Tag - security

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Ghostie’s weekly digest: the Germany Facebook ban and more
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Happy Friday: new servers in a new location!
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There’s a new tech show in town!
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Win lifetime online protection & privacy with CyberGhost 5.5!
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CyberGhost Blog Privacy Challenge
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How Windows 10 is spying on you and what you can do about it
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Get €25.000 funding for your privacy start-up idea from CyberGhost!

Ghostie’s weekly digest: the Germany Facebook ban and more

You win some, you lose some, they say. Well, this could sum up the week just perfectly on the online privacy front, since we had both a victory when Germany ordered Facebook to stop collecting data from WhatsApp users and an important step back, when Swiss voters decided to give new surveillance powers to authorities.

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German privacy regulator orders Facebook to stop collecting data from users; Facebook to appeal

The Hamburg Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information said Facebook was infringing the data protection law and had not obtained effective approval from WhatsApp’s 35 million users in Germany, according to Reuters.

“After the acquisition of WhatsApp by Facebook two years ago, both parties have publicly assured that data will not be shared between them,” commissioner Johannes Caspar said in a statement.

Facebook is however not pleased with this decision and said it would appeal it.

Read More

Happy Friday: new servers in a new location!

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We have some good news for Ghosties around the world.

It was high time to come up with something new on our servers, so from today on we’ll have a new location. All Ghosties can enjoy the 8 new servers in Berlin.

We have 4 Free Berlin servers and 4 Premium Berlin servers.

Happy Friday with #CyberGhost! New location available http://s.cgvpn.net/sH Click to Tweet

For all the new Ghosties out there, download the CyberGhost application to enjoy the latest servers.

You can see here all the locations of our servers.

Feel free while enjoying the experience of a private internet!

There’s a new tech show in town!

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Which would be the ingredients of a tech show? You are probably thinking of news containing specialized terms, a complicated vocabulary and a tech nerd too passionate about his job to remember how to captivate his audience.

We think that tech shows should be more than fancy words for connoisseurs. They should be addressed to everybody. Because we believe technology, safety and privacy are crucial for each and every one of you, we decided to support a show which aims to deliver tech news with a twist of entertainment. Educating people on important matters like internet security and privacy can be fun if you know how to tackle these sensitive subjects.

Security and privacy are very hot topics for authorities and law enforcers around the world. The show’s goal is to bring you not only the latest news on privacy and security, but also to put a smile on your face.

CyberGhost is not just a VPN service, but a security and privacy company which is fighting for the freedom of speech and a free internet. That’s why we back up a famous Romanian actor, comedian, one-man show, Nelu Cortea for his “3 minutes John” YouTube show.

Watch the latest #3MinutesJohn YouTube show! http://s.cgvpn.net/sr #funny #tech Click to Tweet

John is a full time actor, he graduated from the National University of Theatre and Film in Bucharest and he played numerous parts for both theater and television. He is well-known for his stand-up comedy shows. The project he started is just a new challenge that will reveal his talent as a YouTube presenter.

Informing the average user on the importance of online privacy and security is the principal focus and this tech show is just one of the methods through which we are trying to raise awareness.

The “3 minutes John” show calls attention to tech news, privacy and security fresh topics like the Panama Papers, the anti-LGBT law which lead to IP blocking, or weird decisions like authorities banning banana-eating videos. You will be either outraged or amused by news such as the new app that makes fitness sexy and you will find out about the latest Google phone.

Besides the slightly funny information, John also presents important news on tech giants. You can find out about the conflict between Apple and the FBI or the Huawei statement on life after death through technology.

This series will make you want more tech news so all you have to do is subscribe to his YouTube channel. Feel free to share with your friends and spread the joy of online privacy and security!

Watch here the latest episode from John’s show, who wants to stick, at some point, to the 3 minutes he initially planned.

 

Win lifetime online protection & privacy with CyberGhost 5.5!

As you already know, we have a new update out and about as of November 11.

It’s called CyberGhost 5.5 and it’s packed full of awesome new features such as an ad blocker, malware protection, data compression and many more.

To celebrate this new version, we’re offering you the chance to win online privacy & security that will last you a lifetime. Yep, you read it right:

Join our contest now & you could win 1 of 5 CyberGhost Lifetime Premium Plus packages or

1 of 10 CyberGhost Premium Plus subscriptions for 1 year!

Win lifetime online protection & privacy with CyberGhost 5.5! See how: Click to Tweet

The are several ways to enter the contest, the more you use, the better your chances to win!

Join by clicking here & keep in mind that the competition ends on December 10!

Good luck, Ghosties!

CyberGhost Blog Privacy Challenge

As you already know, we really like to improve things everyday and we are always counting on your feedback for that.

If you come here often, you’ve probably noticed that lately we made some changes in the design and structure of our articles.

We want to make this blog the number 1 source for Privacy and Security news.

And today we’re officially launching our redesigned blog through the CyberGhost Blog Privacy Challenge!

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Check our new blog design  and you can win a CyberGhost Premium Plus subscription.

There are 15 ways you can enter our Challenge, the more you use the more chances you have to win.

Feel free to share your feedback on the new design.

Hurry up! Competition ends on 28th of October 2015. We’ll extract the 10 winners through the app and we’ll announce them by email.

How Windows 10 is spying on you and what you can do about it

Win 10

As you surely already know, Microsoft is currently distributing its new operating system Windows 10.

The OS, which was launched globally in 190 countries on July 29 is full of new features, fills in a lot of gaps and does away with the “Metro” style UI almost entirely.

Moreover, Windows 10 is super fluid and fast and its new browser Microsoft Edge might win back a lot of users because it’s also super-fast.

