5/16/2010

Google to Offer Encrypted Search Next Week

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Google will begin letting users run encrypted searches on its flagship search site Google.com starting next week, the company said in a blog post Thursday.

Allowing users to search using https - the web security system which many associate with online banking and shopping — would mark a first for a major search engine, and could begin a move by web services such as social networks to begin offering encryption for more than just log-ins. Such increased adoption would cut down on network eavesdropping and also have the added benefit of preventing some online attacks.

Google grabs personal info off of Wi-Fi networks

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Google Inc. has been vacuuming up fragments of people’s online activities broadcast over public Wi-Fi networks for the past four years, a breach of Web etiquette likely to raise more privacy worries about the Internet search leader.

Even Google was troubled by its behavior, and issued a public apology Friday. The company said it only recently discovered the problem in response to an inquiry from German regulators.

“Maintaining people’s trust is crucial to everything we do, and in this case we fell short,” Alan Eustace, Google’s top engineering executive, wrote in a blog post.

Google characterized its collection of snippets from e-mails and Web surfing done on public Wi-Fi networks as a mistake, and said it has taken steps to avoid a recurrence. About 600 gigabytes of data was taken off of the Wi-Fi networks in more than 30 countries, including the U.S. Google plans to delete it all as soon as it gains clearance from government authorities.

Google to sell Nexus One offline, close Web store

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Google Inc. will close an online store that it set up to sell its Nexus One phone and rely on traditional retailers instead.

The shift announced Friday ends Google’s attempt to develop a new sales model for the mobile industry. Google had hoped to shake things up by establishing its online store as the only place to buy the Nexus One, which the company hailed as a “super” phone when it debuted amid fanfare in January.

But consumers didn’t embrace the idea of buying a phone without any hands-on experience.

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