Sex Tech: PayPal Reversal, Digital Playground Hacked, Facebook Rape Ads

Summary:Facebook rape ads, Digital Playground taken out by hackers, PayPal withdraws censorship, digital dating privacy examined at SXSW.

PayPal stops erotic censorship, Digital Playground got massively hacked, Facebook's rape ads anger female students and perilous dating site security.

PayPal backs off from censoring book content

In late February we reported that PayPal had forced its merchants that publish and distribute e-books to censor erotic literature.

On March 2nd, The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) joined the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression (ABFFE) in a protest against PayPal's censorship.

The pressure and widening outcry in the media was successful in pushing back the online payment processor's gambit to dictate its clients' content.

EBay Inc.'s PayPal unit moved Tuesday to soften a controversial policy that would have restricted the use of its payment-processing services by digital-book merchants that sell material that could be considered obscene.

Now, PayPal will not punish merchants that sell erotica (text), but it will still cancel accounts that sell books with erotic imagery that PayPal deems obscene.

Digital Playground latest victim of porn site hacks

Yet another porn site owned by Manwin was breached this week.

In an exploit, Digital Playground lost 73,000 e-mail addresses, user names, and passwords, and an estimated 40,000 plain-text credit card numbers, including CCV numbers and expiration dates - all of which were stored in plain text.

On February 24, Manwin's YouPorn Chat was compromised when a snooper easily found debugging logs left in the open on a server, exposing data for over 6,000 users.

The Consortium claimed the hack as its first calling card, saying that the site was so unsecure that it was simply too enticing to resist. They wrote,

“This site has so many freaking holes that if I didn’t know it was a porn site, I would have mistaken it for a honeypot”

Consortium also got into DP's mail servers and snagged a variety of credentials, amusing themselves by joining in on a company conference call.

Digital dating sites, security and privacy

Privacy, personal data and security were top-of-mind issues at this year's internet conference SXSW Interactive.

The SXSW panel “Sex, Dating, and Privacy Online” described the myriad ways in which every step you take, every move you make, is online and searchable. (Disclosure: I was on this panel.)

Panel members pointed to the loose security and privacy practices of dating websites recently exposed by the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

Facebook and rape creepiness, redux

We all know Facebook utilizes its users’ information for advertising. As with Facebook's long-defended rape pages, Facebook still seems to have a fast and loose relationship with the seriousness of rape, now cross-pollenating advertisers that claim many rape accusations are false - with female college students.

Some of the advertising showing up on college student profiles includes the “Cry Rape!” advertisement placed by "false accusation" organization Accusing U.

Not surprisingly, many female college students being served these ads are very upset.

Topics: Banking, E-Commerce, Enterprise Software, Legal, Security

About

Ms. Violet Blue (tinynibbles.com, @violetblue) is a freelance investigative reporter on hacking and cybercrime at Zero Day/ZDNet, CNET and CBS News, as well as a noted sex columnist. She has made regular appearances on CNN and The Oprah Winfrey Show and is regularly interviewed, quoted, and featured in a variety of publications that inclu... Full Bio

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