Messaging Apps: Here’s Why You Should Use Signal

Signal looks and works a lot like other basic messaging apps, so it’s easy to get started. It’s especially convenient if you have friends and family overseas because, like iMessage and WhatsApp, Signal lets you sidestep expensive international SMS fees. It also supports voice and video calls, so you can cut out Skype and FaceTime. You can send pictures, videos, and documents.

It’s available on iOS, Android, and desktop.

Plenty of apps have all that stuff. The thing that actually makes Signal superior is that it’s easy to ensure that the contents of every chat remain private and unable to be read by anyone else.

https://www.wired.com/story/ditch-all-those-other-messaging-apps-heres-why-you-should-use-signal/
https://signal.org/

Why privacy is important, and having ”nothing to hide” is irrelevant

It doesn’t matter if you have “nothing to hide”. Privacy is a right granted to individuals that underpins the freedoms of expression, association and assembly; all of which are essential for a free, democratic society.

Loss of privacy leads to loss of freedom.

Your freedom of expression is threatened by the surveillance of your internet usage – thought patterns and intentions can be extrapolated from your website visits (rightly or wrongly), and the knowledge that you are being surveilled can make you less likely to research a particular topic. You lose that perspective, and your thought can be pushed in one direction as a result. Similarly, when the things you write online, or communicate privately to others, are surveilled, and you self-censor as a result, the rest of us lose your perspective, and the development of further ideas is stifled.

Arguing that you don’t care about the right to privacy because you have nothing to hide is no different than saying you don’t care about free speech because you have nothing to say.

– Edward Snowden

https://robindoherty.com/2016/01/06/nothing-to-hide.html

The Privacy Threat From Always-On Microphones Like the Amazon Echo

It is a significant thing to allow a live microphone in your private space (just as it is to allow them in our public spaces). Once the hardware is in place, and receiving electricity, and connected to the Internet, then you’re reduced to placing your trust in the hands of two things that unfortunately are less than reliable these days: 1) software, and 2) policy.

https://www.aclu.org/blog/privacy-technology/privacy-threat-always-microphones-amazon-echo

The House That Spied on Me

In December, I converted my one-bedroom apartment in San Francisco into a “smart home.” I connected as many of my appliances and belongings as I could to the internet: an Amazon Echo, my lights, my coffee maker, my baby monitor, my kid’s toys, my vacuum, my TV, my toothbrush, a photo frame, a sex toy, and even my bed.

I soon discovered that the only thing worse than getting a bad night’s sleep is to subsequently get a report from my bed telling me I got a low score and “missed my sleep goal.”

https://gizmodo.com/the-house-that-spied-on-me-1822429852

’People You May Know:’ A Controversial Facebook Feature’s 10-Year History

In May 2008, Facebook announced what initially seemed like a fun, whimsical addition to its platform: People You May Know.

“We built this feature with the intention of helping you connect to more of your friends, especially ones you might not have known were on Facebook,” said the post.

In an investigation last year, we detailed the ways People You May Know, or PYMK, as it’s referred to internally, can prove detrimental to Facebook users. It mines information users don’t have control over to make connections they may not want it to make.

https://gizmodo.com/people-you-may-know-a-controversial-facebook-features-1827981959

Kashmir Hill’s posts

Kashmir Hill is a senior reporter for the Special Projects Desk, which produces investigative work across all of Gizmodo Media Group’s web sites. She writes about privacy and technology.

https://kinja.com/kashmirhill

CheckShortURL

CheckShortURL is an expand link facility: it allows you to retrieve the original URL from a shortened link before clicking on it and visiting the destination. We provide furthermore information about unshortened URL such as title, description, keywords and author of the page. It also checks if the original URL is on search engines, Twitter, and lets you know if the hidden link is safe or not.CheckShortURL supports almost all URL shortening services:
t.co, goo.gl, bit.ly, amzn.to, tinyurl.com, ow.ly, youtu.be and many others!

https://www.checkshorturl.com/

Three Reasons Why the ”Nothing to Hide” Argument is Flawed

1) Privacy isn’t about hiding information; privacy is about protecting information, and surely you have information that you’d like to protect.

2) Privacy is a fundamental right and you don’t need to prove the necessity of fundamental rights to anyone.

3) Lack of privacy creates significant harms that everyone wants to avoid.

https://spreadprivacy.com/three-reasons-why-the-nothing-to-hide-argument-is-flawed/