The harvesting of our personal details goes far beyond what many of us could imagine. So I braced myself and had a look
Want to freak yourself out? Im going to show just how much of your information the likes of Facebook and Google store about you without you even realising it.
Google knows where youve been
Google stores your location (if you have location tracking turned on) every time you turn on your phone. You can see a timeline of where youve been from the very first day you started using Google on your phone.
Chamath Palihapitiya, former vice-president of user growth, expressed regret for his part in building tools that destroy the social fabric of how society works
A former Facebook executive has said he feels tremendous guilt over his work on tools that are ripping apart the social fabric of how society works, joining a growing chorus of critics of the social media giant.
Chamath Palihapitiya, who was vice-president for user growth at Facebook before he left the company in 2011, said: The short-term, dopamine-driven feedback loops that we have created are destroying how society works. No civil discourse, no cooperation, misinformation, mistruth.
This is not about Russian ads, he added. This is a global problem. It is eroding the core foundations of how people behave by and between each other.
Palihapitiyas comments last month were made a day after Facebooks founding president, Sean Parker, criticized the way that the company exploit[s] a vulnerability in human psychology by creating a social-validation feedback loop during an interview at an Axios event.
Parker had said that he was something of a conscientious objector to using social media, a stance echoed by Palihapitaya who said that he was now hoping to use the money he made at Facebook to do good in the world.
I cant control them, Palihapitaya said of his former employer. I can control my decision, which is that I dont use that shit. I can control my kids decisions, which is that theyre not allowed to use that shit.
He also called on his audience to soul-search about their own relationship to social media. Your behaviors, you dont realize it, but you are being programmed, he said. It was unintentional, but now you gotta decide how much youre going to give up, how much of your intellectual independence.
Chief executive officer Sundar Pichai states internal document that criticised efforts to advertise ladies and under-symbolized minorities is unlike our fundamental values
Google apparently fired an application engineer on Monday following a document he wrote criticising the companys diversity efforts and attributing the tech industrys gender imbalance to biological variations between women and men went viral.
To point out several our colleagues have traits which make them less biologically suitable for [Googles] jobs are offensive and never OK, Google Chief executive officer Sundar Pichai authored in a memo to employees. It’s unlike our fundamental values and our code of conduct.
The firing from the memos author, who identified themself as James Damore within an email towards the Protector, was initially as reported by Bloomberg. Google declined to discuss a person employees situation, but tweeted a link to help comments by Pichai: Our co-workers shouldnt need to worry that every time they open their mouths to talk inside a meeting, they need to prove they aren’t such as the memo states, being agreeable instead of assertive, showing lower stress tolerance or just being neurotic.
The Ten-page manifesto was printed internally, but was leaked towards the press on Saturday after prompting a firestorm within the organization. The document, titled Googles Ideological Echo Chamber, takes are designed for Googles diversity and inclusion initiatives, for example implicit bias training and programs to advertise ladies and under-symbolized minorities, and argues that the organization is intolerant of conservative political opinions.
With regards to diversity and inclusion, Googles left bias has produced a politically correct monoculture that maintains its hold by shaming dissenters into silence, the writer authored.
The writer also made questionable claims about supposedly innate variations between women and men to take into account the ultimate gender disparity in Googles workforce.
Like most of Silicon Valleys top tech companies, Bing is overwhelmingly male, white-colored and Asian. Women constitute just 20% from the technical workforce, and African Americans just 1%, based on Googles newest diversity report.
Bing is also involved in a legitimate fight using the US Department at work, that is investigating the organization for wage discrimination. A Department of labor lawyer told the Guardian in April that it is analysis of wage data demonstrated that discrimination against women in the search engines is very extreme, even just in this industry.
At this time the department has gotten compelling proof of very significant discrimination against women in most positions at Google headquarters, the lawyer stated.
Google denies the costs.
