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.: UK trade group rallies to save cookies - 12th Nov 2001

"The cookie, a simplistic identification tag that most Internet users unknowingly carry when surfing the Web, runs the risk of being outlawed under a proposed privacy directive from the European Commission. The legislation has triggered concern in Europe's Internet advertising community. The Interactive Advertising Bureau U.K. (IAB) said British companies could lose $271.8 million (187 million pounds) if the directive is ratified.

"Cookies have been branded as spyware tools, or some kind of subversive software," said Danny Meadows-Klue, chairman of the IAB U.K. "But it's what we use everyday."..."
[ZDNN]




.: IE security hole leads to cookie jar - 9th Nov 2001

"Microsoft has warned that versions of Internet Explorer can expose consumers' personal data contained within cookies.

The vulnerability exists within IE 5.5 and 6.0, but earlier browser editions "may or may not be affected," according to a security bulletin posted to Microsoft's Web site Thursday. The security flaw allows an outsider to break into cookies--tiny electronic files used by Web sites to file account information or personalize pages--through a specially crafted Web page or e-mail. A person could then steal or alter data from Web accounts, including credit card numbers, usernames and passwords.

"A malicious Web site with a malformed URL could read the contents of a user's cookie, which might contain personal information," according to the Redmond, Wash.-based company. "In addition, it is possible to alter the contents of the cookie. This URL could be hosted on a Web page or contained in an HTML e-mail."..."
[news.com]




.: Privacy expert resigns to focus on security - 1st Nov 2001

"Well-known privacy watchdog Richard Smith said Wednesday that he is leaving his post at the Privacy Foundation to research security issues following the Sept. 11 attacks, one sign of the country's shifting focus from protecting privacy to ensuring safety.

A veteran computer programmer, Smith will leave his position as chief technology officer at the Denver-based Privacy Foundation to become independent consultant. Smith gained prominence early in the Net economy boom for revealing potentially harmful tracking technologies within software programs and operating systems, including high-profile privacy flaws at RealNetworks and Microsoft.

Smith plans to research issues related to Internet security and biometrics technologies, including the effectiveness of facial-scanning technology installed at airports and the possible threat of cyberterrorism...."
[news.com]




.: Europe Goes After the Cookie - 31st Oct 2001

"The "cookie," a simplistic identification tag that most Internet users unknowingly carry when surfing the Web, runs the risk of being outlawed under a proposed privacy directive from the European Commission.

The legislation has triggered concern in Europe's Internet advertising community. The Interactive Advertising Bureau UK (IAB) said British companies could lose 187 million pounds ($272.1 million) if the directive is ratified.

"Cookies have been branded as spyware tools, or some kind of subversive software," Danny Meadows-Klue, chairman of the IAB United Kingdom, told Reuters. "But it's what we use everyday."..."
[wired]




.: Law could open doors for Net surveillance - 26th Oct 2001

"The hour new anti-terrorism legislation becomes law, Attorney General John Ashcroft said Thursday that he would direct all U.S. prosecutors and FBI offices to immediately use their expanded powers to wiretap phones, monitor Internet traffic and apprehend suspects.

Addressing the U.S. Conference of Mayors, Ashcroft said President George W. Bush planned to sign legislation Friday that would greatly boost the powers of law enforcement officers in the war against terrorism. The Senate gave final congressional approval Thursday, a day after the bill cleared the House of Representatives.

"A new era in America's fight against terrorism is about to begin," he said. Ashcroft had proposed the legislation after hijacked plane attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon Sept. 11 killed over 5,000 people..."
[news.com]






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