Wednesday, January 06, 2016

Interesting. How will defense lawyers react? Stay tuned.
The FBI's 'Unprecedented' Hacking Campaign Targeted Over a Thousand Computers
… Just a month after launch, Playpen had nearly 60,000 member accounts. By the following year, this number had ballooned to almost 215,000, with over 117,000 total posts, and an average of 11,000 unique visitors each week. Many of those posts, according to FBI testimony, contained some of the most extreme child abuse imagery one could imagine, and others included advice on how sexual abusers could avoid detection online.
… A month before this peak, in February 2015, the computer server running Playpen was seized by law enforcement from a web host in Lenoir, North Carolina, according to a complaint filed against Peter Ferrell, one of the accused in New York.
… But after Playpen was seized, it wasn't immediately closed down, unlike previous dark web sites that have been shuttered by law enforcement. Instead, the FBI ran Playpen from its own servers in Newington, Virginia, from February 20 to March 4, reads a complaint filed against a defendant in Utah. During this time, the FBI deployed what is known as a network investigative technique (NIT), the agency's term for a hacking tool.
… Magistrate Judge Theresa C. Buchanan in the Eastern District of Virginia, who signed the warrant used for the NIT, did not respond to questions on whether she understood that the warrant would grant the power to hack anyone who signed up to Playpen, or whether she consulted technical experts before signing it, and her office said not to expect a reply.
But Fieman said that the warrant “effectively authorizes an unlimited number of searches, against unidentified targets, anywhere in the world.”

For my Computer Security students (and my Ethical Hacking students) Make sure you are not using the defaults!
Researchers Publish Default Passwords for ICS Products
The list, dubbed “SCADAPASS,” contains default credentials for industrial routers, programmable logic controllers (PLC), wireless gateways, servers and network modules

The SEC thinks there is some hanky-panky going on, but doesn't know how to detect it. So they create a non-profit to detect it and report it to the people doing it in the hope that they will stop doing it?
Wall Street to Get Graded on How Much Spoofing It's Facilitating
U.S. regulators have grown so concerned that traders are using high-speed computers to manipulate markets that they’re planning a new tactic to clamp down on the practice -- rating brokers on how much spoofing flows through their order books.
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority said it plans to issue report cards this year that will grade firms on how many phony bids to buy or sell stock they might have a role in facilitating. Finra, a market cop funded by Wall Street, expects brokers to use the assessments to root out any misconduct, the regulator said Tuesday in its annual letter on exam priorities. The reports won’t be made public.

DHS and TSA are looking for the most favorable spin on the laws governing them. Sometimes “interpretation” becomes “wishful thinking.” Sometimes they spin out of control.
From Papers, Please!:
In response to a flurry of publicity kicked off by a story last week in the New York Times in which we were quoted, the DHS has posted several new or updated pages about the REAL-ID Act on its website, including a new page headed, “REAL ID and You: Rumor Control“.
Not surprisingly, the DHS is still lying about what the REAL-ID Act requires.
Read more on Papers, Please!

I kinda thought we had not heard the end of this.
Cyrus Farivar reports:
The Kentucky man whose drone was shot down by his neighbor last year has now filed a federal lawsuit, asking the court to make a legal determination as to whether his drone’s July 2015 flight constituted trespass. In the case, plaintiff David Boggs also wants the court to rule that he is entitled to damages of $1,500 for his destroyed drone.
Read more on Ars Technica.
[From the article:
"The United States Government has exclusive sovereignty over airspace of the United States pursuant to 49 U.S.C.A. § 40103," Boggs' lawyer, James Mackler, wrote in the civil complaint. "The airspace, therefore, is not subject to private ownership nor can the flight of an aircraft within the navigable airspace of the United States constitute a trespass."

(Related) The first of many?
Drone user sues feds over registration rules
… The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, argues that the drone registration rules put in place last month violate a federal law that prohibits the FAA from regulating recreational drones.

Everyone believes that the Internet of Things means we will measure everything. I wonder if that is true.
Intel embraces Internet of Things, puts sensors on everything
More sensors means more data... which means more chips to be sold... which means more revenue.

(Related) Do we really need 24/7 surveillance of our refrigerator?
CES 2016: Here Is Why Samsung’s Family Hub Is A Fridge Of The Future
People will soon have a fridge equipped with cameras and a huge display, allowing them to see anything inside without the need to open its door.

