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Now, Aadhaar card may be needed for Air travel

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New Delhi: After mandatory Aadhaar number for filing of Income Tax returns and compulsory linking it with Permanent Account Number (PAN) card, now the government is considering to introduce for Air travel. As per sources, the government has asked IT major Wipro to develop a blueprint for Aadhaar based biometric access to flyers at all airports across India. Following […]

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Technological innovations such as mobile devices and biometrics to capture an entire population’s vital events from birth to death are accelerating progress towards the SDGs, according to the findings of a series of case studies released last week. The case studies from Armenia, Ecuador, Kyrgyzstan, Namibia, Netherlands and Peru show that digital civil registration and identity systems help accelerate progress towards development targets especially poverty, gender equality, migration and universal health coverage. In Africa, almost half of the population is unregistered, thus making them miss out on universal benefits such as improved healthcare, Oliver Chinganya, director for statistics from UN Economic Commission for Africa…

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Serbia

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SHARE Foundation

Living under the watchful eye: Implications of facial recognition surveillance in Serbia

Introduction

In early 2019, the minister of interior and the police director of Serbia announced[1] that 1,000 cutting-edge security cameras with facial recognition capabilities will be installed in 800 locations in Belgrade, the Serbian capital, in partnership with Chinese tech giant Huawei. However, despite the flaws of facial recognition and the intrusiveness for citizens’ privacy when it is used for surveillance,[2] there is no transparency about the cameras and the partnership between the Ministry of Interior and Huawei, which is part of a broader cooperation between the Serbian and Chinese governments.

In November 2018, Serbia adopted a new Law on Personal Data Protection[3] based on the European Union's (EU) General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).[4] The application of the law starts on 21 August 2019, after a nine-month adaptation period provided for compliance with the new rules. SHARE Foundation,[5] a Serbian non-profit organisation established in 2012 to advance human rights and freedoms online, submitted freedom of information requests to the Ministry of Interior asking for information about the cameras and supporting documents (e.g. memorandums, contracts, letters of intent). The Ministry withheld this information, meaning that the public in Serbia was left in the dark about a very problematic technology which can greatly impact the privacy of all citizens.

Legislative context

Similar to other countries with a history of repressive regimes and a broad state surveillance apparatus, there is little of a culture of privacy in Serbia. For example, the first data protection law in Serbia was adopted in 2008. After nearly 10 years of application, it turned out that the law was not good enough to provide an adequate level of protection, especially in a world of expanding technologies such as targeted advertising and a whole new digital economy based on personal data. Also, the law did not regulate video surveillance, which opened space for numerous abuses when it comes to data processing through CCTV systems, both state and privately owned. Introducing a new law was an opportunity to regulate this area of personal data processing, but the provisions on video surveillance were not included in the final text of the Law on Personal Data Protection.

In its annual report for 2018, the Commissioner for Information of Public Importance and Personal Data Protection, Serbia’s independent authority for both freedom of information and protection of citizens’ personal data, highlighted the fact that the Ministry of Justice argued to keep the regulation of video surveillance out of the new Law on Personal Data Protection. The Ministry’s view was that this area of personal data processing should be regulated by a special law and that the GDPR does not contain provisions on video surveillance.[6] However, more than six months after the new Law on Personal Data Protection had been adopted in the National Parliament of Serbia and just two months before it is scheduled to start being applied, no specific law regulating video surveillance has been drafted or even proposed.

Over the past six months, at the time of writing, Serbia has been in a state of political turmoil. There have been anti-government protests across the country after an opposition politician was assaulted by a group of men in December 2018.[7] It is in contexts such as these where facial recognition surveillance systems, which store large amounts of biometric data, could potentially be used for pressuring citizens who are protesting, as well as their families, because of their political views. Beyond political protest, the everyday use of the cameras comes with the risk of data breaches, which includes records of the daily routines and movements of citizens, and which could potentially result in harm to those unwittingly surveilled.

An opaque Panopticon: Citizens in the dark

As soon as Huawei’s facial recognition cameras were announced in the media by the highly ranked officials in Serbia’s internal affairs, SHARE Foundation decided to find out more about Huawei’s cameras in terms of their location, public procurement and other relevant procedures by submitting freedom of information requests to the Ministry of Interior.

In their responses to our requests, the Ministry stated that all information about the procurement of Huawei cameras is “confidential” and therefore not for public access. Also, in an interview for Radio Television of Serbia, Police Director Vladimir Rebić said that the locations of stationary cameras were already determined based on “a broad examination and analysis of events, referring primarily to the criminal offences in Belgrade.” We also requested a copy of this analysis, but the Ministry responded that the information, as well as the location of the cameras, were not contained in any document or other medium, meaning they cannot be provided upon a freedom of information request.[8]

According to Article 54 of the new Law on Personal Data Protection, if it is likely that certain data processing will present a high risk to the rights and freedoms of natural persons, the data controller is obligated to conduct a data protection impact assessment before the beginning of data processing.[9] When SHARE Foundation requested a copy of this impact analysis, the Ministry simply stated that the provisions of the new law are not yet being applied. Having read the official responses of the Ministry of Interior, which suggest that this information does exist, it seemed strange that information provided by a freedom of information officer about such a sensitive topic for citizens’ privacy was contradictory to the statements made by the minister and the police director in the media.

While the Ministry was reluctant to provide any official information about the cutting-edge cameras and their procurement, Huawei on the other hand was more transparent about its cooperation with the Serbian authorities. A case study titled “Huawei Safe City Solution: Safeguards Serbia” was available on Huawei’s official website and it provided detailed information about the cameras and related video surveillance solutions, claiming the cameras were already installed in Belgrade. SHARE Foundation published an article about Huawei’s case study,[10] which strangely disappeared from the company’s website shortly after the publication of our article. Having in mind the sensitivity of this content, we saved an archived copy[11] of the page so the case study can still be accessed online.

Huawei stated that for the test phase, nine cameras in five locations were deployed, with the locations being the Ministry of Interior headquarters, a sports arena, a commercial centre and a police station. After this test deployment, it is stated in the case study that Huawei and the Ministry achieved a Strategic Partnership Agreement in 2017 and that in the first phase of the project 100 high-definition video cameras were installed in more than 60 key locations, with the command and data centre in Belgrade being remodelled.[12]

It is very worrying that such advanced technology, which has great implications for privacy, is being deployed without citizens knowing about this digital “watchful eye” collecting and storing large amounts of their biometric data, even if they have done nothing wrong. Saša Đorđević, a researcher at the Belgrade Centre for Security Policy,[13] a Serbian think tank dedicated to advancing the security of citizens and society, said that although video surveillance can improve security and safety, primarily in road traffic safety, the list of unknown things about Huawei’s video surveillance in Belgrade is long. “The situation can still be corrected if and when it is determined which video surveillance equipment is being purchased, how much it costs the citizens of Serbia, where it is placed and how the personal data will be processed and protected,” he added.[14]

Another problematic aspect of facial recognition technology when used for video surveillance is that it is prone to mistakes, which is especially important for law enforcement and legal proceedings. Research by Big Brother Watch has shown that in the United Kingdom the overwhelming majority of the police’s “matches” using automated facial recognition have been inaccurate and that on average, 95% of “matches” made by facial recognition technology wrongly identified innocent people as crime suspects.[15]

In addition, Big Brother Watch found that the police stored photos of all people incorrectly matched by automated facial recognition systems, meaning that biometric photos of thousands of innocent people have been stored.[16] Storing such sensitive biometric data of citizens is also a privacy and security risk, which is even greater taking into account information leaks during police investigations, which are common in Serbia. “The media in Serbia frequently publish information relating to investigations conducted by the police and the prosecution, quoting mostly unknown sources allegedly ‘close to the investigation’ and sometimes with photos,” explained Đorđević. He mentioned an example when information from the investigation of the murder of a Serbian singer was constantly published on the front pages of tabloid newspapers. Another case Đorđević highlighted occurred in February 2017, when one daily newspaper covered the arrest of a member of a football club supporters’ group on its front page the evening before the police informed the public about his arrest.[17]

In other parts of the world there are similar concerns. With all the recent controversy surrounding facial recognition, two cities in the United States have so far banned the use of facial recognition by the city administration – the first was San Francisco, California, followed by Sommerville, Massachusetts.[18] It is highly likely that more cities will join them, particularly since there is more and more awareness of the negative impacts of facial recognition surveillance.

Conclusion

SHARE Foundation will again approach the Ministry of Interior for information, especially relating to the data protection impact assessment of data processing using Huawei’s cameras, after the application of the new Law on Personal Data Protection starts. Of course, data processing through video surveillance systems should be regulated without delay, either though amendments to the Law on Personal Data Protection or through a separate law. It is also important to introduce citizens to the risks of such invasive technologies and call them to action, as it will provide momentum to further pressurise the authorities and demand more transparency. People feel more secure when they see a camera, as Đorđević noted,[19] but there is also a general lack of understanding of who may collect their personal data, the purposes for which it will be collected, and their rights as data subjects.

Moreover, it is also necessary that the new Commissioner for Information of Public Importance and Personal Data Protection is appointed as soon as possible and in a transparent manner,[20] as the second and final term of Rodoljub Šabić, the previous Commissioner, expired in December 2018. As head of an independent institution, the Commissioner plays a key role in protecting citizens’ personal data and freedom of information and it is of utmost importance that the position is given to a person who has personal integrity, expertise and political independence. Otherwise, affairs such as the one with Huawei’s facial recognition cameras may never be resolved, which would leave citizens exposed to huge risks to their privacy and without appropriate safeguards in cases of data breaches and abuse of personal data. There will also be many doubts around how to apply the new Law on Personal Data Protection, which could prove to be quite a challenge if the Commissioner is not up to the task or is easily influenced by other state institutions and political actors.

Action steps

Having taken into account the lack of transparency surrounding Huawei’s surveillance cameras in Belgrade, we propose the following action steps:

  • Insisting on the proper application of the new Law on Personal Data Protection and conducting the necessary data protection impact assessment.
  • Advocating for the regulation of video surveillance by law in order to provide legal certainty.
  • Engaging the wider community (e.g. civil society organisations, human rights defenders, tech experts, journalists) to help raise awareness among citizens about the impact of video surveillance.
  • Pressuring the Ministry of Interior and other relevant state institutions to provide information about video surveillance and facial recognition in a transparent way.

