Posts tagged "Snowden"
Did Edward Snowden Actually Comment on the Dropbox Breach? No.
Almost as fast as every media source out there could jump on the “Yet Another Breach” bandwagon and report that Dropbox had been hacked, the company was denying it. So let’s play a little game of true or false to try to sort out fact from fiction:
Statement: Hackers were able to access logins and passwords of Dropbox users and then leaked 400 account passwords and usernames on to the site Pastebin.
Statement: The usernames and passwords referenced in these articles were stolen from unrelated services, not Dropbox. Attackers then used these stolen credentials to try to log in to sites across the Internet, including Dropbox.
True. (In fact that is a direct quote from the Dropbox blog of October 13, 2014 in which they bluntly proclaim “Dropbox wasn’t hacked”.)
I’m in the business of encouraging people to keep their guard up. I’m always telling people to watch for signs of something that doesn’t feel quite right, take precautionary measures, and stay informed. But even I have to question the tactics some are recommending when it comes to reacting to the NSA PRISM surveillance program leaked by Edward Snowden. In a previous post on this topic, I said it isn’t a black or white argument, but some people are asking you to make it one.
Best-selling author, technology expert and Columbia Law School professor, Tim Wu, has said that web users have a responsibility to quit Internet companies like Google, Facebook, Apple, Yahoo and Skype if it is indeed verified that they have been collaborating with the NSA. In fact, Wu bluntly proclaimed, “Quit Facebook and use another search engine. It’s simple. It’s nice to keep in touch with your friends. But I think if you find out if it’s true that these companies are involved in these surveillance programs you should just quit.” Wu acknowledged that there is still much to learn about this program and admitted it was no surprise that PRISM exists, saying, “When you have enormous concentrations of data in a few hands, spying becomes very easy.”
Do you value national security? Do you want to live free of fear from random terrorist acts like the Boston Marathon bombing? Do you value your privacy? Should you be allowed to act in legal ways without others (namely, the government) digitally eavesdropping on your secrets?
A former data spy is asking us to decide where we stand on the spectrum separating security and privacy. Edward Snowden, 29, a former contractor to the National Security Agency (the guys and gals in charge of wire-tapping phones and internet traffic) and an employee of the CIA, leaked classified documents to reporters about two far-reaching U.S. surveillance programs. Fearing government reprisal, Snowden is hiding in Hong Kong, a country he believes has “a spirited commitment to free speech and the right of political dissent”.