But all this comes at a pretty steep price for privacy, since Windows 10 listens in on what you do now more than ever and all that data gets transferred to Microsoft’s servers.

Basically, the OS will go through all your data (contacts, calendar, mail, messages…) and will learn information about you.

To make matters even worse, with Windows 10 you also have an advertising ID assigned to you so you can be easily targeted with specifically tailored ads; if you encrypt your hard-drive, the keys are stored by default on OneDrive.

Thankfully though, the native VPN option can be accessed and started directly from the notification quick-setting.

Of course, these are all settings and features aimed at increasing your productivity, as they make your apps and operating system much smarter.

But as mentioned before, this does come at a cost. Everything you do gets uploaded to Microsoft’s servers to improve your future experience. As stated in the Terms of Service, Microsoft has the right to share this data whenever it “has a good faith belief doing so is necessary to: 1.comply with applicable law or respond to valid legal process, including from law enforcement or other government agencies; 2.protect our customers, for example to prevent spam or attempts to defraud users of the services, or to help prevent the loss of life or serious injury of anyone; 3.operate and maintain the security of our services, including to prevent or stop an attack on our computer systems or networks; or 4.protect the rights or property of Microsoft, including enforcing the terms governing the use of the services.

In addition, all these settings are ON by default and will remain enabled if you just click next when installing/upgrading to Windows 10.

Most of the information regarding Win 10 and privacy is available in this official Microsoft article:

To sum it up, everything that happens with your Microsoft account (@live.com, @outlook.com, @msn.com, ….. , which is necessary for most of the new features) is scanned by Microsoft’s services. Everything you talk with Cortana (searches, reminders, notes, actions,….) is also processed by them. So is your location. In Microsoft’s own words:

We also share data with Microsoft-controlled affiliates and subsidiaries; with vendors working on our behalf; when required by law or to respond to legal process; to protect our customers; to protect lives; to maintain the security of our services; and to protect the rights or property of Microsoft.

Nevertheless, there’s something you can do about that and protect your data and privacy from Windows 10’s prying eyes.

In case you just clicked NEXT, NEXT when installing/upgrading to Win 10 and went with the defaults, here are a couple of things you should be aware of and disable if you feel spied on too much.

The Privacy settings can be easily managed by searching privacy in the start menu and most of the modules that send your data to Microsoft can be disabled.

If you simply press start then settings and then search for “privacy,” you’ll find most of the options listed. You can go through each of them and disable what you feel you need to keep only to yourself.

Below are some important ones that you need to change if you want to considerably increase your privacy:

  • Disable advertiser ID: open the settings and search for “advertising;” open “Choose if apps can use your advertising ID” and disable the first option: “Let apps use my advertising ID for experiences across apps”
  • On the same page, disable “…info about how I write” so that the text you type and write with a stylus is not sent to Microsoft servers

Also in the settings, search for “privacy” and open “Privacy Settings.” Get more privacy by changing the following:

  • Send Microsoft info about how I write..” -> OFF
  • Let apps use my Advertising ID…” -> OFF
  • Location” -> OFF
  • Speech, Inking, & typing: This is a feature strongly tied with Cortana. You can opt to clear everything, but if you do, you’ll lose Cortana.  You will still be able to use the Windows search function.

The rest is pretty self-explanatory and mostly relates to managing apps’ access to certain personal data. You can check the list of programs or devices (camera, mic) allowed to access the data or device or you can disable them entirely.

Before you go ahead and change these settings though, you should know that:

  • Disabling these option will diminish the “smart” experience you’ll have with Windows 10, so if you’re more into new features than you are into privacy, keeping them ON would be best for you. Otherwise, Windows 10 works really well without all these options; search is still possible.
  • Remember that your information is made available to “Microsoft employees, contractors, vendors, and partners…,” so basically it’s still not as hard as it should be for someone to get your data and use it.

There is one more Windows 10 novelty that you need to know about and that’s called “Wi-Fi Sense.

“Wi-Fi Sense” is a new feature that will sync all your Wi-Fi passwords to the cloud and share them with your contacts (Yep, you read that right). Through this functionality, your PC will also be able to “borrow” passwords and automatically connect, which means that you could end up automatically connected to a rogue router where your data could be easily phished.

In order to disable “Wi-Fi Sense,” go to Settings, search for “Wi-Fi” and open “Change Wi-Fi Settings.”

At the end of the list of found Wi-Fi networks, you will see “Manage Wi-Fi settings” and that’s where you can disable both options mentioned before.

Photo credits: www.orangejuiceblog.com

Get €25.000 funding for your privacy start-up idea from CyberGhost!

Privacy Accelerator

As you surely know by now, we really, strongly support and fight for online privacy, security, and freedom.

We say it on our website, our CEO Robert Knapp never misses a chance to say it during interviews, and everything we do is based on our belief that online privacy is a basic human right not to be ignored or infringed on.

So this year we decided to put our money where our mouth is. Literally.

On July 15, we kicked off our Privacy Accelerator Program, which aims to invest in, mentor, and support early-stage tech start-ups focused on privacy, security, or freedom.

We will invest a total amount of €100.000 in 4 up-and-coming teams/companies that are fighting the good fight and want to protect netizens’ rights to privacy, security, and anonymity.

We’ll also provide them with office space and, if they’re not from the EU, we’ll accommodate them in our guesthouse, which is located smack-dab in the always vibrant center of Bucharest.

And to top it all off, we’ll give them access to our API and make sure they’re mentored by our internal experts in development, sales, marketing, and customer support and administration.

Sounds awesome, right?

Then wait no longer and get your privacy start-up idea funded by sending in your application to press.office@cyberghost.ro.

The deadline is September 1st, so hurry up!

For more info about the Privacy Accelerator Program, click here.

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