Tag Archives: Privacy

Why People Should Never Ever Use DuckDuckGo

http://techrights.org/2020/07/02/ddg-privacy-abuser-in-disguise/

There are substantial privacy and civil liberty issues with DuckDuckGo. Here they are spot-lighted:

Nefarious History of DDG founder & CEO:
DDG’s founder (Gabriel Weinberg) has a history of privacy abuse, starting with his founding of Names DB, a surveillance capitalist service designed to coerce naive users to submit sensitive information about their friends. (2006)
Weinberg’s motivation for creating DDG was not actually to “spread privacy”; it was to create something big, something that would compete with big players. As a privacy abuser during the conception of DDG (Names Database), Weinberg sought to become a big-name legacy. Privacy is Weinberg’s means (not ends) in that endeavor. Clearly he doesn’t value privacy – he values perception of privacy.
Direct Privacy Abuse:
DDG was caught violating its own privacy policy by issuing tracker cookies.
DDG’s app sends every URL you visit to DDG servers. (reaction).
DDG is currently collecting users’ operating systems and everything they highlight in the search results. (to verify this, simply hit F12 in your browser and select the “network” tab. Do a search with javascript enabled. Highlight some text on the screen. Mouseover the traffic rows and see that your highlighted text, operating system, and other details relating to geolocation are sent to DDG. Then change the query and submit. Notice that the previous query is being transmitted with the new query to link the queries together)
DDG is accused of fingerprinting users’ browsers.
When clicking an ad on the DDG results page, all data available in your session is sent to the advertiser, which is why the Epic browser project refuses to set DDG as the default browser.
DDG blacklisted Framabee, a search engine for the highly respected framasoft.org consortium.
Censorship:
Some people replace Google with DDG in order to avoid censorship. DDG is not the answer.

DDG is complying with the “celebrity threesome injunction”.
CloudFlare: DDG promotes one of the largest privacy abusing tech giants and adversary to the Tor community: CloudFlare Inc. DDG results give high rankings to CloudFlare sites, which consequently compromises privacy, net neutrality, and anonymity:
Anonymity: CloudFlare DoS attacks Tor users, causing substantial damage to the Tor network.
Privacy: All CloudFlare sites are surreptitiously MitM’d by design.
Net neutrality: CloudFlare’s attack on Tor users causes access inequality, the centerpiece to net neutrality.
DDG T-shirts are sold using a CloudFlare site, thus surreptitiously sharing all order information (name, address, credit card, etc) with CloudFlare despite their statement at the bottom of the page saying “DuckDuckGo is an Internet privacy company that empowers you to seamlessly take control of your personal information online, without any tradeoffs.” (2019)
DDG hired CloudFlare to host spreadprivacy.com (2019)
Harmful Partnerships with Adversaries of Privacy Seekers:
DDG patronizes privacy-abuser Amazon, using AWS for hosting.
Amazon is making an astronomical investment in facial recognition which will destroy physical travel privacy
worldwide.
Amazon uses Ring and Alexa to surveil neighborhoods and the inside of homes.
Amazon paid $195k to fight privacy in CA. (also see http://cal-access.sos.ca.gov/Campaign/Committees/Detail.aspx?id=1401518&view=late1)
Amazon runs sweat shops, invests in climate denial, etc… the list of non-privacy related harms is too long to list here.
DDG feeds privacy-abuser Microsoft by patronizing the Bing API for search results and uses Outlook email service.
Microsoft Office products violate the GDPR (the Dutch government discovered numerous violations)
Microsoft finances AnyVision to equip the Israeli military with facial recognition to be used against the Palestinians who they oppress.
Microsoft paid $195k to fight privacy in CA. (also see http://cal-access.sos.ca.gov/Campaign/Committees/Detail.aspx?id=1401518&view=late1)
DDG hires Microsoft for email service: torsocks dig @8.8.8.8 mx duckduckgo.com +tcp | grep -E ‘^\w’ ==> “…duckduckgo-com.mail.protection.outlook.com”
DDG is partnered with Yahoo (aka Oath; plus Verizon and AOL by extension). DDG helps Yahoo profit by patronizing Yahoo’s API for search results, and also through advertising. The Verizon corporate conglomerate is evil in many ways:
Yahoo, Verizon, and AOL all supported CISPA (unwarranted surveillance bills)
Yahoo, Verizon, and AOL all use DNSBLs to block individuals from running their own mail servers, thus forcing an over-share of e-mail metadata with a relay.
Verizon and AOL both drug test their employees, thus intruding on their privacy outside of the workplace.
Verizon supports the TTP treaty.
Yahoo voluntarily ratted out a human rights journalist (Shi Tao) to the Chinese gov w/out warrant, leading to his incarceration.
Yahoo recently recovered “deleted” e-mail to convict a criminal. The deleted e-mail was not expected to be recoverable per the Yahoo Privacy Policy.
Verizon received $16.8 billion in Trump tax breaks, then immediately laid off thousands of workers.
(2014) Verizon fined $7.4 million for violating customers’ privacy
(2016) Verizon fined $1.35 million for violating customers’ privacy
(2018) Verizon paid $200k to fight privacy in CA. See also this page
(2018) Verizon caught taking voice prints?
more dirt (scroll down to Verizon)
(2016) Yahoo caught surreptitiously monitoring Yahoo Mail messages for the NSA.
Advertising Abuses & Corruption:
DDG consumed a room at FOSDEM 2018 to deliver a sales pitch despite its proprietary non-free server code, then dashed out without taking questions. Shame on FOSDEM organizers for allowing this corrupt abuse of precious resources.
Tor Project accepted a $25k “contribution” (read: bribe) from DDG, so you’ll find that DDG problems are down-played. This is why Tor Browser defaults to using DDG and why Tor Project endorses DDG over searxes.eu.org – and against the interests of the privacy-seeking Tor community. The EFF also pimps DDG – a likely consequence of EFF’s close ties to Tor Project.

