Social media must evolve beyond data mining

As Congress and the public wrestle with the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica scandal, many people are now realizing the risks data collection poses to civic institutions, public discourse and individual privacy. The U.K.-based political consulting firm didn’t just collect personal data from the 270,000 people who used researcher…

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This is why doxxing is so scary

It’s almost a given that you have personal information available online. Beyond social media and online discussion boards, there are public records of property ownership and voter registration, as well as massive databases of financial information assembled by credit-rating agencies. Taken individually, many of these pieces of information are…

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Internet privacy issues have been simmering for a while

The world erupted in righteous indignation after it was revealed that Facebook had inadvertently allowed a researcher to harvest personally identifying information belonging to millions of users, a large percentage of whom were unknowingly affected, courtesy of loopholes in the enforcement of policies and regulation of Mark Zuckerberg’s most…

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State Sovereignty in the Internet age

If we had to distill part of what defines a nation's sovereignty, it would possibly come down to four key factors. Namely: Energy independence Financial independence Military independence Food independence I am aware that there are other factors that determine whether a state is sovereign or not, but, for the…

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Facebook's letter to South Africa's Information Regulator

Information Regulator (South Africa) 316 Thabo Sehume Street Pretoria For the attention of: Adv. P Tlakula 18 April 2018 Dear Adv. P Tlakula RE: Reported misuse of Facebook user data by Cambridge Analytica I am writing on behalf of Facebook Ireland Limited (“Facebook Ireland”). Representatives of Facebook South Africa passed…

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