Google’s ‘Eyes In Machines’ Push Surveillance Fears To Boiling Point

TN Note: To a Technocrat, there is no such thing as too much data. They will always seek more. Remember that the head of Google is Eric Schmidt, who is also a member of the elitist Trilateral Commission that started the whole Technocracy push in the first place. 

Google is planning to put “eyes in machines” and boost computers’ ability to automatically recognise people, places or objects.

The tech giant has just revealed plans to purchase a French firm called Moodstocks which builds software capable of working out what’s happening in a photo – a trick called image recognition.

This buyout is likely to conclude within weeks, although it’s not known exactly how much Google paid to buy the company.

“Ever since we started Moodstocks, our dream has been to give eyes to machines by turning cameras into smart sensors able to make sense of their surroundings,” the French firm wrote.

Google said it would use this system to help identity pictures so they can be easily found through a search engine.

But the development is likely to stoke privacy fears, as many people are concerned that allowing computers to “see” like humans will one day enable the construction of a surveillance state in which our every move can be monitored by governments, cops or corporations. The news comes just weeks after it was revealed that Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, tapes over his MacBook camera and microphone.

These fears are now bubbling over into the real world. Earlier this week, a man allegedly threw Molotov cocktails at Google Street View cars parked outside its California headquarters.

 In an affidavit, police officers said the man later told them “he felt Google was watching him and that made him upset”. Renate Samson, president of the campaign group Big Brother Watch, said people should be aware of the surveillance potential of their computers.

“All connected devices now have a camera and microphone in them, often these can be turned off and on without us knowing,” she told The Sun.

“Making these eyes intelligent will be great for identifying random objects and helping our smart devices to become even smarter, but not so good for keeping your personal life personal.

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Stores To Spy On Shoppers By Tracking Their Smartphones

TN Note: To add insult to injury, retail stores will start competing with intel organizations by tracking cellphones to collect shopper information. Most people don’t realize that when WiFi is turned on, it becomes a trackable beacon to surveillance scanners and hackers. The remedy is simple: ALWAYS turn your smartphone’s  WiFi service OFF whenever you leave your trusted WiFi zone. 

Scanners are to be placed outside stores from Pret a Manger to Aldi to track people through their smartphones’ wifi signals.

One thousand of the sensors will be used to measure the numbers passing or entering, known as footfall.

The idea is that the information could help revive dying high streets threatened by the rise of internet shopping.

It could lead to changes in bus timetables to make shopping visits easier, or identify times of the day when free parking would help retailers. In theory, it could even be used to decide that some town centres are beyond saving.

But the idea that shoppers will be tracked through their phones’ wifi signals is controversial. Many balk at the rise of the surveillance society through CCTV cameras, automatic number plate recognition and smartphones.

The campaigning group Big Brother Watch warned that many people do not realise they are being scanned in this way and that such surveillance systems are open to abuse.

The team running the project, however, insists all the information will be made anonymous, removing any possibility of the data being linked to a specific individual. And shoppers can opt out by choosing to turn off wifi signals on their phones.

The SmartStreetSensor Project is funded by the Government’s Economic and Social Research Council.

The retailers so far signed up to take part include Pret a Manger, Aldi, Oxfam, Pizza Hut, Superdrug, Thorntons, Dixons Carphone, Patisserie Valerie, Jack Wills, Tortilla, The Entertainer, Eurochange, Itsu, and Ed’s Easy Diner.

The 1,000 sensors that will be placed in 81 towns and cities around the country have been developed in a partnership between the Local Data Company (LDC), which tracks the health of high streets, and University College London.

Data from LDC shows that major chains closed 1,043 high street stores in 2015, while independent traders opened 593.

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FEC and FCC Commissioners Warn Federal Regulation Of Internet Coming

TN Note: In an effort to control everything, Technocrats seek to control what is said on the Internet. Short of controlling this, they also seek to control what you read. Google has already been caught red-handed in skewing search results. Likewise, Facebook has been accused of manipulating feeds to exclude certain items and themes, while promoting others. 

Democrats targeting content and control of the Internet, especially from conservative sources, are pushing hard to layer on new regulations and even censorship under the guise of promoting diversity while policing bullying, warn commissioners from the Federal Communications Commission and Federal Election Commission.