The interior document sparked a heated debate within Google and also the tech industry in particular, with lots of Google employees expressing anger and dismay about its contents on Twitter. Many known as for that authors firing, quarrelling that his opinions produced a hostile work atmosphere, while some elevated concerns about sacking an worker for expressing unpopular views.
Rightwing news site Breitbart covered the debate extensively, concentrating on the perceived culture of political correctness within the tech industry, and casting the memos author like a victim of the witch search by social justice players.
In the memo, Pichai acknowledged concerns over freedom of expression, adding: Many points elevated within the memo like the portions criticising Googles trainings, questioning the function of ideology at work, and debating whether programs for ladies and underserved groups are sufficiently available to each one is important topics.
The writer were built with a to express their thoughts about individuals topics we encourage an atmosphere by which people can perform this also it remains our policy not to do something against anybody for prompting these discussions.
The Chief executive officer told staff he’d be coming back from the vacation early to be able to hold an urban area hall meeting to go over the way we produce a more inclusive atmosphere for those.
Bing is the most recent company to manage problems with sexism, discrimination and harassment this season. The Uber Chief executive officer, Travis Kalanick, resigned in June as well as an additional 20 employees were fired among the fallout from allegations of prevalent sexual harassment and gender discrimination at the organization.
The tech industry has additionally been rocked by accusations that numerous high-profile vc’s have harassed female startup entrepreneurs.
We behave as if technology were neutral nevertheless its not. The task now’s to get rid of the gender bias, states human legal rights lawyer and author Lizzie OShea
Most women within the San Francisco Bay Area are soft and weak, cosseted and naive, despite their claims of worldliness, and usually filled with shit, authored former Facebook product manager Antonio Garca Martnez in 2016. They’ve themselves-regarding entitlement feminism, and ceaselessly vaunt their independence. But the truth is, come the epidemic plague or foreign invasion, theyd become precisely the type of useless baggage youd trade for any box of shotgun shells or perhaps a jerry can of diesel. This really is from his insider account of Plastic Valley, Chaos Apes. It would be a bestseller. The Brand New You are able to Occasions called it an irresistible and indispensable 360-degree help guide to the brand new technology establishment. Anybody who’s surprised at the current revelations of sexism distributing like wildfire with the technology industry is not having to pay attention.
When Susan Fowler wrote about her experience with being sexually harassed at Uber, it motivated a series of occasions that appeared unimaginable several weeks ago, including an analysis brought by former attorney general Eric Holder, and also the departure of numerous key people from the companys leadership team. Venture capitalist Justin Caldbeck faced allegations of harassing conduct, so when he offered an unimpressive denial, companies funded by his firm banded together to condemn his tepidity. He subsequently resigned, and also the future of his former firm is unclear. Since that time, a large number of ladies have come toward reveal the sexist culture in several Plastic Valley technology and investment capital firms. It’s more and more obvious from all of these accounts the problem for ladies within the tech industry isn’t a failure to lean in, it’s a cultureof harassment and discrimination which makes a lot of their workplaces unsafe and uncomfortable.
A minimum of this problem has been discussed with techniques that open the chance that it will likely be addressed. The main problem of sexism within the tech industry goes much much deeper and wider. Technological development is undermining the reason for womens equality in different ways.
American academic Melvin Kranzbergs first law of technology tells us that technologies are neither inherently good nor bad, neither is it neutral. Like a black mirror it reflects the issues which exist in society such as the oppression of ladies. Huge numbers of people bark orders at Alexa, every single day, but rarely shall we be asked to question why the domestic organiser is voiced with a lady. The entry system for any womens locker room inside a gym lately declined admission to a lady member because her title was Dr, also it categorised her as male.