Footnotes

[1] SHARE Foundation. (2019, 29 March). New surveillance cameras in Belgrade: location and human rights impact analysis – “withheld”. https://www.sharefoundation.info/en/new-surveillance-cameras-in-belgrade-location-and-human-rights-impact-analysis-withheld

[2] Big Brother Watch. (2018). Face Off: The lawless growth of facial recognition in UK policing. https://bigbrotherwatch.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/Face-Off-final-digital-1.pdf

[3] Republic of Serbia. (2018). Law on Personal Data Protection. Available in Serbian at: www.pravno-informacioni-sistem.rs/SlGlasnikPortal/eli/rep/sgrs/skupstina/zakon/2018/87/13/reg

[4] European Union. (2016). Regulation (EU) 2016/679 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 27 April 2016 on the protection of natural persons with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data, and repealing Directive 95/46/EC (General Data Protection Regulation). https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=celex%3A32016R0679

[5] https://www.sharefoundation.info/en

[6] Commissioner for Information of Public Importance and Personal Data Protection of the Republic of Serbia. (2019). Summary report on the implementation of the Law on Free Access to Information of Public Importance and the Law on Personal Data Protection for 2018. https://www.poverenik.rs/images/stories/dokumentacija-nova/izvestajiPoverenika/2018/ENGRezime2018.pdf

[7] Vasovic, A. (2018, 8 December). Thousands protest in Serbia over attack on opposition politician. Reuters. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-serbia-protests/thousands-protest-in-serbia-over-attack-on-opposition-politician-idUSKBN1O70S7

[8] SHARE Foundation. (2019, 29 March). New surveillance cameras in Belgrade: location and human rights impact analysis – “withheld”. Op. cit.

[9] Republic of Serbia. (2018). Op. cit.

[10] SHARE Foundation. (2019, 29 March). Huawei knows everything about cameras in Belgrade – and they are glad to share! https://www.sharefoundation.info/en/huawei-knows-everything-about-cameras-in-belgrade-and-they-are-glad-to-share

[11] https://archive.li/pZ9HO

[12] SHARE Foundation. (2019, 29 March). Huawei knows everything about cameras in Belgrade – and they are glad to share! Op. cit.

[13] www.bezbednost.org

[14] Email correspondence with Belgrade Centre for Security Policy researcher Saša Đorđević, 29 June 2019.

[15] Big Brother Watch. (2018). Op. cit.

[16] Ibid.

[17] Email correspondence with Belgrade Centre for Security Policy researcher Saša Đorđević, 29 June 2019.

[18] Haskins, C. (2019, 28 June). A Second U.S. City Has Banned Facial Recognition. VICE. https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/paj4ek/somerville-becomes-the-second-us-city-to-ban-facial-recognition

[19] Email correspondence with Belgrade Centre for Security Policy Researcher Saša Đorđević, 29 June 2019.

[20] Delegation of the European Union to the Republic of Serbia. (2019, 28 January). Fabrizi: Appointment of new Commissioner for Information of Public Importance should be kicked off as soon as possible. https://europa.rs/fabrizi-appointment-of-new-commissioner-for-information-of-public-importance-should-be-kicked-off-as-soon-as-possible/?lang=en

Notes:
This report was originally published as part of a larger compilation: “Global Information Society Watch 2019: Artificial intelligence: Human rights, social justice and development"
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Huawei Mate 30 Pro review: cel mai bun telefon pe care nu ţi-l putem recomanda (Telefoane mobile)

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Mate 30 Pro nu are nevoie de nicio introducere. Este probabil cel mai popular smartphone de pe internet la momentul actual, popularitate care i se trage din mai multe. Da, este noul flagship al producătorului chinez Huawei, compania de pe locul 2 mondial pe piaţa de smartphone-uri, însă este totodată şi telefonul cu cea mai performantă cameră foto de pe piaţă, dar şi unul dintre puţinele modele care nu poate fi livrat cu Android „complet”, cu aplicaţii Google. Iată cu ce impresii mi-a lăsat noul Mate 30 Pro după mai bine de o săptămână de utilizare.

Prezentare

Mate 30 Pro nu este încă disponibil la vânzare în România şi momentan nu ştim exact dacă şi când va ajunge în magazinele autohtone. Cert este că noi am avut spre testare o versiune din China a telefonului, întrucât o versiune „europeană” nu exista la momentul în care aceste telefoane au fost aduse în ţară. Din acest motiv, vor exista cu siguranţă câteva diferenţe de utilizare faţă de o eventuală variantă europeană,însă asta am avut la îndemână aşa că asta am testat. 

Am mai văzut Mate 30 Pro în trecut, având ocazia de a ne juca cu el pe o perioadă scurtă în cadrul unui eveniment privat organizat de Huawei. Astfel, din punct de vedere al design-ului acest model era o cantitate cunoscută: ecran „orizont” curbat pe margini la un unghi de 88 de grade, sticlă pe spate, o cameră încadrată într-un cerc şi o ramă metalică subţire de jur-împrejurul ecranului.

Pentru că este atât de curbat, ecranul ajunge până aproape de partea din spate a dispozitivului, în timp ce butoanele de volum au fost eliminate complet, singurul buton fizic prezent fiind Power, şi acesta mutat aproape de capacul din spate. Telefonul nu are un jack de 3,5mm şi nici un adaptor în cutie, însă vine cu o pereche de căşti USB-C, cât şi cu un cablu de încărcare capabil să facă transfer de energie la 5A, care se conectează la un adaptor de priză cu încărcare rapidă la 40W „SuperCharge”. Acesta din urmă a venit cu mufă de China/SUA, deci l-am folosit cu un convertor la priză europeană (care nu este inclus în pachet). Desigur, acesta a funcţionat fără probleme, oferind o încărcare extrem de rapidă, procentele crescând vizibil de la o secundă la alta.

În timp ce telefonul este impresionant a o primă vedere din punct de vedere al design-ului, probabil că decizia de a merge atât de mult în direcţia curburii ecranului nu a fost atât de bună. Chiar dacă datorită mai puţin lat decât al altor modele de pe piaţă, acesta este mai uşor de ţinut în mână, Mate 30 Pro este extrem de alunecos. Modelul testat nu include şi o husă în pachet, însă de obicei variantele „retail” ale telefoanelor Huawei includ acest accesoriu.

Chiar şi cu o husă însă, pentru că ecranul este foarte mult extins pe laterale, nici măcar una foarte rezistentă nu ar putea să protejeze foarte bine dispozitivul în cazul unui accident. Având în vedere că telefonul este în mare parte arealizat din sticlă, probabil că cei care aleg să îl cumpere ar trebui să îi acorde o atenţie sporită acestui model. Reparaţiile în România momentan nu sunt posibile, nici la service-ul Huawei, întrucât telefonul nu există oficial pe piaţă, iar piesele de schimb precum un kit display + sticla de protecţie ar fi cu siguranţă foarte scump.

Şi de această dată, Huawei a ales să decoreze sticla de pe spatele telefonului în culori atrăgătoare, modelul mov testat fiind foarte „elegant” şi totodată „unisex”. Nu ai motive să ascunzi culoarea mov a telefonului nici dacă eşti bărbat, chiar dacă porţi mereu costum şi cravată, nuanţa este foarte subtilă şi este combinată cu un bleu foarte plăcut, care conferă acestui dispozitiv un aspect de bujiterie scumpă.

Şi nu am fi departe de adevăr, Mate 30 Pro în Europa a fost anunţat la un preţ de 1.100 euro, acelaşi preţ pe care Samsung îl cere pe Galaxy Note10+ şi Apple pe cel mai ieftin model iPhone 11 Pro Max. Şi faţă de aceste modele, Mate 30 Pro are atât plusuri, cât şi nişte minusuri foarte importante.

Specificaţii

  • Display: 6,53", OLED, Full HD+ (2.400 x 1.176 pixeli), format 18,5:9, HDR10
  • Chipset: Hauwei Kirin 990 Octa-core (2 x 2,86 GHz Cortex-A76 + 2 x 2,09 GHz Cortex-A76 + 4 x 1,86 GHz Cortex-A55), 7nm, Dual NPU, GPU Mali G76-MP16
  • RAM: 8 GB
  • Stocare: 256GB
  • Camera principală: Quad-Camera - 40 MP wide (f/1.6), OIS + 40 MP ultra-wide (f/1.8) + 8 MP zoom 3x (f/2.4) + senzor 3D TOF
  • Camera frontală: 32 megapixeli f/2.0
  • Sistem de operare: Android 10 (EMUI 10), fără Google Mobile Services
  • Baterie: 4,500 mAh, Super Charge 40 W
  • Greutate: 198 grame
  • Altele: dual-SIM (slot SIM 2 comun cu cel pentru card Nano Memory), NFC, senzor de amprentă în ecran, infraroşu, autentificare facială 3D, rezistenţă la apă şi praf IP68
  • Accesorii: încărcător Super Charge, cablu USB-C, căşti pe fir cu USB-C

Impresii

În general un review pentru un smartphone obişnuit ar fi abordat mai întâi capabilităţile hardware, fie că vorbim despre calitatea display-ului, performanţă sau camera foto. Totuşi, Mate 30 Pro este un caz special, aşa că vom începe direct cu software-ul. La o primă vedere, nu s-a schimbat mare lucru de la ultimul flagship Huawei, modelul P30 Pro. Interfaţa este tot EMUI, de data aceasta bazată pe Android 10, însă fără aplicaţii Google.

Având în vedere că vorbim despre un model Huawei realizat pentru piaţa din China, acest lucru nu este deloc ieşit din comun, însă în cazul lui Mate 30 Pro, telefonul nu ar avea acces la Google Mobile Services nici măcar dacă s-ar vinde oficial în România. Scandalul dintre SUA şi Huawei a fost discutat şi documentat şi pe go4it încă de acum jumătate de an de când a început, însă realitatea este că această situaţie are un efect direct asupra utilizării telefonului.

Modul de utilizare al lui Mate 30 Pro nu este cu aproape nimic diferit faţă de cel al unui smartphone Huawei din trecut. Toate funcţiile software native ale EMUI 10 sunt încă aici, iar interfaţa a fost actualizată puţin pentru a fi similară nu doar cu iOS-ul celor de la Apple, cum era în trecut, dar şi cu One UI-ul celor de la Samsung, cu butoane ceva mai mari în aplicaţii şi o secţiune de notificări pe tot ecranul.

Totuşi, apare o problemă destul de mare în momentul în care va trebui să începi să configurezi telefonul pentru utilizare. În locul unui cont Google, va trebui să foloseşti la prima configurare un cont Huawei ID. Dacă ai avut un telefon Huawei în trecut, s-ar putea să ai deja unul, folosit pentru backup-uri în cloud şi autentificarea în cadrul aplicaţiilor Huawei integrate în software-ul EMUI precum HiCare, de exemplu.

