Natasha Lomas
Natasha Lomas
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Cryptocat author gets insanely fast backing to build P2P tech for social media – TechCrunch

Cryptocat author gets insanely fast backing to build P2P tech for social media – TechCrunch

The idea for started with a tweet about reinventing social media.A day later cryptography researcher, Nadim Kobeissi — best known for authoring the open-source E2E-encrypted desktop chat app Cryptocat (now discontinued) — had pulled in a pre-seed investment of $100,000 for his lightweight mesh-networked microservices concept, with support coming from angel investor andI'm designing a decentralized social media solution where each user hosts their own microservice. These then connect to one another in a mesh, allowing following and sharing posts. It will be lightweight, user friendly and...

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Natasha Lomas
Jan 18
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Flo gets FTC slap for sharing user data when it promised privacy – TechCrunch

Flo gets FTC slap for sharing user data when it promised privacy – TechCrunch

The FTC has reached a settlement with Flo, a period and fertility tracking app with 100 million+ users, over allegations it shared users’ health data with third-party app analytics and marketing services like Facebook despite promising to keep users’ sensitive health data private.Flo must obtain an independent review of its privacy practices and obtain app users’ consent before sharing their health information under the terms of the proposed settlement.The action follows a 2019 reports in the that conducted an analysis of a number of apps’ data sharing activity.It found the fertility...

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Natasha Lomas
Jan 13
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Google’s plan to replace tracking cookies goes under UK antitrust probe – TechCrunch

Google’s plan to replace tracking cookies goes under UK antitrust probe – TechCrunch

plan to end support for third-party cookies in the Chrome browser and its Chromium engine is under investigation by the U.K.’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).The antitrust regulator said today that it’s a probe under Chapter II of the U.K.’s Competition Act 1998 into “suspected breaches of competition law by Google”.The move follows a complaint lodged in by a coalition of digital marketing companies which urged the CMA to block Google’s implementation of the self-styled “Privacy Sandbox”.The also received complaints from newspapers and technology companies alleging the tech giant...

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Natasha Lomas
Jan 8
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UK judge denies US request to extradite WikiLeaks’ founder, Julian Assange – TechCrunch

UK judge denies US request to extradite WikiLeaks’ founder, Julian Assange – TechCrunch

A U.K. district court judge has refused to extradite founder Julian Assange to the U.S.In a hearing at Westminster Magistrates’ Court this morning, Judge Vanessa Baraitser denied the extradition on grounds that Assange is a suicide risk and extradition to the U.S. prison system would be oppressive, given the likely impact on his fragile mental health.The U.S., which has been seeking to bring Assange to the country to put him on trial for as well as a number of charges under the controversial , has said it will appeal.The case has been seen as a pivotal test of press freedoms and freedom of...

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Natasha Lomas
Jan 4
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France fines Google $120M and Amazon $42M for dropping tracking cookies without consent – TechCrunch

France fines Google $120M and Amazon $42M for dropping tracking cookies without consent – TechCrunch

France’s data protection agency, the has slapped Google and Amazon with fines for dropping tracking cookies without consent.has been hit with a total of €100 million ($120 million) for dropping cookies on Google.fr and Amazon €35 million (~$42 million) for doing so on the .fr domain under the penalty notices issued today.The regulator carried out investigations of the websites over the past year and found tracking cookies were automatically dropped when a user visited the domains in breach of the country’s Data Protection Act.In Google’s case the CNIL has found three consent violations...

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Natasha Lomas
Dec 10
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Facebook hit with antitrust probe for tying Oculus use to Facebook accounts – TechCrunch

Facebook hit with antitrust probe for tying Oculus use to Facebook accounts – TechCrunch

just got worse: It’s being investigated in Germany for linking usage of its VR product, Oculus, to having a Facebook account.The tech giant raised the hackles of the VR community this summer when it it would be merging users of the latest Oculus kit onto a single Facebook account — and would end support for existing account users by 2023.New users were immediately required to have a Facebook account in order to log in and access content for the virtual reality kit.In Facebook also announced that it was changing the name of the VR business it acquired for around $2BN — and had allowed to...

