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India empowers agencies to snoop on computers; critics decry ‘surveillance state’

NEW DELHI: India has authorized 10 federal government agencies to intercept and monitor information from any computer, a move opposition parties said on Friday risked creating a “surveillance state”. The interior ministry said late on Thursday the agencies could “intercept, monitor and decrypt any information generated, transmitted, received or stored in any computer” under an Information Technology Act. “For the nation’s security, these agencies have been made accountable so that no one else can do these activities,”…

Google leans more on algorithms for ads as critics highlight risks

SAN FRANCISCO: Alphabet’s Google introduced new ad-buying tools on Tuesday that showcase its growing push to allow machines instead of humans to fine-tune ads and determine where they should run. Advertisers have welcomed the advanced software, which could encourage them to spend more on Google as it makes more efficient use of their money. But consumer privacy and technology analysts are watching the shift with concern and a push for more regulatory scrutiny may be coming. In Europe, the month-old General Data…

Facebook defends itself against critics of social media

WASHINGTON: Facebook Inc on Friday struck back against scientific researchers and tech industry insiders who have criticized the world’s biggest social media network and its competitors for transforming how people behave and express emotion. Facebook, in a corporate blog post, said that social media can be good for people’s well-being if they use the technology in a way that is active, such as messaging with friends, rather than passive, such as scrolling through a feed of other people’s posts. It was the second time…