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I've Been Mugged Blog



Consumer views and news since 2007 about identity theft, privacy, and corporate responsibility -- by George Jenkins



Updated: 2018-04-06T12:30:00-04:00

 



4 Ways to Fix Facebook

2018-04-06T12:30:00-04:00

[Editor's Note: today's guest post, by ProPublica reporters, explores solutions to the massive privacy and data security problems at Facebook.com. It is reprinted with permission.] By Julia Angwin, ProPublica Gathered in a Washington, D.C., ballroom last Thursday for their annual “tech prom,” hundreds of tech industry lobbyists and policy makers...



Facebook Update: 87 Million Affected By Its Data Breach With Cambridge Analytica. Considerations For All Consumers

2018-04-06T12:11:19-04:00

Facebook.com has dominated the news during the past three weeks. The news media have reported about many issues, but there are more -- whether or not you use Facebook. Things began about mid-March, when Bloomberg reported: "Yes, Cambridge Analytica... violated rules when it obtained information from some 50 million Facebook...



The 'CLOUD Act' - What It Is And What You Need To Know

2018-03-15T13:36:59-04:00

Chances are, you probably have not heard of the "CLOUD Act." I hadn't heard about it until recently. A draft of the legislation is available on the website for U.S. Senator Orrin Hatch (Republican - Utah). Many people who already use cloud services to store and backup data might assume:...



Report: Little Progress Since 2016 To Replace Old, Vulnerable Voting Machines In United States

2018-03-14T12:09:32-04:00

We've know for some time that a sizeable portion of voting machines in the United States are vulnerable to hacking and errors. Too many states, cities, and town use antiquated equipment or equipment without paper backups. The latter makes re-counts impossible. Has any progress been made to fix the vulnerabilities?...



Legislation Moving Through Congress To Loosen Regulations On Banks

2018-03-13T09:00:00-04:00

Legislation is moving through Congress which will loosen regulations on banks. Is this an improvement? Is it risky? Is it a good deal for consumers? Before answering those questions, a summary of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (Senate Bill 2155): "This bill amends the Truth in...



Facebook’s Experiment in Ad Transparency Is Like Playing Hide And Seek

2018-02-13T11:17:08-05:00

[Editor's note: today's guest post, by the reporters at ProPublica, explores a new global program Facebook introduced in Canada. It is reprinted with permission.] By Jennifer Valentino-DeVries, ProPublica Shortly before a Toronto City Council vote in December on whether to tighten regulation of short-term rental companies, an entity called Airbnb...



Advertising Agency Paid $2 Million To Settle Deceptive Advertising Charges

2018-02-12T09:30:00-05:00

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that Minneapolis-based Marketing Architects, Inc. (MAI): "... an advertising agency that created and disseminated allegedly deceptive radio ads for weight-loss products marketed by its client, Direct Alternatives, has agreed to pay $2 million to the Federal Trade Commission and State of Maine Attorney...



New Data Breach Legislation Proposed In North Carolina

2018-02-01T11:19:52-05:00

After a surge in data breaches in North Carolina during 2017, state legislators have proposed stronger data breach laws. The National Law Review explained what prompted the legislative action: "On January 8, 2018, the State of North Carolina released its Security Breach Report 2017, which highlights a 15 percent increase...



Uber's Ripley Program To Thwart Law Enforcement

2018-01-16T13:30:00-05:00

Uber is in the news again, and not in a good way. TechCrunch reported: "Between spring 2015 until late 2016 the ride-hailing giant routinely used a system designed to thwart police raids in foreign countries, according to Bloomberg, citing three people with knowledge of the system. It reports that Uber’s...



What We Discovered During a Year of Documenting Hate

2017-12-21T13:14:17-05:00

[Editor's note: today's guest blog post, by the reporters at ProPublica, is second in a series about law enforcement and hate crimes in the United States. Today's post is reprinted with permission.] By Rachel Glickhouse, ProPublica The days after Election Day last year seemed to bring with them a rise...