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Natasha Lomas
Dec 10
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EU lawmakers to push audio-visual sector on geoblocking – TechCrunch

EU lawmakers to push audio-visual sector on geoblocking – TechCrunch

European Union lawmakers are considering whether current rules aimed at limiting the practice of geoblocking across the bloc should be extended to cover access to streaming audio-visual content.Access to services like Netflix tends to be gated to individual EU Member States, meaning Europeans can be barred from accessing libraries of content offered elsewhere in the region. So if you’re trying to use your Netflix subscription to access the service after moving to another Member State, or want to access inventory offered by Netflix elsewhere in Europe, the answer is typically a big fat no,...

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Natasha Lomas
Nov 30
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What’s all this about Europe wanting crypto backdoors? – TechCrunch

What’s all this about Europe wanting crypto backdoors? – TechCrunch

A emerged over the weekend claiming European lawmakers who are worried about terrorism are speeding towards a ban on end-to-end encryption. Spoiler: It’s a little more nuanced than that. Read on for our break down of what’s actually going on… Is Europe about to ban E2E Encryption?No.A report in the yesterday appeared to suggest a ban incoming on end-to-end encryption which the headline linked to a recent terror attack in the country. In fact there have been ongoing between Member States on the topic of encryption — and — for several years now.The report is based on a of the Council of the...

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Natasha Lomas
Nov 9
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Europe to limit how big tech can push its own services and use third-party data – TechCrunch

Europe to limit how big tech can push its own services and use third-party data – TechCrunch

European lawmakers are taking aim at big tech’s ability to push its own services in search results at the expense of rivals, with Commission EVP confirming today that a legislative proposal due in a few weeks will aim to ban what she called “unfair self-preferencing”.The concern is that so-called gatekeeper platforms have the ability to manipulate the way they rank different businesses — and “show their own services more visibly than their rivals”, she said in a .The Commission is expected to propose a package of legislative measures next month to update long-standing EU e-commerce rules...

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Natasha Lomas
Oct 29
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Twitter changes its hacked materials policy in wake of New York Post controversy – TechCrunch

Twitter changes its hacked materials policy in wake of New York Post controversy – TechCrunch

Image Credits: / Getty ImagesTwitter has announced an update to its — saying it will no longer remove hacked content unless it’s directly shared by hackers or those “acting in concert with them”.Instead of blocking such content/links from being shared on its service it says it will label tweets to “provide context”.Wider Twitter rules against posting private information, synthetic and manipulated media and non-consensual nudity all still apply — so it could still, for example, remove links to hacked material if the content being linked to violates other policies. But just tweeting a link to...

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Natasha Lomas
Oct 16
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Legal clouds gather over US cloud services, after CJEU ruling – TechCrunch

Legal clouds gather over US cloud services, after CJEU ruling – TechCrunch

In the wake of by Europe’s top court — striking down a flagship transatlantic data transfer framework called Privacy Shield, and cranking up the legal uncertainty around processing EU citizens’ data in the U.S. in the process — Europe’s lead data protection regulator has fired its own warning shot at the region’s data protection authorities (DPAs), essentially telling them to get on and do the job of intervening to stop people’s data flowing to third countries where it’s at risk.Countries like .The original complaint that led to the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) ruling focused on use of...

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Natasha Lomas
Jul 17
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Facebook denies it will pull service in Europe over data transfer ban – TechCrunch

Facebook denies it will pull service in Europe over data transfer ban – TechCrunch

head of global policy has denied the tech giant could close its service to Europeans if local regulators order it to suspend data transfers to the U.S. following in July that has cemented the schism between U.S. surveillance laws and EU privacy rights.emerged this week of a Dublin court filing* by Facebook, as it was seeking a stay to a preliminary suspension order on its EU-U.S. data transfers, that suggested the tech giant could pull out of the region if regulators enforce a ban against its use of a data transfer mechanism known as Standard Contractual Clauses.The court filing is attached...

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Natasha Lomas
Sep 23
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Sentinel loads up with $1.35M in the deepfake detection arms race – TechCrunch

Sentinel loads up with $1.35M in the deepfake detection arms race – TechCrunch

Estonia-based , which is developing a detection platform for identifying synthesized media (aka deepfakes), has closed a $1.35 million seed round from some seasoned angel investors — including Jaan Tallinn (Skype), Taavet Hinrikus (TransferWise), Ragnar Sass & Martin Henk (Pipedrive) — and Baltics early-stage VC firm, United Angels VC.The challenge of building tools to detect deepfakes has been likened to an arms race — most recently by tech giant Microsoft, which launched a detector tool in the hopes of helping pick up disinformation aimed at November’s U.S. election. “The fact that...

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Natasha Lomas
Sep 14
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