Acest cont este folosit şi pentru magazinul de aplicaţii proprietar App Gallery, singurul magazin pre-instalat, de altfel. Nu am avut la îndemână versiunea europeană a magazinului, însă varianta din China pare să fie bine populată cu aplicaţii populare în China precum WeChat, aplicaţiile Baidu, Weibo şi multe altele. Întrucât aplicaţiile pe care le folosim zi de zi în Europa sunt de obicei interzise în China, acestea nu se regăsesc pe App Gallery-ul chinezesc.

Pentru a putea folosi măcar la un nivel de bază telefonul, am instalat folosind un alt magazin de aplicaţii, mai puţin convenţional, Aptoide. Experienţa cu acesta este cel puţin dezamăgitoare, dar măcar îşi face treaba, cât de cât. Odată ce selectezi o aplicaţie din Aptoide, magazinul îţi livrează vreo 2-3 reclame video, iar apoi sistemul EMUI te întrebă dacă vrei să instalezi aplicaţia dintr-o sursă „dubioasă” precum Aptoide, sau dacă nu vrei să cauţi aceeaşi aplicaţie pe App Gallery.

Am folosit această metodă pentru a instala aplicaţiile de social media precum Instagram, Facebook şi Facebook Messenger, care au funcţionat fără probleme, minus atunci când era necesar Google Maps pentru a găsi adresa unui eveniment, de exemplu. Aptoide include aplicaţii Google şi chiar o variantă de Google Mobile Services, însă instalarea lor pune doar iconiţa în meniu, aplicaţiile fiind imposibil de rulat fără instalarea serviciilor printr-o metodă mai „dură”. Atunci când dai click pe o adresă, eşti transferat automat în browser-ul Huawei (telefonul nu include nici Google Chrome) pe site-ul Google Maps. Desigur, funcţionalitatea în browser este limitată. Am reuşit să rulez Waze, în schimb, din Aptoide, deci nu rămâi complet fără navigaţie. Waze este însă util doar pentru navigaţie în maşină, fără să ofere rute pentru pietoni sau pentru transport în comun.

YouTube-ul funcţionează la fel, exclusiv în browser, iar aplicaţii precum Netflix sau altele de acest gen refuză să pornească. Astfel, ecranul de rezoluţie înaltă cu compatibilitate HDR nu poate fi folosit la adevărata lui valoare, întrucât nu poţi accesa conţinutul.

Şi pentru că nu are Google Play Store, telefonul nu poate rula nici aplicaţii de banking, deci verificarea soldului curent sau plăţile cu telefonul nu sunt posibile. Există posibilitatea ca Huawei să convingă băncile în viitor să ofere aplicaţiile şi prin AppGallery, însă momentan aceste capabilităţi sunt inaccesibile unui Huawei Mate 30 Pro.

Totodată, toate aplicaţiile pe care le-ai cumpărat până acum pe platforma Android, care de obicei mergeau cu tine de la un telefon la altul, nu sunt accesibile. Chiar dacă Huawei Mate 30 Pro este un telefon cu Android, acesta nu îţi poate oferi acces la plaja largă de aplicaţii din magazinul Google. În China acest lucru nu reprezintă o problemă, dar în Europa, magazinul Google este esenţial, nu doar pentru serviciile sale precum YouTube, Gmail sau Maps, ci şi pentru toate celelalte aplicaţii disponibile.

Într-un viitor în care producătorii de aplicaţii încep să publice totul şi pe App Gallery, asemeni magazinului App Store de la Apple un telefon cu software non-Google ar putea fi recomandat. În acest moment însă, nu este cazul, chiar şi cu disponibilitatea câtorva aplicaţii româneşti precum Bitdefender şi Biziday. Huawei are acum nevoie de suportul unor jucători mari precum Facebook, Netflix, sau chiar Google (printr-o metodă similară cu iOS) pentru a putea concura serios pe piaţa de smartphone-uri la capitolul software.  

Şi acum că am trecut peste „elefantul” din cameră, putem vorbi puţin despre hardware, care într-adevăr este foarte bine pus la punct... cu mici excepţii.

De exemplu, ecranul „orizont”, aşa cum este numit de Huawei, compatibil cu HDR10, vine cu o rezoluţie ciudată: 2.400 x 1.176. Aceasta nu este nici pe departe deranjantă, imaginile fiind foarte clare, însă compania o listează în meniu drept FHD+. Faţă de Mate 20 Pro, de anul trecut, unii ar putea considera că acest ecran este un soi de „downgrade” la capitolul rezoluţie. Adevărul este că panoul pare să fie foarte bun, atât timp cât este configurat corespunzător. Implicit, acesta vine cu setarea de culori „intensă” şi o temperatură de culoare echilibrată. Totuşi, culorile nu sunt deloc naturale, iar fotografiile realizate cu telefonul arată diferit pe ecran faţă de cum sunt de fapt.

Dar ecranul este configurat aşa pentru a te impresiona. Odată ce îl treci pe culori naturale se vede că acesta afişează nişte culori „spălăcite”, în nuanţe neutre. Nu este ceva tocmai deranjant, însă cei care sunt interesaţi de un panou care să afişeze culori cât mai corect, probabil că şi-ar fi dorit un ecran calibrat din fabrică. Marginile extrem de curbate arată foarte bine şi te „păcălesc” că ai în mână un ecran „infinit”. Totodată, în utilizare normală, pe margini poţi găsi de multe ori elemente pe care vrei să le atingi, sau în timpul redării unui clip, partea de sus a materialului se poate prelinge pe laterale. Există o opţiune care limitează acest efect, restricţionând lăţimea ecranului pentru fiecare aplicaţie în parte, dar o parte tot apare afişată pe zona curbată, însă nu până la marginea extremă.

Huawei a ales un ecran curbat la extrem pentru a impresiona, însă după primele câteva minute parcă îţi doreşti un telefon mai puţin alunecos şi cu un ecran care să nu afişeze conţinut în zonele în care nu ajungi. Această curbură exagerată constituie şi un alt dezavantaj în utilizarea lui Mate 30 Pro: lipsa unor butoane de volum. Astfel, nu poţi controla volumul pentru muzică atunci când ecranul este stins, iar atunci când este aprins, gestul de atingere dublă pe margine funcţionează doar din când în când.

Chemarea controlului pentru volum nu este consistentă, fiind necesare mai multe apăsări succesive pentru a apărea. Deja notch-ul nici nu mai este o problemă, întrucât acesta poate fi ascuns la nevoie şi măcar Huawei, la fel ca Apple, şi spre diferenţă de alţi producători, chiar a inclus hardware specializat în decupaj.

La fel ca în cazul lui Mate 20 Pro, şi Mate 30 Pro are o tehnologie de autentificare biometrică prin recunoaştere facială. Funcţia este similară cu Face ID de la Apple şi funcţionează la fel sau chiar mai bine. Deblocarea este instantă şi ai opţiunea de a seta dacă telefonul să te ducă direct în meniu, sau dacă să te lase să citeşti mai întâi notificările. Există chiar şi un mod de intimitate, care ascunde toate notificările dacă este detectată o altă persoană în afară de cel care are faţa înregistrată în telefon. Pe lângă recunoaşterea facială, există şi un senzor de amprentă optic în display, care funcţionează foarte bine, însă nu este necesar aproape niciodată, întrucât telefonul se deblochează de obicei înainte să ai timp să pui degetul pe ecran datorită recunoaşterii faciale.

Am testat senzorul de amprentă doar de la depărtare, evitând să intru în raza de recunoaştere facială şi a funcţionat bine şi rapid, mult mai consistent decât cel ultrasonic de pe Galaxy S10 şi Note10, de exemplu. Probabil că acesta este şi argumentul Apple pentru lipsa unui senzor de amprentă pe noile sale iPhone-uri: recunoaşterea facială pur şi simplu funcţionează şi folosind puncte laser şi camere cu infraroşu, este la fel sau chiar mai sigură decât alte tipuri de autentificare. Este bine că există opţiuni, dar nu ai prea multe motive să foloseşti amprenta în defavoarea deblocării faciale pe Mate 30 Pro.

Huawei P30 Pro a dovedit că un flagship poate fi şi puternic şi poate oferi şi autonomie foarte bună. Mate 30 Pro continuă astfel tradiţia, fiind unul dintre puţinele telefoane de pe piaţă care poate funcţiona două zile la o singură încărcare. Sincer, nici nu ar fi fost deranjant dacă Mate 30 Pro ţinea doar o zi, întrucât bateria se încarcă extrem de repede, iar încărcarea wireless este de asemenea prezentă. Ba chair funcţionează şi în sens invers, pentru a încărca alte dispozitive, ceva ce Apple încă nu a adoptat.

Probabil că nu are prea mult sens să mai vorbim despre performanţă în cazul unui telefon de top, însă Huawei Mate 30 Pro se simte mai rapid decât majoritatea telefoanelor de pe piaţă, chiar dacă pe hârtie are un hardware mai puţin puternic. Testele de performanţă pun chipset-ul Kirin 990 undeva la nivelul procesoarelor de anul trecut ale concurenţei, precum Snapdragon 845 şi Apple A12 Bionic.

Benchmarks

  • AnTuTu v8 - 372.897 puncte
  • GeekBench 4 - Single-Core 3.836 / Multi-Core 11.933
  • 3DMark Sling Shot Extreme Vulkan - 5.430 puncte
  • PCMark - 8.549 puncte 

Totuşi, optimizarea software-ului pentru hardware este excelentă, totul fiind foarte rapid, de la deschiderea aplicaţiilor la tranziţiile între ele. Totodată, Kirin 990 este primul procesor Huawei care permite înregistrarea video în 4K la 60 de cadre pe secundă. Capabilităţile de AI sunt greu de măsurat, chiar dacă există teste specifice, însă cei de la Huawei promit performanţă mai bună în toate cazurile de utilizare, fie că vorbim despre îmbunătăţirea fotografiilor prin detecţie de scenă sau de optimizarea consumului de baterie. Cert este că în utilizare Mate 30 Pro este extrem de rapid, comparabil cu un telefon OnePlus din ultimele generaţii. Din păcate, lipsa aplicaţiilor nu prea încurajează folosirea lui la fel de mult precum în cazul altor telefoane „obişnuite”.

Şi aşa ne apropiem de ultima parte a acestui review, unde vom discuta puţin despre camera foto. Există deja destule teste ştiinţifice, care demonstrează calitatea cadrelor realizate cu Mate 30 Pro şi nu le voi contesta. Este adevărat că fotografiile realizate cu acest telefon arată foarte bine, însă nu sunt întotdeauna „corecte” din punct de vedere cromatic sau al expunerii. Chiar şi aşa, este greu să găseşti un alt telefon care performează la fel de bine.

