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Thread: Google: Gmail users ‘have no legitimate expectation of privacy’

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    Google: Gmail users ‘have no legitimate expectation of privacy’

    "Consumer Watchdog has unearthed a July 13, 2013 motion filed by Google’s attorneys with regards to ongoing litigation challenging how the Silicon Valley giant operates its highly popular free email service. The motion, penned in hopes of having the United States District Court for the Northern District of California dismiss a class action complaint against the company, says Gmail users should assume that any electronic correspondence that's passed through Google’s servers can be accessed and used for an array of options, such as selling ads to customers.

    "Just as a sender of a letter to a business colleague cannot be surprised that the recipient's assistant opens the letter, people who use Web-based email today cannot be surprised if their emails are processed by the recipient's [email provider] in the course of delivery,” the motion reads in part. “Indeed, 'a person has no legitimate expectation of privacy in information he voluntarily turns over to third parties.’"

    http://rt.com/usa/google-gmail-motion-privacy-453/

    Google's motion to dismiss - verry revealing.

    http://www.scribd.com/document_downl...d&source=embed
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nightmare View Post
    SNIP "Just as a sender of a letter to a business colleague cannot be surprised that the recipient's assistant opens the letter, people who use Web-based email today cannot be surprised if their emails are processed by the recipient's [email provider] in the course of delivery,” the motion reads in part.
    That is such an unartful, inept dodge. They just convicted themselves of trying to deceive the public.

    Sure, if I send a business letter, I expect a staffer to handle it.

    But, if I mail a personal letter to my mother, I do not expect the mailman to open it. Nor, my dad, or brother, or anybody else in the home.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Regular Member Maverick9's Avatar
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    I've always considered email to be like sending a postcard.

    There are alternatives to gmail, but according to the buzz none are secure.

    I suppose you could encrypt and cut and paste, but encrypted mail gets more scrutiny.

    Maybe people will end up creating their own personal language - it's not encrypted, just obscure?

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    Regular Member stealthyeliminator's Avatar
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    I personally don't (currently) have much problem with Google running my emails through an automated processor in order to target ads to me.

    Not to mention, it's not necessarily like Google has been entrusted with access to your email while others cannot otherwise see it without Google's malicious intervention. You do realize that, generally speaking, emails are sent plain-text over the internet... Do you know how many devices your emails are transmitted through on the way to the end recipient's device? Do you know how many different companies' devices those emails may be transmitter through before reaching their destination? Do you think that your emails are not being caught in any number of 'nets' along the way, and processed for who-knows-what-purpose? Maybe not, but yeah, you should not expect your emails to be a secret. If you need some privacy, use an encryption solution. I wonder if Google's programs will recognize that the emails are encrypted and target you with encryption related ads. haha

    Now, what would be unethical, is if Google provided a 3rd party, outside of yourself, Google, and the recipient/sender, with copies of the emails or content from them, or even their 'metadata' as is apparently the current catch-term. Despite the fact that other 3rd parties may, and almost likely already have copies of the messages, I would still find it unethical for Google to actually provide anyone else with that information, including government entities. From what I've been able to read, they fight for user privacy in this regard. Automated processing of emails in order to target ads, though? So, you'd rather see ads that have nothing to do with any of your interests? Ok.

    Have you ever sent an email (or surfed the web or anything else), using a non-encrypted connection, over a 'free' wifi connection? Probably. And when you did, you basically broadcast that message to everyone within wifi range. Good job. Now go sue Google because you don't know how email works? Shame.

    It's not Google's job to hold your hand while you use the internet.
    Last edited by stealthyeliminator; 08-13-2013 at 07:01 PM.

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    I use Hardware Full Disk Encryption, Enigmail in my SMTP client, and HTTPS/HTTPS Everywhere addon.

    Kim Dotcom says he is building an encrypted webmail server service.
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    Regular Member XD40sc's Avatar
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    In today's world if you expect privacy with any electronic communication, frankly my dear, you are complete and total fool. And that has been true long before the NSA was exposed to capture and archive every single electronic communication, be it voice, text, email.

    And a special shout out to Obama/Biden and company ....... "bite me"

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    Quote Originally Posted by XD40sc View Post
    In today's world if you expect privacy with any electronic communication, frankly my dear, you are complete and total fool. And that has been true long before the NSA was exposed to capture and archive every single electronic communication, be it voice, text, email.

    And a special shout out to Obama/Biden and company ....... "bite me"
    with almost all privacy issues; its the level that the communicator takes to insure privacy is what controls.

    google clearly does not understand that and compares US Mail to e-mail. OK, with US Mail, you place a letter into a post box, the USPS picks it up and delivers it to a house. Can one be secure that the letter is not going to be given to another address? Yes. Can one be secure in knowing that only the addressee at the posted house reads it? Yes.

    With e-mail, you have a email service .. you need to login and provide a password...you agreement w/the provider does not state its open to the public. Same with the recipient. All persons involved take measures to insure its security. In fact google mail likely spends a lot of $$ insuring that LI's and PWs are not stolen.

    What more does a court want?

    There are certainly other things people could do BUT the actions currently taken shows that privacy attaches.

    Google is full of it ... and you cannot open mail unless its addressed to YOU.

    Lawyers do a lot of work via email and put disclaimers on their email bodies...they mean nothing then?

