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ID theft ranking questioned
Identity fraud nationwide fell 21 percent last year, but Delaware ranks among the top five states at risk of the crime, according to a survey by a California-based research firm. But the accuracy of the report is being questioned by some.
Respondents in California, Illinois, Idaho, West Virginia and Delaware reported the highest incidence of identity fraud, with more than one out of 20 state residents reporting themselves as fraud victims, compared with an average of 3.58 percent, or about one out of 28 people, nationwide, Pleasanton-based Javelin Strategy & Research found in its "2008 Identity Fraud Survey Report."
"Your odds of getting struck by this are higher if you live in Delaware," says James Van Dyke, the company's president and founder, who pointed to Delaware's high population density and role as a corporate haven as possible reasons for the high ranking.
Those odds differ wildly, however, from the most recent data from the Federal Trade Commission, and a local banking expert questioned the survey's results.
Source - Delaware Online
[Get the report here: http://www.javelinstrategy.com/research
Civilian Surveillance. Toys that let you act just like James Bond.
AU: Court hears of elaborate spycam network
A HI-TECH peeping tom rigged his house with an elaborate network of miniature hidden cameras to spy on his housemates, a court was told yesterday.
But police have been unable to view the footage Gold Coast man Rohan Wyllie is suspected to have recorded because he has refused to give them his computer password. [Perhaps they mean 'encryption key,' since a password should be a trivial hack. Bob]
Mr Wyllie, 37, faced a committal hearing in Southport Magistrate's Court yesterday charged with making observations or recordings in breach of privacy, disobeying a lawful order to supply his computer password and wilful damage.
Source - news.com.au
New subject for law? Not sure I've seen anti-RFID skimming law before.
Washington State Reps. Pass Ban On RFID Skimming
The Washington State House of Representatives on Friday passed a bill that would make it a felony to steal information from RFID cards.
The bill (HB 1031) would make it a class C felony to intentionally skim information from RFID-enabled identity cards for fraud or identity theft. The legislation, introduced by State Rep. Jeff Morris, provides exemptions for health care givers and emergency responders.
Source - InformationWeek
[From the article:
... The bill removed a provision that required all cards with RFID technology to be labeled so consumers would know they contain the chips. [Shame. Bob]
The future of the IRS? (“We can't let the Brits out-surveil us!”)
UK: HMRC gets bugging powers
He already has the power to arrest, and as of today, the British taxman will also be able to intercept phone calls, emails and letters, as well as bug residential premises and private vehicles.
The powers were granted to HMRC in the Serious Crime Act, which gained Royal Assent in October, but did not come into force until the relevant statutory instrument is issued today.
... HMRC has stated that all surveillance will be conducted in compliance with the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act and the Wilson Doctrine, and subject to checks by the Office of Surveillance Commissioners and the Interception of Communication Commissioners Office. However, the department will not need to seek external authorisation for any of its surveillance activities.
Source - Accounting Web
...and a simple way to get parent fingerprints. (Note: this is that intermediate step between government surveillance and citizen surveillance.)
UK: Fingerprint scan at nursery door
A nursery has installed fingerprint scanning at its entrance to increase the safety of its young pupils. The biometric security system at Mes Enfants nursery in Mumbles, Swansea, allows only authorised parents and staff to access the building.
The nursery believes it could be the first nursery in Wales to adopt such a system for staff and parents.
Source - BBC
If you tell a hacker that “unlimited usage” no longer applies to him, don't be surprised if his response.is an amused “Oh yeah?”.
BitTorrent Developers Introduce Comcast Busting Encryption
Written by Ernesto on February 15, 2008
Several BitTorrent developers have joined forces to propose a new protocol extension with the ability to bypass the BitTorrent interfering techniques used by Comcast and other ISPs. This new form of encryption will be implemented in BitTorrent clients including uTorrent, so Comcast subscribers are free to share again.
Interesting that Apple has once again changed the paradigm...
Google iPhone usage shocks search giant
By Slash Lane Published: 03:00 PM EST Thursday, February 14, 2008
Google on Wednesday said it has seen 50 times more search requests coming from Apple iPhones than any other mobile handset -- a revelation so astonishing that the company originally suspected it had made an error culling its own data.
Related? (Maybe that high volume usage is coming from some eastern European hacker...)
Most Mobile Users Don't Know if They Have Security
McAfee-sponsored research finds mobile users expect vendors to pre-install 24 x 7 protection.
By David Needle February 13 2008
Security vendor McAfee released results of a survey of mobile users focused on their awareness and concerns related to security threats, which showed more than three quarters of respondents don't have any security at all.
Research tool? Look for blogs in your field/niche. (Besides, I like lists...)
Comparing Six Ways to Identify Top Blogs in Any Niche
Written by Marshall Kirkpatrick / February 15, 2008 10:34 AM
In the early days of blogging you could go to the Technorati Blog Index, enter some identifying terms for a particular niche topic and discover what the top blogs were in the field.
Identifying top niche blogs is invaluable knowledge for anyone wanting to enter, study or market to people in a particular field. It's one of the fastest and most effective ways to learn the lay of the land and get involved in the community of successful artists, real estate agents or 4-H club leaders using social media. I've been seeing a lot of demand for this information lately so I thought I'd write up some quick pros and cons of the options I'm familiar with. Perhaps you'll add some of your own favorite methods in comments.
Now this is creative money wasting at its best! (I admit, it was the headline that caught my attention)
Sex-Toy Sue will drive you around the bend
Louisa Hearn February 14, 2008 - 10:22AM
They may not be famed for their navigation skills, but personalities such as Ozzy Osbourne, the Queen and John Cleese are helping owners of in-car GPS devices manoeuvre their way across town.
Colourful commands such as: "You have reached your f---ing destination" and a regal-sounding "One has arrived" are taking the place of more customary instructions as the growing popularity of the novelty voice download market attracts a host of third-party offerings.
The market for these "voice skins" is split between parodies of famous celebrities such as Dirty Harry (Clint Eastwood), Mr T and Marilyn Monroe, and generic characterisations featuring the likes of the Voice of God, NASA Ground Control and the adult-oriented Sex-Toy Susan.
[Some sample audio on this page Bob]
For my fellow winos
Let’s Wine a Lot!
15th February 2008, 12:34 am
... Speaking of northern California, there’s WineMap at http://winemap.org/ , which will open to the general public on March 1st. WineMap is collecting information on wineries and where grapes are grown, and placing that information on a map. If you can’t wait for the site to open, you can already download its database to use in Google Earth.
Finally, there’s WineMad, at http://winemad.net/ . WineMad is a wine reviews aggregator and custom Google search engine that’s currently indexing 900 wine Web sites and blogs. The front page lists recent wine reviews and articles, with additional tabs for red wine reviews, white/rose/sparkling wine reviews, and cheese articles and reviews (of course). A blog for this search tool is available at http://winemad.wordpress.com/ .
For my statistics class...
Poor People Use Yahoo, Those Better Off Use Google
New data released by Hitwise yesterday shows that the difference between those using Yahoo and Google can be shown by the wealth of each user.