Senzorul principal de 40 megapixeli captează fotografii la 10 megapixeli prin „pixel binning” care păstrează extrem de multe detalii şi de obicei oferă o expunere corectă, însă culorile ar putea fi puţin gălbui, din cauza senzorulu RYYB folosit. Atfel, recomandarea noastră ar fi activarea modului Master AI, care foloseşte setări predefinite de scenă pentru a optimiza cadrele, scăzând astfel din efectul de îngălbenire. Acest senzor este atât de luminos întrucât fotografiile pe timp de noapte, fără modul nocturn, sunt foarte bune, ba chiar uneori prea luminoase. Majoritatea fotografiilor seara sau noaptea trebuie puţin subexpuse pentru a afişa imagini „realiste”, ceea ce poate fi considerat un avantaj sau dezavantaj.

Modul nocturn, aşa cum Huawei ne-a obişnuit deja este extrem de eficient, însă luminează peste necesităţi cadrele. Acesta ar trebui folosit exclusiv în beznă completă, şi chiar şi atunci va oferi un efect exagerat, putând uneori să transforme noaptea în zi. Din păcate, acesta trebuie selectat manual din meniul camerei, iar expunerea durează destul de mult. Alte companii au realizat moduri nocturne care pot să pornească automat la nevoie, sau care sunt accesibile rapid în timpul fotografierii normale.

Foto zi

Galerie foto

De fapt, întreaga aplicaţie de cameră de la Huawei pare să fi rămas puţin în urmă la nivel de interfaţă. Aceasta este foarte încărcată şi greoaie, putând cu uşurinţă să te pierzi în moduri, unele dintre ele precum timelapse, sau slow motion fiind ascunse în meniul „mai multe”. De exemplu, există două moduri de a adăuga blur în jurul unui subiect: apertură, care pare să fie concentrat pe obiecte şi portret, care este realizat pentru oameni. Efectul de blur este mai bun decât pe alte modele, ale concurenţei, precum Samsung, de exemplu, însă tot nu pare să fie „natural”.

Dar Mate 30 Pro mai are şi alte camere. De exemplu, acesta beneficiază de pe urma unei camere „SuperSensing Cine Camera” de 40 megapixeli, cu un obiectiv ultra-wide, realizată special pentru filmări, dar care poate fi folosită şi pentru fotografii. Aceasta este probabil cea mai performantă cameră ultra-wide dintr-un telefon de până acum, însă unghiul său nu este la fel de larg ca în cazul altor dispozitive. Totuşi, este de ajuns pentru câteva fotografii mai cuprinzătoare şi este excelentă pentru filmări, beneficiind de o stabilizare bine pusă la punct, chiar dacă aceasta este exclusiv electronică.

Foto noapte

Galerie foto

Camera de pe Mate 30 Pro poate să şi filmeze şi la 7680 cadre pe secundă în modul slow-motion, în rezoluţie 720p. Rezultatele sunt impresionante, atât timp cât ai lumină destulă şi răbdare să repeţi filmarea până când prinzi exact ceea ce îţi doreşti. Asemeni funcţiei similare de pe Samsung, trebuie ca acţiunea să aibă loc într-o anumită zonă de pe ecran, iar telefonul filmează doar o mică fracţiune de secundă pe care o lungeşte în ceva de aproape un minut. Aceasta este însă o funcţie pe care o vei folosi o dată sau de două ori şi de care vei uita repede.

 

 

În cele din urmă, avem de a face cu o cameră cu zoom optic 3x. Şi aceasta pare să fie cea mai performantă cameră cu zoom 3x de pe piaţă, însă este un pas în spate faţă de camera cu zoom 5x de pe Huawei P30 Pro. Şi acest model poate oferi zoom de până la 5x în mod hibrid, cât şi zoom digital de maximum 30x. La 30x însă nu mai poţi avea pretenţia de a vedea detalii sau de a realiza un cadru foarte stabil. Este doar un lucru pe care îl poţi face, nu ceva ce ar trebui să faci.

Câteva lucruri în plus care trebuie menţionate: modul nocturn funcţionează pe toate cele trei camere, ceva ce este de apreciat, întrucât obiectivele şi senzorii de pe ultra-wide şi zoom nu sunt comparabili în performanţă cu cel principal, deci pentru acestea chiar are sens acest mod de fotografiere. Totuşi, modul în care selectezi camera utilizată este foarte slab implementat.

Majoritatea companiilor au un buton care în mod implicit afişează multiplul de zoom: 0,6x, 1x, 3x, etc. Huawei nu permite însă decât selectarea nivelului de zoom şi implicit a camerei folosite, decât prin tragerea simbolului pe o bară, sau prin „pinch to zoom”. Nu poţi selecta rapid camera şi nivelul de zoom. Singurul lucru mai rapid este atingerea barei în zonele gradate, însă nu este niciodată un proces foarte precis. Dacă doreşti să realizezi o fotografie cu o singură mână, este greu sau chiar imposibil să schimbi camera folosită. Lipsa butoanelor de volum aduce însă un buton virtual mobil pe marginea curbată, care poate fi folosit pe post de declanşator. Prezenta acestui buton nu încurcă, însă nici experienţa de utilizare nu este tocmai impresionantă. Există şi poate fi folosit, la nevoie, dar utilizatorii vor opta cu siguranţă tot pentru clasicul butonul de pe ecran.

Concluzii

Deja am scris un review extrem de lung despre un telefon pe care Huawei probabil că nu îl va lansa în prea multe exemplare în afara Chinei. Este important însă să ştiţi în cazul în care aveţi ocazia să cumpăraţi un astfel de dispozitiv care sunt avantajele şi dezavantajele acestui model. Da, este unul dintre cele mai bine construite telefoane de până acum, cu o cameră foarte bună şi performanţă de top, autonomie şi cam tot hardware-ul pe care ţi l-ai dori de la un telefon.

Totodată, vine cu un software „faultat”, care nu poate să ţină pasul cu concurenţa. Desigur, avem de a face cu jocuri politice şi un conflict economic între SUA şi China. Însă indiferent de părerile personale despre acest conflict, trebuie să recunoaştem că acestea nu schimbă realitatea: Mate 30 Pro este livrat fără aplicaţii şi servicii Google, fără acces la magazinul de aplicaţii cu cea mai bogată ofertă de software, fără acces la aplicaţiile cumpărate anterior şi fără posibilitatea de a rula aplicaţii moderne de streaming video sau audio, sau de banking şi fintech. Să nu mai vorbim despre posibilitatea de plată cu telefonul, întrucât Huawei Pay nu este funcţional în România.

Galerie foto

Concluzia este că Mate 30 Pro este într-adevăr un telefon foarte bun, neaşteptat de bine pus la punct când vine vorba despre hardware. Din păcate, acesta este imposibil de recomandat în România din cauza software-ului. Poate că în viitor, după ce Huawei atrage mai mulţi parteneri, lipsa serviciilor Google nu va mai fi o problemă atât de gravă, iar EMUI, chiar şi cu baze în Android, ar putea deveni o alternativă reală la sistemul de operare Google şi la iOS. Mai durează însă până atunci, iar Huawei va trebui să se mişte repede, întrucât piaţa se mişcă repede, iar utilizatorii probabil că nu vor avea răbdare să aştepte foarte mult. Xiaomi, Oppo şi OnePlus vin destul de tare din urmă pe piaţa din Europa, în timp ce Apple abia a început să îşi revină după câţiva ani de scădere.

Dacă mâine apare update pentru Mate 30 Pro cu servicii Google, da, acesta este probabil cel mai bun telefon cu Android pe care îl poţi cumpăra în acest moment, în ciuda celorlalte minusuri ale sale. Dacă vrei să te bazezi pe cunoştinţele tale în domeniu şi să instalezi pe cont propriu aplicaţiile Google, ia în calcul că majoriatea utilizatorilor nu ştiu să facă asta şi nu sunt interesaţi să înveţe. Iar un update pe serverele Google ar putea în orice moment să blocheze accesul acestor dispozitive care nu au acces oficial la serviciile sale. Este un risc prea mare şi pe bani foarte mulţi, pe care utilizatorii de dispozitive premium nu ar trebui să şi-l asume.

 

(...)

Cuvinte cheie: Mate 30 Pro, Huawei, android 10, emui 10, mate 30 pro review, huawei mate 30 pro review, mate 30 review

Subiecte asemănătoare:
» Angela Merkel cere ţărilor europene să cadă de comun acord asupra tehnologiilor 5G din China
» Telefoanele Huawei interzise de Ministerul Apărării din Spania
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» Samsung Galaxy S11+ apare în primele imagini cu cinci camere pe spate

Articol original - Huawei Mate 30 Pro review: cel mai bun telefon pe care nu ţi-l putem recomanda, de pe site-ul go4it.ro


          

Brazil

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Authored by: 

Organization: 

Instituto de Pesquisa em Direito e Tecnologia do Recife (IP.rec)

We don’t need no observation: The use and regulation of facial recognition in Brazilian public schools

Introduction

The use of facial recognition technology in schools around the world in countries such as China and the United States has encouraged the similar use of this technology by other countries, including Brazil. However, it has also raised questions and concerns about the privacy of students. Because of this, analyses of the nature and consequences of the use of facial recognition technology in diverse scenarios are necessary.

This report presents a brief reflection on the use of facial recognition technologies in Brazilian public schools, including in the state of Pernambuco, where IP.rec is based, and considers their implications for citizens' rights to privacy, as well as the possibility of the technology being regulated by existing laws.

Background

Artificial intelligence (AI), algorithms, the “internet of things”, smart cities, facial recognition, biometrics, profiling, big data. When one tries to imagine the future of big cities, it is impossible not to think about these terms. But is the desire to make cities “smarter” jeopardising the privacy of Brazilian citizens? Does this desire turn people into mere guinea pigs for experimentation with new technologies in a laboratory of continental proportions?

The use of facial recognition technologies in Brazilian public schools has already been implemented in several cities such as Jaboatão dos Guararapes (in the state of Pernambuco), Cabo de Santo Agostinho (Pernambuco), Arapiraca (Alagoas), Cravinhos (São Paulo), Tarumã (São Paulo), Potia (São Paulo), Paranavaí (Paraná), Guaíra (Paraná), Viana (Espírito Santo), Anápolis (Goiás), Senador Canedo (Goiás) and Vila Bela da Santíssima Trindade (Mato Grosso).[1] Among the features provided by the so-called Ponto iD[2] system is the monitoring of the attendance of students at school without the need to take roll call. The system also aims to help optimise class time, as the time spent on the roll call is saved; help manage school meals, as cooks are notified of the exact number of students in class as soon as the gates close; and decrease the school drop-out rate, as guardians receive, through an app, notifications that their child is in the school. The last is noted as a primary social consequence of using the technology. To implement the system, the city of Jaboatão dos Guararapes, for example, has spent BRL 3,000 (USD 780) per month per school.

