FTC Launches Investigations into Mobile Apps for Kids

The Federal Trade Commission on Monday said it’s launching “non-public investigations” to determine if mobile application providers are violating federal laws by collecting information on children without their parents’ permission.A report indicates almost 60 percent (235) of the children-centric mobile apps the agency reviewed from Google and Apple app stores collected device IDs and other private data often shared with an advertising network, analytics company or other third party. More than half also displayed advertising, such as one children’s app that showed an advertisement for an adult singles club. Only 20 percent disclosed their privacy policy.

FTC Settles With Ad Network Over Browser History Sniffing

The FTC has reached a settlement with Epic Marketplace, a large online ad network, related to what the FTC says is the company’s practice of sniffing users’ browser history for the purpose of serving them targeted ads related to a variety of sensitive topics. The settlement bars Epic from performing history sniffing and requires the company to destroy all of the data it’s collected from consumers up to this point through history sniffing.

Black Friday and the Monday that follows, which we have somewhat recently taken to calling Cyber Monday, are two of the biggest shopping days of the year. The tradition of getting off to a fast start on your holiday shopping by getting out there on the Friday after Thanksgiving that most Americans take as a vacation day dates back to the 1960’s. Cyber Monday, on the other hand, was created by online retailers sometime in the last decade in an attempt at squeezing one more day of shopping mania out of consumers.

 In the previous video in our how-to series, Securing Facebook, we reported that the social networking giant was rapidly approaching one billion active users. Facebook has since surpassed that mark. Considering that, we produced a video detailing and explaining how to implement some simple, built-in features on the world’s largest social network that should help keep your profiles as private as possible. 

The security of social networks and the people who use them every day has become a serious concern for enterprises and consumers alike. Millions of people rely on networks such as Facebook and Twitter to communicate and connect with friends and colleagues and attacks against the networks themselves and the users on them undermines some of the trust people place in them. Eugene Kaspersky, CEO of Kaspersky Lab, recently answered questions on the security concerns surrounding social media and what people can do to protect themselves on these networks.

The Tor Project has fixed a flaw in its anonymization and privacy software that leaked information from memory on some machines running Tor that could give an attacker access to sensitive information stored in the cache. The issue was caused by the way that some compilers handle a specific function in the Tor client.

Nearly two years after other browser vendors implemented it, Google on Tuesday finally released a version of Chrome that supports the Do Not Track functionality that helps users prevent Web sites from following their movements around the Web. Google’s move to include the technology is a response to discussions with the White House earlier this year around privacy.

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