Hate Crime Training for Police Is Often Inadequate, Sometimes Nonexistent

2017-12-21T12:33:25-05:00

[Editor's note: today's guest blog post, by the reporters at ProPublica, is first in a series which explores the approaches by law enforcement to hate crimes in the United States. Today's post is reprinted with permission.] By A.C. Thompson, Rohan Naik and Ken Schwencke. ProPublica To become a police officer...



Net Neutrality: Massachusetts Joins Multi-State Lawsuit Against FCC. What Next?

2017-12-20T15:20:25-05:00

The Attorney General (AG) for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is suing the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) after the FCC voted on December 14th to repeal existing net neutrality rules protecting consumers. Maura Healey, the Massachusetts AG, announced that her office has joined a multi-state lawsuit with the New York...



FCC Action To Kill Net Neutrality Will Likely Hurt Public Libraries, The Poor, And The Disabled

2017-12-18T12:39:14-05:00

Jim Neal, the president of the American Library Association, released a statement condemning the December 14th vote by the Republican-led U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to kill net neutrality protections for internet users: "The majority of the FCC has just dealt a blow to equitable access to online information and...



More Year-End Considerations Given The Coming Likely Republican Tax Plan

2017-12-15T13:19:00-05:00

A prior post discussed the questionable benefits and year-end considerations for middle-class taxpayers of the likely Republican tax reform plan making its way through Congress. The likely tax plan includes lower tax rates paired with many deductions eliminated. The professional who prepares my taxes provided another warning: "Dear clients: It...



Doug Jones Wins In Alabama, Net Neutrality, And The FCC

2017-12-14T14:34:12-05:00

[7:30 am EST] Congratulations to Doug Jones and his supporters for a stunning victory Tuesday in a special election in Alabama for the open U.S. Senate seat. His victory speech is available online. Late last month, Doug Jones tweeted this: I strongly support #NetNeutrality and believe every Alabamian should have...



Was Your Identity Information Misused To Submit Fake Comments To The FCC About Net Neutrality?

2017-12-12T21:36:28-05:00

After creating a webpage specifically to help New York State residents determine if their identifies were misued for net neutrality comments, Attorney General Schneiderman announced: "In the last five days alone, over 3,200 people have reported misused identities to the Attorney General’s office, including nearly 350 New Yorkers from across...



Governors and Federal Agencies Are Blocking Nearly 1,300 Accounts on Facebook and Twitter

2017-12-11T09:00:00-05:00

[Editor's note: today's guest blog post, by the reporters at ProPublica, highlights a little-known practice by some elected officials to block their constituents on social networking sites. Today's post is reprinted with permission.] By Leora Smith and Derek Kravitz - ProPublica Amanda Farber still doesn’t know why Maryland Gov. Larry...



Photos: December 7 Demonstration In Boston To Keep Net Neutrality

2017-12-11T13:19:11-05:00

Demonstrations occurred nationwide on December 7 to save net neutrality. Citizens took to the streets to keep our internet services open. About 200 persons attended the demonstration in Boston on Boylston Street. It was encouraging to meet several students from local universities participating in the event. They understand the issue...



Futurism: Your Life Without Net Neutrality Protections

2017-12-07T15:52:28-05:00

You've probably heard that Ajit Pai, the Chairman of the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC), is leading his agency towards a vote on December 14, 2017 to kill net neutrality. How will consumers' online lives change? Futurism described what your online life will be like without net neutrality: "You’re at...



The Limitations And Issues With Facial Recognition Software

2017-12-06T10:31:53-05:00

We've all seen television shows where police technicians use facial recognition software to swiftly and accurately identify suspects, or catch the bad guys. How accurate is that? An article in The Guardian newspaper discussed the promises, limitations, and issues with facial recognition software used by law enforcement: "The software, which...