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Government

Massachusetts Plans To Keep Track of Where Your Car Has Been 521

Attila Dimedici writes "Massachusetts wants to establish a database with the information gathered by license plate scanners installed in police cars. The scanners will scan license plates of every car the police vehicle passes and transmit that information (along with the location) to a database that will be made available to various government agencies. The data wil be kept indefinitely."
Google

India Now Wants Access To Google and Skype 366

crabel writes "A couple of weeks ago India went after RIM and its mail service; it has extended its hunger for data now to all telecommunications. All telecom companies have to give them access to all voice over IP services that go in/out or happen within the country. Heck, they are even going after VPNs used by corporate employees working remotely."
Privacy

Tech Specs Leaked For French Spyware 212

An anonymous reader writes "With the 'three strikes' law now in effect in France, the organization tasked with implementing it, Hadopi, has been working on technology specs for making the process work — and those specs have now leaked. It appears to involve client-side monitoring and controlling software, that would try to watch what you were doing online, and even warn you before you used any P2P protocol (must make Skype phone calls fun). It's hard to believe people will accept this kind of thing being installed on their computers, so I can't wait to see how Hadopi moves forward with it. It also appears to violate EU rules on privacy."
Australia

Australia Air Travelers' Laptops To Be Searched For Porn 647

bluetoad writes "Australian customs officers have been given the power to search incoming travelers' laptops and mobile phones for porn. Passengers must declare whether they are carrying pornography on their Incoming Passenger Card. The Australian government is also planning to implement an Internet filter. Once these powers are in places, who knows how they will be used."
The Media

Media Industry Wants Mandated Spyware and More 373

An anonymous reader writes "The joint comment filed by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) and the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) requests anti-infringement software on all home computers, pervasive copyright filtering, border searches, forced US intellectual property policies on foreign nations and a joint departmental agency to combat infringement during major releases." The MPAA would also like to have its rent paid a bit by Congress, with a ban on what seems to me like a useful tool (for those in as well as outside the film industry), the recently-discussed futures market for box-office receipts.
Privacy

EU Data-Retention Laws Stricter Than Many People Realized 263

An anonymous reader writes with a snippet from the Telegraph: "A European Union directive, which Britain was instrumental in devising, comes into force which will require all internet service providers to retain information on email traffic, visits to web sites and telephone calls made over the internet, for 12 months."
Censorship

Indymedia Server Seized By UK Police, Again 528

timbrown writes with word that "On 22 January 2009, Kent Police seized an Indymedia server hosted by Manchester-based colocation facility UK Grid and run by the alternative news platform Indymedia UK. The server was taken in relation to comments on an article regarding the convictions in the recent Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC) trial. Seven activists were sentenced to a total of 50 years in prison." The complete story is worth reading; timbrown continues: "I'm posting this as a concerned UK administrator who hosts a number of sites. The message appears to be clear: the UK establishment does not want political content, legitimate or otherwise, hosted from these shores. The message has been noted, however free speech must be supported even where it may not be agreeable."
Privacy

UK Cops Want "Breathalyzers" For PCs 545

An anonymous reader writes "One of the UK's top cyber cops, detective superintendent Charlie McMurdie, says the top brass want to develop the equivalent of a breathalyzer for computers, a simple tool that could be plugged into a machine during a raid and retrieve evidence of illegal activity. McMurdie said the device was needed because of a record number of PCs were being seized by police and because the majority of cops don't have the skills to forensically analyse a computer."

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