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Security Bits — 21 March 2021

Feedback & Followups

  • An interesting timeline of the Microsoft Exchange mega-attack discussed last time (Editorial by Bart: it really begs the question ‘what took Microsoft so long?’) — krebsonsecurity.com/…
  • Bloomberg Report that when Parler (the social media app that powered the failed US insurrection on January 6th) came back online they applied to be re-listed on the iOS AppStore, but Apple rejected them for ‘highly objectionable content’ — www.imore.com/…
  • Apple launches a single hub for privacy labels on its own native apps — www.imore.com/…
  • Apple’s up-coming App Tracking Transparency feature:
    • Facebook & ATT:
    • Reports of a Chinese government-sponsored tool for cross-app tracking that avoids iOS’s IDFA (ID For Advertisers), the ID ATT protects, surface, with the Chinese government apparently encouraging Chinese app makers to use this new technology to keep tracking users across apps without consent when ATT is enforced later this spring — arstechnica.com/…
    • Apple warned developers not to try work around ATT — www.imore.com/…

Privacy Mini — That T-Mobile Tracking Story (by Allison)

Last week a big news story was that T-Mobile was going to start tracking users for advertising on their phones. I posted the story in our Slack from BGR where they showed how to opt-out

I was all smug and happy that I didn’t have T-Mobile, when Sandy pointed out that most cell companies in the US do this and she was glad that at least T-Mobile notified users (and there was a way to opt out).

I then dug into the privacy settings on AT&T’s site and disabled “relevant ads” on all of our cell phones. I also had a friend of mine figure out how to do it on her Verizon account. Verizon had three toggles she was able to turn off: “customer proprietary network info”, “business and marketing insights” and “relevant mobile advertising”.

I KNOW you’ve told us they do this before but what we’ve learned about what they do with this tracking lately made this much more front of mind and now I took it seriously.

❗ Action Alerts

Worthy Warnings

Notable News

Excellent Explainers

Interesting Insights

Palate Cleansers

Perseverence Parachute with pattern for secret message
Perseverence Parachute with Pattern for JPL’s Secret Message
Perseverance-style Cute Explained — Stay Patched and Stay Secure
Perseverance-style — Stay Patched and Stay Secure

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Legend

When the textual description of a link is part of the link it is the title of the page being linked to, when the text describing a link is not part of the link it is a description written by Bart.

Emoji Meaning
🎧 A link to audio content, probably a podcast.
A call to action.
flag The story is particularly relevant to people living in a specific country, or, the organisation the story is about is affiliated with the government of a specific country.
📊 A link to graphical content, probably a chart, graph, or diagram.
🧯 A story that has been over-hyped in the media, or, “no need to light your hair on fire” 🙂
💵 A link to an article behind a paywall.
📌 A pinned story, i.e. one to keep an eye on that’s likely to develop into something significant in the future.
🎩 A tip of the hat to thank a member of the community for bringing the story to our attention.

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