Germany's federal and state data protection authorities (DSK) have raised concerns about the compatibility of Microsoft 365 with data protection laws in Germany and the wider European Union. Under the GDPR, children below the age of 13 are incapable of consenting to their data being collected, while consent may be given by those with parental responsibility for those under 16 but not younger than 13. When platforms do store data on adults, those customers are meant to be able to request the deletion of their records. Microsoft has denied that its assessment : "We ensure that our M365 products not only meet, but often exceed, the strict EU data protection laws. Our customers in Germany and throughout the EU can continue to use M365 products without hesitation and in a legally secure manner." That statement is not actually a categorical and clear denial of what Germany alleges. But actually my opinion is, if there is concern about any age group using this software for educational purposes, all the concepts (and use) can also be taught using open source LibreOffice and then there is no issue like this. Schools should anyway be teaching concepts and principles, that there are options out there, and to innovate around experimentation, adapting software, etc. See #technology #GDPR #privacy #M365 #Germany

These days, social media gets all the attention, but the Bulletin Board System (BBS), a relic from a kinder, gentler time in computer communications, persists. Each BBS is its own retro-flavored community with messages, text-based games, and files you can download. And you can still connect to one today. A Bulletin Board System, or BBS, is a computer-based electronic community on which its members can read and write messages, play text-based games, and download files. They originated in 1978 in Chicago, and their popularity peaked around 1995, just as the internet began to go mainstream. Back then, this was the Internet for most people. Today, because dial-up phone lines are scarce, and we have the internet, most BBSes utilize the Telnet protocol for connections (although some dial-up BBSes still exist). Today, the number of BBSes is rising due to a growing nostalgia for the past. The Telnet BBS Guide lists almost 800 currently active BBSes, which is more than double the amount around in 2016. Sure, you can just jump on Twitter, Facebook, or Reddit to find a community. But if you want a blast from the past, you should try a BBS. Each BBS is a cultural pocket that’s usually insulated from the reach of Google’s indexing or viral intrusions from social media. You can’t get to a BBS through a web browser without logging in through a terminal emulator. This means, generally, you can’t reach the resources of a BBS openly from a website (although exceptions do exist). As a result, each BBS feels like a private club that reflects the personality of the administrator, or Sysop (system operator). Each BBS is its own community. People leave messages for each other, play against each other in text-based games, and (less commonly, now) share files that are only available on that particular BBS. See #technology #retro #BBS #bulletinboard #Telnet

The device, nicknamed Wi-Peep, can fly near a building and then use the inhabitants' Wi-Fi network to identify and locate all Wi-Fi-enabled devices inside in a matter of seconds. The Wi-Peep exploits a loophole the researchers call polite Wi-Fi. Even if a network is password protected, smart devices will automatically respond to contact attempts from any device within range. The Wi-Peep sends several messages to a device as it flies and then measures the response time on each, enabling it to identify the device's location to within a meter. "The Wi-Peep devices are like lights in the visible spectrum, and the walls are like glass," Abedi said. "Using similar technology, one could track the movements of security guards inside a bank by following the location of their phones or smartwatches. Likewise, a thief could identify the location and type of smart devices in a home, including security cameras, laptops, and smart TVs, to find a good candidate for a break-in. In addition, the device's operation via drone means that it can be used quickly and remotely without much chance of the user being detected." This vulnerability relates to the location and type of devices, so is not about any access to your devices or network. It's great from thieves for example to see where your smart TVs are located in a home, and where the human's phone devices are presently. But it's also great for hostage rescuers to see where hostages are grouped in a bank vs others moving around. As it is hardware related, there is no possible software patch, and we'll need to wait for newer Wi-Fi hardware devices to be rolled out. See #technology #security #privacy #wipeep #vulnerability

You can also download an awesome live wallpaper.

> Twitter shut down its communications department and could not be reached for comment

You can append to your existing e-mail address in various ways, and this could be pretty useful for seeing who leaked your e-mail address to spammers. For example, for your bank, give them the address Then, if spammers send to that address, you can quickly see where they got the e-mail address from! I've tested it with Proton Mail, and it works in exactly the same way. See #technology #email #antispam #privacy

Converting Your Twitter Archive to Markdown, and links to original URL
Once your archive is on your machine, you will have a browsable HTML archive of your tweets, direct messages, and moments including media like images, videos, and GIFs. This is nice, but it also has a few flaws. For one, you can’t easily copy your Tweets somewhere else, for example, into your website because they are stored in a complex JSON structure. But even more dangerous: your links are all still links. This hides the original URL you shared and redirects all traffic over Twitter’s servers. But this is not only inconvenient, it is also dangerous. Just imagine what happens when ever goes down: all URLs you ever shared are now irretrievable. And then, there are the images: all images in your archive are much smaller than the ones you originally shared, and when you click to expand them, you are taken to the Twitter website once again. So, your Twitter archive is far from being a safe, independent backup in case you want to delete your account or if Twitter ever dies completely. But luckily, there is help in the form of a Python script called Twitter Archive Parser, a project started by Tim Hutton. See #technology #twittermigration #twitterarchive #twitter

> A couple of weeks ago a billionaire, whose skin is apparently as thin as his wallet is thick, took over one of the important public squares on-line. It is a good moment to explore and recognize other dangers, in addition to failure to moderate the public debate, such centralized control creates. Twitter’s tumultuous transition to a privately held company became a lens, focusing — at long last — our collective attention on them. > > These issues are hardly new or unexpected. Activists and experts had been warning about problems related to centralized control of our daily communication tools for years. But by and large, our warnings went unheeded. Today, as we mourn the communities disrupted and connections lost, and grapple with the fallout, we have to recognize this is about more than just Twitter. And use the opportunity to learn not to make the same mistakes again. (...) > We can also build systems that allow people to switch providers without losing contact with their friends and coworkers — e-mail and mobile networks are good, familiar examples of these. The fact that the big social media services, or the huge online productivity providers, do not allow this kind of compatibility is a business decision, rather than a technological necessity. (...) > “Never let a good crisis go to waste”, Winston Churchill once said, and it would serve us well to lean into that wisdom today. A centralized, closed, monopolistic platform’s agony is a good opportunity to reconsider our over-reliance on Big Tech walled gardens in general.

After careful consideration, we will be concentrating Wickr’s focus on securing our business and public sector customers’ data and communications with AWS Wickr and Wickr Enterprise, and have decided to discontinue our consumer product, Wickr Me.

Rumors, happenings, and innovations in the technology sphere. If it’s technological news, it probably belongs here.

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