The technology provider's webpage states that the solution is designed in an integrated way, linking government departments. Because of this, a diverse range of public institutions can share information with each other. For example, according to the government of the city of Jaboatão dos Guararapes, if a student is absent for more than five days, the Guardianship Council is notified as the system also shares students’ information with that body.[3]

In 2015, the service provider also stated that the system would be connected to the Bolsa Família programme,[4] which is a direct income transfer programme aimed at families living in poverty and extreme poverty throughout the country, and intended to help them out of their vulnerable situation. In Brazil, more than 13.9 million families are served by Bolsa Família.[5] The receipt of the benefits is conditioned, among other duties of a student whose family is a beneficiary of the programme, to a minimum school attendance of 85% for children and adolescents from six to 15 years old and 75% for adolescents 16 and 17 years old.[6]

Privacy? Absent. Risks? Present

As previously observed by several scholars, digital technologies not only make behaviour easier to monitor, but also make behaviour more traceable.[7] Given this potential, a number of critical issues in relation to the application of facial recognition systems in educational contexts were identified.

According to the service provider, the system works off a platform that uses cloud computing capabilities, but it was not possible to identify any information regarding the level of security related to the storage of collected data in the company’s privacy policy available on its official website. Despite this, among the said benefits offered by the technology implemented are not only the monitoring of students’ attendance and their school performance, but the possibility of monitoring students’ personal health data.

The mayor of the city of Jaboatão dos Guararapes[8] states that in addition to facial recognition, the software also offers, through the collection of other information, the possibility of better planning the number of daily school meals. As soon as the school’s gates are closed, the cooks receive via SMS[9] the exact number of students who are in the classrooms. Meanwhile, according to the secretary of education of Jaboatão dos Guararapes, Ivaneide Dantas, at some point even the health problems of students will be identified and parents informed using the system.

However, the lack of information that is included in the company’s privacy policy,[10] or on city halls’ websites, constitutes a critical point in the relationship between students and the education system. The problem becomes all the more obvious since the solution involves sensitive data – biometric data – of minors.

The text of the Brazilian General Data Protection Law (LGPD),[11] recently approved unanimously in congress after almost 10 years of discussions and two years of proceedings, has undergone major changes due to the vetoes of former president Michel Temer at the time of its sanction and more recently by President Jair Bolsonaro. The changes to the text of the LGPD through Provisional Measure 869/2018[12] have resulted in the impairment of the effectiveness of the law as well as a series of setbacks. These setbacks have ignored issues considered already decided on in discussions that had popular participation, as well as the input of members of the executive and legislative branches. As argued in a report released by the joint committee set up to investigate the possible impacts caused by the Provisional Measure,[13] the revised act put at risk the effectiveness of the guarantees reached by the previous text.

The public sector, especially the police authorities, are using new technologies to monitor the population without the social consequences being considered or even measured. The adoption of facial recognition systems for public security purposes is already a reality in several Brazilian cities. Recently, the increase in the use of the tool in public and private spheres has led to the establishment of Civil Public Inquiry No. 08190.052289/18-94[14] by the Personal Data Protection Commission of the Public Prosecutor's Office of the Federal District and Territories (MPDFT), as well as a public hearing held on 16 April 2019.[15] The hearing sought not only to promote debates about the use of facial recognition tools by businesses and the government, but also to function as an open space for the participation of NGOs and civil society.

It is important to remember that as systems are being implemented in public schools around the country, much of the peripheral and vulnerable population is being registered in this "experiment" – that is, data is being collected on vulnerable and marginalised groups. As researchers have pointed out, biases are being increasingly incorporated into the variety of new technological tools.[16] These digital tools can act more quickly, on a larger scale, and with actions that can be hidden by a greater complexity, such as, for example, through profiling systems that use biased machine learning algorithms that police, profile and punish minorities. The struggle is still against the perpetuation of the same problem: the deprivation of civil rights of certain groups of society as a result of social inequalities and power relations in society.

It is not uncommon for technology to be used in a way in Brazil that suggests the possibility of a future Orwellian dystopia. The use of facial recognition technology during the Carnival of 2019 in the cities of Rio de Janeiro and Salvador, resulting in a number of arrests, drew the attention of Brazilians.[17] The apparent relativism of fundamental rights and the relaxation of laws that limit surveillance due to the magnitude of events,[18] and the lack of official information on the effectiveness of the new automated measures, as well as on the storage and sharing of biometric data, were just some of the various problems identified.

The need to manage large events with thousands of participants is not the only reason why surveillance technologies are used in Brazilian urban centres. As Marcelo Souza from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ) explains,[19] the increase in punitive policies and the militarisation of the police are the main reasons behind the increasing use of dystopian and invasive AI devices and technologies, typical of combat zones.[20] Even after a series of changes that have taken place in Brazil since the promulgation of the 1988 Constitution, public security institutions have not been significantly modified. The culture of war against the "internal enemy", for example, remains as present as in the days of the military dictatorship.[21]

Given that the recently approved LGPD does not apply to data processing for public security purposes, it would be possible for authorities to argue that the biometric database from the facial recognition system in schools can be used to identify suspects and improve public security. This would place its use even further outside the remit of current legislation. As the LGPD states, data processing for public security purposes "shall be governed by specific legislation, which shall provide for proportionate and strictly necessary measures to serve the public interest" (Article 4, III, § 1, LGPD).[22]

However, a specific law does not exist so far. According to the Brazilian lawyer and privacy advocate Rafael Zanatta,[23] the civic battle in Brazil will be around the shared definition of "proportional measures" and "public interest”. The solution proposed by some researchers and activists for the time being is the protection offered by the constitution, such as the presumption of innocence, and the general principles of the LGPD itself, which guard against the improper use of collected data. On the other hand, it is believed that a tremendous effort will be needed to consolidate jurisprudence where these principles are applied in cases of state surveillance.

There is also a lack of easy access to public documents and information on the use of surveillance technologies. Often information related to the operation of these technologies depends on ad hoc statements made by public agents or private companies, whistleblowers or, when granted, requests for access to public information made possible by the Access to Information Law (LAI).

The discussion on the regulation of AI systems in Brazil is still very new. According to Brazilian researchers Bruno Bioni and Mariana Rielli,[24] the general debate on data protection around the globe has different degrees of maturity depending on the region and the specific issues faced. In addition, a paradigm shift has been observed through the transition from a focus on the individual's right to self-determination with regards to his or her private information to a model of risk prevention and management with respect to data-processing activities.

However, the use of AI for the collection and processing of sensitive personal data, such as the biometric data in question, makes these risks difficult to measure. In part this is because the general population does not have sufficient knowledge of the technology to recognise the extent of its impact on their personal lives.

In this way, an imbalance of power with regard to public awareness and the use of the technology has been created in Brazil.

The need for impact reports on the protection of personal data is an important requirement that has been gaining prominence in legislation, such as European legislation and the recently approved LGPD. However, Bioni and Rielli draw attention to the few requirements placed on developers of AI technologies in Brazil, as well as on the consumer who buys and implements the technology. In particular, there is no law in relation to the purchase and use of facial recognition devices for public service and public safety purposes in Brazil, unlike similar public projects elsewhere that seek an informed public debate and the inclusion of citizens' interests in decision-making processes (e.g. the ordinance on the acquisition of surveillance technology recently adopted in San Francisco, in the United States).[25]

Conclusion

A decrease in school drop-out rates: this is the main advantage of facial recognition technology in schools, according to the company that has developed the technology. But are we assigning to technology something that would be the responsibility of society and the state?

As the Brazilian educator and philosopher Paulo Freire[26] showed, many of the most common practices in the Brazilian educational system are dictated by the Brazilian elite. This includes the use of educational content that does not correspond to the reality of students from lower classes, but instead inhibits their ability to think critically of their reality, and in the end discourages them from attending school.

Easy and safe access to school is also an important consideration impacting on the student's educational performance. The Brazilian Statute of the Child and Adolescent, in chapter IV, art. 53, inc. V,[27] states that one of the rights of the child and adolescent is access to public and free schools near his or her home. However, when distance is not an impediment to school attendance, issues related to the safety of the student's route to school should also be considered. For example, in some communities in Rio de Janeiro,[28] there are frequent incidents of armed confrontation between police and drug traffickers, visible abuses of power by the authorities, stray bullets and other incidents endangering the lives of passers-by, and even street executions, all of which are daily threats to residents. In addition, the reality faced by marginalised populations in Brazil raises another important question: the need for children and adolescents from low-income families to leave school in order to work and help support the household.

The problem of the school drop-out rate in Brazil is neither a new issue nor something that can be solved only with the implementation of a new school attendance system using AI. It is necessary for society to seek more meaningful ways to mitigate the present crisis facing the educational system.

In addition to projects that raise public awareness about issues related to new technologies in Brazilian urban centres, there is also a need to strengthen legislation that governs how sensitive data is shared and used in public projects in order to maintain the quality of public services. When the fundamental rights and guarantees of citizens are understood and respected, a relationship of trust is established.

Cities in Brazil should strengthen privacy protection instruments and create legal certainty through the establishment of fundamental principles, rights and duties for the operation of an ever-changing array of technologies in society. Regulating the use of personal data in the public sphere has the power to promote the conscious, transparent and legitimate use of this information.

Action steps

The following advocacy priorities are suggested for Brazil:

  • Formulate regional policies and strategies for the use of AI in Latin America and the Caribbean.
  • Develop legally enforceable safeguards, including robust transparency and accountability measures, before any facial recognition technology is deployed.
  • Promote national campaigns and public debate over surveillance technology given the impact such technologies may have on civil rights and civil liberties.
  • Include a social, cultural and political understanding of the needs of vulnerable groups in the country's education strategies to make the learning environment more attractive for these groups.
  • Develop open source AI systems that enable wider community use, with appropriate privacy protections.

