Heigal sues Duane Reade for breach of privacy arising from a retweet

April 12, 2014

The Washington Post in  Can Katherine Heigl really sue Duane Reade for tweeting her photo? Yes, and here’s why reports on Heigl suing Duane Reade for violating her privacy and using her image without her permission.

It provides:

If Katherine Heigl makes a Duane Reade run and the drug store’s Twitter account proudly tweets a photo of her in the act (in a “celebrities run errands, too, and at our fine establishment!” kind of way), can she sue them for $6 million?

The answer: Yes, she can. And she did. And she has a case.

“Love a quick run? Even @KatieHeigl can’t resist shopping ‘s favorite drugstore http://bit.ly/1gLHctI ” the Duane Reade account tweeted on March 18 with a link to gossip site Just Jared, which ran a paparazzi photo of Heigl outside the store in New York City carrying two shopping bags.

It makes sense if you Read the rest of this entry »

Heartbleed causing significant heartburn for internet security

April 9, 2014

There has been a major alert and scare about a discovered flaw in OpenSSL cryptographic software library which is used by a large number of websites.  It is reported in Web security in doubt after discovery of ‘Heartbleed’ flaw and Newly discovered encryption flaw a ‘big deal’, say security experts.  It has also been reported in the Drum in somewhat apocalyptic terms in A civilisation built upon software isn’t safe, which provides:

Go onto the web to check your bank balance Read the rest of this entry »

Facebook page on sneak photos of women eating on the London Tube raises serious privacy concerns

April 8, 2014

The Washington Post reports, in A Facebook page of sneaky photos of women eating on the Tube creeps out London, on a strange Facebook Page which is devoted to surreptitious photographing of women eating on the London Tube and then posting them on Facebook (Women who eat on tubes). As idiotic as the concept is it is a page that has 19,000 followers.  The debate about the page revolves around mysogeny and eccentric and harmless fun or even art. One important issue is the privacy of those who have had their photos taken. In UK jurisprudence the Read the rest of this entry »

Drone allegedly makes an impact of the wrong sort

April 7, 2014

That drone technology has the potential to create problems almost as great as the significant benefits it brings to civilian use has been obvious for almost the outset.  In’River of blood’ after drone ‘hits’ Australian athlete the Age reports on a possible collision between a drone and an individual.  There are competing versions of events.  Whether someone was struck by a drone or not it matters little.  The reported incident highlights the increasing use of drones in the public space.  Drones purchased from hobby shops are inexpensive and operated by anyone who can stump up the cash. That is all it takes.  Putting a camera on a drone Read the rest of this entry »

Investigation of significant data breach at Experian

April 4, 2014

Itnews reports in Experian investigated over data breach on a serious data breach at Experian.  The scope of the breach involves access to social security numbers of up to 200 million people.  Interestingly the focus of the investigation goes to whether there has been complience with data protection laws.  While the law is not directly analogous in Australia the Privacy Commissioner now has significant powers to investigate data breaches.  What does not exist yet is mandatory data breach notification laws.  Such a law almost passed in 2013.

It provides:

US law enforcement teams are jointly investigating a serious data breach involing a subsidiary of credit reporting firm Experian that exposed the social security numbers of some 200 million people to potential criminal activity.

The focus of the Read the rest of this entry »

Kenneth Roth regarding mass surveillance

April 3, 2014

I had the pleasure of attending a public lecture hosted by the Castan Centre on Surveillance and the right to privacy in a digital age  (see here) by Kenneth Roth, the Executive Director of Human Rights Watch.  It was a very useful overview of one of the biggest public policy issues relating to privacy, mass and untargeted surveillance.

Mr Roth has been active in the media in the last week and published an opinion piece in the Fairfax press, Privacy: rationales governments use to claim mass snooping is legal, which is a very interesting overview of the developments in privacy protections since Read the rest of this entry »

Australian Law Reform Commission releases the Serious Invasion of Privacy in the Digital Era

March 31, 2014

The Australian Law Reform Commission (the “ALRC”) has released its long awaited discussion paper on Serious Invasions of Privacy in the Digital Era (found here).

Submissions are due by no later than 12 May 2014.  That is a very short time frame given the size of the report, over 200 pages, and 47 recommendations.

The media release provides:

The Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) today released a Discussion Paper, Serious Invasions of Privacy in the Digital Era (DP 80, 2014). The Terms of Reference for this Inquiry ask the ALRC to consider the detailed legal design of a statutory cause of action and, in addition, other innovative ways the law might prevent or redress serious invasions of privacy.

The ALRC is Read the rest of this entry »

Drones and collisions and police

March 28, 2014

Itnews reports on a drone v helicopter near miss in Drone almost collides with Westpac Rescue chopper.   It is hardly an unexpected event.  The expansion in the use of drones by properly trained and accredited operators and the hobbyists, the limited enforcement of regulations is making for a complicated situation in the airwaves.  The lack of privacy protection is a significant issue both in Australia (where protections are weak and have been traditionally enforced sporadically) and the United States of America, where the legislative response has been focused at a state level.

It provides:

UAV aimed for helicopter.

 The Australian Transport Safety Bureau is investigating a narrowly avoided collision on Saturday night between a Westpac Rescue chopper and an unmanned aerial vehicle.

One of two Bell 412 choppers the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service operates was involved in a near miss with the UAV near Read the rest of this entry »

British Telecom being investigated by Information Commissioner’s Office regarding data breach

March 26, 2014

Telcos have proven to be prone to data breaches.  Massive amounts of data stored and significant interface with other service providers.  Telstra was earlier this month found to have breached the Privacy Act in relation to a data breach (see here) .

Now British Telecom finds itself under scrutiny from the UK Information Commissioner’s Office as reported in BT investigated by UK privacy watchdog over breach due to a hacking attack.

It provides:

Whistleblower says seven million customers exposed.

 British Telecom is being investigated by the UK’s privacy watchdog, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), over claims that the user names and passwords of millions of its email customers were exposed to hacking.

The ICO launched an inquiry on Read the rest of this entry »

US President calls for reform in the collection of metadata… while in Australia law enforcement wants more metada collected

The world today reports, in Obama says it will take time to regain trust after spying revelations, on the call by the US President to reform the collection of data by government.  Which may have receptive ears in the legislative branch (see here).  The executive has slowly been turning its attention to the collection of metadata.  Very slowly.  Last Friday the President met with tech CEOs on privacy issues (see here)

The report provides:

ELEANOR HALL: The US president Barack Obama has declared that he is determined to win back the trust of citizens who are disgusted by revelations of America’s spying activities.

He urged Congress Read the rest of this entry »