    I am not a fool - I am a person who expects his privacy to remain present no matter what technology is utilized.
    Last edited by davidmcbeth; 08-13-2013 at 09:47 PM.

  8. #8
    Regular Member stealthyeliminator's Avatar
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    No, it's not like US mail because US mail is closed in an envelope that prevents regular viewing of the contents. The postman would have to physically open the package to read the contents of the message. With email, there is no such container. No manipulation of of the "email package" is required for the entire contents of the message to be viewable in plain text. You would literally have to avert your eyes to prevent seeing the content. As noted, email is more comparable to being a postcard than a message in an envelope.

    If you go to a coffee shop, connect to their 'free' and open wireless network and open up any packet sniffer, and the guy sitting next to you sends an email using the regular smtp protocol, you can literally see the plain text contents of the message go across your screen as raw data. Basically, you're expecting other people to take action to ensure your privacy as opposed to you taking action to protect your privacy. Edit: correction, you don't even have to connect to the same wireless network. Just tell your wireless radio to "listen" and watch their emails flow across your screen.

    Edit again: There is also to consider that with Gmail, by default, you'll probably end up using it over encrypted connections and in that case the simple sniffing example I give above wouldn't apply. That still doesn't turn it into a similar-to-mail scenario, though! More like, you take the post card to the postman and hand it to him and say deliver this but don't let anyone else see it. You're still handing the post card, completely viewable including content, to the postman. That is more what Gmail is like.

    There is even still a lot more to consider here. No one has mentioned the terms of service agreement. I'm sure we all could have a lot to say about that aspect.

    Personally, I'm not butt-hurt at all about my emails being scanned by an automated process for keywords in order to target ads to me - so long as the contents of the messages are not actually transferred to or made available to a 3rd party, and so long as the characterizations created for the ad targeting are not linked to my identity and those informations together transferred to a 3rd party. From what I understand in this case, neither of those scenarios are true.
    Last edited by stealthyeliminator; 08-13-2013 at 10:23 PM.

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    In the instant case, it must be presumed that the postal employees' job is to deliver the mail and not to read it...
    http://scholar.google.com/scholar_ca...en&as_sdt=8003


    A case involving postcards ... so I think that as a customer of USPS one should expect some level of privacy for a written postcard when sent by USPS.

    Clearly they are delivering to a specific address...once in the mailbox delivered there is an expectation of privacy there too....

    The postcard analogy is curious ... I shall review it further ...

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    Regular Member Maverick9's Avatar
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    Let's say I want to send 'private' information to someone. I could use something like 'SkyPE' and just hold up note cards. Though someone might conceivably intercept the speech in SkyPE, I don't think they can grab the stream.

    In fact, I could just use somewhat coded message cards in SkyPE, like 'send me some gump' (which is child-speak for 'milk').

    I think we should presume that all our email is being read, that LE or anyone can grab one's ID and impersonate us. Thus we should monitor all our CCs and bank accounts daily and dispute any wrong charges, and things like that.

    I guess it's the price one pays for being in the information age. I just hope that the aliens that gave us the semi-conductor wait at least 50 more years before taking us over via our computers.

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    I would like to know the numbers on how many folks who use Gmail thought their data would remain private.....it's Google!!!!!

    You get what you pay for.

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    Cash is king.

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    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    I would like to know the numbers on how many folks who use Gmail thought their data would remain private.....it's Google!!!!!

    You get what you pay for.
    "You get what you pay for." Well said, I hope it is true. My 'secure' e-mail for fee provider has not been forthcoming on their security status since the NSA flap took to the air.
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    Regular Member stealthyeliminator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maverick9 View Post
    Let's say I want to send 'private' information to someone. I could use something like 'SkyPE' and just hold up note cards. Though someone might conceivably intercept the speech in SkyPE, I don't think they can grab the stream.

    In fact, I could just use somewhat coded message cards in SkyPE, like 'send me some gump' (which is child-speak for 'milk').

    I think we should presume that all our email is being read, that LE or anyone can grab one's ID and impersonate us. Thus we should monitor all our CCs and bank accounts daily and dispute any wrong charges, and things like that.

    I guess it's the price one pays for being in the information age. I just hope that the aliens that gave us the semi-conductor wait at least 50 more years before taking us over via our computers.
    Not sure why you're spelling it that way, I must be missing something...

    At any rate, I would not trust Skype video calls, or any data through Skype be it text, video or audio, to be free from spying eyes... Same goes for other video messaging services, including Google's Hangouts. I don't meant to come off as a conspiracy theorist or anything, but... you know.

    Words of warning - security through obscurity isn't.
    Last edited by stealthyeliminator; 08-14-2013 at 02:01 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nightmare View Post
    "You get what you pay for." Well said, I hope it is true. My 'secure' e-mail for fee provider has not been forthcoming on their security status since the NSA flap took to the air.
    Neither has my congressman .... patriot act ... yeah, right patriot act of china they should have called it.

    Congress: OK NSA, we are giving you these tools to spy on every US Citizen .. but don't do that

    NSA: OK Mommy (gurgle gurgle gurgle big smile)
    Last edited by davidmcbeth; 08-14-2013 at 02:40 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    NSA: OK Mommy (gurgle gurgle gurgle big smile)
    David, with respect, your tagging almost every thread, and many posts in these threads, with everything that you know is becoming tiresome.
    Last edited by Nightmare; 08-14-2013 at 04:24 PM.
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