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The Harbeth User Group is the primary channel for public communication with Harbeth's HQ. If you have a 'scientific mind' and are curious about how the ear works, how it can lead us to make the right - and wrong - audio equipment decisions, and about the technical ins and outs of audio equipment, how it's designed and what choices the designer makes, then the factual Science of Audio sub-forum area of HUG is your place. The objective methods of comparing audio equipment under controlled conditions has been thoroughly examined here on HUG and elsewhere and should be accessible to non-experts and able to be tried-out at home without deep technical knowledge. From a design perspective, today's award winning Harbeths could not have been designed any other way.

Alternatively, if you just like chatting about audio and subjectivity rules for you, then the Subjective Soundings area is you. If you are quite set in your subjectivity, then HUG is likely to be a bit too fact based for you, as many of the contributors have maximised their pleasure in home music reproduction by allowing their head to rule their heart. If upon examination we think that Posts are better suited to one sub-forum than than the other, they will be redirected during Moderation, which is applied throughout the site.

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{Updated Oct. 2017}
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Cloud services - safe, reliable and what are your rights?

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  • Cloud services - safe, reliable and what are your rights?

    There is a drift at home and in business towards storing personal data, including audio and video, on-line 'in the Cloud'. It is claimed that before long, all data will be on the Cloud, and accessible only through the internet.

    Is this safe? What rights does the subscriber have? How can he expect rights over his data when he may pay nothing for the use of Cloud infrastructure which a provider has heavily invested in.

    Google are an example of a free on-line Cloud service with paid-for options. Their Terms of Trade are attached. How many rights and how much access do you have over your data once in the cloud?

    The PDF is open and you can annotate and upload.
    Attached Files

  • #2
    No such thing as free storage

    Two major points
    • I would only use a cloud-based service if it allowed - nay - encouraged me to use an encryption method of my choosing.
    • I would never use a cloud-based storage service unless I held control over that encryption

    plus
    • how reliable is your connection? How disastrous would it be to find that your data was inaccessible until such time as your ISP gets around to checking your connection and then, on finding that the physical line appears to be compromised, waiting for a slot at the sole discretion of BT Openreach?

    I'm afraid I remain very cynical about the drive towards cloud storage, and the interests that drive the likes of Google. While neither your private data, nor mine, may be of the slightest interest in and of itself, the private data of a nation, when well analyzed, could provide Google with the most immense repository of commercial value.

    What other incentive could they have to provide gazillions of bytes of 'free' storage?

    Comment


    • #3
      Treat with caution

      Originally posted by Pluto View Post
      Two major points
      • I would only use a cloud-based service if it allowed - nay - encouraged me to use an encryption method of my choosing.
      • I would never use a cloud-based storage service unless I held control over that encryption

      plus
      • how reliable is your connection? How disastrous would it be to find that your data was inaccessible until such time as your ISP gets around to checking your connection and then, on finding that the physical line appears to be compromised, waiting for a slot at the sole discretion of BT Openreach?

      I'm afraid I remain very cynical about the drive towards cloud storage, and the interests that drive the likes of Google. While neither your private data, nor mine, may be of the slightest interest in and of itself, the private data of a nation, when well analyzed, could provide Google with the most immense repository of commercial value.

      What other incentive could they have to provide gazillions of bytes of 'free' storage?
      Well said. I treat such service with caution. I do not store anything that is either private or important in this manner.
      Plus these services have limits which are not suitable for the storage of certain materials that are intended to be shared.

      Comment


      • #4
        Too risky?

        My reaction to this form of storage is a little paranoic; my instinct is to not want a large NGO having data of mine even with the highest standards of security guaranteed; we all know that it all fails at some point.

        It is also more remote, and the larger the matrix, or longer the 'loop', the greater the potential for failure.

        If the information about my personal tastes in music were freely available to the public, they would have some insight into my personality, and this may be acceptable, though I would rather it did not happen, but personal photos, diaries, essays or documents of an intimate nature, (legal case notes for eg.), represent too greater risk to my privacy.

        What about hackers, not only those geeks who do it for fun, but those who will sell information to predatory bodies?

        Comment


        • #5
          Another Cloud provider ....

          Check out https://mega.co.nz/ - the latest incarnation of the infamous - "megaupload" !!

          Comment


          • #6
            Data at home?

            Originally posted by Pharos View Post
            ... we all know that it all fails at some point.

            It is also more remote, and the larger the matrix, or longer the 'loop', the greater the potential for failure.

            ... represent too greater risk to my privacy.

