By Christian Zibreg on Nov 19, 2013
Google’s nefarious overriding of both desktop and iOS Safari users’ privacy settings in order to better track their web browsing activity backfired after the United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in April 2012 took a long, hard look at the practice and decided to fine the search giant.
Google has previously agreed to pay $22.5 million fine to the government, with a judge approving the record-setting penalty. And now, the Internet giant will pay 37 U.S. states a cool $17 million to settle the Safari probe case… Read More
By Jeff Benjamin on Nov 12, 2013
Believe it or not, private browsing mode has many uses. My favorite reason for using the mode is when troubleshooting page issues with cookies. It’s a great way to have a “control” when comparing against a non-private browsing session.
In browsers like Chrome, private browsing mode is a cinch to enable using a simple keyboard shortcut. In Safari, there is no such built-in shortcut. Instead, you have to click on the Safari menu bar and click the Private Browsing option.
Inside, we’ll show you how easy it is to create a keyboard shortcut for quickly enabling and disabling private browsing mode in Safari. Read More
By Jeff Benjamin on Nov 11, 2013
To improve the quality and performance of its iOS devices, Apple routinely collects diagnostic and usage information from customer’s iPhones and iPads. Diagnostic data includes information about system performance, such as the popular low memory warnings, and other details about your specific device and OS specifications.
End users have the option of sharing this information automatically with Apple, but it can also be turned off. You’ve probably all seen the option during the initial setup of your iOS device to automatically send diagnostic and usage data to Apple.
Inside, we’ll show you where you can go to view your device’s logged diagnostic data, and manage how it is used. We’ll also show you how to completely remove the diagnostic logs from your device. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Nov 6, 2013
Though I’ve been syncing my Safari web passwords lately using the new iOS 7 password-syncing feature called iCloud Keychain, I’m still a 1Password type of guy, mainly as iCloud Keychain doesn’t support secure notes, tagging, folders and what not.
That said, I understand AgileBit’s password manager may not be everyone’s cup of tea due to its high asking price ($17.99 for the iPhone/iPad app, plus an additional $49.99 for 1Password for Mac).
But there are other password managers out there and one of them called LastPass is free and has just received a nice little makeover for iOS 7… Read More
By Cody Lee on Nov 5, 2013
Apple has issued a public report this afternoon entitled ‘Report on Government Information Requests.’ The piece details the number and types of requests it receives from governments around the world for user and device information.
The company said it considers it a responsibility to provide its users with “the best privacy protections available,” and that it has published the report “in the interest of transparency for our customers around the world.” More after the fold… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Nov 4, 2013
The great thing about Apple’s iOS 7 password syncing feature is that setting up iCloud Keychain on your device with an iCloud Security Code prevents anyone from gaining access to your saved web passwords by going to Settings > Safari > Passwords & AutoFill > Saved Passwords. That is, viewing any saved entry there requires providing an iCloud Security Code, or your account password on the Mac.
This added layer of protection ensures I can’t steal your iPhone while it isn’t auto-locked and use the Settings app to hijack your online identities in a snap. Not so much with Chrome for Mac. Currently, Google’s browser does not require any form of authentication to reveal saved passwords. The Internet giant is aware of the problem and is aiming to deploy enhanced security for saved passwords in an upcoming Chrome build… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 27, 2013
With the advent of iOS 7 and OS X Mavericks, Apple has enabled even tighter iCloud integration across its operating systems.
A good example is a new feature called iCloud Keychain which keeps your web site and Wi-Fi passwords, login and account information and credit card numbers in sync between any number of trusted Mac, iPhone, iPad and iPod touch devices authorized with the same Apple ID.
It’s also another example of Apple’s growing reliance on iCloud. But with great power comes great responsibility so privacy-minded users may ask themselves how exactly iCloud manages this growing mountain of personal information while keeping it safe and secure… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 25, 2013
With Tuesday’s free release of OS X Mavericks, Apple users can now opt to have their Safari web passwords securely synchronized across their iOS devices and Macs through the power of iCloud. The useful feature dubbed iCloud Keychain made a brief appearance in iOS 7 betas before being pulled from iOS 7 Gold Master, only to re-surface in iOS 7.0.3. What you probably don’t know is that iCloud Keychain isn’t necessarily supported everywhere so Apple’s published a handy list detailing iCloud Keychain availability by country… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 15, 2013
Your online privacy is an elastic concept. No, I’m not referring to the NSA eavesdropping on your online communications or breaking into your iPhone or harvesting your online address books. Let’s talk about Snapchat for a minute.
A quick backgrounder for the uninitiated: developed by Stanford University students, Snapchat is a handy photo messaging application that exploded in popularity soon after people realized they can send their photos to a controlled list of recipients and set a time limit for how long they can view them.
