Friday, October 10, 2014

Adobe Digital Editions and Your Privacy

In recent days, there has been press coverage about the extent of user data that the desktop computer e-book application Adobe Digital Editions (ADE) version 4.0 collects and transmits back to Adobe unencrypted. How does this affect library patrons who borrow e-books from one of our two e-book services – 3M Cloud Library or OverDrive/Library2Go?

If you use 3M Cloud Library, there is no need to use the desktop application Adobe Digital Editions. 3M Cloud Library e-books are read via their mobile app or by a desktop application built by 3M. 3M released this statement:

Many of you have recently heard of the problems with Adobe Digital Editions and privacy, and many have asked us if we have similar problems with our system.  While we do use Adobe for DRM support, we never recommend that users download Adobe Digital Editions for reading 3M Cloud eBooks.  We have our own internally developed applications for PC and MAC which removes the need to have any 3rd party software installed to use our service.  Our technical team has confirmed that the kinds of data noted in the article below are not transmitted between the 3M software and Adobe. http://www.digitalbookworld.com/2014/adobe-confirms-its-gathering-ebook-readers-data/

If you use OverDrive (Library2Go) to download e-books, this issue does not affect you if you use the OverDrive app on a mobile device. However, if you use Adobe Digital Editions version 4.0 on your desktop computer, this may affect you, as Adobe Digital Editions software is required to download e-books from OverDrive to your desktop computer. You may choose to uninstall Adobe Digital Editions 4.0 and install an earlier version (3.0) instead, as earlier versions appear to be unaffected. OverDrive released a statement about the issue.

WCCLS is concerned about patron privacy and will continue to monitor this issue.  We will share any information we find in order to help our patrons make informed decisions about their e-book use.