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Old 07-27-2013, 11:37 AM   #1
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What do you think about the privacy B&N policy regarding Nook(s)

Hi

I read the privacy policy when i got my Nook HD. To me it felt like my device was as good tracking device as it can ever get. It sounds like BN tracks you in and out all the way in the name of product statistics/ metrics etc. So I rooted it, disabled internet, added firewall etc etc. Not that I have anything to hide, but I find that these creeping practices by big corps and goverments to be incredibly invasive against individual`s right and human condition.

I persoanly feel like there has to be a limit of what they can/should track. As of now anything can be a reasonable argument for corporate business practices, or goverment practices. They can claim all the metadata/anon stats are used to imrove the system/products/social justice/security etc.


In any case I am curious what other fellow users think about it. And maybe this conversation cna help those who have not read those privacy policies.

I am also aware that "everyone else is doing it" and " this has been going for a long time".


thanks
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Old 07-27-2013, 12:40 PM   #2
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Since they don't actually check that I am who I say I am, or that such a person even exists it doesn't worry me at all!
I give them no pereonal information, whatsoever. To find out even where I am they would have to contact my ISP. My IP doesn't even put me within 2 hours driving distance...

Edit And to clarify: I'm completely aware that a hacker can find me or more or less anyone else using Internet. They would use illegal means to do that though. I doubt Barnes and Noble or any other legit company cares enough to go through those channels though!

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Old 07-29-2013, 02:14 AM   #3
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I agree that all the tracking is totally intrusive and unnecessary. But until all of our politicians take their hands out of the pockets of big business, they will never pass laws stringent enough to protect the average citizen.

I'm not willing to become a Luddite, though, because technology has always fascinated me and I realize that I have to trade some of my anonymity for access to that world. I control what I can the best I can and I don't sweat the rest. My fingerprints went on file with the federal government at age 22 when I started working for it; I remember thinking at the time that I had just given up my privacy. So perhaps, too, it's just that I've had a longer time to adjust to that notion.
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Old 07-29-2013, 06:24 AM   #4
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khahoon, there are some location-based benefits that B&N offers you that depend on your location. For example, if you take your Nook HD into a B&N store, you can read most any ebook for up to an hour. For free.

So at least in some instances, they have to be able to know exactly where you are. And track your usage.

At any rate, I have no issue if they want to track my location or purchases or whatever. In the case of the Nook HD, it is done solely for marketing/sales purposes.

It's totally different from the government snooping in on emails and phone calls and such. Though even in those cases, a reasonable argument can be made that the security benefits outweigh the minor loss in privacy.

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Old 07-30-2013, 10:12 AM   #5
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It does bother me, which is why I use Airplane mode a lot. On the other hand, there's not really a choice, because all tablet OS do this now. It's pretty frustrating, but since they've gotten consumers to accept it I don't know if it's going to change.
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Old 07-30-2013, 11:44 AM   #6
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@Xanthe,
I agree technology is fascinating and it enables us to tackle issues that were not possible before. However we could have designed a better future where certain values were not compromised.

@PatNY
There are no problems with providing services that require certain data. That is perfectly fine. What is not fine is doing that at all times. They cna design these things in much better and respectful ways, but they do not want to.

@Rbneader,
You should root your phone/tablet and install firewalls and certain other apps that will let you limit those invasive behaviours and turning on the airtplane mode is also good idea. We do not need to have these devices to be connected to internet at all times. Rooting tablets is pretty easy. It is as easy as putting couple files on an sd card and rebooting your tablet while it is in the tablet. Check out Xda forums.

Also it is not just the tablet manufacturers that want those data, most likely every app that you install will try to return some data from your device to some distant location. It is pretty sad to see that Android did not implement admin features by default. I believe that they just did not want people to truly own their devices. All modern operating systems let you have admin accounts. Why not Android?


To me it is really sad to see that people are easily giving up so much valuable things about themselves. Please remember that Google made an immense empire by just giving away email accounts. Facebook made an immense empire by just giving you some cheap server space where you spilled all your beans.What they are giving you is so little but in return what you give back is many hundred times bigger and more valuable. That is why they were able to get so rich so fast.

The other thing is that whenever this kind of conversation comes up, many people assume that the OP is always thinking that some goverment or some company is going to get him/her. This is just a silly oversimplification. This has nothing to do with individuals, not about me or not about you. This is more about our future as humanity and how we want to govern our future. I realize people like to think in simpler terms however I do hope that everyone can implement their own geniune understanding of these massivley important issues.