But the problem is not just that technology products reflect a backward look at the function of ladies. They frequently also appear ignorant or indifferent to womens resided experience. As the web of products expands, more devices within our homes as well as on our physiques are collecting data about us and delivering it to systems, a procedure that we frequently haven’t much control. This presents profound trouble for vulnerable people of society, including survivors of domestic violence. Wearable technology could be hacked, cars and phones could be tracked, and knowledge from the thermostat can reveal whether someone reaches home. This potential is frightening for those who have experienced rape, violence or stalking.
Unsurprisingly, technologies are utilized by users: inside a survey of domestic violence services organisations, 97% reported the survivors using them have observed harassment, monitoring, and threats by users through any susipicious activity regarding technology. This frequently happens on phones, but 60% of individuals surveyed also reported that users have spied or eavesdropped around the survivor or children using other kinds of technology, including toys along with other gifts. Many shelters have resorted to banning using Facebook due to fears about revealing details about their whereabouts to stalkers. It is possible to make devices give control to users and limit the capability for abuse. But there’s little evidence this is a priority for that technology industry.
Items that tend to be more attentive to the requirements of women will be a great start. But we ought to be thinking bigger: we have to avoid reproducing sexism in system design. The term-embedding models utilized in such things as conversation bots and word searches offer an instructive example. These models operate by feeding immeasureable text right into a computer therefore it learns how words connect with one another wide. It is dependant on the idea that words which appear near one another in texts share meaning. These spatial relationships are utilized in natural language-processing to ensure that computers can build relationships us conversationally. By studying lots of text, a pc can discover Paris would be to France as Tokyo, japan would be to Japan. It develops a dictionary by association.
However this can make problems once the world isn’t just as it must be. For example, scientific study has experimented using these word-embedding models, Word2vec, a well known and freely available model trained on three million words from Google News. They discovered that it creates highly gendered analogies. For example, when requested Man would be to lady as computer programmer would be to ?, the model will answer homemaker. Or father would be to mother as physician would be to ?, the reply is nurse. Obviously the model reflects a particular reality: it is a fact there are more male software engineers, and nurses tend to be more frequently women. However this bias, reflecting social discrimination, will be employed and reinforced whenever we build relationships computers using natural language that depends on Word2vec. It’s not difficult to imagine how this model may be racially biased, or biased against other groups.
These biases could be amplified duringthe procedure for learning. Because the Durch Technology Review points out: When the phrase computer programmer is much more carefully connected with men than women, a look for theterm computer programmer CVs might rank men better than women. When this sort of learning has applications across fields including medicine, education, employment, policymaking and criminal justice, it’s not difficult to observe how much damage such biases may cause.
Removing such gender bias is really a challenge, partly because the issue is inherently political: Word2vec entrenches the planet because it is, rather thanwhat it might or ought to be. But as to change the models to mirror aspirations, how can we decide what sort of world you want to see?
Technology offers myriad waysto put these understandings to operate. It’s not bad, but we must challenge the presumption that it’s neutral. Its potential has been explored with techniques which are sometimes promising, frequently frightening and amazing. To take full advantage of this moment, we have to make a future with no oppressions of history. We have to allow women to achieve their potential in workplaces where they think safe and revered. But we should also consider the black mirror of technology and discover the cracks of sunshine shining through.
Personally, I wouldnt. But now you ask , an even bigger one: how can we be responsible for the role within the exploitive gig-economy?
Q: Given all of the terrible tales which have emerge about Uber, must i erase the application from my phone, although the Chief executive officer has resigned?
Lets list unhealthy things. Uber, which appropriately or wrongly seems like patient zero within the plague of horrible tech start ups, were built with a bad repetition before the occasions that introduced lower Chief executive officer Travis Kalanick a week ago. It set the gig economy standard of classifying its motorists as independent contractors instead of employees, to prevent providing them with benefits.
Among individuals it did, unavoidably, need to employ, it inculcated a culture of sexism which has generated allegations of harassment among female engineers and led to only 15% of its tech staff being women. It acquired the medical records of a woman in India who had been raped by an Uber driver (the motive force has since been sentenced to existence jail time), which was all before David Bonderman, an Uber executive, designed a joke in a board meeting two days ago towards the effect that getting more women around the board would fill conferences with useless chat. The brouhaha around Bondermans comments appears to possess been the final straw for investors, who requested Kalanick to resign. He did.