            What about hackers, not only those geeks who do it for fun, but those who will sell information to predatory bodies?
            The flip side is that your personal information is probably far more exposed to hackers sitting on your home PC than it is on a properly run cloud service. Individuals don't have the sophistication or the money to provide the same level of security. Of course, you have to trust your provider, so caveat emptor. But a lot of businesses and professional firms are looking at and moving ahead with cloud storage, with the appropriate safeguards in place.

            The "cloud" is not risk-free, but nothing is. A lot of the risks we associate with it are already in existence - we just prefer not to think about them.

            As for "free" services like Google, of course, they want your data. But as long as that data is aggregated and anonymous, I'm not sure I care. Isn't this what marketers have always done?

            Comment


            • #7
              Critical evaluation of Cloud computing from a lawyer ...

              Here are some links from Canadian Lawyer magazine that provide information that may be of interest (including reasons for caution). The articles are written from a lawyer's perspective, but contain information that I think is also of general use. One has a five-point checklist at the end that is particularly helpful.

              http://www.canadianlawyermag.com/444...contracts.html

              http://www.canadianlawyermag.com/379...ing-risks.html

              Comment


              • #8
                Security - what security?

                Well, well, well. Who would have though it. If there was one online software giant who would be highly motivated to put security at the top of their agenda, it would be Adobe Corporation. Even more so, I assumed, than Microsoft.

                From today's reports, I cannot imagine a more serious situation for a company that is committed to a cloud-only platform than to not only allow hackers to gain access to customer passwords but to put revenue generating source code on line, then give it away.

                Ironically, developing a document management system over the last few years to future-proof my technical archive, I seriously considered using Adobe.com to host my data. I thought, wrongly, that their security would be beyond reproach.

                Story here.
                Alan A. Shaw
                Designer, owner
                Harbeth Audio UK

                Comment


                • #9
                  The Ts & Cs we nerver read ....

                  I'm rather curious about online backup/syncing services in the wake of Snowden's revelations. So many of us are using online services these days that I thought I'd take a quick look at the Terms and Conditions that we click as read when signing up.

                  By general repute, DropBox offers and excellent service, at a price, and claims to have two million business users. Their Ts & Cs are here relating to the information they collect from users, as are comments on their internal policy here. Discussion about their Ts and C's here.

                  It's interesting to note that despite being (or perhaps because of being) the claimed market leader, DropBox's curiosity about the habits of their customers is considerably more intensive than some of their competitors, for example, Box, here. Or OpenDrive here.

                  And from the Trend Micro corporation .... here

                  and iDriveSync here and also here

                  CX here

                  Syncplicity here

                  (this is not looking so great for privacy is it, thus far)

                  Microsoft SkyDrive here

                  FileLocker here

                  SparkWeave here

                  Google Apps here

                  Zoho here (one of the more transparent policies?)

                  Egnyte here

                  ZipCloud here (note data is unecrypted from their server back to your PC!)

                  JustCloud here (note data is unecrypted from their server back to your PC!)

                  Think that it's only audiophile salesmen that peddle snake oil? Wrong! Plenty here in the cryptography industry ....
                  Alan A. Shaw
                  Designer, owner
                  Harbeth Audio UK

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Between good friends and allies .....

                    Who would have believed it, methinks

                    BUGGING

                    Government snooping is a sensitive subject in Germany, which has among the strictest privacy laws in the world, since it dredges up memories of eavesdropping by the Stasi secret police in the former East Germany, where Merkel grew up. The issue dominated discussions at a European summit on Thursday, prompting Merkel to demand that the U.S. strike a "no-spying" agreement with Berlin and Paris by the end of the year. As the row festers, telecom and Internet experts said the rhetoric exceeded the practical changes that could be expected from Deutsche Telekom's project. More than 90 percent of Germany's internet traffic already stays within its borders, said Klaus Landefeld, a board member of the non-profit organization that runs the DE-CIX Internet exchange point in Frankfurt.

                    Others pointed out that Deutsche Telekom's preference for being paid by other Internet networks for carrying traffic to the end user, instead of "peering" agreements at no cost, clashed with the goal to keep traffic within Germany. It can be cheaper or free for German traffic to go through London or Amsterdam, where it can be intercepted by foreign spies.

                    Thomas Kremer, the executive in charge of data privacy and legal affairs for the German operator, said the group needed to sign connection agreements with three additional operators to make a national routing possible. "If this were not the case, one could think of a legislative solution," he said.

                    "As long as sender and receiver are in the Schengen area or in Germany, traffic should no longer be routed through other countries," Kremer said, referring to the 26-country passport-free zone in Europe.
                    More on software backdoors here.

                    Linux - the friendly, secure operating system? Here.

