Google logging wireless network info

Discussion in 'privacy problems' started by elapsed, Apr 23, 2010.

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  1. katio

    katio Guest

    @ caspian
    If you are still curious about skype see my post here
    If you read a bit through that pdf you'll see Skype is heavily obfuscating and encrypting everything. Not much of a chance to get anything usefull by just running wireshark. There's no way to know if they use geolocation.
    If you want to protect your location/IP while using Skype I'd recommend a VM with a completely locked down firewall so any traffic on the system has to go through VPN/OpenSSH.
     
  2. JRViejo

    JRViejo Super Moderator

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  3. Searching_ _ _

    Searching_ _ _ Registered Member

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    Google Ceases Using Streetview Mapping Cars in Hong Kong
    Wallstreet Journal
     
  4. JRViejo

    JRViejo Super Moderator

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  5. LockBox

    LockBox Registered Member

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    THAT is the million-dollar question. Thanks for posting the snippet and link!
     
  6. JRViejo

    JRViejo Super Moderator

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    LockBox, you're welcome! Take care.
     
  7. BoerenkoolMetWorst

    BoerenkoolMetWorst Registered Member

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  8. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

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    I still don't consider them "evil", but I swear, Google has a habit of getting themselves in the worst situations. One of these days, it WILL happen, people will become too distrusting of them and Google will find themselves the largest Internet company in the world, with nobody using their services. This is a company trying hard to get people into cloud services, but who's going to want to when they have no idea what Google is going to do with their data and just what data they are getting? Who will want to use Gmail when Google is forcing them to hand over cell phone numbers and having no idea where that number is going to go once Google gets it? Who's going to want to use Chrome when Google is so haphazard that they themselves don't even know what code is running in their services?

    Google needs to straighten up and do it quick. Whether this or any of their blunders end up being over-hyped, PR is everything. Unlike Hollywood, bad PR for a company can destroy them faster than any government inquiry ever will.
     
  9. vasa1

    vasa1 Registered Member

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    I'll continue using Chrome until a better or safer browser turns up.

    As for the rest, there should be a difference between collecting data for demographics (or improving a business model) versus specific targeted violation of an individual's privacy. I feel (without knowing absolutely anything about the whole business), that the data-gathering of Google is not targeted at individuals.
     
  10. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

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    Well Vasa, the problem is, whether individuals are being targeted on purpose or not, it's the individuals data that keeps getting collected. We know some data collecting is targeted at us, otherwise we wouldn't have ads in our Gmail with the same content that is found in our emails to our businesses, friends and family. We also would not have ads related to our search inquiries, and, I could go on and on. But, that's business as usual on today's Internet. It's the kind of data collecting referenced in the original post, and the possible reasons behind it that bother me. At best, we have a company who continually keeps shooting itself in the foot. At worst, we have a company that possibly was given permission or even ordered by a government/governments to do a whole lot more than just gather our "Internet footprint", so to speak, with the usual data collecting.

    I'm not ready to deem them spies here, or start up a conspiracy theory story. None of us know all the facts. But, not knowing all the facts, and with the accusations being made, I don't think it would be wise to brush it aside as nothing either.
     
  11. vasa1

    vasa1 Registered Member

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    Valid points.

    But I think there was no secret that Google would scan our mail for keywords and data-mine our searches. So I'm wondering just how much the reaction by some is meaningful: I'll never use this, I'll never use that ...

    As you say, it is now common-place. And, maybe I'm missing something quite obvious here, but I still don't think that is a violation of my privacy because it's data we're giving them in the first place with the foreknowledge that they will use it to provide us targeted ads.

    And, as you've remarked in a thread on pdf viewers, it's our choice of whether we are willing to give a little (or a lot), in exchange for something.

    Anyways, a healthy dose of resistance to certain types of data-gathering is doubtlessly useful to slow down the Orwellian erosion of privacy.

    (One of the reasons I'm sympathetic towards Google, is that they're the first bunch of guys who seem to have got a monopoly (that has been oppressing us for quite a few years) somewhat on the run. IBM failed miserably here. The conspiracy-detector in me wonders how much of this outcry is sponsored by that monopoly:D.)
     
  12. Dermot7

    Dermot7 Registered Member

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  13. vasa1

    vasa1 Registered Member

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  14. JRViejo

    JRViejo Super Moderator

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  15. korben

    korben Registered Member

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    That;s what's been stopping me from using Android in the 1st place.
     
  16. JRViejo

    JRViejo Super Moderator

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  17. caspian

    caspian Registered Member

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    I don't believe that there was any error involved.
     
  18. nix

    nix Registered Member

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    From the Computer World article, JR's cite below, Samy Kamkar shows you how it's done, and in plain English, why Wi-Fi data collection poses a problem:

    "Because their databases strip out personally identifiable information, the data collectors say that they are safe. But as hacker Samy Kamkar discovered earlier this year, these databases can be misused. Kamkar, best known for writing a worm that briefly shut down MySpace in 2005, found a way to use Google's database of location information to secretly figure out people's addresses.


    Kamkar couldn't figure out everybody's address, but in a talk he gave at a security conference last month, he showed how he could take advantage of a basic programming error in certain types of home Wi-Fi routers to get them to reveal their MAC addresses. Armed with that information, he then showed how he could use a publicly accessible Google geolocation database to figure out where people lived. If someone visits his website from a buggy router left with default access control settings, he can figure out where they are located."

    The details of Kamkar's hack itself:

    http://blogs.computerworld.com/16663/hack_pinpoints_where_you_live_how_i_met_your_girlfriend
     
  19. tobacco

    tobacco Frequent Poster

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    Oh no Caspian, you've done it :eek: Expect "Eice" (the defend to the death, google can do no wrong defender) to be on the war path now!

    Of course it was an error - google wouldn't do something like that :rolleyes:
     
  20. elapsed

    elapsed Registered Member

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    Do you seriously find it neccesary to call out another member on the forum just because his opinion differs to yours? *sigh*

    I dislike Google as much as the next privacy freak, but your post is simply sarcastic+personal attack/taunting=trolling.
     
  21. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

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  22. tobacco

    tobacco Frequent Poster

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    Re: Google: Street View cars grabbed emails, urls, passwords!

    It was all a big mistake - yeah Whatever :rolleyes:
     
  23. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

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    Re: Google: Street View cars grabbed emails, urls, passwords!

    That's their excuse & they're sticking to it! LOL o_O
     
  24. Doritoes

    Doritoes Registered Member

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    Re: Google: Street View cars grabbed emails, urls, passwords!

    I would be more concerned about people sending their passwords and e-mail over unencrypted wifi. Its really simple to just run WireShark or something similar on a laptop and go wardriving to collect personal information from clueless/uncareful users. It's Voyeurism 2.0 and the users are being digital exhibitionists who don't have curtains over their windows.
     
  25. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

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    Re: Google: Street View cars grabbed emails, urls, passwords!

    Yes, that's all well & good but most people who use the Net have no idea about encryption & many have little idea about cyber-security, me included! When I can afford it I will update my router (barely three years old) & worry more about encryption & cyber-voyeurism.

    I've just checked the wireless connections around me, of the four that I can see just clicking on the WiFi icon in my systems tray, three of them have WEP & only one has WPA2. Sometimes one pops up that appears to have no wireless security protocols at all.

    It's a 'brave new cyber-world' for many, me included.
     
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