Thursday, August 27, 2015

Disclosure, what a concept! Does this suggest that failure to disclose breaches was common?
Aliya Sternstein reports:
New sweeping defense contractor rules on hack notifications take effect today, adding to a flurry of Pentagon IT security policies issued in recent years.
Just this month, the Office of Management and Budget proposed guidelines to homogenize the way vendors secure data governmentwide. The Defense Department had already released three other policies that dictate how military vendors are supposed to handle sensitive IT.
Now, industry, which is already concerned about overlapping and burdensome cyber rules, worries the Pentagon will go back and retroactively change contracts, after the White House draft is finalized.
Read more on NextGov.

The joy of a large data breach.
Kevin M. McGinty of Mintz Levin writes:
Card-issuing banks are forging ahead with their lawsuit against Target arising from the 2013 holiday shopping season data breach. Their July 1 motion for class certification has just been unsealed, allowing a glimpse at plaintiffs’ version of the events during November and December 2013 that resulted in theft of payment card data for 40 million Target customers.
Read more on National Law Review.

“Authorized” vs “Unauthorized” access. If you are authorized to access the data, you are not in violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, no matter what you do with the data you obtain?
Orin Kerr writes:
The Ninth Circuit has handed down United States v. Christensen, a case that touches on a bunch of computer crime issues that include the scope of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA). The court overturned CFAA convictions for employee misuse of a sensitive database. I think that result is correct, although I’m a bit puzzled by the way the court reached it.
The new case involves several defendants that were involved in the Pellicano Investigative Agency.
Read more on The Volokh Conspiracy.

For my Computer Security students.
EY, LANL make new cybersecurity tools available to private sector
by Sabrina I. Pacifici on Aug 26, 2015
News release: “Ernst & Young LLP and Los Alamos National Laboratory have formed a strategic alliance to deliver some of the most advanced behavioral cybersecurity tools available to the commercial market.
[From the release:
The first product to be introduced through the alliance will be PathScan®, a network anomaly-detection tool that searches for deviations from normal patterns of communication that might be indicative of an intrusion.
… According to the most recent EY Global Information Security Survey, more than half (56%) of executives said their company would be unlikely to detect a sophisticated cyberattack.
… For more information about EY’s strategic alliance with Los Alamos, visit

Is this because the Paparazzi are out of control?
Drones would be prohibited over private property in California
… The drone bill, by Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson (D-Santa Barbara), would make flying a drone less-than 350 feet above private property without consent a trespass violation.
"If you drive on someone's property with a car, you're trespassing. If you're looking on someone's property to break in, you're trespassing," [Is that correct? Bob] said Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Los Angeles), who presented the bill on the floor. "It makes no sense that a drone should be able to look in your window and the operator should not be guilty of the same trespass."

Would my students pay attention if my teaching assistant was the Terminator?
Forrester Report – Humans and Robots working side by side
by Sabrina I. Pacifici on Aug 26, 2015
InformationWeek, Thomas Claburn: “Robots will not take all our jobs, but that doesn’t mean their arrival will be without consequence. Automated systems — ranging from free-roaming bots to computerized kiosks, to pure software — will replace human labor, and it will demand more of it. Unfortunately for humans, research firm Forrester anticipates more jobs being lost than being created in the next decade. In a Forrester report published on Monday, “The Future of Jobs, 2025: Working Side By Side With Robots,” lead author J.P. Gownder argues that fears of robots supplanting humans in the labor force exaggerate the impact of automation. The more salient issue, he says, is that people will find themselves working with automated systems more frequently. Gownder contends that nightmare scenarios rest on flawed logic. Dystopian entertainment about malevolent robots stokes cultural and psychological fears that distort data with emotion, he says. The most alarming research, like the 2013 paper from Oxford professors Carl Frey and Michael Osborne that foresees as many as 47% of jobs being automated away, offers the fuzziest predictions…”

(Related) Dilbert interprets this report...