“Protecting freedom on the Internet is just one vote away,” said Lee E. Goodman, a commissioner on the FEC which is divided three Democrats to three Republicans. “There is a cloud over your free speech.”

Freedom of speech on the Internet, added Ajit Pai, commissioner of the Federal Communications Commission, “is increasingly under threat.”

Pai and Goodman cited political correctness campaigns by Democrats as a threat. Both also said their agencies are becoming politicized and the liberals are using their power to push regulations that impact business and conservative outlets and voices.

“One of the things that is critical for this country is to reassert the value of the First Amendment, the fact that robust discourse, that is sometimes cacophonous, is nonetheless a value, in fact it creates value,” said Pai.

At a CATO Institute discussion on online speech Wednesday night, both said that regulators are eager to issue new rules that could put limits on what people could say on blogs, online news and even YouTube. Washington Examiner reporter Rudy Takala and Cato’s digital manager Kat Murti were also on the panel.

Goodman drew attention to the political divide on the FEC and how Republicans have been able to block Democrats from moving against conservative media. He noted a new decision expected to be released today in which Democrats in executive session voted for the first time ever to punish a TV outlet, Fox News, for its handling of presidential debates.

That 3-3 vote killed any action against Fox, but he warned that protecting further regulation is “held together by just one vote.”

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Predictive Analysis ‘Crystal Ball’ To Employ Digital DNA Avatar

TN Note: The ultimate data collection model about you will include your DNA, activities, personality, lifestyle factors, etc. iCarbonX declares its “intention of recommending tailored wellness programs, food choices and possibly prescription medicines.”  To the extent that your avatar exists in the computing ether, you will be micro-managed like cattle in a feed lot, until the day you die. Remember that China has been a Technocracy since at  least 1995, and so Technocrats are encouraged to think this way.

Wang Jun spent 16 years expanding the world’s understanding of what living things are made of — sequencing genomes including those of the giant panda and potatoes.

Now he’s attempting to build on that: using DNA as one component to create online avatars that could act as health-care test dummies for people. Asia’s biggest internet company believes he’s onto something.

Wang’s iCarbonX wants to construct a “digital you” containing biological samples such as saliva, proteins and DNA; bolstered by environmental measurements such as air quality; and lifestyle factors such as workout regimes and diet. The Shenzhen, China-based company is developing algorithms to analyze the data, with the intention of recommending tailored wellness programs, food choices and possibly prescription medicines.

Tencent Holdings Ltd. and Zhongyuan Union Cell & Gene Engineering Corp. invested in iCarbonX, making it one of only three health-care startups in China with a $1 billion-plus valuation, according to CB Insights. Preventive medicine is burgeoning in the nation as cancer and diabetes diagnoses increase. Artificial intelligence systems will generate $6.7 billion in global revenue from health care by 2021, compared with $811 million last year, researcher Frost & Sullivan said.

“I’m trying to build a crystal ball,” Wang, 40, said. “By analyzing all the data that we can get our hands on, we will be able to see more clearly to predict what might happen to your body in the future.”

He has some powerful backers. Tencent, owner of social-media app WeChat, led a $200 million series A funding round in April and is providing computing power, Wang said. The companies’ offices are 10 minutes apart in Shenzhen.

The iCarbonX website shows Tencent Chairman Ma Huateng, China’s third-richest man, attending the founding ceremony in October. Canny Lo, a spokeswoman for Tencent, didn’t respond to an e-mail and text message seeking comment.

Shanghai-listed Zhongyuan Union, also known as Vcanbio, does gene testing and blood banking. Two calls to Vcanbio’s offices weren’t answered. There are two other investors, including a big data company, and Wang said he would announced the names soon.

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The Matrix: 24 Ways We’re Tracked On A Regular Basis

TN Note: The Total Surveillance Society is not funny, cute or convenient. Rather, it is the singular conduit to deliver us directly into an Orwellian-style Scientific Dictatorship. Technocracy requires surveillance, and there is no such thing as ‘enough’. Surveillance data will one day be fed into quantum computers for instant analysis, correlation and tabulation, with the outcome being ‘instructions’ for the masses. This is the ‘science of social engineering’. 