(Related) This follows like night follows day.
The Extortionist in the Fridge

Perspective. Does this suggest the auto makers are taking this seriously?
Automakers, not Silicon Valley, lead in driverless car patents: study
… "Automakers aren’t as good as technology companies in tooting their own horns," Tony Trippe, principal author of the report, told Reuters in an interview. "But when you look at the patent data, the automakers are all over this."
Toyota is, far and away, the global leader in the number of self-driving car patents, the report found. Toyota is followed by Germany’s Robert Bosch GmbH [ROBG.UL], Japan’s Denso Corp (6902.T), Korea’s Hyundai Motor Co (005380.KS) and General Motors Co (GM.N). The tech company with the most autonomous-driving patents, Alphabet Inc's (GOOGL.O) Google, ranks 26th on the list.

An interesting area of law.
Brian Schaller of InfoLawGroup provides yeoman service by recapping legislative news in 2015 in ed-tech:
There was a lot of legislative movement for the educational technology (ed-tech) industry in 2015 with states placing additional privacy regulations on the industry, and the effects of those new acts should be felt this year. The states that passed this type of legislation in 2015 were following California’s lead. California’s governor signed the Student Online Personal Information Protection Act (SOPIPA) (2014 Cal SB 1177) back in 2014. Even though these states enacted legislation after SOPIPA, at least one of these acts came into effect before SOPIPA became operative (which was January 1, 2016). Maryland’s Student Data Privacy Act of 2015 (2015 MD H.B. 298) was approved by the governor on May 12, 2015 and took effect July 1, 2015. On August 7, the influential and often business friendly state of Delaware saw its governor approve the Student Data Privacy Protection Act (2015 Del. SS 1 for SB 79). Some of the Delaware act’s provisions became effective upon its enactment into law, but the provisions that have the most impact are effective “August 1 the first full year following the Act’s enactment into law”. Georgia’s Student Data Privacy, Accessibility, and Transparency Act (2015 GA S.B. 89) was signed by the state’s governor on May 6, 2015 and will become effective July 1, 2016. Additional states passed similar legislation such as Arkansas and Virginia. According to an article by the National Association of State Boards of Education released last June, 111 state bills “were aimed at establishing better safeguards for the collection, use, and disclosure of student data.”
Read more on InfoLawGroup.

5 Staggering Email Stats That Are Hard to Believe

Big Data is useless by itself.
Sebastian Wernicke: How to use data to make a hit TV show
Does collecting more data lead to better decision-making? Competitive, data-savvy companies like Amazon, Google and Netflix have learned that data analysis alone doesn't always produce optimum results. In this talk, data scientist Sebastian Wernicke breaks down what goes wrong when we make decisions based purely on data — and suggests a brainier way to use it.

For my next Spreadsheet class.
8 Tips for How to Learn Excel Quickly

(Related) Dilbert lists the errors my Spreadsheet Students make.

I don't think there is anything new here.
Paper – Staying Smart: How Today’s Graduates Continue to Learn Once They Complete College
by Sabrina I. Pacifici on Jan 5, 2016
Project Information Literacy Research Report: “Staying Smart” | January 5, 2016 | Alison J. Head
Staying Smart: How Today’s Graduates Continue to Learn Once They Complete College – “This report presents findings about the information-seeking behavior of relatively recent college graduates used for lifelong learning in personal life, the workplace, and the local communities where they lived. Included are results from online surveys of 1,651 respondents and telephone interviews with 126 study participants who graduated from one of 10 US colleges and universities between 2007 and 2012. Findings indicated that most graduates needed to learn a combination of basic and complex life skills during the past year, such as money-management, how to make household repairs, and how to advance in their careers and communicate better on the job. They consulted friends, family , and coworkers almost as much as the Web. Graduates preferred information sources that had currency, utility, and interactivity. They also placed a high premium on curated information systems that were organized and kept up-to-date, such as libraries, museums, and bookstores. A model of shared utility is introduced for explaining graduates’ use of contemporary social media technologies as well as personal connections they had established with trusted allies. Graduates reported four barriers to their continued learning efforts: lack of time, finding affordable learning sources, staying on top of everything they needed to know, and staying motivated to keep learning after college. As a whole, graduates prided themselves on their ability to search, evaluate, and present information, skill s they honed during college. Yet, far fewer said that their college experience had helped them develop the critical thinking skill of framing and asking questions of their own, which is a skill they inevitably needed in their post-college lives. Ten recommendations are presented for improving educational strategies, resources, and services that foster lifelong learning.”

An Infographic for our “Success Coaches” to pass along?
Studying Doesn’t Have To Be a Struggle If You Do It Right

Almost cool enough to convince me to buy a smartphone.
“Like Google Translate for music”
ScoreCloud instantly turns your songs into sheet music. As simple as that!
  • Instant Score from MIDI or Audio
  • Arrange and Edit your Score
  • Print, Export and Share

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