This can be considered like a fitting finish towards the matter, considering that Kalanick, who founded the organization in ’09 and elevated more investment capital compared to any startup ever, is recognized as largely the reason for its so-called brogrammer culture. Without any Kalanick, and considering the independent analysis Uber commissioned into its very own failures from Eric Holder, the previous U . s . States attorney general believe it or not which figured that internal slogans at Uber for example Continually Be Hustlin have been accustomed to justify poor behavior, possibly this is the time to update our ideas of the organization.
However , Uber is simply one illustration of a much wider trend. OK, so it is the worst example, however if you simply boycott Uber, dont imagine you are able to shift to other ride-share apps with cosier reputations in the US, Lyft, say, that also denies its motorists worker status and counts the wonderful Peter Thiel among its investors and are available away having a clean conscience.
And why visit transport? Each week, most of my groceries are sent to my door by Instacart, a Bay Area-based launch which provides 1 / 2 of its workers individuals that do the particular shopping worker status, but denies it to those who do the delivery. The expertise of using Instacart is much more guilt-inducing than taking Uber you cannot avoid eye-to-eye contact with someone in your doorstep how you can with someone providing you with a trip.
The issue then becomes one not just of methods much responsibility will we, most effective and quickest, bear for conditions across a completely new work model, but simply how bad is the fact that model to begin with? Advocates from the gig economy, included in this David Plouffe, Barack Obamas former right hands man and until lately a professional at Uber, and Chris Lehane, mind of worldwide policy at Airbnb along with a former strategist within the Clinton administration, credit Uber-type apps with funnelling earnings lower to individuals battling within the employment market. Critics refer to it as exploitation.
This debate is simply too large to solve here, apart from to state that it is true many individuals prosper gigging, however they are usually individuals who prosper anyway and then any reference to trickle lower financial aspects chief proponent, Jesse Trump ought to be given scepticism. I easily wiped Uber from my phone years back after it struck me having a cost surge and that i wound up having to pay nearly as much for that 40 minute journey towards the airport terminal when i did for that five hour flight from New You are able to to LA. I dislike the actual way it undermines trains and buses infrastructure and fills metropolitan areas with creepy black SUVs. But Im additionally a complete hypocrite I personally use Via, Ubers ride-discussing rival having a better status, not understanding the very first factor about this.
Heres things i think: that Uber represents a brand new variety of company, the culture being still in development, as evidenced through the raft of first-generation lawsuits arrived. Not just are Uber and Lyft being sued by former employees, but so might be cleaning startup Homejoy, delivery startup Postmates, and Instacart.
Uber is definitely the greatest of those companies and just what happens there matters, to ensure that regardless of recent changes at the very top, now would appear to become a bad time for you to take away the pressure. Just the opposite. You should be complaining concerning the grosser facets of the brand new economy as noisally as you possibly can lest they become imbedded normalized, let’s say in a manner that 5 years from now means they are harder to root out.
Im place in mind of Madeleine Albrights famous reaction to the issue of why the united states designated Cuba for sanctions when a lot of other nations on the planet were badly. We don’t possess a standard method of policy, she stated. China is really a world power … Cuba is definitely an embarrassment towards the western hemisphere. Within this example, Uber may be the world power so that as things at the organization still stand, its a global a lot of us shouldn’t reside in. Personally, Id delete the application.
If you’d like advice from Emma Brockes regarding how to be considered a human online, send us a short description of the concerns to email@example.com
As Uber Chief executive officer departs, questions happen to be elevated why its CTO who had been incorporated inside a viral publish about discrimination and harassment continues to have employment
The resignation of Ubers embattled Chief executive officer Travis Kalanick has brought some to question why the companys chief technology officer (CTO), who had been incorporated within an engineers viral account of sexual harassment and discrimination, has stored his job.