The design of the internet of everything, and the nature of the cloud that it floats in, is to track data. The 34 billion internet-enabled devices we expect to add to the cloud in the next five years are built to stream data. And the cloud is built to keep the data. Anything touching this cloud that is able to be tracked will be tracked.

Recently, with the help of researcher Camille Hartsell, I rounded up all the devices and systems in the U.S. that routinely track us. The key word is “routinely.” I am leaving off this list the nonroutine tracking performed illegally by hackers, criminals, and cyberarmies. I also skip over the capabilities of the governmental agencies to track specific targets when and how they want to. (Governments’ ability to track is proportional to their budgets.)

This list, instead, tallies the kind of tracking an average person might encounter on an ordinary day in the United States. Each example has been sourced officially or from a major publication.

  • Car movements – Every car since 2006 contains a chip that records your speed, braking, turns, mileage, accidents whenever you start your car.
  • Highway traffic – Cameras on poles and sensors buried in highway record the location of cars by license plates and fast-track badges. Sev enty million plates are recorded each month.
  • Ride-share taxis – Uber, Lyft, and other decentralized rides record your trips.
  • Long-distance travel – Your travel itinerary for air flights and trains is recorded.
  • Drone surveillance – Along U.S. borders, Predator drones monitor and record outdoor activities.
  • Postal mail – The exterior of every piece of paper mail you send or receive is scanned and digitized.
  • Utilities – Your power and water usage patterns are kept by utilities. (Garbage is not cataloged, yet.)
  • Cell phone location and call logs – Where, when, and who you call (meta- data) is stored for months. Some phone carriers routinely store the contents of calls and messages for days to years.
  • Civic cameras – Cameras record your activities 24/7 in most city down towns in the U.S.
  • Commercial and private spaces – Today 68 percent of public employers, 59 percent of private employers, 98 percent of banks, 64 percent of public schools, and 16 percent of homeowners live or work under cameras.
  • Smart home – Smart thermostats (like Nest) detect your presence and behavior patterns and transmit these to the cloud. Smart electrical outlets (like Belkin) monitor power consumption and usage times shared to the cloud.
  • Home surveillance – Installed video cameras document your activity inside and outside the home, stored on cloud servers.
  • Interactive devices – Your voice commands and messages from phones (Siri, Now, Cortana), consoles (Kinect), smart TVs, and ambient micro phones (Amazon Echo) are recorded and processed on the cloud.
  • Grocery loyalty cards – Supermarkets track which items you purchase and when.
  • E- retailers – Retailers like Amazon track not only what you purchase, but what you look at and even think about buying.
  • IRS – Tracks your financial situation all your life.
  • Credit cards – Of course, every purchase is tracked. Also mined deeply with sophisticated AI for patterns that reveal your personality, ethnic ity, idiosyncrasies, politics, and preferences.
  • E-wallets and e-banks – Aggregators like Mint track your entire financial situation from loans, mortgages, and investments. Wallets like Square and PayPal track all purchases.
  • Photo face recognition – Facebook and Google can identify (tag) you in pictures taken by others posted on the web. The location of pictures can identify your location history.
  • Web activities – Web advertising cookies track your movements across the web. More than 80% of the top thousand sites employ web cookies that follow you wherever you go on the web. Through agree ments with ad networks, even sites you did not visit can get information about your viewing history.
  • Social media – Can identify family members, friends, and friends of friends. Can identify and track your former employers and your cur rent work mates. And how you spend your free time.
  • Search browsers – By default Google saves every question you’ve ever asked forever.
  • Streaming services – What movies (Netflix), music (Spotify), video (You Tube) you consume and when, and what you rate them. This includes cable companies; your watching history is recorded.
  • Book reading – Public libraries record your borrowings for about a month. Amazon records book purchases forever. Kindle monitors your reading patterns on ebooks – where you are in the book, how long you take to read each page, where you stop.

