Saturday, May 30, 2015

Lot's of speculation, not much security management.
FBI to Dig Into IRS Data Breach Debacle
The United States Federal Bureau of Investigation is looking into a hack of the U.S. Internal Revenue Service that led to personal data being stolen from at least 100,000 taxpayers' accounts of the 200,000 that were hit.
The hackers got the data by accessing the Get Transcript application, which lets taxpayers download data they filed with the service, the IRS announced Tuesday.
Twenty-three million taxpayers used the online Get Transcript application in the latest filing season.
… The hackers obtained sensitive personal information from outside the service to get through the security hurdles. However, they did not gain access to the core IRS system or the tax accounts it holds, the IRS said.
However, the personal data they acquired "seems to be exactly the kind of information the IRS has," Igor Baikalov, chief scientist at Securonix, told the E-Commerce Times.
… One disturbing possibility for the small number of accounts attacked is that "the hackers specifically identified certain high-value targets they wanted to go after," Radware Security Solutions Director Ben Desjardins told the E-Commerce Times.
… Given that the hackers hit 200,000 or so accounts, the IRS "is apparently lacking security alert systems for being breached, proper authentication using multiple biometric factors, and deep encryption for all customer-sensitive data," he told the E-Commerce Times.

Does this increase their liability? Is their “routine” monitoring timely enough to prevent problems? How about the dozens of social media sites they are not monitoring? Who does the monitoring a psychologist or a teacher?
From the it’s-for-the-kids dept.:
Daniel Dahm reports:
The Orange County school district is now monitoring students’ social media messages in an effort to curb cyberbullying, crime on campus and suicide.
Orange County Public Schools announced Thursday that it has acquired software to monitor social media “to proactively prevent, intervene and (watch) situations that may impact students and staff.” The district has obtained an annual license with SnapTrends, software that monitors Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Instagram. [What about the ones listed here: Bob]
The district said it plans to use the software to conduct routine monitoring for the purposes of prevention or early intervention of potential issues in which students or staff could be at risk to themselves or to others.
Read more on ClickOrlando.

Perhaps one the Internet, someone does know you're a dog. Once that anonymity is gone, the downside is huge.
Silk Road Mastermind Sentenced to Life in Prison
The highly educated 31-year-old, whose devoted parents have followed every twist and turn in the case, displayed no emotion as he stood in dark prison scrubs to hear his fate from Federal Judge Katherine Forrest.
She sentenced Ulbricht, who used the online alias of "Dread Pirate Roberts" and commissioned five contract killings, to two life sentences for narcotics distribution and criminal enterprise.
Forrest also imposed maximum terms of five, 15 and 20 years for separate hacking, trafficking in false documents and money laundering convictions, to be served concurrently.

But this is not just for the FBI, right?
FBI inches closer to expanded search powers
The Department of Justice (DOJ) is one step closer to making a controversial change in how judges issue warrants for computer searches.
The department confirmed to multiple news outlets that a United States Courts committee has approved its request to give judges the power to authorize warrants for electronic searches in multiple jurisdictions or when investigators don’t know the physical location of a device.
… Tech companies like Google, computer scientists and privacy advocates have decried the potential change, which they believe would give the FBI the authority to hack computers with little oversight.

The market loves social media.
Snapchat Raises $537.6 Million In New Funding As App Makes Media Push
Snapchat raised $537.6 million in new venture capital funding, the company disclosed Friday in a regulatory filing.
The filing does not state how much the stock sold for or name the buyers and sellers. Since its inception, Snapchat has raised more than $1 billion in outside funding, and has been said to be raising at a valuation of more than $15 billion.

For my Data Management students.
General Mills Builds Up Big Data to Answer Big Questions
… How did you get started?
Coming in as an outsider, my first couple of months were focused on figuring out what we really do at General Mills. The very first thing I had to do was sit down and do a catalog of all the different data we commonly use and what we use it for. I started asking around, “Does anybody have a data diagram that tells me the data you have and where it’s being used?” No one had it. So I started doing diagrams to say where the data was connected, where are they not, and asking, where should they be? Where are the various data being used in analyses? Where should they be?
… How you can tell the company is successfully operationalizing analytics?
For us, it’s how many people are using our stuff and asking for more stuff. Ultimately, a company is successful if it can say decisions made by analytics led to incremental profit.

My weekly chuckle.
Hack Education Weekly News
… Chris Christie was for the Common Core before he was against it. (He’s proposed that New Jersey drop the standards that Christie once pushed for.) As Politico notes, “The Republican flip-flop on the Common Core is nearly complete,” with almost every (potential) Republican presidential candidate now opposing the CCSS – save Jeb Bush.
… “Many students in Silicon Valley community not reading by 3rd grade,” so San Mateo County is launching a campaign that will, among other things, help expand preschool programs for low-income families. [Shouldn't they expand the reading program? Bob]
… “Neither the legal principle of academic freedom nor the receipt of outside financial support for his work gives a public-college lecturer a right to declare his correspondence private, the University of Kansas argued this week in state court.” More on the legal battle between the university’s director of Center for Applied Economics and Students for a Sustainable Future in The Chronicle of Higher Education.
… “7 in 10 schools now have shooting drills, needlessly traumatizing huge numbers of children,” Vox reports.
Via NiemanLab: “What happened when a college newspaper abandoned its website for Medium and Twitter.” (A look at student journalism at Mt. San Antonio College.)
… Via Campus Technology: “Why Blogging Is Key to the Future of Higher Ed.” (A look at the digital learning initiatives out of Virginia Commonwealth University.)
Via Education Week: “Data breaches are costing companies in education up to $300 per compromised record, making it the second most impacted sector – behind only healthcare – for businesses with lost or stolen records globally, according to research released Wednesday by the Ponemon Institute.”

We have a student club for exercise fanatics. (I can watch them all day) These might be useful.
Train for a Half Marathon with These Running Websites & Tools
Read on to discover seven great websites with tons of information and tools you need to get started.

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