So we put our privacy and our sensitive information at risk, all because we don’t want to be excluded from conversations with our friends. With a patented encryption system and a promise never to collect your data, how does it fare for everyday use?
Wickr keeps conversations private by using peer-to-peer encryption, which does not rely on centralized private decryption methods.
At a recent New York toy fair, a Mattel representative introduced the newest version of Barbie by saying: "Welcome to New York, Barbie." The doll, named Hello Barbie, responded: "I love New York! This Wi Fi-connected Barbie may soon be a hit among children used to tinkering with i Pads, but children's privacy advocates are crying foul. Hello Barbie works by recording a child's voice with an embedded microphone that is triggered by pressing a button on the doll.
It will learn over time, remembering your dog's name and adjusting to new topics.
"It's creepy - and creates a host of dangers for children and families." The criticism of Hello Barbie comes at a difficult time for Mattel.
Bryan Stockton resigned as the toymaker's chief executive in January after a string of poor earnings results.
Instead, both the users ID and device undergo multiple rounds of salted cryptographic hashing using SHA256.
"Kids using 'Hello Barbie' aren't only talking to a doll, they are talking directly to a toy conglomerate whose only interest in them is financial," Susan Linn, the group's director, said in a statement.
"The data is never used for anything to do with marketing or publicity or any of that stuff. But the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood launched a petition Wednesday calling on Mattel to scrap the doll.
The technology could leave children vulnerable to stealth advertising, the group says.
The concern underscores a tricky challenge facing the toy industry as it struggles to keep up with children's growing affinity for technology and Web-enabled gadgets.
Sales of Barbie have plummeted recently, while demand for children's apps and online games has exploded.
And both messages and media are “forensically wiped” from your device after they expire.