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FBI’s Secret Surveillance Tech Budget Is ‘Hundreds of Millions’

TN Note: The Intel community in the U.S. now exists to monitor every aspect of society and human activity, which is a necessary requirement for the implementation of Technocracy. The FBI’s budget is controlled 100 percent by the Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper. Clapper is also the principal intelligence advisor to President Obama. The point is, the FBI is not acting autonomously but rather in a synchronistic manner with all other intel agencies in the nation, and the web of surveillance they have created is completely obscured.

The FBI has “hundreds of millions of dollars” to spend on developing technology for use in both national security and domestic law enforcement investigations — but it won’t reveal the exact amount.

Deputy Assistant Director of the FBI James Burrell spoke about the secretive budget of the Operational Technology Division — which focuses on all the bureau’s advanced investigative gizmos, from robots to surveillance tech to biometric scanners during a roundtable discussion on encryption technology.

In December 2015, The Washington Post reported the budget of the FBI’s Operational Technology Division at between $600 and $800 million, but officials refused to confirm the exact amount.

The FBI did not respond to a request for comment from The Intercept on the division’s budget.

The intelligence community sponsored the roundtable on Thursday and Friday to spark discussion among academics, scientists, developers, and tech officials on the finer points of encryption — and to try to answer whether it’s technically possible to give law enforcement access to secure devices without compromising digital security.

The National Academies of Science, Technology, and Medicine hosted the workshop, which included Chris Inglis, former deputy director of the NSA; James Baker, the top lawyer for the FBI; and tech officials from Apple, Microsoft, and other companies.

Burrell said the FBI divides its technical focuses into two areas: core IT capabilities, and the Operational Technology Division, which devotes resources to researching and developing technology “specifically for use in investigations.”

The division’s budget had to be put “into context,” Burrell stressed. Resources are split between tools developed for national security investigations versus domestic law enforcement. “Sometimes we’re not able to use the technology we develop for one side equally on the other,” because some technology is classified, he said.

The FBI has tried to keep evidence gleaned from its advanced, national security technology secret in court proceedings relating to domestic investigations — technology like Stingrays, which mimic cell phone towers to track location information of an entire geographical area. The FBI has even chosen to throw out legal prosecutions to hide its technical capabilities — a controversial decision that’s been criticized by advocates for transparency.

The bureau has also repeatedly stressed how challenging and expensive it is to develop capabilities to hack into devices rather than have a mandated access point in encryption. “Hacking devices, … of course we do it, but it is slow,” Baker said in his concluding remarks. “It’s expensive, it’s very fragile.”

The FBI has requested over $100 million more dollars for its operational technology division and cyber division for 2017 — pushing the grand total closer to a billion, if the Washington Post‘s figure is accurate. The FBI asked for over $85 million to bulk up its cyber offense and defense — and over $38 million to counter the problem encryption and other anonymity software poses during investigations through technological means.


FBI’s Massive Facial Recognition Database Is Dangerously Flawed

TN Note: How many times has the intel community been slapped down by Congress and/or the Judiciary for illegal surveillance on innocent Americans? Nevertheless, their activities have accelerated with impunity, and this is a clear confirmation that Technocracy is marching forward on its own agenda and timetable. How is it that the FBI now has million of records from state driver’s licenses? Fusion Centers! I have warned for years that the real function of Fusion Centers was never about national security, but rather about the collection and reformatting of disparate types of data from state and local databases. Fusion Centers were implemented by the Department of Homeland Security, but the data they collect winds up in the hands of the FBI and NSA.  This cooperation further confirms that intel agencies are acting in concert and answering to a higher authority, namely, the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) The DNI has unified all intel operations under a single command, even though the various agencies retain their former names and branding. This unified intel behemoth is fully dedicated to surveilling all American citizens at all times.

The problem is: The system is deeply and dangerously flawed. 

The FBI steadily, stealthily compiled a massive facial recognition database without oversight and in disregard of federal law, according to a report released today by the Government Accountability Office.

The bombshell report reveals that the FBI dipped into driver’s license photo databases from 16 states, as well as passport and visa photo databases from the State Department, feeding its facial recognition with millions of photos of Americans and foreigners who have never been accused of a crime. The FBI has access to a whopping 411.9 million images for use in facial recognition, roughly 30 million of which are mug shots.

