government

Fri
16
Nov
Dennis Faas's picture

Government Snooping Increasing, Google Says

Google says that national governments are demanding access to its user data more than ever before. The search giant also says governments are making more requests for it to take controversial information offline. These revelations come in the latest ... edition of Google's Transparency Index, a semi-annual report designed to shed light on the state of online censorship. It takes Google several months to compile the data, so the new information covers 20,939 requests for user data and other demands made only between January and June 2012. Compare that to Google's 2009 Transparency Index, which ... (view more)

Wed
03
Oct
Dennis Faas's picture

Iran Lowers Block on Gmail; YouTube Still Censored

Iran's government has removed its block on Gmail in that nation, claiming it didn't mean to restrict access to the service. It now says the block was an unintended result of a deliberate effort to stop Iranians from viewing YouTube. These new claims ... contradict an earlier comment from an Iranian official who said last week: "Due to the repeated demands of the people, Google and Gmail will be filtered nationwide. They will remain filtered until further notice." Another government official now says: "Unfortunately, we do not yet have enough technical know-how to differentiate between these two ... (view more)

Thu
27
Sep
Dennis Faas's picture

Google, Gmail Censored by Iranian Government

The Iranian government has blocked its citizens' access to Gmail and a secure version of Google. The move appears to be the first part of a larger plan to control exactly what Internet sites Iranians can access. An Iranian official who is part of a ... government group in charge of controlling Internet content says that "due to the repeated demands of the people, Google and Gmail will be filtered nationwide. They will remain filtered until further notice." (Source: com.au ) The official did not make clear exactly who made these demands. Insiders, however, note that many Iranian businesses use ... (view more)

Fri
24
Aug
Dennis Faas's picture

Facebook Censors Internet to Prevent Violence

Freedom of speech online is once again the topic of heated debate, this time in India. That country's government has now urged major sites like Facebook to remove threatening material that may have provoked a mass exodus from some regions. The issue ... stems from religious disputes in Assam, a region in the northeast of India where long-time residents have clashed with immigrants from nearby Bangladesh, leading to dozens of deaths. In the past week, angry residents of Assam have used the Internet to threaten the immigrants with violence. The threats have reportedly caused "tens of thousands" of ... (view more)

Fri
10
Aug
Dennis Faas's picture

Congress Challenges Cellphone Radiation Limits

A Congressional agency has told regulators it is time to review the rules governing cellphone radiation. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) said existing rules might not be doing an effective job of measuring the risk to users. The GAO acts ... as support staff for Congress and also carries out audits to check that government departments are spending money effectively. Three members of Congress recently asked the GAO to look into the way the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regulates public safety with respect to cellphones. Cancer, Health Risks Not a GAO Concern The GAO's year- ... (view more)

Mon
30
Jul
Dennis Faas's picture

FCC Rural Broadband Plan Costs US $115 Million

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) now says it will help bring broadband Internet service to 400,000 Americans who currently don't have access to high-speed Internet. The program to subsidize networks in rural areas will cost $115 ... million in public funds. The aim of the Connect America Fund is to subsidize the installation of high-speed Internet cables in remote places where doing so is not profitable for private firms. The money will come from the Universal Service Fund. In the past, this fund was spent on subsidies to make sure every American home had telephone service, but ... (view more)

Tue
10
Jul
Dennis Faas's picture

Twitter User Data Sought by US Gov't: Report

Twitter has released new figures showing government requests for information about its users. It's a report similar to the one produced by Google, though with some notable differences. For the past three years, Google has produced these kinds of ... statistics every six months. The idea is to show changes in government demands for specific user information. Twitter openly acknowledges it has copied Google's idea. It says releasing the figures will force governments to be more accountable about the information they demand. (Source: twitter.com ) Twitter's newly-published data covers all government ... (view more)

Wed
20
Jun
Dennis Faas's picture

Google Gives In to Gov't Snooping Requests: Report

A new report from Google indicates the US government is currently requesting more information about the online activity of its citizens than ever before. In the second half of 2011, it received 6,321 requests for Internet user data, compared with ... 4,601 in the same period in 2010. That's a 37 per cent increase. The figures were revealed in Google's latest Transparency Report. The US requests cover a total of 12,243 Internet users. (Source: google.com) However, the increase in demands for user data isn't necessarily a sign that the US government is snooping more. Google said the increase could ... (view more)

Fri
13
Apr
Dennis Faas's picture

Iran Denies Plans to Censor Internet

Iran's government has dismissed reports that it intends to block all Internet access for its citizens, starting in August. Spokespeople claim the shutdown reports stem from an April Fool's joke. Yet at least one part of the story appears to be true. ... The allegations of a coming shutdown are made by Reporters Without Borders, an international media and free speech advocacy group that in recent years has turned its attention to online censorship. Intranet Could Replace Internet According to Reporters Without Borders, Iran plans to simply cut all public access to the global Internet for its ... (view more)

Thu
08
Mar
Dennis Faas's picture

Leading Hacker Was Undercover FBI Informant

Members of the international hacking group LulzSec ("Lulz Security") have discovered their worst nightmare may have come true. It appears that one of the group's leading figures was working as an undercover FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation) ... informer for the past nine months. The news emerged this week with the arrest of five suspects in the United States, the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. All those arrested are said to be members of the LulzSec group, which emerged last summer and quickly made a name for itself as a leading organization of highly proficient hackers ... (view more)

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