But Pham has weathered the storm and stays in the high-profile position, the organization confirmed on Wednesday, drawing criticisms that Uber hasn’t correctly addressed Fowlers claims, has unsuccessful to carry a effective executive accountable and it has dirty enough to repair the ride-hailing companys misogynistic culture.
Its sad. It transmits a note that being an industry we value men in technical roles greater than we value the security of ladies, stated Julie Ann Horvath, an advocate of diversity in tech that has openly discussed her experiences of facing sexual harassment and discrimination in Plastic Valley.
Concerns about Phams ongoing role at Uber may come as the Bay Area firm has guaranteed to construct an Uber 2. as a result of criticisms of their toxic workplace and frat-house culture, which many stated was promoted by Kalanicks immature and offensive behavior.
Fowler, who labored for Uber from November 2015 to December 2016, claimed that the manager immediately propositioned her for sex when she became a member of, however that HR ignored her complaints despite documented evidence cheap others had elevated concerns about him.
In another situation, Fowler stated her organization at Uber had guaranteed leather jackets for everybody, but made the decision to not get them organized for ladies since there weren’t enough women … to warrant putting in an order. When she complained, an HR representative stated she was the most popular theme in any reports, and her manager later informed her she was on thin ice for likely to HR and could be ended if she accomplished it again, Fowler authored.
She stated she told HR and Pham of those threats and stated both of them accepted this was illegal, but not one of them did anything, adding, I had been told later they didnt do anything whatsoever since the manager who threatened me would be a high artist.
Its unclear exactly what the subsequent analysis uncovered about Phams handling of her situation.
An Uber spokesperson declined to discuss the findings associated with Pham and whether he’s faced any disciplinary action, but confirmed the CTO continues to be at Uber. The organization also adopted finished all employment recommendations that resulted in the investigations, such as the recent round of terminations, the spokesperson added.
We’ve taken strong action to deal with claims of harassment, discrimination along with other inappropriate behavior, and also have established processes and systems to guarantee the mistakes of history won’t be repeated, the organization stated inside a statement. Were centered on rebuilding trust with this employees and also the communities we serve, creating a company along with a culture that people can are proud of.
Fowler didnt react to a request comment, but on Wednesday retweeted a critique from another female engineer in tech, who wrote: Wondering why there isnt more fuss concerning the CTO still staying at uber, considering that numerous problems originated from engineering org.
Other women in Plastic Valley echoed the concerns, saying it had been disappointing to determine the recent high-level departures have largely happened outdoors of Ubers engineering organization, which, based on Fowler, was affected by problems.
Susan particularly references that Ubers CTO … didn’t do anything, Taylor, who co-authored a magazine known as Women in Tech, authored within an email. And So I ask Uber, why must we feel that theyve taken the required actions within engineering to repair their problems? Where’s the proof?
Horvath stated it had been painful to determine Pham avoid termination which could deter others from coming forward. Kalanicks departure, she added, is nearly a distraction to be able to say, Okay, we fixed the issue. Weve managed to move on now.
Some also have elevated concerns concerning the ongoing employment of Ryan Graves, a longtime executive who had been formerly Chief executive officer and it was even the companys first worker. Graves is recognized as a Kalanick loyalist and it was mind of operations overseeing HR during Fowlers tenure, based on a study recently from tech news site Recode, which noted that Graves and Pham were both pressurized within the sexual harassment analysis.
Graves, however, can also be still at Uber, a spokesperson confirmed towards the Protector.
Pham and Graves didn’t react to demands for comment.
Other Kalanick defenders stay at the organization, based on the New You are able to Occasions Mike Isaac, who tweeted that some employees were saying these were angry at investors for pushing the Chief executive officer.