The sheer number of photos described in the GAO report is staggering, but what’s worse is that the FBI didn’t make public disclosures about the program required by law, the report says. The GAO recommended that the FBI make several improvements to its transparency process and assess its past failures. The report instructs that the U.S. Attorney General should determine why the FBI didn’t publish legally mandated privacy assessments as it expanded its facial recognition program.

The Privacy Act requires government agencies to disclose how they harvest and use personal information like ID photos, but the GAO found that the FBI didn’t make the mandatory disclosures.

“There appears to be no internal oversight on this system and that’s remarkable,” Alvaro Bedoya, the executive director of the Center on Privacy and Technology at Georgetown Law, told TechCrunch. Bedoya previously worked for Senator Al Franken, the legislator who has frequently pushed for oversight of facial recognition technology and requested that the GAO audit the FBI’s use of the technology.

“Today we found out that they have no idea if they’re misusing it or not,” Bedoya said of the FBI. “They’ve literally never done an audit.”

Bedoya pointed out that many Americans don’t expect their driver’s license photos to end up in a federal law enforcement database.

 “When you turn 16 or 17, you don’t go down to the police station and give them your fingerprints; you go get your driver’s license. Turns out, it’s the same thing as far as the FBI is concerned,” he said. “They might not be storing these photos at Quantico but it has built, in effect, a nationwide biometric database using driver’s license photos. It’s breathtaking.”

The GAO report also notes that the reliability of the FBI’s facial recognition technology is virtually untested, and testing it for accuracy is complicated, given that the FBI searches several different state and federal databases for photos. Studies have consistently found facial recognition software to be faulty when identifying minorities, women and young people, and it’s probable that the FBI’s databases are susceptible to similar biases.

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Privacy Experts Attack Russian Hi-Tech Spy Devices

su_note note_color=”#daf2fd” radius=”2″]TN Note: Technocrats invent because they can. That people would not like what they invented does not concern them in the least. It is this very mentality that fuels the mantra to use science to engineer society as they see fit. [/su_note]

New Russian technologies, including phonecall interception and a facial recognition app, have stirred a fierce debate about privacy and data monitoring.

Infowatch, a Moscow-based IT security company managed by businesswoman Natalya Kasperskaya, found itself in hot water last month after it revealed it had invented a system that companies can use to intercept employees’ mobile phone conversations.

Companies outside Russia have also devised call interception software, and Infowatch already markets products that monitor employees’ e-mails, USB keys and printers.

But Kasperskaya says she was taken aback by the storm that surrounded the mobile phone innovation.

“We weren’t expecting this. For us it was only another channel of communication,” Kasperskaya told AFP in an interview.

The Russian authorities and members of the public lashed the invention as a breach of law or infringement of privacy.

Infowatch traces its origins back to 1997, when Kasperskaya and her then-husband, now divorced, Eugene Kaspersky co-founded the Kaspersky Lab security software company, which has gone on to global success.

The goal behind phonecall interception, Kasperskaya said, is to provide large businesses with a tool to prevent information leaks, including companies whose success depends on protecting corporate secrets.

Communications minister Nikolai Nikiforov said a court ruling was needed to get permission to tap phones.

The speaker of Russia’s lower house of parliament, Sergei Naryshkin, said he feared such technologies could be used to malicious ends.

Facing objections from the authorities, the company has refrained from designing a voice recognition system, even though there is demand from sensitive sectors including banking, the oil industry and large public companies.

Monitoring of communications by private corporations touches a nerve in a country where the shadowy KGB security service once monitored dissidents and where the state is keen to retain its grip on citizens’ personal data.

The KGB’s post-Soviet successor, the FSB, has long used a sophisticated system called SORM to carry out surveillance communications by telephone or on the Internet.

The revelations of whistleblower Edward Snowden showed that the US National Security Agency also carries out surveillance on a mass scale.

Human rights advocacy group Agora has said that nine million Russians, including opposition figures and political activists, have come under state surveillance since 2007.

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EU Technocrats Want You To Log Into Social Media With Gove-Issued ID Cards

TN Note: European Technocrats are blatant and blunt about their goals now, and U.S. counterparts will be emboldened by their initiatives. Remember that “Technocracy is the science of social engineering, the scientific operation of the entire social mechanism to produce and distribute goods and services to the entire population…” (The Technocrat, 1938) The time to reject all of it is now!