After the cut-off time, the snaps are automatically deleted from both the recipient’s device and Snapchat’s servers. As a bonus, Snapchat features a built-in mechanism that informs the other side when you screenshot their snaps. Now, you can imagine why Snapchat blew up in no time as some folks predominantly use the application to expose their body parts and share their candid shots.
A new iPhone app called SnapHack changes all that by bypassing Snapchat’s screenshot notifications and pulling unopened content from Snapchat’s servers. Plus, the company behind Snapchat yesterday detailed law enforcement requests. Jump past the fold for the full breakdown… Read More
By Cody Lee on Oct 12, 2013
Just a heads up for those that missed the news yesterday: Facebook is going to be removing the ‘Who can look up your Timeline by name’ privacy option that allowed you to make it so your profile could not be found via search.
The social network actually removed the option for those who weren’t using it last December. But for the small percentage still using it, it has announced that they will receive reminders about its removal in the coming weeks… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Sep 26, 2013
Apple has just released iOS 7.0.2 (build 11A501) as an over-the-air update for the supported iPhone, iPod touch and iPad devices.
Release notes for the software indicate the firmware update fixed bugs that could let nefarious users bypass your Lock screen passcode.
As recently detailed by YouTube user Jose Rodriguez, the security vulnerability involves a series of complex taps on the iOS Lock screen to gain access to a bunch of stock apps containing personal data like photos, email, text messages, Facebook and Twitter accounts and much more… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Sep 20, 2013
What are the privacy implications of the iPhone 5s fingerprint sensor? U.S. Senator Al Franken wants Apple CEO Tim Cook to answer that question and more. In a published letter to Cook, Franken writes that “important questions remain about how this technology works.” In addition, the senator wants the Apple chief to explain how the Touch ID sensor may be used in the future.
In response, Apple published online a document explaining that fingerprints obtained by the new iPhone 5s are walled-off from the iOS software and application developers… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Sep 9, 2013
In case you missed our Sunday coverage of the newly exposed NSA tactics, the snooping agency – thanks to its secret 10-year initiative code-named Bullrun which runs at $250 million a year – has been able to successfully crack much of the Internet’s widely-used encryption technologies to compromise everyone’s online communications, banking transactions and other sensitive data.
And now, internal NSA slides from a 2010 report titled ‘Exploring Current Trends, Targets and Techniques’ and leaked by the NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden shamefully depict iPhone customers as ‘zombies’. As if that weren’t enough, in a reference to the George Orwell book ’1984′ Steve Jobs himself is being portrayed as Big Brother… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Sep 8, 2013
The U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) has pretty much compromised every online user’s security through a previously unknown ten-year program against encryption technologies that made “vast amounts” of collected data “exploitable.”
After these shocking revelations came to light Thursday, a new report Sunday in German news weekly Der Spiegel has given the privacy scare a whole new meaning.
See, owners of iPhone, BlackBerry and Android devices are at risk of their “most sensitive data” being fully exploitable because the NSA is able to crack protective measures of these systems, previously believed to be highly secure… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Aug 20, 2013
While independent security researcher Ibrahim Balic claimed responsibility for taking down Apple’s Dev Center, in reality his discovery of an iAd Workbench vulnerability had nothing to do with the Dev Center outage.
Apple this morning credited Balic for reporting the iAd Workbench bug that did allow him to obtain full names and Apple IDs of Apple’s registered iOS and Mac developers.
While it’s a bit murky whether or not Balic was solely responsible for the system-wide Dev Center shutdown, Apple today wrote on its Web Server notifications page that it fixed a “remote code execution issue” that allegedly caused the downtime… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Aug 20, 2013
Ibrahim Balic, an independent security researcher, made the headlines by taking credit for knocking Apple’s Dev Center out for thirteen days following his discovery of a serious iAd Workbench vulnerability.
Even though that issue hasn’t made the hack directly possible, it did force Apple to shut down Dev Center for more than a week.
It has also prompted an overhaul of Apple’s developer systems, including updating the server software and rebuilding the entire database. Though Balic has rarely come out of stealth mode since protecting his Twitter timeline out of fear of potential consequences, he needn’t worry as Apple has now credited him with reporting the iAd Workbench vulnerability… Read More
By Cody Lee on Aug 9, 2013
Following a series of meetings with tech executives a government leaders this week, President Obama held a press conference this morning to describe his plan to assuage concerns among Americans and foreigners regarding the legality of US surveillance activities.
During his speech, the President said that the surveillance programs in use by government agencies right now are “operating in a way that prevents abuse.” But the question for his administration, he posed, is how does it make “American people more comfortable?”
So he outlined the following four initiatives… Read More