07 December 2018

Facebook denies UK allegations after Six4Three document dump

Social media giant maintains it has 'never sold people's data'

In context: The Six4Three files are a compilation of Facebook internal emails and memos that were recently released by the UK parliament's Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee. The documents outline various discussion within the company regarding monetizing user data particularly surrounding the 3.0 platform changes in 2015. Facebook denies all allegations made by the committee.
Facebook has seen almost no end to public scrutiny since the Cambridge Analytica scandal. It comes as no surprise that revelations and criticisms leveled at the social media titan in recent weeks have spun the company into turmoil and had the denial machine working overtime.

On Wednesday, a British parliamentary committee made public numerous damaging internal emails and documents showing that the company allowed “special access” to users’ data to partner companies like Lyft and Netflix while denying access to competitors such as Vine.

“Facebook have clearly entered into whitelisting agreements with certain companies, which meant that after the platform changes in 2014/15 they maintained full access to friends’ data [sic],” stated Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee Chairman Damian Collins in his summary of the document dump known as the “Six4Three files.” He adds, “It is not clear that there was any user consent for this, nor how Facebook decided which companies should be whitelisted or not.”

"The documents were selectively leaked to publish some, but not all, of the internal discussions at Facebook at the time of our platform changes. But the facts are clear: we’ve never sold people’s data."

Facebook quickly responded to the Six4Three files with a rebuttal saying they were “cherry-picked” and taken out of “context.”

“We changed our platform policies in 2014/15 to prevent apps from requesting permission to access friends’ private information,” said a Facebook spokesperson referring to the whitelisting allegation. “In some situations, when necessary, we allowed developers to access a list of the users’ friends. This was not friends’ private information but a list of your friends (name and profile pic).”

Collins also points out emails that spelled out the collection of user call and text logs on Android devices. He claims Facebook went to great lengths to keep users from realizing such data was being collected from them.
“Facebook knew that the changes to its policies on the Android mobile phone system, which enabled the Facebook app to collect a record of calls and texts sent by the user would be controversial. To mitigate any bad PR, Facebook planned to make it as hard of possible for users to know that this was one of the underlying features of the upgrade of their app.”
Facebook flatly denied the allegation saying that users had to “opt-in” to share their call and message logs. The company pointed out that it only used this information to improve Facebook Lite and Messenger apps' abilities to make call suggestions and rank contact lists. It says that an audit conducted this year showed that such data is not as useful after it becomes old insinuating that it no longer collects such logs.

“After a thorough review in 2018, it became clear that the information is not as useful after about a year,” the spokesperson said. “You are unlikely to need to call someone who you last called over a year ago compared to a contact you called just last week.”

However, the company stopped short of explicitly saying that it no longer collects this information.

There were four other areas that Collins expressed concerns over ranging from the valuation of friends’ data to increase FB revenues to using data collected from the Onavo VPN app. Facebook had “explanations” for them all and maintains that Six4Three only selected "some, but not all" documents and discussion in these matters.

You can check out the full 250-page document dump including the DCMS’s summary at the UK parliament’s website. Facebook's response is posted in its Newsroom.

Text source: techspot .com

03 December 2018

Who do the police work for?

MANY people may be of the erroneous belief that the police work for them (the tax payers), or even are members of the 'public service'.

Why even the Victorian Government washed its hands of police, especially when it came to coughing up for compensation.

See article from The Age publication at:

Every state or territory may have its legal peculiarities with regards to its police force.

In Victoria the police have been corporatised since 2013, i.e. (officially) since the Victoria Police Act 2013, where every 'job' has a cost associated with it.

See the current Victoria Police Fees & Charges document within the pdf:

Apparently in Western Australia the police are not even a legal entity:

Let's take a look at a common example of a 'common law' criminal action of theft.

We've obtained information on at least a dozen case files of stolen phones, that will never receive attention, even if the alleged suspect is 'known to police', where the most common excuse given to the serfs is that there is not enough resources.

Let's take a look at the photo at the beginning of this post, which is with regards to an actual case file, where a man was accused of stealing a mobile phone from a telco's retail store.

The accused was cooperative, non aggressive and non-threatening, but it took 4 squad vehicles and 8 uniformed officers to deal with the matter, where most of the time 6 officers where literally doing nothing with regards to the job on hand.

Meanwhile if you (the serf) requires the police to find your $2300 piece of iJunk, then there are no resources, as they are taken up by an 8:1 (police to serf) ratio if the crime is committed against a corporation.

As the masses should be aware the police are part of your 'friendly' government, BUT the 'problem' (for the herd population) is that the people in government see their own population as the primary enemy, as mentioned in numerous lectures by Noam Chomsky.

Therefore you (the serf) are literally the enemy of federal and state police force.

Government to access call logs and SMS

As part of the global nanny state agenda, governments want to access as much of your information as possible, from whatever sources under whatever pretexts.

Telecommunications infrastructure is owned by governments, where the data is able to be siphoned by whatever government agencies have been given access to it, despite the official resistance by whatever seemingly independent telecommunications corporations exist in that country.

The Indian government, under the label of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, has written a "Do Not Disturb' app in order to apparently, help the slave population solve the spam problem in India, which in reality does not need an app as this can be stopped within the telecommunications corporations themselves.

Despite whatever Apple officially states with regards to its data policies, in this case being that an App producer cannot access a user's call logs and SMS,  it is a company that collects, forwards or uses the data provider's (i.e. you, the 'user') information, where it cannot be trusted given the track record it has with deceiving users on how 'their' data is/was used.

We do not support the use of Apple products.

We do not support the use of apps, as the closed and proprietary environment of the app does not allow the end user to see where their data is going.

See article from 30 Nov 2018 from gsmarena.com of the headline:

India’s Do Not Disturb App is finally approved for iOS’ App Store

With spam callers increasingly becoming an issue all over the world, India set out to tackle the problem by implementing a “Do Not Disturb” app that could let users report spam numbers and register to a ‘do not call’ registry so that Indian subscribers can see relief from constant telemarketing calls.

The TRAI DND app works by letting users report phone numbers that make spam calls or SMS, although it eventually depends upon the carriers to take any action on those numbers (which rarely happens).

Apple and TRAI were in battle earlier this year, with TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India) demanding Apple allow its DND app on the App Store. The app required access to the user's call logs and SMS, which is against App Store policies. Apple, thus, declined to have the app on the store, which threw TRAI in a hissy fit and repeatedly threaten to ban sales of iPhones in India. (Google, meanwhile, allowed the app on the Play Store.) This was back in July.

By August, things had settled down a bit, and TRAI said they will be taking advantage of the new feature in iOS 12 that allowed users to report spam calls and messages. TRAI finally released its app this week that uses this feature, without accessing any private data.

iPhone users in India can find the TRAI-DND app now at the App Store. In order to install the app, you must have the latest version of iOS 12.1 installed.