The European Commission plans to attack citizens’ right to online privacy, insisting that state-issued ID cards should be used to log into platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, and even Uber.

The Vice President for the Digital Single Market on the European Commission, former Communist Andrus Ansip, is behind the next European Union (EU) raid on personal freedoms, promoting the idea of using national ID cards to log in to online services.

Leaked documents from within the European Commission revealed a call for the roll out of a more extensive use of national ID cards across the EU. The documents have since been uploaded to the Commission’s own website.

Mr. Ansip is from Estonia, a small Baltic country and former Communist state which has the most highly-developed national ID card system in the world. The Estonian state website boasts: “Much more than simply a legal picture ID, the mandatory national card serves as the digital access card for all of Estonia’s secure e-services.”

The paper outlines that: “In particular, online platforms need to accept credentials issued or recognised by national public authorities, such as electronic ID cards, citizens cards, bank cards or mobile IDs… for every consumer to have a multitude of username and password combinations is not only inconvenient but becomes a security risk.”

This draft document entitled ‘Online Platforms and the Digital Single Market’ is dated 25 May this year, and urges the log in policy on the basis that fake user reviews are misleading European consumers. The document states: “Online ratings and reviews of goods and services are helpful and empowering to consumers, but they need to be trustworthy and free from any bias or manipulation. A prominent example is fake reviews, where loss of trust can undermine the business model of the platform itself, but also lead to a wider loss of trust, as expressed in many responses to the public consultation

Breitbart London has previously reported on how the European Union plans to roll out a continent-wide ID card, with a view to using the data to impose Europe-wide taxes, and an EU-wide minimum wage, further bypassing elected national parliaments and handing more power to the unelected bureaucrats in Brussels.

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Facial Recognition Software Spells The End Of Anonymity

TN Note: In order for Technocracy to be fully implemented, a fully ubiquitous surveillance system must be in place. On top of the myriad of ways to collect data on citizens, which are already being used, facial recognition will effectively track everywhere you go and everything you do. There is no ‘opt-out’ box to check. Nobody will ask you permission. You will have no way to correct data errors. In other words, your reality will be the one they conjure up as they sift, sort, slice and dice your data. 

Nearly 250 million video surveillance cameras have been installed throughout the world, and chances are you’ve been seen by several of them today. Most people barely notice their presence anymore — on the streets, inside stores, and even within our homes. We accept the fact that we are constantly being recorded because we expect this to have virtually no impact on our lives. But this balance may soon be upended by advancements in facial recognition technology.

Soon anybody with a high-resolution camera and the right software will be able to determine your identity. That’s because several technologies are converging to make this accessible. Recognition algorithms have become far more accurate, the devices we carry can process huge amounts of data, and there’s massive databases of faces now available on social media that are tied to our real names. As facial recognition enters the mainstream, it will have serious implications for your privacy.

A new app called FindFace, recently released in Russia, gives us a glimpse into what this future might look like. Made by two 20-something entrepreneurs, FindFace allows anybody to snap a photo of a passerby and discover their real name — already with 70% reliability. The app allows people to upload photos and compare faces to user profiles from the popular social network Vkontakte, returning a result in a matter of seconds. According to an interview in the Guardian, the founders claim to already have 500,000 users and have processed over 3 million searches in the two months since they’ve launched.

What’s particularly unsettling are the use cases they advocate: identifying strangers to send them dating requests, helping government security agencies to determine the identities of dissenters, and allowing retailers to bombard you with advertisements based on what you look at in stores.

While there are reasons to be skeptical of their claims, FindFace is already being deployed in questionable ways. Some users have tried to identify fellow riders on the subway, while others are using the app to reveal the real names of porn actresses against their will. Powerful facial recognition technology is now in the hands of consumers to use how they please.

This leads to a situation that conjures up our worst fears with surveillance. You have no control whether your face is linked to other databases — such as loyalty rewards programs or police watch lists — or how that information is shared. Facial recognition is usually done without your permission, and there is no established way to opt out.

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