Police Blotter: Husband accused of tapping wife's PC

A Texas court has ruled that a husband accused of monitoring his wife's computer through a keystroke logger did not violate federal wiretapping laws.

Larry Bagley was sued in June by his wife Rhea Bagley, who accused him of surreptitiously placing audio recording devices in their house as well as a software keystroke logger. The Bagleys are in the process of divorcing.

The complaint in this civil case says that during the divorce proceedings, the husband revealed the existence of the surveillance tech and acknowledged that the "software recorded screenshots of activity on this computer." The husband … Read more

Report: Feds to push for Net encryption backdoors

The Obama administration will seek a new federal law forcing Internet e-mail, instant-messaging, and other communication providers offering encryption to build in backdoors for law enforcement surveillance, The New York Times reported today.

Communication providers, apparently including companies that offer voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services, would be compelled to reconfigure their systems so that police could be guaranteed access to descrambled information.

It could become illegal for a company to offer completely secure encrypted communications--through a protocol such as ZRTP, for instance--if its customers held the keys and the provider did not.

Valerie Caproni, the FBI's general counsel, … Read more

Buzz Out Loud 1295: Facebook Places knows when you miss the bus (podcast)

On today's show, how future generations will know all too well where they were conceived, thanks to Facebook Places--and yes, it's opt-out and lets your friends check you in, but somehow, I can still find a way to love it. Plus, Intel buys McAfee, Verizon's bringing TV to your iPad (in bed), and Windows 7 is killing it!

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Facebook goes Places

Links from Thursday's episode of Loaded: Update your Facebook Places Verizon on the iPad Google Chrome Web Store leaks Intel to buy McAffe Personal spy game with the iPhone

Buzz Out Loud 1251: Captain Obvious issues a memo (podcast)

From the desk of the big man himself: tablets are gonna be huge. Thanks for that one, boss. Also, iPhone 4 shipments are delayed again, and that doesn't even address the white iPhone 4 issue (where is that thing?). But Android's no help, at least not if you want the HTC Aria, which is all locked down by (you guessed it) AT&T. And in other obvious news, monkeys like TV.

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At E3: Wiretape, a super-thin cable you can paint

LOS ANGELES--At a show that's as large as it gets for video games, in a corner of E3 the was a product designed to be hidden from sight entirely.

Hitech Innovation's Wiretape, which the company claims is the world's thinnest wire at 0.16 millimeters, has been designed to de-clutter the usual mess of wires that can stretch down from high-mounted televisions, or across rooms.

It works like a roll of tape, running as long as it's needed before consumers can cut it with a pair of scissors. Then, the loose ends can be fed into … Read more

School accused of off-campus Webcam spying

I know that there are many parents who would dearly love to spy on their children. Some, because they think their kids might be up to no good. Some, because they think their kids might be up to something so very not good that it might be illegal.

So I am rather moved with concern at a spying accusation that has reportedly been leveled by parents at a Philadelphia-area school district.

According to Computerworld, a class action lawsuit has been served upon the Lower Merion School District, based in Ardmore, Pa. It declares that the school district has taken on … Read more

Report: NSA tried to eavesdrop on Congress member

The National Security Agency tried to wiretap a member of the U.S. Congress without a warrant, and has engaged in "significant and systemic" illegal surveillance activities in the last few months including e-mail and telephone call interceptions, according to a report this week.

The article in Wednesday's New York Times said the Obama administration acknowledged there had been abuses but said they had been resolved. The attempted eavesdropping on a congressman came about because he or she was part of a delegation to the Middle East in 2005 or 2006, and was ultimately blocked.

The NSA … Read more

MacHeist 3 brings back the great software deals

For the past two years, several independent Mac software developers have teamed up to put together a bundle of award-winning Mac apps at a vastly reduced price--with 25 percent of the purchase price donated to the charity of your choice (chosen from a list). The whole thing takes place at a very well-designed site called MacHeist.com and over the past two years, thousands of Mac users have snapped up the limited time offer--it's really a great deal! The fun part about the MacHeist offer is the developers of MacHeist make it into a kind of scavenger hunt. They … Read more

Obama unseals Bush-era wiretap memos

The Bush administration secretly concluded after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks that it had the authority to wiretap the Internet and telephone calls with virtually no limitations, restrict free speech, and use the U.S. military domestically against suspected terrorists.

Those legal opinions came in a series of memorandums written by U.S. Department of Justice lawyers, including deputy assistant attorney general John Yoo, which were disclosed by the Obama administration on Monday.

Although the broad outlines of the Bush administration's claims to sweeping executive powers were previously known, the newly released memorandums provide a glimpse at both … Read more