Czech Authorities Investigate Avast Over Data Collection

Investigations are underway to examine Avast’s practice of collecting and selling its users’ browser histories.

Avast, which is based in the Czech Republic, claimed it was stripping away users’ personal details from the collected browser histories as a way to “de-identify” the data, and preserve their customers’ privacy. However, the joint investigation from PCMag and Motherboard found the contrary: The same data can actually be combined with other information to identify the web activities of individual Avast users, including their internet searches. As many as 100 million users had their data collected.

I’m glad there are investigations. As I found out last week, there are likely other companies participating in this data collection practice.

US Reportedly Gave Allies Evidence of Huawei Backdoors

Although the U.S. hasn’t shared it publicly, it claims to have found actual evidence of Huawei backdoors.

The United States has long claimed that Huawei can secretly access networks through the networking gear it sells to telcos, but the goverment previously argued that it doesn’t need to show any proof. US officials still are not providing such evidence publicly but have begun sharing their intelligence with other countries.

The best part is that, according to The Wall Street Journal, the origin of this report, these backdoors were intentionally put into place for law enforcement. And yet, the DoJ wants Apple to put backdoors in iOS that they swear can only be accessed by law enforcement, and definitely not foreign state hacking groups.

LaunchCuts 1.2 Update Adds Folder Icons, Quick Actions, and More

LaunchCuts is a launcher for Apple’s Shortcuts app that adds extra functionality. With LaunchCuts 1.2 it adds even more features, such as: Customization: Personalize the look of your folders with icons and colors; Custom App Icon: Choose from five different app icons for LaunchCuts; Quick Actions: Easily access up to three folders or shortcuts from iOS Home screen; Enhanced Keyboard Support: Control nearly every aspect of LaunchCuts from the keyboard; New Shortcut Actions: Analyze and Filter Shortcuts actions give you more visibility into your library of shortcuts; and a whole lot more. App Store: US$7.99