CEOs of Tech Companies Unironically Ask Congress for Federal Data Privacy Law.

Many media outlets are reporting that the CEOs of fifty-one “tech companies” have urged the US Congress to pass a federal data privacy law. The letter itself, from the Business Roundtable, an association which includes these fifty-one companies and others, notes that: There is now widespread agreement among companies across all sectors of the economy, […] read more

AG Barr Says Encryption Backdoors Are Acceptable Risk.

Attorney General William Barr – the same one who concluded that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report on collusion and obstruction of justice “exonerates” the sitting president (in quotations because there’s a wee bit of a controversy on whether the report actually does so; plus Barr never literally uttered the word) – gave a speech on […] read more

British Airways, Marriot To Be Fined £183m, £99m Respectively For Data Breaches.

Earlier this week, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) in the UK announced that British Airways (BA) will be fined £183 million (approximately US$228 million) for a data breach. The figure represents 1.4% of the total revenue BA earned in 2018. The airline is the first major business that has been fined under the European Union’s […] read more

HIPAA Data Breach Leads To Chapter 11 Bankruptcy For American Medical Collection Agency (AMCA).

A couple of weeks ago, Quest Diagnostics and LabCorp, two companies in the medical healthcare field, announced that they had been affected by a data breach. As it turned out, the root of the actual HIPAA data breach lay with a debt collection firm, the American Medical Collection Agency (AMCA). This week, AMCA’s parent company […] read more

Moody’s Downgrades Equifax “Because Of Data Breach”.

Equifax had a data breach, a preventable one (or so they say *), in 2017. It was the biggest in US (and world) history, a dubious honor that could potentially be retained for a good long while. The consequences of said breach? Until last week, the answer would have been “pretty much nil.” (* As […] read more

Seattle University Alerts Over 2000 Faculty & Staff Of Lost Laptop.

Seattle University announced a couple of weeks ago that an unencrypted laptop was lost while an employee was “commuting on the bus.” An IT investigation drew the conclusion that “an offline email cache file” contained Social Security numbers and other personal information for 2,102 current and former faculty, staff, and dependents. The story feels like […] read more

UK’s National Cyber Security Centre Publishes List of Commonly Used Passwords.

A blast from the past, from the 1990s to the early noughts to be more specific, made the news this week, courtesy of the National Cyber Security Centre in the United Kingdom. According to an analysis by the government organization, blink182 is among the most commonly used passwords in the world. This means that it’s […] read more

Verizon Tries To Settle Yahoo Data Breach For the Second Time.

Verizon, which acquired Yahoo in 2016 and renamed the business twice since (Oath, followed by Verizon Media), is attempting to settle the massive data breach the purple company admitted to shortly before being bought out. In January of this year, a settlement of $50 million was rejected by Judge Koh of the US District Court […] read more

California Looking To Label Biometric Data As “Personal Information”.

California was the first state in the US to pass a data breach notification law, all the way back in 2003. In the intervening fifteen years, all states have passed similar laws. The federal government has repeatedly attempted to pass one as well, so far without success. The need for federal legislation, one that would […] read more

Judge Says Biometric Locks Protected By 5th Amendment.

The battle over privacy in the digital age ratcheted up last week. According to a California judge, the Fifth Amendment – the right not to incriminate oneself – protects people from being forced to bypass a smartphone’s encryption via the use of irises, fingerprints, facial recognition, and other similar methods. Obviously, this means a warrant […] read more