Sunday, August 26, 2012

I wonder how the other states would measure up?
Data Breach at New York Utility Prompts Enforcement Action and Industry-Wide Data Security Review
August 25, 2012 by admin
Boris Segalis and Nihar Shah provide some follow-up to a data security breach at New York State Electric & Gas and Rochester Gas and Electric that was disclosed in January. As I noted in July, regulators criticized NYSEG over the breach that had affected 1.8 million.
Segalis and Shah write:
The Commission subsequently issued an “Order Directing a Report on Implementation of Recommendations” that expanded on many of the recommendations in the Commissioner’s initial statements, and described in detail the ways in which the Commissioner found NYSEG to have failed to adequately protect its customers’ PII.
The Commission conducted an exhaustive inquiry into NYSEG’s data security practices and found several instances in which the utility was not employing best practices and industry standards to protect PII. The Order referred to the NIST (2010) Recommended Security Controls for Federal Information Systems and Organizations as well as best practices set forth in the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) as the baseline for benchmarking NYSEG’s relevant practices. The Commission benchmarked NYSEG’s data security practices in eight areas:
Read more on InfoLawGroup.

I suppose that in a city the size of LA they must have a Rodney King-like incident every day. No doubt that's why they need to be airborne at all times. I wish them luck with some of their delusional expectations...
Lancaster’s daily aerial surveillance flights raise privacy fears
August 25, 2012 by Dissent
Abby Sewell and Richard Winton report:
Lancaster this week embarked on what experts say is a first-of-its-kind aerial surveillance over the city, using a small Cessna plane.
The plane, equipped with sophisticated video equipment, is set fly a loop above the city for up to 10 hours a day, beaming a live video feed of what’s going on below to a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department dispatch center.
The camera will inevitably pick up scenes of mundane day-to-day life. Officials said they planned to use the video only to track reports of crimes in progress, traffic collisions and other emergency situations.
Read more on the Los Angeles Times.
The videos will be encrypted, but they will reportedly be stored for two years, leading me to wonder how this comports with the police chiefs’ newly adopted code of conduct that recommends:
  1. Unless required as evidence of a crime, as part of an on-going investigation, for training, or required by law, images captured by a UA should not be retained by the agency.
  2. Unless exempt by law, retained images should be open for public inspection.
Yes, I know these aren’t UA’s, but even so….?
[From the article:
"This will allow us within five seconds of a call [I'd like to see the real numbers Bob] to get some eyes on location. If some robber is fleeing deputies, we get to learn where, thanks to this technology," [Because the deputies can't tell where they are? Bob] Parris said. "In law enforcement, for a long time it has been known that it is a deterrent if a criminal believes there is a strong likelihood of apprehension."
When the plane is in the air, it will record every incident deputies respond to, [Unlikely Bob] Sheriff's Capt. Robert Jonsen said.

Another comment on the lack of e-estate planning. How could you divvy up your electronic assets in your will? Perhaps by storing them in a country with useful laws? Would the RIAA or MPAA honor such and inheritance or would they sue your children?
"Many of us will accumulate vast libraries of digital books and music over the course of our lifetimes, reports the WSJ, but when we die, our collections of words and music may expire with us. 'I find it hard to imagine a situation where a family would be OK with losing a collection of 10,000 books and songs,' says author Evan Carroll of the problems created for one's heirs with digital content, which doesn't convey the same ownership rights as print books and CDs. So what's the solution? Amazon and Apple were mum when contacted, but with the growth of digital assets, Dazza Greenwood of MIT's Media Lab said it's time to reform and update IP law so content can be transferred to another's account or divided between several people."

Seems like I have several students with a clear idea of the small businesses they will start (or have already). Perhaps this will inspire the rest.
August 25, 2012
Inc. Magazine's Annual List of America's Fastest-Growing Private Companies -- the Inc. 500|5000
"America’s fastest growers span 25 industries, all 50 states, and metro areas ranging from Boston to San Diego. New York City had the most honorees, with 350--three more than runner-up Washington, D.C. While nearly half the winners had revenues between $2 million and $10 million, more than 50 took in over $1 billion."

Global Warming! Global Warming! This article suggests we only have detailed records since 1979! (Don't mind me. Occasionally I rant about bad reporting or maybe bad science?)
Arctic sea ice likely to hit record low next week

(Related) Another lack of records. Also, dark spots on the sun are apparently hotter that a spotless sun.
Link Found Between Cold European Winters and Solar Activity
Scientists have long suspected that the Sun's 11-year cycle influences climate of certain regions on Earth. Yet records of average, seasonal temperatures do not date back far enough to confirm any patterns. Now, armed with a unique proxy, an international team of researchers show that unusually cold winters in Central Europe are related to low solar activity -- when sunspot numbers are minimal. The freezing of Germany's largest river, the Rhine, is the key.

A New Jersey cell phone case?

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