I also like to point out that the security really has nothing to do with surveilance. Goverments want to know everything you do, so they can govern you better in their terms. Everyone is living in glass houses now they just do not realize it. It happened so fast that it is hard for people to grasp it. To me security claims are dubious. The real security can be implemented only when everyone on earth agrees on it. It can only happen through real diplomacy, friendship and common future. Other than that, if some people want to hurt another, they will find the ways this way or that way regardless of if your goverment is running dubious, hideous, dishonest survailance campaign in a total punishment camp. Currently the western goverments surveilance skills are 100x worse than communist/ despotic regimes in fiction literature.

Last edited by khahoon; 07-30-2013 at 11:51 AM.
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Old 07-31-2013, 06:17 AM   #7
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@PatNY
There are no problems with providing services that require certain data. That is perfectly fine. What is not fine is doing that at all times. They cna design these things in much better and respectful ways, but they do not want to.
Well, that's what the Airplane mode and Wi-Fi On/Off switches are for. To turn off any electronic transmissions. What exactly would you rather a vendor like B&N do?

All tablets and their apps will do more or less the same in terms of tracking, no matter who the vendor is. Do you seriously think that B&N or any other app or device vendor has any interest about what you do or where you go apart from the device's or app's intended purpose? They couldn't care less.

And if you still think your tablet is a risk to your privacy, you don't have to own one. It's not like it's an absolute necessity in life.

Quote:
I also like to point out that the security really has nothing to do with surveilance ... To me security claims are dubious. The real security can be implemented only when everyone on earth agrees on it. It can only happen through real diplomacy, friendship and common future. Other than that, if some people want to hurt another, they will find the ways this way or that way regardless of if your goverment is running dubious, hideous, dishonest survailance campaign in a total punishment camp.
As I said in my previous post, government surveillance is different from tracking activities of vendors for marketing/sales purposes. The two shouldn't be lumped together, IMO. Apples and oranges.

But since you brought up government surveillance, I have to disagree with you that there are no security benefits to that. Let's take the example of security cameras monitoring almost every main street in American cities. Those cameras are what helped the government to capture the Boston Marathon bombers who had prepared more pressure cooker bombs and were planning to set them off before they were captured/killed. Reportedly, government surveillance has also thwarted many planned terrorist attacks on American soil.

Of course, such surveillance will never stop terrorism totally. But it will help minimize it and save some lives. So in that respect it's worthwhile.

The idea that "everyone on earth" can agree to anything of significance is unrealistic and too idealistic. The world is filled with too many disparate religious and cultural groups who are too often at each other's throats.

--Pat
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Old 07-31-2013, 12:13 PM   #8
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Well, that's what the Airplane mode and Wi-Fi On/Off switches are for. To turn off any electronic transmissions. What exactly would you rather a vendor like B&N do?

All tablets and their apps will do more or less the same in terms of tracking, no matter who the vendor is. Do you seriously think that B&N or any other app or device vendor has any interest about what you do or where you go apart from the device's or app's intended purpose? They couldn't care less.

And if you still think your tablet is a risk to your privacy, you don't have to own one. It's not like it's an absolute necessity in life.
--Pat
Well I already outlined what BN could have done in my prev post. They could have just given the right to own the device properly by providing admin rights by default. AN airplane mode is useless because anytime you enable wireless back (regardless of where you are) it will transmit back whatever was cached.

I also mentioned that this has nothing to do with me or any particular individual therefor I found your argument of device vendor`s lack of interest in particular individual baseless. Because an individual`s random behavior on a map does not bring enough insight, what they are after is crowd behaviour. That is how corporations get enlightened. What they can do with that data is beyond any regular consumer`s imagination, beside using to upgrade their systems, updating for consumer needs etc. On top of it they also have each indivual`s anon data, although I have hard time calling it anon data since one registers with the device id so they have your non-anon datas.

You claim that corporations are not interested in your or my boring life, which I agree, however that is not a strong argument to let them be able to record every movement of your life. Basically your argument is rather naive and half brainwashed and it is hopeful in post lost paradise world. I wish you best luck, however I would take enough steps to keep myself out of their crowd behavior games.

"And if you still think your tablet is a risk to your privacy, you don't have to own one. It's not like it's an absolute necessity in life. "

Books, a job, a wife, a kid, a husband, reading, , relationships, philosophy, poetry, religion, goverments, security cameras, politics etc, none of these are necessities of life either. There are only couple necessities in life. I would say that some water, some food and basic sheltering are the must haves.
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Old 08-01-2013, 05:08 AM   #9
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Well I already outlined what BN could have done in my prev post. They could have just given the right to own the device properly by providing admin rights by default. AN airplane mode is useless because anytime you enable wireless back (regardless of where you are) it will transmit back whatever was cached.
Sorry, but just saying "providing admin rights" is very vague, especially since right out of the box, the Nooks give you admin rights -- and the ability to create sub-accounts with lesser privileges.

