Blog topic: Be Smart Online

Lessons from a Controversial App

In the mood for love, or just after a one-night stand? [This app] puts you in control! Reveal the hottest nightspots, who’s in them, and how to reach them . . .”

“Browse photos of lovely local ladies and tap their thumbnail to find out more about them.”

“[This app] is a revolutionary new city scanner app than [sic] turns your town into a dating paradise!”

- The pitch from a controversial app

Many people join online dating services. But recently, a controversial mobile app created profiles of men and women, many of whom didn’t know their information – including their location – was being shared by an app advertised as a “dating paradise” for finding “love.” The app created profiles of these men and women by collecting information that was publicly available through foursquare and Facebook – like location, photos, and contact information -- and presenting it in a context that many people found surprising, and even disturbing. Users of the app were able to scan their surrounding area to view the profiles of men and women who were nearby, even though many of those men and women never signed-up to be a part of the service. 

Blog Topic: Be Smart Online

Don't Take It From Us...

When it comes to advice about online dating scams, you could listen to OnGuardOnline.gov. We have advice to help you protect yourself and your money. 

But why not go straight to the source, too? Many online dating sites now offer really practical advice on how to avoid relationship scams.
 

Coordinating Voluntary Efforts to Fight Botnets

Over the past several years, a new threat has emerged on the Internet, increasingly putting consumers at risk. Some industry experts suggest that as many as 1 in 10 computers in the U.S. are part of what is called a botnet.

Stop.Think.Connect. Celebrates National Police Week

I’m passing on some information from the Stop Think Connect campaign.

This week the Stop.Think.Connect. Campaign is celebrating National Police Week. A tradition since 1962, National Police Week is a time to honor the tremendous efforts and sacrifices law enforcement officers make every day to help keep this country secure.

Myspace Settles FTC Charges That It Misled Millions of Users

The social networking site Myspace has agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that it misrepresented how it shared users’ information with advertisers.

Blog Topic: Be Smart Online

Grand Opening: A New Page for Small Business

If you run a small business, you may rely on technology to expand your reach and stay competitive, even if you don’t have a full-time IT staff. OnGuardOnline.gov wants you to have the information you need to protect your data, your networks, and your IT systems.

Mobile Devices Roundtable: Identifying Good Privacy and Security Practices

Recently, I had the opportunity to speak at a Mobile Devices Roundtable organized by the HHS Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) and the HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR).  The Roundtable was part of HHS’ initiative to identify privacy and security good practices for health care providers, professionals and other entities that are using mobile services.

Blog Topic: Be Smart Online

FTC Highlights Annual Accomplishments Online

Every year, the FTC Chairman highlights the work the agency has done to protect consumers and promote business competition. This year, for the first time, these highlights are online with interactive, multimedia features.

Malware’s Not So Entertaining

A wildly successful book series like The Hunger Games becomes a widely anticipated movie series. That means millions of curious fans on the lookout for sneak peeks, actor bios, author details, and more. Criminals are counting on it.

Blog Topic: Be Smart Online

Social Networking Site Settles FTC Charges

The social networking site RockYou has agreed to settle FTC charges that its security flaws allowed hackers to access the personal information of 32 million users.  The FTC complaint also alleges that the company collected info from more than 100,000 kids in violation of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). RockYou will pay a $250,000 civil penalty for the alleged COPPA violations.

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