FlashRouters Privacy & Technology Link Roundup (2/4/13 – 2/11/13)


It’s been a couple of weeks since we’ve posted our last roundup of fun and interesting links related to privacy and technology, so we figured it was high time to scour the web to see what’s new and changing in those worlds. Predictably, there is much that’s new and exciting to discuss. So please bounce around from link to link, and see if you find any of these stories as compelling as we did.



Stories From The World of Streaming Media


HBO Go on Apple TV – Though it’s been available for a couple of years on iOS devices, HBO Go should be available on Apple TV’s within the year. However, you’ll still need a subscription to HBO to enjoy HBO Go, which features every episode of every single HBO program you can think of (from Game of Thrones through True Blood all the way back to The Wire).

House of Cards and Cord-Cutting – Maybe you enjoyed our recent post about House of Cards, Netflix’s first major foray into original programming, for which the company paid somewhere in the neighborhood of a hundred-million dollars. If so, then you may be interested in this Wired article that illuminates just how risky this gambit is for Netflix.

Stories of Online Security & Privacy

Internet & Social Media: The Least Trusted Industries For Privacy – Though it was only two weeks ago that we linked to an article about technology being the most trusted industry (according to an annual survey called the Trust Barometer), the Ponemon Institute’s recent list of most trusted industries finds the internet and social media at the bottom. Granted, technology, the internet, and social media aren’t exactly the same thing, but they’re obviously inextricably linked.

Hiding Embarrassing “Likes” – And while we’re on the subject of social media and privacy, lifehacker teaches you how to hide all of those Facebook “likes” that you may regret.

Phone Alerts For Suspicious Activity – Another advice page from lifehacker. This one offers you tips on how to activate phone alerts from Google about suspicious activity on your Gmail account.

5 Free Security Tools For Protecting Your Data – This article from PCWorld offers just what the title suggests: security tools designed to protect your passwords and files, allow you to chat privately, browse securely, and hide your files in plain sight.

Google Discovers 9,500 Malicious Websites A Day – Whether it’s websites created with good intentions that have been corrupted by malware, or websites designed with the specific intention of messing up your computer, you should know the kind of minefield we internet denizens are facing.

5 Security Holes To Which Most People Are Vulnerable – Since we’re already scaring you, why not check out these 5 incredibly common ways most of us leave our online information unsecured?

US Weighs Response To Chinese Cyber-Attacks – After The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times made highly publicized announcements declaring themselves victims of cyber-attacks that originated in China, the Obama administration is considering how to respond.

Malware More Likely to Come From Legitimate Websites – Did you know that you’re more susceptible to receiving malware from third-party advertising on legitimate websites than from porn websites? That’s what Cisco’s Annual Security Report says.

Stories From the World of Technology


Now for the fun stuff. Though we here at FlashRouters are devoted to optimizing your internet experience with an emphasis on strengthening your online security, we like finding out the ways in which other companies are achieving goals in fields that may seem only tangentially related to what we do. Here’s a few of the more exciting developments we’ve stumbled upon:

Meet the Nest – If you’re looking for a good introduction to the Nest, an internet-connected thermostat that is designed to learn your preferences so that it may heat and cool your house in the most efficient way possible, then this article from readwrite.com is just the place to go.

The Transparent iPad – A smart, self-monitoring thermostat not cool enough for ya? How about a transparent iPad? Sure, this one is still a ways off, but it’s not impossible.

Fact-Check in Real Time – This one’s a little more relevant and urgent than an transparent iPad, if a little less sexy. The Washington Post recently unveiled Truth Teller, a fact-checking news app that will do its work in real time. If ever an app was suited for it’s times.

Electric Shocks – Though all of the gadgets and innovations we’ve posted about thus far have real-life applicability, this one stymies us a bit. Pedro Lopes, a computer interaction researcher, has developed a way to deliver a mild electric shock to players of smartphone games. Not to prevent you from spending too much time playing smartphone games and shirking your responsibilities, mind you, but to make the games more interactive and…visceral, we guess?

Understanding Your Most Confusing Searches – Ever had to search something so specific that you couldn’t quite phrase it properly in the search bar? Thanks to Skyphrase, soon you’ll be able to enter your most confusing questions and search topics in natural, conversational ways.

A Universal iPad and Macbook Charger – This one is pretty self-explanatory, but maybe this is something one of you, our beloved customers, need.

A Map of Underseas Internet Pipes – Lastly, here’s a bit of a curio. Take a look at this telegeographic map of the world, and learn a little about the physical infrastructure of our beloved internet.


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