And in terms of your location ... no, an airplane mode is NOT useless. They can't track your location if your Wi-Fi is turned off or your Airplane mode is turned on. They can't even cache your location unless Wi-Fi is on.

So, I have to ask, since your location can be hidden, right out of the box without rooting or anything -- what type of data exactly are you worried about getting to B&N or the app makers?

Quote:
I also mentioned that this has nothing to do with me or any particular individual therefor I found your argument of device vendor`s lack of interest in particular individual baseless. Because an individual`s random behavior on a map does not bring enough insight, what they are after is crowd behaviour. That is how corporations get enlightened. What they can do with that data is beyond any regular consumer`s imagination, beside using to upgrade their systems, updating for consumer needs etc. On top of it they also have each indivual`s anon data, although I have hard time calling it anon data since one registers with the device id so they have your non-anon datas.
I don't really know what you're talking about. Can you please explain how either B&N or an app vendor are using "crowd behavior" from the Nooks for their use? And why it is so evil? Be precise.

In terms of "anon data" they don't match up that data with the device or name, so why the worry?

Are we talking mobile ad data here? Are you seriously worried about that?

Quote:
You claim that corporations are not interested in your or my boring life, which I agree, however that is not a strong argument to let them be able to record every movement of your life. Basically your argument is rather naive and half brainwashed and it is hopeful in post lost paradise world. I wish you best luck, however I would take enough steps to keep myself out of their crowd behavior games.
Again, they don't record every movement of your life. If you simply turn Wi-Fi off, you CAN'T be tracked. Who is naive here? As well as a little paranoid perhaps?

Quote:
Books, a job, a wife, a kid, a husband, reading, , relationships, philosophy, poetry, religion, goverments, security cameras, politics etc, none of these are necessities of life either. There are only couple necessities in life. I would say that some water, some food and basic sheltering are the must haves.
Well, a lot of what you just named ARE necessities of life. A job, wife, husband, kid, religion (for many) ... most people consider these things life's basics that we can't live without or are essential to the quality of life ... especially in comparison to an electronic device!

I just don't see where the dangers are that you mentioned. Whether one is talking about the individual or "crowd" behavior.

--Pat
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Old 08-01-2013, 11:32 AM   #10
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It does bother me, which is why I use Airplane mode a lot.
I would expect this to make no difference. Any analytics software should be clever enough to store its data in non-volatile memory and push it up the moment a connection becomes available. Actually, that's how they work, they do not send data continuously, they bunch it up and send it in bursts. So, when you eventually turn wifi on, I would expect it to send all the recorded history up to the mothership.
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Old 08-01-2013, 01:55 PM   #11
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I would expect this to make no difference. Any analytics software should be clever enough to store its data in non-volatile memory and push it up the moment a connection becomes available. Actually, that's how they work, they do not send data continuously, they bunch it up and send it in bursts. So, when you eventually turn wifi on, I would expect it to send all the recorded history up to the mothership.
Except for your location, of course. For as long as you have wi-fi off, your location cannot be tracked. It cannot be cached either.

You can go around the world and come back home, and as long as you never turned your wi-fi on, no one would have a clue. You were home the entire time as far as the device/software vendors are concerned.

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Old 08-01-2013, 02:12 PM   #12
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The whole problem with information gathering is when it used to ones detriment. [which could occur in the near or distant future]. For example higher auto insurance cost, higher health insurance cost, because you facebooked a picture of yourself speeding down the road holding a mixed drink while smoking a cig.

I'm not saying the sky is falling, but the USA is not immune from becoming tyrannical in its abuse of power.
I pose this scenario as food for thought. The police hiding in a 25 mph spot (after descending a steep hill), in order to generate revenue from easy pickings. I would much rather they patrol the local area that would insure greater safety for the public, but is not a generous money maker.

Now do you think I would sit in a city council meeting and suggest such a thing. Guess who would become a target. Why sir, you crossed that yellow line, you rolled through that stop sign, I seem to smell alcohol or whatever, do you mind if I search your car?

Now you might say that its important to standup for your rights, well there was a time when being a law abiding citzen was enough. I have my own approach to the slippery slope.
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Old 10-02-2013, 06:17 PM   #13
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I guess I was right about raising suspicions about privacy and the tablet usage. Now that it has been revealed that (thanks to Snowden) NSA is collecting everything about you regardless of your lawful status, I advise users of tablets and phones to be more careful.

