Tag Archives: Security

FTC Staff Report Recommends Ways to Improve Mobile Privacy Disclosures

The Federal Trade Commission, the nation’s chief privacy agency, issued a staff report recommending ways that key players in the rapidly expanding mobile marketplace can better inform consumers about their data practices.

The report makes recommendations for critical players in the mobile marketplace: mobile platforms (operating system providers, such as Amazon, Apple, BlackBerry, Google, and Microsoft), application (app) developers, advertising networks and analytics companies, and app developer trade associations. Most of the recommendations involve making sure that consumers get timely, easy-to-understand disclosures about what data they collect and how the data is used.


FTC files complaint against Dropbox

May 11, 2011



1. Dropbox has prominently advertised the security of its “cloud” backup, sync
and file sharing service, which is now used by more than 25 million
consumers, many of whom “rely on Dropbox to take care of their most
important information.”1

2. Dropbox does not employ industry best practices regarding the use of
encryption technology. Specifically, Dropbox’s employees have the ability to
access its customers’ unencrypted files.

3. Dropbox has and continues to make deceptive statements to consumers
regarding the extent to which it protects and encrypts their data.

4. Dropbox’s customers face an increased risk of data breach and identity theft
because their data is not encrypted according to industry best practices.

5. If Dropbox disclosed the full details regarding its data security practices,
some of its customers might switch to competing cloud based services that
do deploy industry best practices regarding encryption, protect their own
data with 3rd party encryption tools, or decide against cloud based backups

6. Dropbox’s misrepresentations are a Deceptive Trade Practice, subject to
review by the Federal Trade Commission (the “Commission”) under section 5
of The Federal Trade Commission Act.

http://www.wired.com/images_blogs/threatlevel/2011/05/dropbox-ftc-complaint-final.pdf [PDF]

The Dropbox Blog

Updated 5/16/2011: added new section 7 (Talking about security). No other text was changed.

Hi Dropboxers,

Like many of you, we’ve been reading the reports about a change we made to our Terms of Service, and more generally about Dropbox’s approach to privacy and security.

Everyone who works at Dropbox knows our most important asset is the trust of our users. Dropbox is used by millions of people every day, including our own friends and families, and we promise them — and all of you — that we work hard to keep your most important data safe, secure, and private.

In this post, we’d like to go through each of the concerns that has been raised, and provide you with answers that we hope you feel are complete, transparent, and straightforward. We also provide detail on specific technical concerns. We look forward to your feedback, and will continue to strive to make our policies as easy to understand as Dropbox is to use. Our goal is to have an open and honest relationship with you so that we can address all of these issues quickly and effectively.


PCWorld: Dropbox Speaks Out on Data Security Controversy

WikiLeaks-how does it sit with you?

Secret US Embassy Cables

Wikileaks began on Sunday November 28th publishing 251,287 leaked United States embassy cables, the largest set of confidential documents ever to be released into the public domain. The documents will give people around the world an unprecedented insight into US Government foreign activities.

The cables, which date from 1966 up until the end of February this year, contain confidential communications between 274 embassies in countries throughout the world and the State Department in Washington DC. 15,652 of the cables are classified Secret.

Text of the White House press secretary’s statement on the WikiLeaks release.

Statement by the Press Secretary
We anticipate the release of what are claimed to be several hundred thousand classified State department cables on Sunday night that detail private diplomatic discussions with foreign governments. By its very nature, field reporting to Washington is candid and often incomplete information. It is not an expression of policy, nor does it always shape final policy decisions. Nevertheless, these cables could compromise private discussions with foreign governments and opposition leaders, and when the substance of private conversations is printed on the front pages of newspapers across the world, it can deeply impact not only US foreign policy interests, but those of our allies and friends around the world. To be clear — such disclosures put at risk our diplomats, intelligence professionals, and people around the world who come to the United States for assistance in promoting democracy and open government. These documents also may include named individuals who in many cases live and work under oppressive regimes and who are trying to create more open and free societies. President Obama supports responsible, accountable, and open government at home and around the world, but this reckless and dangerous action runs counter to that goal. By releasing stolen and classified documents, Wikileaks has put at risk not only the cause of human rights but also the lives and work of these individuals. We condemn in the strongest terms the unauthorized disclosure of classified documents and sensitive national security information.


Pro-Wikileaks group using Botnet to retaliate against detractors