Another tool users can totally rely on. Every answer their smartphones return will be correct! Well, almost everything...
Smartphone, smartphone in my hand
Who's the fairest in the land?
(Huh, that might make an amusing App)
Behind The Siri Killer Facebook M, A Battle Over AI's Future
Facebook’s test release today of a digital assistant inside its Messenger app is a shot across the bow of the Internet’s biggest companies: Apple, Google, Microsoft, and It’s also the latest salvo in a high-stakes battle over the ways artificial intelligence should transform the way we live and work.
Facebook M is intended to allow users of Facebook Messenger to pose any query or service request in natural language and get a personalized answer immediately. The key wrinkle that sets it apart from Apple’s Siri, Google Now, and Microsoft Cortana is that there’s a team of human “trainers” who will step in when the machines aren’t quite up to the challenge.

“Ease of use” has a downside.
When a Snuff Film Becomes Unavoidable
… Two videos of the murders exist. The first was broadcast live, on TV, at the time of the killing. The second was taken by the gunman himself. He posted it to Twitter and to Facebook after the murder.
Both social media companies quickly suspended his accounts and removed the videos. For the 10 or 15 minutes before that, though, the videos circulated widely on both services as users shared them out of horror, confusion, or some other emotion.
In the past 12 months, both Twitter and Facebook have begun auto-playing videos when they appeared in a user’s feed. If a video comes across your feed, or you accidentally open it in a tab or tap a link on your phone, the video pops up and just starts playing. You do not have the option to figure out the video’s context, and choose whether to press play: On both Twitter and Facebook, the footage just starts rolling.

Some people have no privacy, even off screen?
Kristin Magaldi reports:
In a recent mandate made by the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) that spurned panic in the adult film industry, performer health records dating back to 2007 are to be reviewed to help diminish the spread of STDs. The subpoenas detailed that test results and information from health care facilities like Cutting Edge Testing, Talent Testing Service along with another clinic that specifically caters to adult film stars will be reviewed to ascertain past infections.
Read more on Medical Daily.
For more background and applicability of HIPAA, search for “AHF.”

Will some small country adopt strict privacy laws hoping all the money in Swiss banks will transfer to them? It's also possible one or more Swiss banks will buy a small country...
Press Trust of India reports:
At a time when it is under global pressure, including from India, on black money menace, the Swiss government has rejected the popular initiative to allow strict privacy in financial matters.
The decision also comes at a time when Switzerland is slowly shedding the veil of its famed banking secrecy practices amid global efforts being stepped to curb flow of illicit funds in the financial system.
Read more on Business Standard.

Perspective. Written for libraries, but others can learn a bit too. (Lots of interesting numbers to quote)
The Internet of Things – 50 Billions Connected Devices and Objects by the Year 2020
by Sabrina I. Pacifici on Aug 26, 2015
OCLC – NextSpace 24 – Libraries and the Internet of Things: “A world divided by the prospect of a world connected. The simplest definition of the Internet of Things (IoT) might be: real-world objects connected to the Internet, sending and receiving data. But beyond that, there is little consensus on what the specific technical infrastructures of IoT might look like; what kind of standards would be required; who should set those standards; what the specific business cases for various industries should be; and the relationships between personal, private data about individuals vs. information about their connected things. Likewise, in an informal poll of more than 100 librarians, we found that the term “Internet of Things” itself was less familiar than some specific examples of the “smart” or “networked” objects that are beginning to comprise IoT, such as smart watches, medical monitors, smart appliances and self-driving cars…”

No one notices the running car in their garage? Is this a lawsuit based on what some car owners think their cars will do rather than what they actually do? Do we have a duty to protect people who live in a world they create in their mind? (If so, can I sell them Dragon Insurance?)
Ten automakers are sued over keyless ignitions
Ten of the world's biggest automakers were sued on Wednesday by consumers who claim they concealed the risks of carbon monoxide poisoning from millions of vehicles equipped with keyless ignitions.
The lawsuit attributed at least 13 deaths to the problem, which it said arises when people mistakenly leave their vehicles running after removing their key fobs, sometimes in garages, believing that doing so turns off the engines. [But never checking? Bob]
… It seeks an injunction to require the automakers to install a feature that would automatically turn off unattended engines after a period of time. It also seeks compensatory and punitive damages, among other remedies.
The case is Draeger et al v. Toyota Motor Sales USA Inc et al, U.S. District Court, Central District of California, No. 15-06491.

