Cloud Computing, The Government, and You!

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posted on Nov, 3 2012 @ 06:15 AM
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Many of you reading this probably already use some cloud service; Steam for keeping game saves between computers or Google Docs/Drive for storing documents online, arguably any service that stores data on its servers and is accessible from any internet-connected device counts as cloud computing. Even ATS with is media storage setup falls under this criteria in that the data lives on their servers, but you access and use it.

Keeping that in mind I highly suggest you now go read this article regarding how the US government has been dealing with user data in the Megaupload case.

...

Ok now that you are done with reading that its time to become worried, very very worried. Going on the premise that the government is suggesting your data is no longer yours once you upload it, it becomes a sort of jointly owned piece of property which is owned by the service provider as well as the server owners (usually two different entities) and if seized by the government in a blanket-style raid is up for grabs unlike conventional search and seizure which outlines specific things that can be looked at and taken as evidence.

So much of our data now lives in the "cloud" that its not even funny, your pictures on Flickr, Facebook data, ANY web-based email such as Gmail or Hotmail, pretty much all you do online in one way or another creates a repository of data which lives on servers leased from one company and managed by another. Imagine for a second your email provider is hit with a seizure like the one mentioned and you lose access to your email completely; could you continue doing day to day tasks? Would you be impacted come tax-time when your information is not accessible? From personal experience I cannot access my bank's online portal without checking my email because I use a 2-factor authentication setup which emails me a temporary code to use in addition to my password. Even as an IT person I would be out in the cold without access to my email, not to speak of my Evernote account which contains a lot of very important data.

With all of the scary part out of the way how many of you have alternate data stores that you physically control which would not be impacted by a situation like the Megaupload case? In light of this I know I have begun migrating my data to systems which I personally control and I would highly suggest the same for the membership of ATS lest they wind up out in the cold (and probably sleepless depending on the data lost) when uncle sam yanks some servers out of a rack to hold them hostage in some evidence locker.




posted on Nov, 3 2012 @ 06:35 AM
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Never save anything online that you would not mind seeing posted on a billboard in your hometown. I do places like ATS only using methods which I hope provide anonymity. I use a throwaway name, a disposable email account, and only log on via publicly accessible portals like McDonalds or some-such.



posted on Nov, 3 2012 @ 06:38 AM
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reply to post by DarthMuerte
 


While thats a given being able to access your data is also important, given the recent storm that hit the east coast and took out datacenters and destroyed homes people are thinking about the idea of off-site storage for important things (both from the individual and business perspective) and may not necessarily be tempering those thoughts with information such as the Megaupload case and what it could mean for cloud data.



posted on Nov, 3 2012 @ 07:16 AM
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I think two things are important here.

Back up your data. Thumb drives at 32 MB are available and inexpensive. As I use computing, everything I need is on my thumb drive. If I fly somewhere my drive goes with me. Need more space, 1TB go any where drives are small and convenient.

As for keeping data secure, try Truecrypt. When you start with a cloud server just use an encrypted container. The Government may have your data but they will never know what it contains. Same with your thumb drive or take anywhere hard drive.

If other trusted people need access you can create shared containers.

For the uninitiated, no, it is not like it is on silly TV. "Yeah boss, it is all encrypted, I'll need a few hours." ROFL. More like he needs a few lifetimes.

P



posted on Nov, 3 2012 @ 08:08 AM
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They can already access any and all information on your mobile, pc and any other devices you may have that employ digital networks/electronic signaling to function, remember that! So cloud computing is just making it easier for them to do so IMHO.
edit on 3-11-2012 by andy06shake because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 3 2012 @ 08:57 AM
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off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift


 



posted on Nov, 3 2012 @ 10:05 AM
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reply to post by Helig
 



the government is suggesting your data is no longer yours once you upload it, it becomes a sort of jointly owned piece of property which is owned by the service provider as well as the server owners (usually two different entities) and if seized by the government


There you have it - information is a commodity under international trade law; ownership is determined by international copyright law. Long story short - once you store or post anything on the Net, you give up your rights of ownership and privacy.

Sucks to be technologically advanced.



posted on Nov, 4 2012 @ 01:36 AM
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reply to post by Helig
 





Ok now that you are done with reading that its time to become worried, very very worried. Going on the premise that the government is suggesting your data is no longer yours once you upload it, it becomes a sort of jointly owned piece of property which is owned by the service provider as well as the server owners (usually two different entities) and if seized by the government in a blanket-style raid is up for grabs unlike conventional search and seizure which outlines specific things that can be looked at and taken as evidence.


Its not just the gov, its common practice on the web. Did you even read the T&Cs when you signed up here?



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posted on Nov, 4 2012 @ 04:22 AM
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reply to post by Superhans
 


Yes I've been over the terms here several times and that section you linked in particular, however there is a massive difference between access to your data and right as to what you can do with it. In the case of Megaupload customers who did nothing wrong lost their data completely and the government doesn't want to give them a reasonable path to follow in order to get that data back and have been going through that data even though it had nothing to do with the seizure in the first place.



posted on Nov, 4 2012 @ 04:29 AM
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Originally posted by DarthMuerte
Never save anything online that you would not mind seeing posted on a billboard in your hometown. I do places like ATS only using methods which I hope provide anonymity. I use a throwaway name, a disposable email account, and only log on via publicly accessible portals like McDonalds or some-such.


So you do have something to hide? You make yourself an even bigger target this way.



posted on Nov, 6 2012 @ 05:14 PM
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People also need to consider the future. Microsoft, Adobe, Google and others are all working towards their software being cloud based. You want to use Photoshop? Access it through the Cloud. Same deal with Windows eventually if Microsoft have their way.

Eventually your computer will just be a terminal through which you access the cloud. Your operating system and everything else will be on other peoples servers.



posted on Nov, 6 2012 @ 05:24 PM
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I am laughing. I live like it's the 60's and this kind of crap is exactly why. I've got hard copy on everything and I can live without email and the internet.

Good luck everybody.





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