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Re: [tor-talk] Tor and Google error / CAPTCHAs.

Alec Muffett writes:

> To a first approximation I am in favour of maximising all of those, but
> practically I feel that that's a foolhardy proposition - simply, my Netflix
> viewing, or whatever, does not need to be anonymised.

I appreciate your approach to analyzing what Tor-like tools need to be
able to do, but I wanted to question this a little bit.

Some of us privacy advocates have felt that it's quite bad that
communications technologies generate location and association metadata
in the first place.  I've often said in interviews that it's a flaw in
the cell phone infrastructure that it generates location data about
its users, for example, and that it would be better to have a mobile
communications infrastructure where location anonymity was the default
for everybody all of the time.

In the Netflix case, when you use an account to sign into their service,
just like any other, you're creating evidence of where you were when
you were watching that movie, which is also the basis of other evidence
about who was with you or who knows whom (like if you watched Netflix
from someone else's house, or two people watched Netflix from the same
place, or one person watched Netflix and another person signed into a
different service).

I wouldn't want to concede that it's appropriate that all of that data
gets generated all of the time, even if you can't see any sensitivity to
it at a particular moment.  And if location privacy continues to happen
on a purely opt-in basis, it'll continue to draw more attention to people
who are using tools to protect it, and it'll continue to be hard for
people to anticipate when they're going to turn out to have needed it.
It seems that people often discover later on that they wish they had
taken precautions to protect some data that didn't seem significant at
the moment.

Seth Schoen  <schoen@xxxxxxx>
Senior Staff Technologist                       https://www.eff.org/
Electronic Frontier Foundation                  https://www.eff.org/join
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