Joelle Emerson, Chief executive officer of Paradigm, a business that can help tech firms diversify their workforces, stated it was vital that firms like Uber exceed just terminating problematic people: We are able to sometimes result in the mistake of thinking this really is about individuals [when] its concerning the underlying group of systems and procedures and underlying culture.
But, she added, When individuals aren’t attributed for all kinds of role they play in discrimination or harassment it reinforces that inappropriate behavior is suitable.
The organization has already established a apparently never-ending string of missteps, from the questionable Chief executive officer to questionable tactics and sexual harassment claims
Uber continues to be rocked by a steady flow of scandals and negative publicity recently, including revelations of questionable spy programs, a higher-stakes technology suit, claims of sexual harassment and discrimination and embarrassing leaks about executive conduct.
The PR disasters culminated in Chief executive officer Travis Kalanick taking an indefinite leave of absence now and promises of bold reform that largely overlooked the ride-hailing companys strained relationship with motorists.
This is a timeline of probably the most consequential controversies.
Boob-er backlash, Feb 2014
Uber Chief executive officer Travis Kalanick faced backlash for any sexist joke about his growing desirability, telling an Esquire reporter: We call that Boob-er.
Individuals competitor, August 2014
Uber faced accusations it booked a large number of fake rides from the competitor Lyft in order to reduce its profits and services. Uber recruiters also allegedly spammed Lyft motorists in order to recruit them from the rival.
The God View scandal, November 2014
Uber executive Emil Michael suggested digging up dirt on journalists and distributing private information of the female reporter who had been critical of the organization. He later apologized. It had been also says Uber includes a so-known as God View technology that enables the organization to trace users locations, raising privacy concerns. One manager had accessed the profile of the reporter without her permission.
Stalking Beyonc, December 2016
An old forensic investigator for Uber testified that employees regularly spied on politicians, exes and celebrities, including Beyonc.
Self-driving pilot failure, December 2016
Regulators in California purchased Uber to remove self-driving vehicles from the road after the organization launched an airplane pilot without permits. On the very first day from the program, the vehicles were caught running red lights, and cycling advocates in Bay Area also elevated concerns concerning the cars creating hazards in bike lanes. The organization blamed red-light issues on human error, however the New You are able to Occasions later claimed the companys statements were false which the autonomous technology unsuccessful.
Exclusive: Chief executive officer Elon Musk defends workplace, saying [we’re not just greedy capitalists who skimp on safety and declares his $50bn company overvalued
When Tesla purchased a decommissioned vehicle factory in Fremont, California, Elon Musk transformed that old-fashioned, unionized plant right into a much-vaunted factory of the future, where giant robots named after X-Men shape and fold sheets of metal in the gleaming white-colored mecca of advanced manufacturing.
Hunger for Musks planet, and the promise to disrupt the carbon-reliant automobile industry, helps Teslas value exceed those of both Ford and, briefly, General Motors (GM). But a few of the human workers who share the factory using their automatic counterparts complain ofgrueling work pressure they attributeto Musks aggressive production goals, and often existence-altering injuries.
Ambulances happen to be known as greater than 100 occasions since 2014 for workers experiencing fainting spells, dizziness, seizures, abnormal breathing and chest pains, based on incident reports acquired through the Protector. Hundreds more were known as for injuries along with other health problems.
Inside a phone interview concerning the conditions in the factory, which employs some 10,000 workers, the Tesla Chief executive officer conceded his workers have been getting difficulty, working lengthy hrs, as well as on hard jobs, but stated he cared deeply regarding their health and wellness.His company states its factory safety record has considerably improved within the this past year.
Musk also stated that Tesla shouldn’t be when compared with major US carmakers which its market capital, now greater than $50bn, is unwarranted. I do think the forex market cap is greater than we’ve any to deserve, he stated, mentioning his company produces just 1% of GMs total output.