Footnotes

[1] www.pontoid.com.br/home

[2] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YRMihVh0cew&t=24s

[3] Folha de Pernambuco. (2017, 19 April). Tecnologia para registrar presença nas escolas de Jaboatão. Folha de Pernambuco Folha de Pernambuco. https://www.folhape.com.br/noticias/noticias/cotidiano/2017/04/19/NWS,24738,70,449,NOTICIAS,2190-TECNOLOGIA-PARA-REGISTRAR-PRESENCA-NAS-ESCOLAS-JABOATAO.aspx

[4] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YRMihVh0cew&t=24s

[5] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bolsa_Fam%C3%ADlia

[6] https://www.caixa.gov.br/programas-sociais/bolsa-familia/Paginas/default.aspx

[7] Lessig, L. (2006). Code: Version 2.0. New York: Basic Books. Monitoring is mostly related to observation in real time and tracking can be done afterwards based on certain information.

[8] Santos, N. (2017, 18 April). Jaboatão inicia reconhecimento facial nas escolas. LeiaJá. https://m.leiaja.com/carreiras/2017/04/18/jaboatao-inicia-reconhecimento-facial-nas-escolas

[9] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YRMihVh0cew&t=24s

[10] www.pontoid.com.br/politica_privacidade_education.jsp

[11] IAPP. (2018). Brazil's General Data Protection Law (English translation). https://iapp.org/resources/article/brazils-general-data-protection-law-english-translation

[12] Medida Provisória nº 869, de 27 de dezembro de 2018. www.planalto.gov.br/ccivil_03/_ato2015-2018/2018/Mpv/mpv869.htm

[13] https://legis.senado.leg.br/sdleg-getter/documento?dm=7945369&ts=1556207205600&disposition=inline

[14] Inquérito Civil Público n.08190.052289/18-94 Reconhecimento Facial. www.mpdft.mp.br/portal/pdf/noticias/março_2019/Despacho_Audiencia_Publica_2.pdf

[15] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pmzvXcevJr4

[16] Eubanks, V. (2018). Automating Inequality: How High-Tech Tools Profile, Police and Punish the Poor. New York: St Martin’s Press.

[17] Távora, F., Araújo, G., & Sousa, J. (2019, 11 March). Scanner facial abre alas e ninguém mais se perde no Carnaval (e fora dele). Agência Data Labe. https://tab.uol.com.br/noticias/redacao/2019/03/11/carnaval-abre-alas-para-o-escaner-facial-reconhece-milhoes-e-prende-seis.html

[18] Graham, S. (2011). Cities Under Siege: The New Military Urbanism. New York: Verso Books.

[19] Souza, M. (2008). Fobópole. Rio de Janeiro: Bertrand Brasil

[20] Kayyali, D. (2016, 13 June). The Olympics Are Turning Rio into a Military State. Vice. https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/wnxgpw/the-olympics-are-turning-rio-into-a-military-state

[21] Machado, R. (2019, 19 February). Militarização no Brasil: a perpetuação da guerra ao inimigo interno. Entrevista especial com Maria Alice Rezende de Carvalho. Instituto Humanitas Unisinos. www.ihu.unisinos.br/159-noticias/entrevistas/586763-militarizacao-no-brasil-a-perpetuacao-da-guerra-ao-inimigo-interno-entrevista-especial-com-maria-alice-rezende-de-carvalho

[22] IAPP. (2018). Op. cit. 

[23] https://twitter.com/rafa_zanatta/status/1085583399186767875

[24] Bioni, B., & Rielli, M. (2019). Audiência Pública: uso de ferramentas de reconhecimento facial por parte de empresas e governos. Data Privacy Brasil. https://dataprivacy.com.br/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/Contribui%C3%A7%C3%A3o-AP-reconhecimento-facial-final.pdf

[25] Johnson, K. (2019, 14 May). San Francisco supervisors vote to ban facial recognition software. VentureBeat. https://venturebeat.com/2019/05/14/san-francisco-first-in-nation-to-ban-facial-recognition-software

[26] Freire, P. (1976). Education: The Practice of Freedom. London: Writers and Readers Publishing Cooperative.

[27] www.planalto.gov.br/ccivil_03/leis/l8069.htm 

[28] Brito, R. (2017, 2 October). Rio’s kids are dying in the crossfire of a wave of violence. AP News. https://www.apnews.com/efeeaed43c7b47a0ae4a6cfaa8b871e2

Notes:
This report was originally published as part of a larger compilation: “Global Information Society Watch 2019: Artificial intelligence: Human rights, social justice and development"
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) - Some rights reserved.
ISBN 978-92-95113-12-1
APC Serial: APC-201910-CIPP-R-EN-P-301
978-92-95113-13-8
ISBN APC Serial: APC-201910-CIPP-R-EN-DIGITAL-302

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A note on pseudo-observations and left-truncation

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A note on pseudo-observations and left-truncation

Grand, M. K., Putter, H., Allignol, A. & Andersen, P. K., 2019, In : Biometrical Journal. 61, 2, p. 290-298 9 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Original languageEnglish
JournalBiometrical Journal
Volume61
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)290-298
Number of pages9
ISSN0323-3847
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Bibliographical note

Special Issue: ISCB38, Part I


          

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Amazon is also expanding the capabilities of itsAAWS IoT Greengrass service, which extends AWS functions to connected devices.

"When you know the state of your physical assets, you can solve a lot of things," AWS Vice President of IoT Dirk Didascalou told SiliconANGLE.

"You can also create a lot of new services. A lot of our customers have this need," he added.

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COLUMBIA, S.C. (Nov. 26, 2019) – A bill prefiled in the South Carolina House would ban police from using facial recognition and biometric surveillance technology in conjunction with body-worn cameras. The law would not only help protect privacy in the Palmetto State, but it would also hinder one aspect of the federal surveillance state. Rep. […]
          

New Jersey Bill Would Put Restrictions on Facial Recognition Technology

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TRENTON, N.J. (Nov. 18, 2019) – A bill introduced in the New Jersey Senate would put restrictions on the use of facial and other biometric recognition technology. The proposed law would not only help protect privacy in New Jersey, but it would also hinder one aspect of the federal surveillance state. Sen. Nia Gill (D-Montclair) […]
          

Iberia trials facial recognition app at Madrid Airport

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The following article was published by Future Travel Experience

The app will allow passengers to use their mobile devices to identify themselves with facial biometrics, without the need to show travel documents. Iberia has launched a facial recognition pilot project at Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport’s Terminal 4 in partnership with the Spanish airport operator Aena, and technology companies IECISA, Gunnebo and Thales. The project aims to enable customers to identify […]

Article originally published here:
Iberia trials facial recognition app at Madrid Airport


          

LAWA to implement EASIER’s automated biometric boarding gates

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The following article was published by Future Travel Experience

EASIER will deploy 128 e-gates in Los Angeles International Airport’s new Midfield Satellite Concourse and the existing Tom Bradley International Terminal. Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) has signed a three-year contract with EASIER, covering automated biometric boarding gate equipment, implementation, and maintenance services. The project is expected to elevate the passenger experience, enhance safety and […]

Article originally published here:
LAWA to implement EASIER’s automated biometric boarding gates


          

Команда Biometric представит Казахстан на глобальном саммите Seedstars 2020 в Лозанне

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Команда Biometric представит Казахстан на глобальном саммите Seedstars 2020 в Лозанне
          

Cyprus Passport Personalization System is being modernised

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The Civil Registry and Migration Department of the Ministry of Interior of Cyprus commissioned Veridos to modernize its nationwide system for biometric data collection, centralized personalization, and issuance of electronic passports, ID cards, and residence permits.

Veridos was awarded a …


          

Orange Bank ya en España, el banco concebido para el móvil llega con cuenta corriente, de ahorro y tarjeta de débito

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Orange Bank ya en España, el banco concebido para el móvil llega con cuenta corriente, de ahorro y tarjeta de débito

Tras años escuchando hablar de la entrada de Orange en el sector bancario, dos años después de hacerse realidad en Francia y cinco meses más de pruebas con 200 clientes en España, la operadora acaba de presentar oficialmente Orange Bank en España, el banco 100% móvil que arranca con un paquete inicial que incluye cuenta corriente, tarjeta de débito, cuenta de ahorro, finanzas en grupo, y descuentos en la factura de telefonía.

España se convierte así en el segundo país en el que el Grupo Orange lanza su banco móvil, inicialmente disponible para sus clientes de contrato en 25 tiendas propias y online, aunque durante el primer trimestre de 2020 planean llegar a toda la red de tiendas.

Ventajas de Orange Bank

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La oferta permitirá a los clientes de Orange disfrutar sin comisiones de mantenimiento ni permanencias de una cuenta corriente con IBAN español, una cuenta ahorro con una remuneración del 1% TIN para depósitos de hasta 20.000 euros y una tarjeta de débito MasterCard.

El banco ofrece el 100% de sus servicios a través de una aplicación con un interfaz nativo para garantizar mejor experiencia móvil. Desde esta aplicación, el cliente podrá realizar las operaciones bancarias como consultar movimientos, mover sus ahorros entre su cuenta ahorro y su cuenta corriente, realizar transferencias SEPA gratuitas, pagar con Apple Pay y gestionar su tarjeta, por ejemplo, para congelar en caso de pérdida o volver a activar en caso de encontrarla.

La aplicación ofrece un chat con agentes del banco que nos orientará durante las 24 horas del día.

La tarjeta de débito MasterCard gratuita es válida en cajeros y comercios de todo el mundo, permitiendo retirar dinero hasta tres veces al mes sin ningún coste para el usuario en cualquier cajero de la zona euro.

El interfaz está pensado para el móvil desde el principio, por lo que el cliente puede realizar la firma de estas operaciones de manera segura utilizando la biometria del teléfono móvil, sin necesidad de recordar contraseñas complejas, y cumpliendo en todo momento con la normativa bancaria.

Ventajas de Orange Bank para clientes

Una de las principales innovaciones del banco consiste en su servicio de Grupos, que permite compartir gastos entre varias personas y gestionar más fácilmente los típicos botes entre amigos y familiares. Una alternativa a tener en cuenta mientras Orange Bank no sea compatible con Bizum.

Lo que podemos esperar para el futuro cercano

El proyecto en España se ha construido bajo el esquema de sucursal del banco francés y ha sido desarrollado en modo "agile" por un equipo multidisciplinar de profesionales con alta experiencia en banca, seguridad, retail y telecomunicaciones.

Como promoción de lanzamiento, Orange Bank ofrecerá un descuento de 30 euros en la siguiente factura a todos los clientes con tarifas Go y Love.

Con el transcurso de los meses, el banco pondrá progresivamente a disposición de los clientes de la operadora créditos de hasta 10.000 euros que el cliente puede simular en la aplicación del banco según sus necesidades y que podrá contratar desde esta aplicación en apenas pocos clics, previa evaluación de crédito, pero sin necesidad de documentación adicional. Todo digital, todo desde el móvil. También llegarán próximamente las domiciliaciones, Bizum y la disponibilidad para clientes de Jazztel.

