October Roundup

On and on and on the Public Services Card rolls despite almost all the wheels having fallen off, even the mandatory but not compulsory wheels that have been hastily repaired and reapplied to the shambling mess as it drags itself from pothole to ditch to pothole. The potholes and ditches in this case are rules,…

September Roundup

Autumn roared in. The Public Services Card rolled on despite one minister admitting in a roundabout way that there is no legal basis for what’s currently happening and another cooing softly that the thing which should have been done before the project started many years ago will certainly be done “very soon”. Massive amounts of…

August Roundup

August was a busy month as the already cracked veneer on the surface of the Irish state’s shambolic data acquisition and sharing projects shattered further. We were treated to a senior government minister denying she was splitting hairs while attempting a precision distinction between ‘mandatory’ and ‘compulsory’. Elsewhere it was (bad) business as usual for…

The Knowledge Gap [KitBits 17.11]

I was prompted to write this post, which had been rolling around the back of my head for quite some time, by this series of tweets by Simon McGarr. Do read them all. Privacy and data protection is not a dry legal issue, nor an incomprehensible technical thing best left to boffins. Data protection at…

June Roundup

Unfortunately there was quite an amount of data daftness on display last month. 1. EU Proposes to Mandate end-to-end encryption; UK still trying to break it In May the US Senate approved the use of encrypted messaging app Signal for staff. A European Parliament committee followed suit in June in a draft proposal “that will enforce end-to-end…

May Roundup

This month there’s a fair bit about advertising and the power which combining disparate buckets of information about you offers to the world’s advertising companies, large and small. The Irish state’s continued quest to issue three million biometric-capable identity cards it signed a contract for without explaining why it thinks these cards are needed is…

April Roundup

This month brings some revealing peeks behind a few data curtains and an exploration of the soft soothing language of sharing with partners and keeping it all in the family (of companies). 1. Facial Recognition, As It’s Happening We’re essentially building an IT backbone, which can allow TSA or potentially air carriers or any other…

Ordering Pizza In The Future [Video]

This is a short America Civil Liberties Union video from 2006. If it seemed like an extreme scenario when it was first made, it looks far more likely now.

The Man Who Invented The Web Agrees [KitBits 17.4]

The web has turned twenty eight. Tim Berners-Lee, the man who invented the web, has a few thoughts on the challenges that face it. Number one on his list is ‘We’ve lost control of our personal data’. The current business model for many websites offers free content in exchange for personal data. Many of us…

October Roundup

This month you’re in a police line up and your DNA information is held offshore by a third party. Well, maybe neither of those things are true yet, but they’re certainly perfectly possible. Google and Facebook are still profiling you, but are entirely determined to profile you more, and harder. 1. DNA Genealogy There was…