Архив рубрики: New Internet Monitoring

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Forrester Research analyst J.P. Gownder said a hit smartphone traditionally hasn’t led buyers to get a tablet from the same manufacturer. He believes Samsung will get a bigger boost from its new mini-stores inside U.S. Best Buy locations. Having a retail environment it can control bridges some of the gap with Apple, which has its own stores.

“Whether you buy it online or in person, people want to touch and feel these products,” Gownder said.

Samsung has declined to challenge the iPad on screen resolution. The new tablets have the same resolution as older models, leaving them well behind the iPad and even Samsung’s flagship Galaxy S4 smartphone. The 10-inch tablet has a resolution of 1280 by 800 pixels, compared with 1920 by 1080 for the phone. The smartphone packs in three times more detail in a square inch than the tablet does. (The 8-inch Tab 3 does, however, have a slightly higher screen resolution than the iPad Mini, the closest Apple equivalent.)

Analyst Jeff Orr at ABI Research said that the new Samsung tablets aren’t “groundbreaking in any particular direction,” it shows the South Korean company is honing a strategy that’s been successful in smartphones: producing a wide variety of devices for different customer segments.

“Samsung has certainly shown how that can be accomplished with handsets, and I see more of that occurring now with the Galaxy Tab 3 announcement,” Orr said.

With the new models, Samsung will have five tablets on sale in the U.S., compared to two at Apple. In addition, Samsung sells the Galaxy Note II, a phone-tablet crossover device.

The 10-inch model is the first Android-powered Samsung tablet to use an Intel processor. That’s a significant win for the Santa Clara, Calif., chipmaker, which has been trying to break into the market for cellphone and tablet chips now that PC sales are slumping. Other smartphones and tablets run chips made by a variety of companies, all based on designs from ARM Holdings PLC, a British company.

New Internet Monitoring

New Internet Monitoring Law In Russia Guised To Protect Children Could Lead To A New Surveillance State.

Internet freedom in Russia took a hit yesterday, as the Kremlin implemented new online filtering protocols that could result in widespread government monitoring of web traffic — all due to a measure purportedly aimed at protecting Russia’s youth.

This is far from the first time protecting children has been invoked in support of laws requiring a significant online surveillance, just last year the U.S. House considered the Protecting Children from Internet Pornographers Act of 2011, which would have mandated internet service providers (ISPs) to maintain records of everything you do on the Internet every year, and give the government access to the data without a warrant under the same pretenses.

The evolution of the Russian law should make American citizens thankful the U.S. legislation failed: While it originated as a blocking mechanism for obscene content, since passage, Russian courts have said the measure can be used to ban political extremism and critics of President Vladimir Putin’s regime and the Ministry of Communications concluded Deep Packet Inspection (DPI) is the only way to implement it. DPI is a method of data processing involving looking at the details of the packets sent across networks to determine how to process or reroute the information. Logistically, this will require Russia’s ISPs to maintain detailed records of user traffic and would allow the Russian government a potential backdoor into the private lives of Russia’s internet users. As Eric King, head of research at Privacy International explained to Wired, this has some very troubling implications:

“No Western democracy has yet implemented a dragnet black-box DPI surveillance system due to the crushing effect it would have on free speech and privacy… DPI allows the state to peer into everyone’s internet traffic and read, copy or even modify e-mails and webpages: We now know that such techniques were deployed in pre-revolutionary Tunisia. It can also compromise critical circumvention tools, tools that help citizens evade authoritarian internet controls in countries like Iran and China.”

All of this makes DPI sound sinister, and it can be: the late Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi used DPI to track online dissent in Libya, and has proven a cost effective way for totalitarian regimes to censor and target political opposition. Although, there are legitimate uses — particularly in network protection — most internet freedom advocates are against large scale implementation due to the damage potential abuse would for freedom of speech and privacy rights, especially in nations with poor track records on human rights issues (such as Russia).

However, most ISPs are already keeping tabs on what their subscribers are generally up to online and have the ability to use DPI on case by case basis — and as with much of the technology interacting with personal details, the questions of who has access to what breakdown of information, under what conditions, and with what safeguards to prevent abuse are critical to their responsible use. Even in countries with more respectable track records on these issues than Russia, DPI can cause considerable controversy, such as when it was proposed as part of new cybersecurity protocols in the United Kingdom.

Depending on how Russia’s mandated DPI processing is implemented and utilized, it may serve as a cautionary tale not only about how the justifications for legislation don’t represent their actual applications, but how structured surveillance can stifle the free flow of ideas online.
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