Orange Bank en España prevé contar con un millón de clientes en diez años y alcanzar la rentabilidad en menos de 5 años.


          

South Carolina Bill Would Ban Facial Recognition on Police Body Cameras

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COLUMBIA, S.C. (Nov. 26, 2019) – A bill prefiled in the South Carolina House would ban police from using facial recognition and biometric surveillance technology in conjunction with body-worn cameras. The law would not only help protect privacy in the Palmetto State, but it would also hinder one aspect of the federal surveillance state. Rep. […]
          

Auckland Airport rolls out new scanners as part of move towards biometric screening

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Auckland Airport has installed new scanning equipment that increases international departures processing capacity five-fold.Twelve new automated pre-security gates scan boarding passes to grant passengers to security areas rather...
          

The Most Secure Crypto Wallet Ever

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Over the past couple years we’ve seen a number of crypto wallets designed to offer security to coin holders. We’ve been big fans of the Trezor and Ledger wallets, but some new technologies are creating opportunities for digital wallets to become even safer. Evercoin now claims to be the safest cryptocurrency wallet and exchange. Evercoin co-founders Miko Matsumura and Talip Ozturk join us today to discuss their latest update and how their integration with the Yubikey make their wallet the safest one available.

What do you get when you combine a spicy password, a dash of biometrics, a sprinkle of 2FA, a dollop of hardware security and a jar of nutella? We’re not really sure, but at least part of it sounds tasty.

Find out more on episode #338 of The Bad Crypto Podcast.

The post The Most Secure Crypto Wallet Ever appeared first on The Bad Crypto Podcast.


          

Une technologie israélienne permet à Citibank de surveiller la santé de ses traders

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Des capteurs biométriques pour surveiller les traders Internet La startup ContinUse Biometrics développe des capteurs biométriques - qui permettent de suivre sans contact...
          

How Google Is Stealing Your Personal Health Data

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Expert Review by Maryam Heinen

Google, by far one of the greatest monopolies that ever existed, and poses a unique threat to anyone concerned about health, supplements, food and your ability to obtain truthful information about these and other issues.

This year, we’ve seen an unprecedented push to implement censorship across all online platforms, making obtaining and sharing crucial information about holistic health increasingly difficult.

As detailed in “Stark Evidence Showing How Google Censors Health News,” Google’s June 2019 update, which took effect June 3, effectively removed Mercola.com and hundreds of other natural health sites from Google search results. Google is also building a specific search tool for medical and health-related searches.1

And, while not the sole threat to privacy, Google is definitely one of the greatest. Over time, Google has positioned itself in such a way that it’s become deeply embedded in your day-to-day life, including your health.

In recent years, the internet and medicine have become increasingly intertwined, giving rise to “virtual medicine” and self-diagnosing — a trend that largely favors drugs and costly, invasive treatments — and Google has its proverbial fingers in multiple slices of this pie.

Health Data Mining Poses Unique Privacy Risks

For example, in 2016, Google partnered with WebMD, launching an app allowing users to ask medical questions.2 The following year, Google partnered with the National Alliance on Mental Illness, launching a depression self-assessment quiz which turned out to be little more than stealth marketing for antidepressants.3,4

Google and various tech startups have also been investigating the possibility of assessing mental health problems using a combination of electronic medical records and tracking your internet and social media use.

In 2018, Google researchers announced they’d created an artificial intelligence-equipped retinal scanner that can appraise your risk for a heart attack.5

According to a recent Financial Times report,6 Google, Amazon and Microsoft collect data entered into health and diagnostic sites, which is then shared with hundreds of third parties — and this data is not anonymized, meaning it’s tied to specifically to you, without your knowledge or consent.

What this means is DoubleClick, Google’s ad service, will know which prescriptions you’ve searched for on Drugs.com, thus providing you with personalized drug ads. Meanwhile, Facebook receives information about what you’ve searched for in WebMD’s symptom checker.

“There is a whole system that will seek to take advantage of you because you’re in a compromised state,” Tim Lebert, a computer scientist at Carnegie Mellon University told Financial Times.7 “I find that morally repugnant.”

While some find these kinds of technological advancements enticing, others see a future lined with red warning flags. As noted by Wolfie Christl, a technologist and researcher interviewed by Financial Times:8

“These findings are quite remarkable, and very concerning. From my perspective, this kind of data are clearly sensitive, has special protections

The following graphic, created by Financial Times, illustrates the flow of data from BabyCenter.com, a site that focuses on pregnancy, children’s health and parenting, to third parties, and the types of advertising these third parties then generate.

user data sent to third parties

Tech Companies Are Accessing Your Medical Records

As described in the featured Wall Street Journal video,9 a number of tech companies, including Amazon, Apple and the startup Xealth, are diving into people’s personal electronic medical records to expand their businesses.

Xealth has developed an application that is embedded in your electronic health records. Doctors who use the Xealth application — which aims to serve most health care sectors and is being rapidly adopted as a preferred “digital formulary”10 — give the company vast access to market products to their patients. The app includes lists of products and services a doctor believes might be beneficial for certain categories of patients.

When seeing a patient, the doctor will select the products and services he or she wants the patient to get, generating an electronic shopping list that is then sent to the patient. The shopping links direct the patient to purchase these items from Xealth’s third-party shopping sites, such as Amazon.

As noted in the video, “Some privacy experts worry that certain Xealth vendors can see when a patient purchased a product through Xealth, and therefore through their electronic health record.” In the video, Jennifer Miller, assistant professor at Yale School of Medicine says:

”In theory, it could boost adherence to physician recommendations, which is a huge challenge in the U.S. health care system. On the other side, there are real worries about what type of information Amazon in particular is getting access to.

So, from what I understand, when a patient clicks on that Xealth app and is taken to Amazon, the data are coded as Xealth data, which means Amazon likely knows that you purchased these products through your electronic health records.”

Amazon Is Mining Health Records

Amazon, in turn, has developed software, called Amazon Comprehend Medical, which uses artificial intelligence (AI) to mine people’s electronic health records. This software has been sold to hospitals, pharmacies, researchers and various other health care providers.

The software reveals medical and health trends that might otherwise go unnoticed. As one example, given in the video, a researcher can use this software to mine tens of thousands of health records to identify candidates for a specific research study.

While this can certainly be helpful, it can also be quite risky, due to potential inaccuracies. Doctors may enter inaccurate data for a patient, for example, data that, were it accurate, would render that patient a poor test subject.

Apple is also getting in on the action through its health app. It facilitates access to electronic medical records by importing all your records directly from your health care provider. The app is meant to be “helpful” by allowing you to pull up your medical records on your iPhone and present them to any doctor, anywhere in the world.

What Does This Mean for Your Privacy

While tech companies like Amazon and Apple claim your data are encrypted (to protect it from hacking) and that they cannot view your records directly, data breaches have become so common that such “guarantees” are next to worthless.

As noted in the video by Dudley Adams, a data use expert at the University of California, San Francisco, “No encryption is perfect. All it takes is time for that encryption to be broken.” One very real concern about having your medical records hacked into is that your information may be sold to insurance companies and your employer, which they can then use against you, either by raising your rates or denying employment.

After all, sick people cost insurance companies and employers more money, so both have a vested interest in avoiding chronically ill individuals. So, were your medical records to get out, you could potentially become uninsurable or unemployable.

Google Collects Health Data on Millions of Americans

Getting back to Google, a whistleblower recently revealed the company amassed health data from millions of Americans in 21 states through its Project Nightingale,11,12 and patients have not been informed of this data mining. As reported by The Guardian:13

“A whistleblower who works in Project Nightingale … has expressed anger to the Guardian that patients are being kept in the dark about the massive deal.

The anonymous whistleblower has posted a video on the social media platform Daily Motion that contains a document dump of hundreds of images of confidential files relating to Project Nightingale.

The secret scheme … involves the transfer to Google of healthcare data held by Ascension, the second-largest healthcare provider in the U.S. The data is being transferred with full personal details including name and medical history and can be accessed by Google staff. Unlike other similar efforts it has not been made anonymous though a process of removing personal information known as de-identification …

Among the documents are the notes of a private meeting held by Ascension operatives involved in Project Nightingale. In it, they raise serious concerns about the way patients’ personal health information will be used by Google to build new artificial intelligence and other tools.”

The anonymous whistleblower told The Guardian:

“Most Americans would feel uncomfortable if they knew their data was being haphazardly transferred to Google without proper safeguards and security in place. This is a totally new way of doing things. Do you want your most personal information transferred to Google? I think a lot of people would say no.”

On a side note, the video the whistleblower uploaded to Daily Motion has since been taken down, with a note saying the “video has been removed due to a breach of the Terms of Use.”

According to Google and Ascension, the data being shared will be used to build a search tool with machine-learning algorithms that will spit out diagnostic recommendations and suggestions for medications that health professionals can then use to guide them in their treatment.

Google claims only a limited number of individuals will have access to the data, but just how trustworthy is Google these days? Something tells me that since the data includes full personal details, they’ll have no problem figuring out a way to eventually make full use of it.

Google Acquires Fitbit

In November 2019, the company also acquired Fitbit for $2.1 billion, giving Google access to the health data of Fitbit’s 25.4 million active users14 as well. While Google says it won’t sell or use Fitbit data for Google ads, some users have already ditched their devices for fear of privacy breaches.15 As reported by The Atlantic on November 14, 2019:16

“Immediately, users voiced concern about Google combining fitness data with the sizeable cache of information it keeps on its users. Google assured detractors that it would follow all relevant privacy laws, but the regulatory-compliance discussion only distracted from the strange future coming into view.

As Google pushes further into health care, it is amassing a trove of data about our shopping habits, the prescriptions we use, and where we live, and few regulations are governing how it uses these data.”

How HIPAA Laws Actually Allow This Data Mining

The HIPAA Security Rule is supposed to protect your medical records, preventing access by third parties — including spouses — unless you specifically give your permission for records to be shared. So, just how is it that Google and other tech companies can mine them at will?

As it turns out, the Google-Ascension partnership that gives Google access to medical data is covered by a “business associate agreement” or BAA. HIPAA allows hospitals and medical providers to share your information with third parties that support clinical activities, and according to Google’s interpretation of the privacy laws and HIPAA regulations, the company is not in breach of these laws because it’s a “business associate.” 