                    The fog seems to be clearing. Nothing, bar nothing, locally stored on an on-line PC or remotely stored 'on the cloud' is inaccessible by those have the means to undermine security, and without effort if back-doors have been built into operating systems like Windows and Linux, as it certainly has been. Those persons probing for information could be governments legitimately going about their business of protecting the public, or foreign governments, corporations or individuals probing for state, commercial or industrial knowledge. We know from recent GCHQ disclosures that the amount of network probing of UK companies and infrastructure is hardly imaginable, unrelenting and increasing. This all concerns me greatly.
                    Alan A. Shaw
                    Designer, owner
                    Harbeth Audio UK

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Client confidentiality?

                      It's not getting any better .....

                      Open season for confidential data?
                      Alan A. Shaw
                      Designer, owner
                      Harbeth Audio UK

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        "No true discussion ...."

                        Liberty, freedom and a proper discussion of data drag nets ...
                        Alan A. Shaw
                        Designer, owner
                        Harbeth Audio UK

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          "Think Google respects your privacy? Think again."

                          "Google goes through every Gmail that's sent or received, looking for keywords so they can target Gmail users with paid ads. And there's no way to opt out of this invasion of your privacy. Watch the video to learn about Gmail's tactics. Outlook.com is different—we don't go through your email to sell ads."

                          Here

                          Personally, I would never, ever, under any circumstances use any of the above first mentioned software for this very reason: your most intimate thoughts and curiosities are just a money making opportunity for the company.

                          Brilliant marketing: shouting in the wind?
                          Alan A. Shaw
                          Designer, owner
                          Harbeth Audio UK

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            We should replace the word 'cloud' with 'somebody else's computer', says security expert

                            Originally posted by A.S. View Post
                            "Google goes through every Gmail that's sent or received, looking for keywords so they can target Gmail users with paid ads. And there's no way to opt out of this invasion of your privacy. Watch the video to learn about Gmail's tactics. Outlook.com is different—we don't go through your email to sell ads."

                            Here

                            Personally, I would never, ever, under any circumstances use any of the above first mentioned software for this very reason: your most intimate thoughts and curiosities are just a money making opportunity for the company.

                            Brilliant marketing: shouting in the wind?
                            I saw this article today and thought of this thread.

                            http://www.computing.co.uk/ctg/news/...ecurity-expert

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Google Corporation - friend or devil?

                              Last week we had a visit from an industry insider, a gentleman who has been at the very top of the global advertising business. He had recently been invited by another marketing colleague to take a sneaky peek at the data Google had amassed on his on-line life. How the other had access to the data was not explained, but what he could see horrified him. Google's current privacy policy is here and their ability to scour multiple on-line services to pull-together a comprehensive snapshot of you is here.

                              I have already expressed my grave concerns about Google, who potentially know far more about me than any organisation or individual alive, data that I have not given them the right to collect. In that respect they know far, far more about me than my doctor, my lawyer, my wife, my family or anyone in government or the police and security services - combined.

                              What does genuinely surprise me is that the majority of new members joining here do so with a Google email account. That is, professional people are using a 'free' webmail account provided by a hugely intrusive and for-profit organisation when they would, presumably, not expect their physical mail to be opened before it is delivered. I would not use Google mail under any circumstances whatever: none, nor their free data storage, nor any of their otherwise excellent on-line apps.

                              We can probably agree that the Google search engine is, unsurprisingly, excellent at hunting down information and connections for our benefit. That is the direct consequence of their intrusive look-everywhere trawling of the internet, and there must be a correlation between that sniffing around, and the links that it presents. So web searches benefit from their corporate voyeurism, but surely none of us as private individuals want to be observed as we go about our lives. We are not just marketing opportunities.

                              In the last few days, the European union had made it possible for individuals to demand that Google expunge details they'd rather not be held on their database. You can download Google's form here. Obviously, the totality of what Google really know about someone they are not going to reveal, so the onus is on you to step forward. Not Google. And you'd be amazed what they do know. Right down to the most intimate of details.

                              Cynically, this is a really brilliant move by Google. First, the uptake will be utterly insignificant, so it will be business as usual. Second, the aggrieved individual will be providing proof positive of their identity, completing the final element of the personality jigsaw that Google strive to build: the ultimate, vital piece in the puzzle that links the footprint of an individual PC to an IP address, to a service provider, to a credit card, to a postal address, to a named individual. A data gold mine.

                              There are other search engine solutions - more on that later - but you should be aware that if you use any product or service that is in any way connected with Google, including the use of Chrome browser or any product running the Android operating system you sacrifice privacy. I wouldn't use any of them - period.
                              Alan A. Shaw
                              Designer, owner
                              Harbeth Audio UK

                              Comment

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