Connecting Your New Gadget to the Wireless Internet

Many people will be getting shiny, new wireless gadgets this holiday season. This might be a new smart phone, a laptop or netbook computer, or a tablet such as the iPad. One of the most attractive features of these devices is that they can connect to the Internet wirelessly, using Wi-Fi networks found in homes, offices, and many public locations (hotspots). This is a great feature, but it does come with risks.

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Insights on Privacy - Jesse Hirsh and Chris Soghoian on the Frontiers of the Privacy Landscape

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (OPC) is holding the first armchair discussion in its Insights on Privacy Speakers’ Series. Our first event will take place on Friday, December 10th with Chris Soghoian and Jesse Hirsh. Chris and Jesse will report from the frontiers of the privacy landscape and give their thought-provoking insights into what the future of privacy might look like. Known as stimulating speakers, Chris and Jesse will no doubt push some boundaries and engage the audience on their assumptions and understanding of privacy, identity and reputation online.

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Fleeced by Firesheep?

Last week, you may have heard about Firesheep, a plug-in for the Firefox web browser that lets an eavesdropper take over another user's session—such as a login to Twitter or Facebook—by intercepting packets on a local network and copying the victim’s cookie.  What Firesheep does is to take advantage of a known security flaw and make it easy to exploit, by carrying out sidejacking (or session hijacking). There are two main parts to this exploit:

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Do your kids know how to protect their online privacy?

With new technologies emerging all the time, it can be hard to stay in the loop in terms of privacy. Many applications and websites have privacy settings, but using them might not always be straightforward or obvious (or even seem to matter), especially to youth. That’s why the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada is proud to be a sponsor of the Youth Privacy Online Conference in Toronto, held on Wednesday, December 1st.

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"People don't care about privacy until it bites them."

Understanding how we construct and manage our online reputations is crucial in our understanding of how people determine what to make public and what to keep private in online environments. The interview below, with Firefox's Creative Director Aza Raskin, has some interesting observations on what the construction of identity and memories could look like in the future. Also, around 4:35, he talks about the work Mozilla has been doing to create a set of privacy icons in the style of Creative Commons licences to help people understand how their data is being collected and used.

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