for some (alleged) nefarious purpose.
It is not often that we come across something that just does not seem possible. Yesterday was one of those days, when the FTC announced that it is working with copy machine manufacturers to either end or severely restrict the existing practice of storing digital images captured on photocopiers. The FTC's response (PDF link) was in reaction to a letter (PDF link) from Representative Ed Markey (D-MA) after seeing a CBS report last month on the issue.
Photocopies made on modern photocopies are stored on an internal hard drive in the copy machine. CBS' report last month that "[n]early every digital copier built since 2002 contains a hard drive - like the one on your personal computer - storing an image of every document copied, scanned, or emailed by the machine." In other words, everything you have photocopies is stored on a hard drive hidden deep inside the photocopier.
WHAT!?! Why? Who thought this was a good idea? And all, or almost all, copier manufacturers put this function in their copiers? When did I photocopy those "youthful" pictures from college for my buddy's bachelor party? We received new photocopiers last year, so that copier is gone (thank goodness). But wait, where is it? Read on to see some of the nightmare scenarios this raises.Continue Reading...
In the recent federal case in the Middle District of Tennessee, ReMedPar, Inc. v. AllParts Med., LLC, a split among federal circuit courts is apparent regarding the interpretation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act's (CFAA) civil cause of action for accessing a protected computer without authorization or exceeding the scope of permitted authorization. In ReMedPar, Inc, the plaintiff filed a suit against an independent contractor who allegedly gave a competitor the plaintiff's software and source codes to develop a comparable software system. The case was dismissed as the court found the independent contractor was not without or exceeding authorization as he was given permission to access the computers by the plaintiff. The split in interpretation among the federal circuits of the CFAA is apparent with the Middle District of Tennessee and others courts, including the 9th Circuit, holding CFAA claims are only applicable to those cases in which access was undeniably exceeded; whereas the 1st and 7th Circuits hold a less extreme approach, finding CFAA claims are permitted when a person misuses access in any way adverse to the authorizer's interest.
Rep. Rick Boucher (D-VA) and Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-FL) proposed federal legislation last week that would create a two tier standard of protection of private information, whereby “covered information” would fall under the standard “opt-out” method and “sensitive information” would fall under an “opt-in” method.
The proposed legislation breathes new life into perennial dead on arrival legislation, and potentially offers something the Obama administration can support in fulfilling its promise to close existing gaps in federal privacy legislation.
The phrase "Sensitive Information" includes any information that relates to the individual's medical records, race or ethnicity, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, financial records or precision geolocation information.
Opponents of the legislation have jumped all over it, claiming that it does not go far enough to protect individuals, especially in the online context. Others cite that European laws remain the gold standard for privacy protection, and that this legislation avoided going that far because of backlash from business.Continue Reading...