Talkative homebuyers beware, the seller might be listening

Posted by & filed under Ethical Issues.

Real estate agent says clients used audio, video surveillance to eavesdrop on potential buyers. Homebuyers should watch what they say during home viewings, according to an Ontario real estate agent who says two of her clients recently used cameras and microphones to eavesdrop on potential buyers. Juliana Webster says the rules should be changed to force… Read more »

The gadgets of the future know everything wrong with you right now

Posted by & filed under Consumer Technology.

After three hours wandering through endless aisles of gadgets at CES, the world’s largest consumer technology conference, the products start to blend together. Was this automated cat litter cleaner the same one we saw 20 minutes ago? How many internet-connected locks can the world possibly need? But somewhere between hour four and five, something strange happens…. Read more »

How Alexa knows the difference between a breaking window and a wine glass

Posted by & filed under Amazon, Privacy.

For Amazon, getting Alexa’s new security-guard feature to work meant literally breaking a lot of windows. In December, the company started inviting Amazon Echo users to try out Alexa Guard, a new setting that turns the smart speakers into home security devices. It listens for suspicious sounds when you’re away and sends a smartphone alert if it detects, say,… Read more »

Bell wants permission to gather and track customer data

Posted by & filed under Privacy.

Canada’s largest telecommunications group is getting mixed reviews for its plan to follow the lead of companies like Google and Facebook in collecting massive amounts of information about the activities and preferences of its customers. Bell Canada began asking its customers in December for permission to track everything they do with their home and mobile… Read more »

It’s not just Apple — Samsung is hurting, too

Posted by & filed under Apple, Samsung.

The South Korean company said Tuesday that its fourth-quarter operating profit is set to plunge nearly 30% from a year earlier, well below analysts’ forecasts. It blamed the sharp drop on “lackluster demand” for its memory chips and “intensifying competition” in the smartphone industry. Samsung’s guidance comes after Apple (AAPL) set off alarm bells last… Read more »

Banning Huawei from building new 5G wireless network won’t really hurt Canada’s big telecom firms

Posted by & filed under Cybersecurity.

A possible federal government ban prohibiting Huawei from building Canada’s 5G network is unlikely to have a major financial impact on two of the country’s top communication companies, analysts said. Source: CBC News Date: December 19th, 2018 Link: https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/huawei-ban-government-bell-telus-5g-1.4950521 Discussion 1) “Huawei’s equipment is already used in telecommunications infrastructure run by Canada’s major cellphone carriers, namely BCE and Telus. Those two companies are currently… Read more »

As Facebook Raised a Privacy Wall, It Carved an Opening for Tech Giants

Posted by & filed under FaceBook.

For years, Facebook gave some of the world’s largest technology companies more intrusive access to users’ personal data than it has disclosed, effectively exempting those business partners from its usual privacy rules, according to internal records and interviews. The special arrangements are detailed in hundreds of pages of Facebook documents obtained by The New York… Read more »