The Department of Health and Human Services’ Office for Civil Rights has opened an investigation into the legality of this arrangement.17 As reported by The Atlantic:18

“If HHS determines that Google and its handling of private information make it something more akin to a health care provider itself (because of its access to sensitive information from multiple sources who aren’t prompted for consent), it may find Google and Ascension in violation of the law and refer the matter to the Department of Justice for potential criminal prosecution.

But whether or not the deal goes through, its very existence points to a larger limitation of health-privacy laws, which were drafted long before tech giants started pouring billions into revolutionizing health care.”

Patients Bear the Risk While Third Parties Benefit

BAA agreements only allow for the disclosure of protected health information to entities that help the medical institution to perform its health care functions. The third party is not permitted to use the data for its own purposes or in any independent way.

I personally find it hard to believe that Google would not find a way to profit from this personal health data, considering its web-like business structure that ties into countless other for-profit parties. Even if they don’t, there does not appear to be any distinct advantages to patients whose records are being shared. As reported by STAT News:19

“Jennifer Miller, a Yale medical school professor who studies patient privacy issues, said the way health information is being shared, whether legal or not, is far from ideal. Patients — whose data are shared without their knowledge or specific consent — end up with all the risks, she said, while the benefits, financial or otherwise, go to Google, Ascension, and potentially future patients.”

As reported by Health IT Security20 in March 2019, Democratic senator of Nevada, Catherine Cortez Masto, has also introduced a data privacy bill “that would require companies not covered by HIPAA to obtain explicit consent from patients before sharing health and genetic data.”

“The bill covers the collecting and storing of sensitive data, such as biometrics, genetics, or location data,” Health IT Security writes.21 “The consent form must outline how that data will be used.

And the bill will also let consumers request, dispute the accuracy of their records, and transfer or delete their data “without retribution” around price or services offered.

Further, organizations would need to apply three standards to all data collection, processing, storage, and disclosure. First, collection must be for a legitimate business or operation purpose, without subjecting individuals to unreasonable risks to their privacy.

Further, the data may not be used to discriminate against individuals for protected characteristics, such as religious beliefs. Lastly, companies may not engage in deceptive data practices.”

Google Partnership Spurs Class-Action Lawsuit

The fact that patients don’t want Google to access their medical records is evidenced by a class-action lawsuit filed in the summer of 2019 against the University of Chicago Medical Center which, like Ascension, allowed Google access to identifiable patient data through a partnership with the University of Chicago. As reported by WTTW News June 28, 2019:22

“All three institutions are named as defendants in the suit, which was filed … by Matt Dinerstein, who received treatment at the medical center during two hospital stays in 2015.

The collaboration between Google and the University of Chicago was launched in 2017 to study electronic health records and develop new machine-learning techniques to create predictive models that could prevent unplanned hospital readmissions, avoid costly complications and save lives …

The tech giant has similar partnerships with Stanford University and the University of California-San Francisco. But that partnership violated federal law protecting patient privacy, according to the lawsuit, by allowing Google to access electronic health records of ‘nearly every patient’ at the medical center from 2009 to 2016.

The suit also claims Google will use the patient data to develop commercial health care technologies … The lawsuit claims the university breached its contracts with patients by ‘failing to keep their medical information private and confidential.’ It also alleges UChicago violated an Illinois law that prohibits companies from engaging in deceptive practices with clients.”

Like Ascension, the University of Chicago claims no confidentiality breaches have been made, since Google is a business associate. However, the lawsuit claims HIPAA was still violated because medical records were shared that “included sufficient information for Google to re-identify patients.”

The lawsuit also points out that Google does indeed have a commercial interest in all of this information, and can use it by combining it with its AI and advanced machine learning.

According to the plaintiffs, Google’s acquisition of DeepMind “has allowed for Google to find connections between electronic health records and Google users’ data.” The news report also points out that:23

“In 2015, Google and DeepMind obtained patient information from the Royal Free NHS Trust Foundation to conduct a study, which a data protection watchdog organization said ‘failed to comply with data protection law.’”

Health-Tracking Shoes and Other Privacy Abominations

Google is also investing in other wearable technologies aimed at tracking users’ health data, including:24

  • Shoes designed to monitor your weight, movement and falls
  • “Smart” contact lenses for people with age-related farsightedness and those who have undergone cataract surgery25 (a glucose-sensing contact lens for diabetics was canceled in 2018 after four years of development26)
  • A smartwatch to provide information for clinical research27
  • An all-in-one insulin patch pump for Type 2 diabetics that is prefilled and connected to the internet28

Google also has big plans for expanding the use of AI in health care. According to CB Insights,29 “The company is applying AI to disease detection, new data infrastructure, and potentially insurance.”

As mentioned earlier, insurance companies can jack up premiums based on your health. So, what could possibly go wrong by having Google’s AI wired into the insurance market?

Google has also partnered with drugmaker Sanofi, which “will leverage Google’s cloud and AI technologies and integrate them into its biological innovations and scientific data which in turn will accelerate the medicine discovery process,” according to a Yahoo! Finance report.30

According to Yahoo! Finance, “the collaboration will aid in the identification of various type of treatments suitable for patients. Additionally, Google’s AI tools are likely to be utilized by Sanofi in improving marketing and supply efforts and in forecasting sales.”

In plain English, this partnership will help Sanofi sell more drugs, which can hardly be said to be for the patients’ best interest, but rather that of Sanofi and Google. As mentioned earlier, Verily, Google’s health care division, is also collaborating with Sanofi, Novartis, Otsuka and Pfizer to help them identify suitable patients for clinical drug trials.31

To boost drug sales even further, Verily is working with Walgreens to deploy a “medication adherence” project, in which patients are equipped with devices to ensure they’re taking their medication as prescribed.32

Amazon also plays a part in the drug adherence scheme with its recent buyout of Pillpack, an online pharmacy that offers prepackaged pill boxes with all the different medications you’re taking.

According to Yahoo! Finance, Amazon is also planning to develop at-home medical testing devices, and is rolling out the option to make medical-related purchases from Amazon using your health savings account. All of these things generate health-related data points that can then be used for other purposes, be it personalized marketing or insurance premium decisions.

Have You Had Enough of Google’s Privacy Intrusions Yet? 

Add to all of this data mining the fact that Google is actively manipulating search results and making decisions about what you’re allowed to see and what you’re not based on its own and third party interests — a topic detailed in a November 15, 2019 Wall Street Journal investigation.33 The dangers ahead should be self-evident.

Now more than ever we must work together to share health information with others by word-of-mouth, by text and email. We have built in simple sharing tools at the top of each article so you can easily email or text interesting articles to your friends and family.

My information is here because all of you support and share it, and we can do this without Big Tech’s support. It’s time to boycott and share! Here are a few other suggestions:

Become a subscriber to my newsletter and encourage your friends and family to do the same. This is the easiest and safest way to make sure you’ll stay up to date on important health and environmental issues.

If you have any friends or relatives that are seriously interested in their health, please share important articles with them and encourage them to subscribe to our newsletter.

Consider dumping any Android phone the next time you get a phone. Android is a Google operating system and will seek to gather as much data as they can about you for their benefit. iPhone, while not perfect, appears to have better privacy protections.

Use the internal Mercola.com search engine when searching for articles on my site.

Boycott Google by avoiding any and all Google products:

  • Stop using Google search engines and recognize that even engines that honor privacy like Start Page, still use Google as their back end and provide censored results. Alternatives include DuckDuckGo34 and Qwant35
  • Uninstall Google Chrome and use Brave or Opera browser instead, available for all computers and mobile devices.36 From a security perspective, Opera is far superior to Chrome and offers a free VPN service (virtual private network) to further preserve your privacy
  • If you have a Gmail account, try a non-Google email service such as ProtonMail,37 an encrypted email service based in Switzerland
  • Stop using Google docs. Digital Trends has published an article suggesting a number of alternatives38
  • If you’re a high school student, do not convert the Google accounts you created as a student into personal accounts

Sign the “Don’t be evil” petition created by Citizens Against Monopoly


          

POSTDOC BIOMETRIC SCREENINGS

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POSTDOC BIOMETRIC SCREENINGS

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More information will be available soon.
          

Healthcare: Scientist/Senior Scientist, Clinical Biomarkers - Cambridge, Massachusetts

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Scientist/Senior Scientist, Clinical Biomarkers Location Agios Pharmaceuticals HQ Job Code 884 # of openings 1 Apply Now Scientist/Senior Scientist, Clinical Biomarkers Agios (agios.com) is a biopharmaceutical company committed to applying our scientific leadership in cellular metabolism to transform the lives of patients with cancer and rare genetic diseases. We are growing rapidly with an active research and discovery pipeline across both therapeutic areas. Agios has two approved oncology precision medicines and multiple first-in-class investigational therapies in clinical and/or preclinical development. Agios Pharmaceuticals is searching for a dynamic Biomarker Scientist/Sr. Scientist to join our growing Clinical Biomarkers team. The successful candidate will focus on hematological studies in oncology ranging from preclinical to late stage clinical trials often with a focus in epigenetics. The candidate will develop into a lead biomarker role, be responsible for biomarker strategies, and deliver on objectives. This role bridges the science and technical aspects of biomarker strategy with the operational aspects to execute on clinical studies and enable Agios' precision medicine approach. Key Responsibilities Oversee implementation of biomarkers for patient identification, demonstration of mechanisms of action, and for clinical effect to facilitate development in a resource and time efficient manner. Partner closely with Clinical Operations, Biometrics, and Bioinformatics to ensure that biomarker sample collection, assays and data acquisition for analyses are valid and compliant. Develop translational biomarker strategy by incorporating the latest research findings and cutting-edge technologies. Direct and oversee the outsourcing and validation of clinically applicable biomarker assays. Generate/review biomarker reports summarizing study findings and contribute to clinical documents such as protocols, investigator brochures and regulatory submissions. Communicate biomarker data and strategy through in internal and external settings, including publication in high-quality scientific, technical or medical journals. Ensure effective cross functional interactions and collaborations across the different functional areas that relate to Biomarker discovery and development. Minimum Requirements PhD in cancer biology, molecular biology, genomics or related discipline with 3-5 years' experience in the biotech/biopharmaceutical industry, MS with 8+ years. Familiarity managing clinical trial samples, in addition to utilizing genomics, proteomics, and flow cytometry to evaluate drug effects on clinical endpoints Experience in oncology clinical development with patient selection, PD and response biomarker clinical translation Strong background in cancer biology and biomarkers, knowledge in immunotherapy and/or immuno-oncology is a plus Experience with clinical study design and clinical drug development CRO management and clinical site training Record of cutting edge research and/or clinically-related science as evidenced by first- or senior-authored publications in top-tier journals ()
          

HS Biometric Screening for Staff

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HS Biometric Screening

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