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Commentary: data protection commission investigates 1,500 valid complaints

16 Feb
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If there was any doubt how serious the problem was, there’s now a statistic that surely proves that Singapore users are inundated with unsolicited marketing messages and calls on their phones.

Just a month and a half after a do-not-call list came into effect, the Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC) has investigated 1,500 valid complaints from the public and probed 580 organisations for possible violations.

Tagged in: Cellphones, Featured, Singapore, DNC, PDPC, privacy, Singapore do-not-call registry,  

Are we picking up the right slice of Big Data?

23 Aug
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Big Data illustration

From where we’ve been with our phones to what type of coffee we drink at a cafe, the digital trail we leave every day carries the sort of data that companies and governments seem eerily keen to collect these days.

Walk into a Big Data seminar, as I did at an Intel event this week in Vietnam, and you’re often told how important it is to get geared up with the latest in data centre technologies to prepare for the deluge of data coming in the years ahead.

Petabytes of data, for sure, will be collected, stored and analysed. Faster chips are needed to compute. Cloud computing provides the flexibility and scalability, while greener data centres keep behemoth data warehouses running more cheaply by cutting power usage.

Yet, while geeks fascinate over the possibilities of the technology, you wonder if the people making decisions based on what the Big Data machine churns out have really put enough thought into the magic before their eyes.

Tagged in: cloud, Enterprise, Internet, Singapore, Software, Storage, Big data, privacy,  

Singapore do-not-call registry to keep spam calls, messages out from Jan 2014

15 May
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angry phone user2

Phone users in Singapore can finally say no to annoying spam SMSes or phone calls by adding their phone numbers to a much-awaited do-not-call registry from January 2, 2014.

When it swings into action, telemarketing companies will have to check against the registry to ensure that they do not call, SMS or fax people who have opted out of marketing messages.

Tagged in: Cellphones, Internet, Media, Singapore, data protection law, Personal Data Protection Commission, privacy, SMS, spam,  

Data Privacy Day: Five tips to protect your online privacy

30 Jan
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On Monday, the world marked Data Privacy Day, an international day that aims to raise awareness and educate people about data protection and privacy.

As more users put up information about themselves online and personal devices like smartphones store more data about their users, it pays to take a step back to consider the importance of privacy for a moment.

Here are five everyday tips which may be useful. 

Tagged in: Enterprise, Internet, security, Software, data privacy day, data protection, privacy, Symantec,  

Lesson from Instagram’s privacy terms – there’s no free lunch, folks

20 Dec
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Watching the Instagram story unfold this week, you’d be hard-pressed to find what’s funnier – outraged users threatening to delete their accounts or company executives squirming at the unexpected backlash and back-tracking on their original terms.

National Geographic threatened to close its account. Kim Kardashian said she was reviewing the terms, reported the BBC. Many others are not applying the image filters anymore.

In truth, both users and the company are denying reality when they set on this collision course. And if you’ve seen how the Internet works, things will be back to normal in time.

Tagged in: Cellphones, Internet, Media, social media, Software, business model, Instagram, online services, privacy,  

Commentary: Singapore gets stricter with data protection, but issues persist

16 Oct
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After years of being spammed by irritating SMSes to buy a house or insurance policy, Singapore consumers will finally be able to say no to these messages with a data protection law passed for the first time yesterday.

They can add their names to a national Do-No-Call list, up by early 2014, which will tell telemarketers not to send marketing SMSes or call them to peddle bank loans and the like. 

Tagged in: Internet, Media, Singapore, data protection law, MICA, privacy, Singapore, SMS, spam,  

Microsoft mocks Gmail with “Gmail Man”!

30 Jul
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Stand aside, browser wars; a new battle is heating up between Microsoft and Google and this time, the battlefield is email.

Google fired the first shot by launching a new website called Email Intervention, designed to help you stage an intervention among your friends who still use that outdated email address from the 1990s. The accompanying video featuring an “intervention specialist” is cute, funny and completely in Google’s cheeky style.

Tagged in: google, Internet, Web 2.0, email, email intervention, Gmail, gmail man, Google, Microsoft, office 365, privacy,