For the naives, you have no idea about how much data that is being sent out of your tablets and phones every second to unknown entities ( I tested, and logged all the attempts). I am guessing that if you are a careless user probably your phone/tablet sends million of bytes every single day to multiple locations, be it facebook, twitter, nsa, google, b&n, amazon, hackers, darknet bots, fbi etc which might include, you location, your contacts, your phone status, your device id, the name of the wireless network, your external and internal ip address, your mac adress probably, your phone calls, your book list, your magazine reads, your subscriptions, name of your lover or your exlovers, names of your close friends, your maritial status, your financial status, your emails, your passwords in some instances etc

Remember that couple bytes of information sent over your mobile device is enough to recognize you.

Just be aware of the consequences of being a useful idiot, you are endangering the future of your own society by being naive about the intentions of the goverment and the corporations.

Enough said.

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Old 10-04-2013, 04:12 PM   #14
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I guess I was right about raising suspicions about privacy and the tablet usage. Now that it has been revealed that (thanks to Snowden) NSA is collecting everything about you regardless of your lawful status, I advise users of tablets and phones to be more careful.
Huh?

Right about what? What's changed between July 27th when you started this thread and today?

By July 27th, it had already been months since Snowden leaked the info on the NSA. He had already been on the run for a long time. Maybe you live such a cocooned life free of electronic news and communications that you are just learning about Snowden today?

And, no, the NSA is not gathering everything about you. For the most part, for most Americans, you are of no interest to them. They only snoop on a limited range of data communications for very targeted purposes (drug trafficking; terrorism).

But to get back to the original topic of this thread -- B&N and how they track usage of Nook users -- there is nothing inherently risky or insecure about a Nook HD/HD+ and users have nothing to fear. B&N collects usage data for marketing and promotional purposes. If you're the paranoid type, you'd be better off worrying about the large email and search engine companies such as Yahoo, Bing, and Google. They mine or have access to a greater amount of user data than a hardware vendor like B&N does.

I really do think you are overly paranoid, but that is your business. Just keep your wi-fi turned off all the time and there is no way anyone can track where you've been -- if they even have any interest in where you've been to begin with.

--Pat
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Old 10-11-2013, 01:37 AM   #15
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Huh?

Right about what? What's changed between July 27th when you started this thread and today?

By July 27th, it had already been months since Snowden leaked the info on the NSA. He had already been on the run for a long time. Maybe you live such a cocooned life free of electronic news and communications that you are just learning about Snowden today?

And, no, the NSA is not gathering everything about you. For the most part, for most Americans, you are of no interest to them. They only snoop on a limited range of data communications for very targeted purposes (drug trafficking; terrorism).

--Pat

The public learned the actual extend of the programs by now and then. On the other hand I already knew this for years and was "trying" to live with integrity without turning myself into a data mining whore. The reason I posted after the leaks was to see if people paid attention to such issues.

I think that you are not getting the point of what Nsa or others are trying to do. I advise you to watch some of the recent EU Nsa hearings which you can find on online video places, where the actual people who worked on these programs or witnesses whosaw the actual abuses will tell you what is really going on. As an average Joe you have no idea about what you are talking about, how can you know what you are talking about if you are just an average person? Most of these programs are very secret and you are not supposed to know about them, therefor comments from someone like you has no weight I am sorry to say that because by nature, you(I do not mean you directly, but people who think that they can form proper ideas abotu such isssues) are a decent human being trying to get by in life. What they can monitor and cannot is most likely is beyond your imagination and technical skills, I have some technical skills therefor I can somewhat grasp what is going on which helps along the way. If you areally want to understand what they are doing you have to study computer sciences, cryptography etc not public law, or social sciences. What is going on and what they can do with the data is basically like a film strip of you without you being actively playing backward, in some cases they can extrapolate. I also recommend you to watch some of the videos of the Re Jim Sensenbrenner of WI who was one of the first architects of that legislature. He is now in shock an awe to see that what they envisioned then is not what these cowboys are up to with those laws.

Anyway I doubt that you have more information than Jim Sensenbrenner, or Senator Wyden, or Greenwald etc. I say please open up and listen them more closely.

And here is an article that should take care about the concerns about B&N data collection.

"Anonymized data really isn’t—and here’s why not"
http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2...bases-of-ruin/

I do not want to accuse B&N since I have no direct data about their involvement, but most likely they are in the Nsa`s address book to contact. So separating B&N from the nsa topic is really so possible considering that Nsa blackmailed all the big corporations that can provide some kind of user data this way ot that way. Hey even some of them made good chunk of money afterall.

On the other hand calling me paranoid at this point after all those leaks/revelations is childish at best. If I am paranoid then most of the world is paranoid at this point. There are only handful of non paranoid people left, like most of the Obama cabinet and probably some people like you

Last edited by khahoon; 10-11-2013 at 01:47 AM.
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