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WIRED discusses the EU General Data Protection Regulation – GDPR – and how the new privacy law will likely change the way web sites collect data on its users:

Instead, companies must be clear and concise about their collection and use of personal data like full name, home address, location data, IP address, or the identifier that tracks web and app use on smartphones. Companies have to spell out why the data is being collected and whether it will be used to create profiles of people’s actions and habits. Moreover, consumers will gain the right to access data companies store about them, the right to correct inaccurate information, and the right to limit the use of decisions made by algorithms, among others.

The law protects individuals in the 28 member countries of the European Union, even if the data is processed elsewhere. That means GDPR will apply to publishers like WIRED; banks; universities; much of the Fortune 500; the alphabet soup of ad-tech companies that track you across the web, devices, and apps; and Silicon Valley tech giants.

As an example of the law’s reach, the European Commission, the EU’s legislative arm, says on its website that a social network will have to comply with a user request to delete photos the user posted as a minor — and inform search engines and other websites that used the photos that the images should be removed. The commission also says a car-sharing service may request a user’s name, address, credit card number, and potentially whether the person has a disability, but can’t require a user to share their race. (Under GDPR, stricter conditions apply to collecting “sensitive data,” such as race, religion, political affiliation, and sexual orientation.)

If you do anything on the web, which in 2018 is tantamount to asking someone if they have electricity, then this is a must read. Europe really is at the forefront of privacy law, and we can only hope other nations will follow suit. But since the web knows no borders, GDPR will apply to every company and organization operating on the web. So as a netizen, become familiar with this regulation and know what is, and is not, allowed.

There is a lot of talk about GDPR all over the technology industry, but specifically the web. In light of todays Cambridge Analytica story detailing how the company easily collected data from Facebook, protecting consumer privacy from continued breaches of trust is paramount. A lot of money is being expended on GDPR compliance and I really wonder just how it will change the landscape, if it will change the landscape.

Just as Cambridge Analytica was able to exploit loopholes in Facebook’s system, I wonder what company will be the first to find and leverage loopholes in GDPR, and what will happen to them for doing so.

The Globe and Mail reports on the thought police in China, and the new cyber police corps defending their protecting Chinese citizens from illegal information or what is otherwise known as state sponsored censorship:

But the new details have nonetheless brought fresh attention to the extraordinary measures China takes to quell digital dissent. Under Mr. Xi’s leadership, Beijing continues to diminish the ability of Chinese people to use the Internet to expose wrongdoing, communicate news not approved by authorities or even chat with friends without fear their conversations could land them in trouble. Recent months have suggested more is coming.

Authorities are working to set in place a broad new national security law that seeks to root out “harmful moral standards” and would create new “systems for cyber and information security.” Critics have called it a “neo-totalitarian” piece of legislation, but it falls in line with calls from Mr. Xi for the use of the Internet – along with Chinese arts and culture – to spread “positive energy.”

To further enforce that, China is also building a “social credit system” that would rely in part on individual Internet browsing and posting histories to assign each person a score that reflects their adherence to socialist values like patriotism and hard work. Comments critical of the Communist Party risk producing a poor score that would threaten a person’s ability to secure work or bank loans. It’s been called an “Orwellian” system for the digital age.

China’s Internet police, as part of their charm offensive this week, defended their work as keeping the Internet free of problems for everyday Chinese.

“Freedom of speech is enshrined in the law,” Zhong Zhong, deputy inspector at the Bureau for Network Security, said in an comments published by the Global Times, a Communist mouthpiece newspaper. Online enforcement is useful to “stop the spread of illegal information,” he said, so China can “protect the legal right of every netizen to use Internet.”

If you believe China has freedom of speech, as American’s understand freedom of speech, you might want to think again.

David Nakamura and Wesley Lowery of The Washington Post on the Obama administration banning some military-style assault gear from local police departments because, you know, there was no need for the police to have this type of gear to begin with:

The Obama administration announced Monday it will ban federal transfers of certain types of military-style gear to local police departments, as the president seeks to respond to a spate of incidents that has frayed trust in communities across the country.

The banned items are tracked armored vehicles, bayonets, grenade launchers, ammunition of .50-caliber or higher and some types of camouflage uniforms, according to a report released by a White House working group that made the recommendations. Other equipment, including tactical vehicles, explosives and riot equipment, will be transferred only if local police provide additional certification and assurances that the gear will be used responsibly, according to the report.

“We’ve seen how militarized gear sometimes gives people a feeling like they are an occupying force as opposed to a part of the community there to protect them,” Obama said during remarks in Camden, N.J. “Some equipment made for the battlefield is not appropriate for local police departments.”

Standby for local policy departments around the country to step up their fear campaigns as a result of this new policy.