Sunday, October 25, 2015

Ah man, never EVER challenge a hacker.
TalkTalk expects criminals unable to steal money after cyber attack
British broadband provider TalkTalk said on Saturday it did not believe the authors of a cyber attack against it this week would be able to steal money from its customers.

This reads as a duplication of effort, unless they believe that OPM can't do the job?
Roy Urrico reports:
Weeks after the Federal government began sending snail mail notifications to the 21.5 million victims of the Office of Personnel Management breach, the Department of Defense proposed creating a hack victims database.
The Pentagon’s proposed database, the Defense Manpower Data Center, would store the information in a “holding file,” according to an Oct. 14 Federal Register notice.
“The information collected will be used only to verify whether or not an individual was impacted by the OPM cybersecurity incident involving background investigation records and to send a letter confirming status as ‘impacted’ or ‘not impacted’ by this incident,” the proposal stated.
Read more on Credit Union Times.

Interesting. Would the FCC want to enforce compliance as it is starting to do with Privacy Policies? How can I pledge if part of my business is selling this information to the government?
Phil Lee writes that the collapse of Safe Harbor leads to a crisis in restoring trust that might be addressed, in part, by U.S. businesses making an anti-surveillance pledge. He writes, in part:
What does an anti-surveillance pledge look like? It takes the form of a short statement, perhaps no more than two or three paragraphs in length, under which the business would pledge never knowingly to disclose individuals’ data to government or law enforcement authorities unless either (1) legally compelled to do so (for example, by way of a warrant or court order), or (2) there is a risk of serious and imminent harm were disclosure to be withheld (for example, imminent terrorist threat). The pledge would be signed by senior management of the business, and made publicly-available as an externally-facing commitment to resist unlawful government-led surveillance activities – for example, by posting on a website or incorporation within an accessible privacy policy.
Will taking a pledge like this solve the EU-US data export crisis? No. Will it prevent government surveillance activities occurring upstream on Internet and telecoms pipes over which the business has no control? No. But will it demonstrate a commitment to the world that the business takes its data subjects’ privacy concerns seriously and that it will do what is within its power to do to prevent unlawful surveillance – absolutely: it’s a big step towards accountably showing “adequate” handling of data.
Read more on FieldFisher Privacy and Information Law Blog.

Perspective. Some interesting statistics, but I'll spare my students.
50 Percent of Mobile Users Don’t Search, One Estimate Says
If Google has an Achilles heel, it’s mobile search, but in reality it is also PC search. And a detailed analysis on why this is so was published by tech journalist Charles Arthur on his blog recently.
… Arthur uses Google’s own data to come up with these results. The first important data point is that the company now sees around 100 billion total searches each month, and mobile makes up half of it, or 50 billion. By taking that number and the amount of smartphones that can perform Google searches — 1.8 billion in a 30-day period — it comes out to 0.925 to 0.98 mobile searches per day over a 30-day period, or around 27.8 every month.

Perspective. Where are we heading? On demand, buy-the-drink, anywhere, anytime entertainment. (and possibly some educational stuff?)
NBC SeeSo and the beginning of the end for traditional TV channels
You know the cable TV bundle is crumbling when the big networks start swinging the sledgehammers.
NBC will soon begin doing its part with SeeSo, the comedy-focused streaming service it announced last week. When it launches in January, SeeSo will offer a mix of NBC broadcast shows such as Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock, more than 20 original series (Community creator Dan Harmon, for instance, is on board for an “animated adventure”), and syndicated programs such as Monty Python’s Flying Circus and Kids in the Hall. NBC plans to charge $4 per month for the service, with no commercials. An invite-only beta arrives in December.
This is uncharted territory for both NBC and TV networks in general, and it's a sure sign that the TV landscape is changing. It’s also proof that the unbundling of cable TV is a good thing for consumers, no matter what the cable apologists tell you.
… SeeSo is a glimpse into a future where the big networks start slicing off their programming into highly-focused streaming services, all available a la carte. (As I’ve written before, streaming services are really just channels in disguise.) The average TV viewer might subscribe to a handful of these smaller, lower-priced channels, plus one or two “premium” services such as Netflix or HBO Now. Even if you don’t get as much content as you would with a cable TV bundle, you’ll still save money on a programming lineup that caters to your interests.

An interesting breakdown of who uses what, where.
Information Geographies at the Oxford Internet Institute
by Sabrina I. Pacifici on Oct 24, 2015
This project proposes a comprehensive mapping of contemporary geographies of knowledge. Information is the raw material for much of the work that goes on in the contemporary global economy. As such, it is important to understand who produces and reproduces, who has access, and who and where are represented by information in our contemporary knowledge economy. Our goal is to produce a comprehensive atlas of contemporary information and Internet geographies, that will draw on four years of focused research conducted at the Oxford Internet Institute. Specifically, the atlas will draw on unique data, visualisations, and maps in order to tell a story about three key facets of global information geographies (access, information production, and information representation) We aim to broadly disseminate this work in a variety of open and accessible formats including free and interactive ebooks, an interactive website, and a printed atlas. We’re still at early stages of the work, but keep an eye on this site for all of our updates.”

Is Dilbert foretelling the doom of all professions? (And eventually all humans?)

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