(Related) Not clear if different demographics use a different combination of features. In any case, I have no doubt manufacturers will drop anything that does not help sell cars.
Connection Lost: Many Drivers Ignoring Technology Advancements In Today’s ‘Connected Cars’
If you've recently purchased a new vehicle, have you've actually taken advantage of all of its provided technology features? According to a survey conducted by J.D. Power, most don't. Most don't even take advantage of half of them.
It's estimated that because of these untouched features, consumers are wasting billions of dollars, and likewise, car vendors are wasting billions installing them in the first place.

Automating psychoanalysis? What if it's the computer driving you crazy?
Computers Can Predict Schizophrenia Based on How a Person Talks
… Most of the time, people don’t actively track the way one thought flows into the next. But in psychiatry, much attention is paid to such intricacies of thinking. For instance, disorganized thought, evidenced by disjointed patterns in speech, is considered a hallmark characteristic of schizophrenia. Several studies of at-risk youths have found that doctors are able to guess with impressive accuracy—the best predictive models hover around 79 percent—whether a person will develop psychosis based on tracking that person’s speech patterns in interviews.
A computer, it seems, can do better.
That’s according to a study published Wednesday by researchers at Columbia University, the New York State Psychiatric Institute, and the IBM T. J. Watson Research Center in the Nature Publishing Group journal Schizophrenia. They used an automated speech-analysis program to correctly differentiate—with 100-percent accuracy—between at-risk young people who developed psychosis over a two-and-a-half year period and those who did not.

Perhaps we could add something like this to the University Portal to keep our students sharp?
Man Discovers Google’s Secret Hiring Process, Lands Himself A Job
According to a post by Max Rosett, he was Googling for programming terms one day when he was suddenly greeted by the screen you see above. While Rosett was initially skeptical at first, it was later revealed that this was apparently a secret hiring process employed by Google that was designed to test applicants.
Rosett managed to pass a variety of tests which safe to say he did not share the information publicly, but according to him was pretty tricky.
When it was all said and done, a Google recruiter got in touch with him, after which he managed to secure a more regular interview, and at the end of the day he managed to nab himself a job at Google!

It's that time of year again.
NFL without cable: A cord cutter’s guide for the 2015/2016 season
Among all the major U.S. sports, NFL football is arguably the easiest to watch without a pay-TV subscription.
… With the NFL season just a couple weeks away, now’s a good time to run through all the ways that cord cutters can watch or stream NFL games so you’ll be ready for kickoff:

For my students who read. (a list of sources)
Read the World’s Best Books for Free With The Harvard Classics

I push WolframAlpha to my Math students. Imagine my surprise to find there are other uses!
20 Ways Everyday Life is Easier with Wolfram Alpha

An infographic for Marketing students?
Connected Consumers: A Day in the Life (Infographic)
… This infographic from SAP showcases data from its Customer Insights and Analytics in Telcoms Market Survey. Take a look for one portrayal of how today's connected consumers interact with brands, showing the range of experiences possible for your brand.

An infographic of each minute on the Internet. (Makes a nice poster)
Data Never Sleeps 3.0

My students have etiquette?
Americans’ Views on Mobile Etiquette
by Sabrina I. Pacifici on Aug 26, 2015
“Cellphones and smartphones have become a mainstay in the lives of many Americans, and this has introduced new challenges into how users and non-users alike approach basic social norms and etiquette. People are sorting through new rules of civility in an environment where once-private conversations can easily be overheard in public places and where social gatherings can be disrupted by participants focusing on digital screens instead of their in-person companions. This Pew Research Center report explores newly released survey findings about Americans’ views about the appropriateness of cellphone use in public places and in social gatherings and the way those views sometimes conflict with their own behaviors…”

(Related) Harvard says it's important.
Research: Technology Is Only Making Social Skills More Important
… “The Growing Importance of Social Skills in the Labor Market,” shows that nearly all job growth since 1980 has been in occupations that are relatively social skill-intensive — and it argues that high-skilled, hard-to-automate jobs will increasingly demand social adeptness.

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