lundi 28 novembre 2005

Big Broothel

Google has been aggressive about collecting information about its users' activities online. It stores their search data, possibly forever, and puts "cookies" on their computers that make it possible to track those searches in a personally identifiable way - cookies that do not expire until 2038. Its e-mail system, Gmail, scans the content of e-mail messages so relevant ads can be posted. Google's written privacy policy reserves the right to pool what it learns about users from their searches with what it learns from their e-mail messages, though Google says it won't do so. It also warns that users' personal information may be processed on computers located in other countries.

The government can gain access to Google's data storehouse simply by presenting a valid warrant or subpoena. Under the Patriot Act, Google may not be able to tell users when it hands over their searches or e-mail messages. If the federal government announced plans to directly collect the sort of data Google does, there would be an uproar - in fact there was in 2003, when the Pentagon announced its Total Information Awareness program, which was quickly shut down.

Adam Cohen NYT 28-Nov

S'il n'en faut pas plus pour vous rendre parano (ou simplement vous énerver contre ce qui se passe à l'insu de votre plein gré) vous pouvez toujours utiliser la version expurgée de Google : SCROOGLE (le site renvoie les résultats du moteur Google en virant tous les trackers, soit no cookies, no search-term records, access log deleted after 7 days)

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