How NeoCon Billionaire Paul Singer Is Driving the Outsourcing of US Tech Jobs to Israel

Several U.S. tech giants including Google, Microsoft and Intel Corporation have filled top positions with former members of Israeli military intelligence and are heavily investing in their Israeli branches while laying off thousands of American employees, all while receiving millions of dollars in U.S. government subsidies funded by American taxpayers.

 

With nearly 6 million Americans unemployed and regular bouts of layoffs in the U.S. tech industry, major American tech companies like Google, Microsoft and Intel Corporation are nonetheless moving key operations, billions in investments, and thousands of jobs to Israel — a trend that has largely escaped media attention or concern from even “America first” politicians. The fact that this massive transfer of investment and jobs has been so overlooked is particularly striking given that it is largely the work of a single leading neoconservative Republican donor who has given millions of dollars to President Donald Trump.

To make matters worse, many of these top tech companies shifting investment and jobs to Israel at record rates continue to collect sizable U.S. government subsidies for their operations while they move critical aspects of their business abroad, continue to layoff thousands of American workers, and struggle to house their growing company branches in Israel. This is particularly troubling in light of the importance of the tech sector to the overall U.S. economy, as it accounts for 7.1 percent of total GDP and 11.6 percent of total private-sector payroll.

Furthermore, many of these companies are hiring members of controversial Israeli companies — known to have spied on Americans, American companies, and U.S. federal agencies — as well as numerous members of Israeli military intelligence as top managers and executives.

. . . .

In recent years, the top U.S. tech companies have been shifting many of their most critical operations, particularly research and development, to one country: Israel. A 2016 report in Business Insider noted that Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Amazon and Apple had all opened up research and development (R&D) centers in recent years, with some of them having as many as three such centers in Israel, a country roughly the size of New Jersey. Other major tech companies that have also opened key operation and research centers in Israel include Sandisk, Nvidia, PayPal, Palantir and Dell. Forbes noted last year that the world’s top 10 tech companies were now “doing mission-critical work in Israel that’s core to their businesses back at HQ.”

Yet, some of these tech giants, particularly those based in the U.S., are heavily investing in their Israeli branches while laying off thousands of American employees, all while receiving millions of dollars in U.S. government subsidies funded by American taxpayers.

For example, Intel Corporation, which is the world’s second largest manufacturer of semiconductor computer chips and is headquartered in California, has long been a major employer in Israel, with over 10,000 employees in the Jewish state. However, earlier this year, Intel announced that it would be investing $11 billion in a new factory in Israel and would receive around $1 billion in an Israeli government grant for that investment. Just a matter of months after Intel announced its major new investment in Israel, it announced a new round of layoffs in the United States.

. . . .

Particularly troubling is the fact that, since SUNC’s founding, the number of former Unit 8200 members in top positions in American tech companies has skyrocketed. Based on a non-exhaustive analysis conducted by Mintpress of over 200 LinkedIn accounts of former Israeli military intelligence and intelligence officers in three major tech companies, numerous former Unit 8200 alumni were found to currently hold top managerial or executive positions in Microsoft, Google and Facebook.

At Microsoft, managers for at least 15 of the company’s products and programs — including Microsoft’s lead managers for engineering, product strategy, threat analytics and cloud business intelligence — publicly listed their affiliation with Unit 8200 on their LinkedIn accounts. In addition, the general manager of Microsoft’s Israeli Research and Development Center is also a former member of Unit 8200. In total, of the 200 accounts analyzed, 50 of them currently worked for Microsoft.

Similarly, at Google, 28 former Unit 8200 members at the company were identified from their LinkedIn accounts. Among them are Google’s Engineering Director, its strategic partner manager, two growth marketing leads, its lead technical manager, and six product and program managers, including Google’s manager for trust and safety search.

. . . .

This concern is further exacerbated by the deep ties connecting top tech companies like Microsoft and Google to the U.S. military. Microsoft and Google are both key military contractors — Microsoft in particular, given that it is set to win a lucrative contract for the Pentagon’s cloud management and has partnered with the Department of Defense to produce a “secure” election system known as ElectionGuard that is set to be implemented in some U.S. states for the 2020 general election.

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Wikimedia, Microsoft’s Bing search engine, reddit, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation each announced plans to protect their site visitors by using secure HTTPS connections by default

Congratulations to Wikimedia, Microsoft’s Bing search engine, and reddit for announcing this week their intention to switch their websites over to encrypted HTTPS connections by default.

Using an HTTPS connection helps protect the privacy of what people are doing online—making them more willing to read and write about controversial topics. It stops network operators from easily snooping on users’ reading habits, profiling the users’ activity within sites, invisibly altering or censoring web site content, or even injecting malware.

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2015/06/what-do-wikipedia-bing-reddit-and-fbi-have-common

What does it mean?

WHAT DOES IT MEAN?

The state collects:
(a) all our search requests
(b) all our communications
(c) all our financial transactions
(d) all our medical information
(e) all our weapon information
(f) all our travel information
(g) all our tax information
(h) all our title information (real property)
(i) all our marriage and divorce information.
(j) all our birth and death information
+ and insurance companies collect:
(k) all our risk information (our forecasts)
+ and private companies collect our:
(l) genetic information

IT MEANS WE ARE CATTLE.

(Curt Doolittle)