Wednesday, July 02, 2014

Similar to my concern that no one is looking at logs. Managers must “control!” not just produce analysis reports that they don't bother to read.
T-Mobile charged customers for 'hundreds of millions' of dollars in bogus fees - FTC
The Federal Trade Commission filed a lawsuit Tuesday alleging that T-Mobile (TMUS) earned a windfall in recent years from third-party merchants offering bogus text message subscriptions for things like flirting tips, horoscopes and celebrity gossip. Those charges frequently weren't authorized by customers. The charges were allegedly concealed on customers' monthly bills.
As many as 40% of those customers hit with these monthly charges sought refunds, a fact that the FTC says should have been "an obvious sign to T-Mobile that the charges were never authorized." The complaint alleges that the charges took place between 2009 until December of last year, and T-Mobile had documentation of high complaint levels as early as 2012.

Perhaps this kerfuffle has legs. Releasing it on a weekend doesn't seem to have buried it.
Facebook Lawyer: That Emotion-Manipulation Study Was About Customer Service
During a session on freedom of speech at the Aspen Ideas Festival, [Another year without an invitation – and it's only a few miles up in the hills. (sigh) Bob] hosted by the Aspen Institute and The Atlantic, Facebook's Head of Global Policy Management, Monika Bickert, was asked about the emotion-manipulation study that has been a subject of controversy over the past few days.
"Do you see some regulation about this," an audience member asked, "and how free speech might be influenced by what users of social networks are shown?" What if, he continued, governments began asking Facebook to do that kind of manipulation not for science, but for politics—to affect, essentially, the moods of their citizens by asking the company to influence the content those people are shown?

Data Science: What the Facebook Controversy is Really About
Facebook has always “manipulated” the results shown in its users’ News Feeds by filtering and personalizing for relevance. But this weekend, the social giant seemed to cross a line, when it announced that it engineered emotional responses two years ago in an “emotional contagion” experiment, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).
Since then, critics have examined many facets of the experiment, including its design, methodology, approval process, and ethics. Each of these tacks tacitly accepts something important, though: the validity of Facebook’s science and scholarship. There is a more fundamental question in all this: What does it mean when we call proprietary data research data science?

This will change when dumpsters are added to the Internet of Things.
John Wesley Hall writes:
New Mexico adopts the Greenwood dissent and holds that there is a reasonable expectation of privacy in trash left out for collection in an opaque bag, even in a communal dumpster. City ordinances on trash collection help create the expectation of privacy by regulating it. State v. Crane, 2014 N.M. LEXIS 245 (June 30, 2014)

CBS News reports:
While more people and places are switching to energy-saving LED light bulbs, a California company has found a way to turn them into smart networks that can collect and feed data. However, the new technological opportunities are also raising privacy concerns, reports CBS News’ Bill Whitaker.
A building in Silicon Valley is one of the few places in the country where a smart light network has been installed. They’re used primarily for security. The 40 lampposts in the parking lot holds 83 LED lights, and they’re connected to seven cameras in a seamless grid that tracks and records people’s moves.
“We do use the license plate recognition, and we also can detect people,” said Kevin Kirk, chief engineer for the Shorenstein Company, which owns the building.
The company plans to install smart lights at its properties across the country.
Read more on CBS.
Joe Cadillic, a frequent contributor to this blog, reminds us that he has been blogging about streetlamp surveillance since last year:

Concern about surveillance of US citizens. Surveillance starts with the overseas end, but if I called Evil McBadguy (or he called me), wouldn't they want to know a bit about me?
On Tuesday evening, the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB)—an independent body within the Executive Branch—released a major report concerning the National Security Agency’s electronic surveillance program under section 702 of the Foreign Act Surveillance Act. (The full text of the report entitled, “Report on the Surveillance Program Operated Pursuant to Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act,” is available here).
… The Executive Summary of the Report contains a section on “Legal Analysis,” a section on “Policy Analysis,” and 10 specific recommendations.

(Related) Ha! Let me repeat that for you, HA!
In a provocatively entitled essay, Are National Security Lawyers a National Security Threat? Marshall Erwin, a research fellow at the Hoover Institution and former “lead intelligence specialist” at the Congressional Research Service, asks if national security lawyers are a “security threat” because, as he claims, they “distract us from important questions about national security and intelligence community efficacy,” and “this hurts America’s national security bottom line.”
… Neither Mr. Erwin nor anyone else should be especially surprised that lawmakers concerned about the adequacy of the law would want to hear from lawyers. Given that the key issues in the post-Snowden era mostly relate to privacy and civil liberties, subjects about which lawyers – not intelligence specialists – have real expertise and experience, congressional interest in what lawyers have to say hardly should be unexpected.

How should we market our students? Perhaps a Blog titled, “Sooner or later...”
Sooner or Later You'll Get Hacked and Hire a CISO
I always thought the marketing campaign for AAA was genius; sooner or later you’ll breakdown and join AAA. A few wise individuals will hand over the cash when they proactively decide to curb their risk, and the rest will find themselves trying to sign up while stranded on the side of the highway. We’re seeing a similar storyline play out in the world of security. In our case, not only do we have a few insightful leaders recognizing the risk and others experiencing security system breakdowns – we are also seeing immense pressure from customers, regulators and shareholders.

My Computer Security students know all about encryption. This article is for the (really smart) CEO that hires them.
PGP Me: Pretty Good Privacy Explained
If you’re concerned about online and electronic privacy, encryption is the best thing to set your mind at ease. By using strong encryption protocols, you can make sure that your data is safe from prying eyes, and that only the people who you decide should see your information have access to it. One of the most common methods for encryption is called PGP, and this article will guide you through what it is, what it’s good for, and how to use it.
… How Secure Is PGP?
While it’s impossible to say that any particular encryption method is 100% secure, PGP is generally regarded as being extremely safe. The two-key system, digital signatures, and the fact that PGP is open-source and has been heavily vetted by the public all contribute to its reputation as one of the best encryption protocols. Bruce Schneier once called PGP “the closest you’re likely to get to military-grade encryption,” and says that there are “no practical weaknesses.”

BEER! There's an App for that! (Okay, a device, but connect it to the Internet of Things and I can have one waiting when I get home.)
Beer Maker Envisions Individual Pints Anywhere, Anytime
For anyone who has dreamed of one day being able to brew a personal pint of beer anywhere imaginable, the new Synek draft system hopes to make it a reality. Reminiscent of single-cup coffee brewing, Synek has the ability to serve a personal beer fresh from the tap.

For my students – particularly the Math students. Perhaps now those who assert that they “can't get math” will be less surprised when they get an “A” or “B” in my class.
Wisdom Is a Slippery Construct
Are truly wise people wise enough to know that they have a great deal of wisdom? Or does their wisdom make them acutely aware of how little wisdom they really possess? Research by Uwe Redzanowski and Judith Glück of Alpen-Adria Universität Klagenfurt, Austria, shows that there is zero correlation between self-assessments and peer ratings of wisdom, so those who think they’re wise are no more likely than anyone else to be judged as wise by their peers. Of course, it’s unclear whether peer ratings are a good measure of wisdom…

Most of the new students this quarter use Chrome. (I asked them at Orientation)
Browser Wars: Firefox vs. Chrome vs. Opera, The Definitive Benchmark
… The war between web browsers has become more diverse as Internet Explorer, the former giant of the space, has given up ground. That space has been filled by Chrome, Firefox and Opera, a trio of free competitors known across the globe.
You really only need one browser, though, and once you choose you’re likely to feel locked in as you accumulate plugins and bookmarks. We’ve taken a close look at each browser to see which comes out on top for a variety of benchmarks.

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