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UPDATED: Tim Berners-Lee Joins Camp of Phorm Criticism

akbray

ULTIMATE Member
Phorm just keep getting more and more popular, don't they?
 

PhormUKtechteam

Casual Member
Hi,
I work for the Phorm comms team.
Here is a statement from Phorm relating to this story, which may be of interest:

"We believe that it is wrong to store Internet users' personal data. Our technology is a real turning point in the protection of privacy online - it does not store personally identifiable information, does not store IP addresss and nor does it store browsing histories. By contrast, ad targeting from other major Internet companies means that potentially identifiable personal data is stored for over 12 months before it is even anonymised. Also, because these companies reach nearly all UK Internet users, consumers effectively have no real choice about being targeted in this way. With the Phorm technology, users can choose - they can opt out or in at any time; and again, no personal data is stored .

"We look forward to speaking to Tim Berners Lee to explain how our technology is a ground breaking advance in delivering targeted ads while protecting privacy online and consumer choice, as we have with other experts."

For more information about Webwise, see www.webwise.com, and for specific queries that aren't covered there, you can contact techteam@phorm.com

Phorm comms team
 

KDS

ULTIMATE Member
"We look forward to speaking to Tim Berners Lee to explain how our technology is a ground breaking advance in delivering targeted ads while protecting privacy online and consumer choice, as we have with other experts."

I dont think sir Tim Berners Lee need explanation from some spamming company he knows what he is talking about why do we need this technology I dont want to see some adverts when I search for some thing etc

I switching from Virgin media
 
Last edited:

sentup.custard

ULTIMATE Member
some pillock above said:
"We believe that it is wrong to store Internet users' personal data. Our technology is a real turning point in the protection of privacy online - it does not store personally identifiable information, does not store IP addresss and nor does it store browsing histories.
Never mind storing information - I believe it is wrong for Phorm to collect information from password protected pages of an otherwise public web site in the first place.

I have no means of knowing whether a visitor to my site from BT, Virgin or TalkTalk has opted in or not, and no means of preventing password-holding members who may have opted in (or may be using the computer of another person who, unbeknown to them, has opted in) from exposing private information to Phorm's system.

As I have said elsewhere, I am compiling a list of BT, Virgin and TalkTalk IP adresses, which I shall block - customers of those ISPs will instead get a "403.shtml" page suggesting that they change ISP.
It ain't perfect, it doesn't get round the problem of proxy servers, but it's the only defence I can think of against Phorm's intrusion into the private pages of my site without my consent.

A lot has been said about the ability of ISP's customers to opt out - but where is the opt out option for the web site owner?
 

akbray

ULTIMATE Member
I don't run any websites, so I don't care from that point of view, but I do care whether my browsing is monitored and my data collected for whatever purpose.

AFAIK, my ISP has nothing to do with Phorm (though there have been no public comments from them to my knowladge), but if they did, I would request a MAC immediately.
 

Kits

Super Moderator
Staff member
ISPreview Team
how can they collect information on password protection pages ? I don't see this lasting long though


This is easy if I stay with VM and login to the Admin section on ISPreview since this opens inside the browser then they see what I see.

It has also been noted that IE7, Microsft word us the same detais so if in word you had an url then phorm would read it. Think about all the assignments students do and they have to do a biblography the urls would trigger phorm to read it.

Not that I will be worried soon since migration from VM has been set up.
 

KDS

ULTIMATE Member
This is easy if I stay with VM and login to the Admin section on ISPreview since this opens inside the browser then they see what I see.

It has also been noted that IE7, Microsft word us the same detais so if in word you had an url then phorm would read it. Think about all the assignments students do and they have to do a biblography the urls would trigger phorm to read it.

Not that I will be worried soon since migration from VM has been set up.
even if it's a SSL secure connection ? I thinking to sign up with a openvpn provider and use it that way, till I get way from this crappy ISP
 

Kits

Super Moderator
Staff member
ISPreview Team
Any browser that only uses http is monitored unless everyone buys a certificate and goes https then yes it will be logged by phorm.
 

Mel

ULTIMATE Member
That's a point, they say they won't profile webmail sites, but what about private messaging on sites like ISPReview. By sending a PM the sender clearly has not consented to have it intercepted by a third party.
 

Kits

Super Moderator
Staff member
ISPreview Team
That's a point, they say they won't profile webmail sites, but what about private messaging on sites like ISPReview. By sending a PM the sender clearly has not consented to have it intercepted by a third party.

yes Mel and I have upto 30 month on busy months more.. :shrug:
 

sentup.custard

ULTIMATE Member
Yes, as Kits says "unless everyone buys a certificate and goes https then yes it will be logged by phorm" - and how many of us (a) can afford the cost of that (I find it difficult enough to scrape up the £55 a year that my hosting and two domain names costs me!) and (b) have the know-how to set it up.
I did actually look at a few https hosting deals - but anything even optimistically affordable seems to have restrictions on it, intended for light use for the odd transaction here and there, not for running a forum using a MySQL database and so on.
 

curtis

Top Member
It just goes to show the contempt that Phorm Directors:( have for Sir Tim Berner-lee they must think he was born yesterday??.

Why are the government sitting back on this or are they behind the push by Phorm:hrmph: as it would appear that our internet freedom may be at an end?:eek:
 

carrot63

Pro Member
The point that the Phorm spin team are anxious to avoid (and that shouldn't get lost among the smoke and mirrors) is that it is not the storage of browsing habits that most folks are worried about, but collecting them and utilising them AT ALL without informed consent.

Sir Tim said his data and web history belonged to him. "It's mine - you can't have it. If you want to use it for something, then you have to negotiate with me. I have to agree, I have to understand what I'm getting in return."

Quite. And what I get in return for telling them all about myself - in the very unlikely event I agree - has to be a lot better than a rather pointless no-better-than-other-free-stuff phishing warning. It's like allowing marketing people to monitor your entire life and getting a free elastic band in return; a one sided and uncompelling arrangement.

Sir Tim's intervention is timely, since people generally are interested in what he has to say, and, unlike the data-pimps, their PR weasels and the ISPs, he has nothing personal to gain.
 

sentup.custard

ULTIMATE Member
Thank you, Mel.
Not a site that I normally visit, so I doubt if I'd have come across it - that one is worth bookmarking and passing on to the small number of friends who don't "get it" and think I'm maybe over-reacting! :)
 

Mel

ULTIMATE Member
Hi,
I work for the Phorm comms team.
<snipped>

"We look forward to speaking to Tim Berners Lee to explain how our technology is a ground breaking advance in delivering targeted ads while protecting privacy online and consumer choice, as we have with other experts."

It would seem you needn't bother.

Sir Tim Berners-Lee has seen their presentation, and held a press conference yesterday to try to stop the practice cold.
 

Mel

ULTIMATE Member
Thank you, Mel.
Not a site that I normally visit, so I doubt if I'd have come across it - that one is worth bookmarking and passing on to the small number of friends who don't "get it" and think I'm maybe over-reacting! :)

Be sure to point them to the petition too. Signatures: 6,192

My ISP is not one of the three, but even I am beginning to think perhaps I should be moving to an ISP that has actually said never on our network.
 
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