Were a cash losing company, Musk added. This isn’t some situation where, for instance, we’re just greedy capitalists who made the decision to scrimp on safety to be able to convey more profits and dividends which type of factor. Its only a question of how much cash we lose. And how can we survive? How can we not die and also have everybody lose their jobs?
Setback may be the latest manifestation of turmoil at Uber, which lately found itself inside a separate sexual harassment firestorm and faces a significant suit from Google
The very best engineering executive at Uber has resigned, contributing to the companys turmoil per week after the organization found itself within an unrelated sexual harassment firestorm.
Amit Singhal, whose hire was announced just five days ago, unsuccessful to reveal that hed left his previous job at Google due to a sexual harassment allegation, according to the tech blog Recode.
Singhal denied the allegation and stated he left Google last year for their own reasons.
The dustup is only the latest manifestation of turmoil at Uber, which a week ago found itself within an unrelated sexual harassment firestorm. That stemmed from the detailed essay printed with a former female Uber engineer, who billed that her prospects at the organization evaporated after she were not impressed with sexual advances from her boss. Within the publish about her year at Uber, she stated the companys human sources department overlooked her complaints because her boss would be a high artist.
Uber Chief executive officer Travis Kalanick has known as to have an independent analysis of individuals issues, and the organization has hired former attorney general Eric Holder to assist.
Additionally, Uber is facing a lawsuit from Waymo, the self-driving vehicle company of Googles parent Alphabet, alleging the ride-share company involved in the calculated thievery of their self-driving technology. All of this on the top from the viral #DeleteUber campaign and Kalanicks questionable role on Jesse Trumps economic advisory council.
Inside a statement emailed towards the Connected Press, Singhal stated: Harassment is unacceptable in almost any setting. I certainly want everybody to understand that I don’t condone and also have not committed such behavior. Within my 20-year career, Ive never been charged with anything such as this before and the choice to leave Google was my very own.
Based on Recode, Singhal left Google after executives there informed him of the harassment allegation lodged by an worker that the internal analysis had found credible.
Representatives for Google didn’t immediately react to a request discuss Monday. Uber declined to comment beyond confirming that Singhal is not with the organization.
LinkedIn has suggested the 29-year-olds arrest is tied to a 2012 breach that resulted in more than 100 million of its users passwords being compromised
A Russian man has been charged with hacking and stealing information from computers at LinkedIn and other San Francisco Bay Area companies.
The US attorneys office in San Francisco announced Friday that a grand jury indicted 29-year-old Yevgeniy Aleksandrovich Nikulin, of Moscow, Russia, a day earlier on charges including computer intrusion and aggravated identity theft.
Prosecutors say Nikulin used a LinkedIn employees credentials to access the companys computers in 2012. Nikulin is also accused of hacking two other companies, Dropbox and Formspring, and conspiring to sell stolen user names, passwords and email addresses of Formspring customers.
He was arrested on 5 October by officials in the Czech Republic and remains there, according to prosecutors. Russian officials have said they are working to prevent his extradition to the United States.
LinkedIn has suggested that Nikulins arrest was tied to a 2012 breach of member information. In May, LinkedIn said the 2012 breach resulted in more than 100 million of its users passwords being compromised, vastly more than had been previously thought.
Abraham Simmons, a spokesman for the US attorneys office, declined to comment on whether the charges against Nikulin related to that breach.
Simmons said he did not know the name of Nikulins attorney.
LinkedIn said in a statement that it appreciated the FBIs ongoing work to pursue those responsible for the 2012 breach of LinkedIn member information.
The indictment alleges three unnamed co-conspirators, one of whom offered to sell the stolen Formspring user information to another for 5,500 euros, or about $6,000 in current US currency.
The US has accused Russia of coordinating the theft and disclosure of emails from the Democratic National Committee and other institutions and individuals in the US to influence the outcome of the election. Russia has denied that.
There was no indication the LinkedIn case was connected to that accusation.