Friday, May 13, 2016

One way to get hard currency.  No doubt North Korea will deny any involvement.  What would we do if we proved they did it? 
Bangladesh Bank heist similar to Sony hack; second bank hit by malware
Investigators probing the cyber heist of $81 million from the Bangladesh central bank connected it on Friday to the hack at Sony Corp's film studio in 2014, while global financial network SWIFT disclosed a previously unreported attack on a commercial bank.
SWIFT did not say which commercial bank it was or whether it had lost money, but cyber-security firm BAE Systems said a Vietnamese bank, which it did not name, had been a target.  It was not clear if they were referring to the same attack and there was no immediate comment from authorities in Hanoi.
   In Bangladesh, cyber-security experts hired by the central bank said in a report that hackers were still inside the bank's network, monitoring the investigation into one of the biggest cyber heists in the world.
   The report said investigators knew little about a third group of hackers found inside the network, referred to as Group Two, except that they were using mostly commodity, or off-the-shelf, hacking tools. [So any teenager with an adequate allowance could hack this bank.  Bob]

(Related) “It is better to look good than to feel good.”  Hernando (and politicians everywhere)
Congress hits FDIC cyber breach that ‘boggles the mind’
A series of cybersecurity incidents at the federal office safeguarding bank deposits has seriously shaken the confidence of House members who were dismayed by agency testimony Thursday.
Lawrence Gross, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.’s chief information and chief privacy officer, was called before the panel to explain the removal of sensitive electronic data by employees.  Members also accused the agency of obstructing a congressional investigation into the cyber-issues.
The House Science, Space and Technology oversight subcommittee also sought more information on a sophisticated cybertheft of FDIC data that subcommittee Chairman Barry Loudermilk (R-Ga.) said was likely done by the Chinese.
Since October, a series of violations by seven employees as they were leaving the agency, including five cases The Post reported earlier this week, resulted in the breach of personal information belonging to more than 160,000 individuals, according to Loudermilk.
“To date, FDIC has failed to notify any of those individuals that their private information may have been compromised,” he added.

“This is a guideline.  Only a fool would submit 99 identical subpoenas and expect a judge not to notice.”  
Alan Feuer reports:
A federal judge in Brooklyn ruled on Thursday that prosecutors could not force Facebook to remain silent about 15 grand-jury subpoenas involving the company’s customers.
The judge, James Orenstein, said that the prosecutors had legitimate concerns that their investigations might be compromised, but he added that the government’s boilerplate requests, made in identical language in each of the 15 applications for a gag order, were insufficiently detailed.
Read more on NY Times.

Is there an expectation that ‘social media’ is a better forecaster of future behavior?  Or merely more trendy?
Overnight Tech: Feds pressed to review social media in background checks
   The House Oversight Committee has called officials to testify from the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. Congress is pressing agencies to start using social media and other public information online in background checks. OPM has recently been soliciting vendors for a pilot project to use software that automatically scrapes the web for information helpful in a background check. You can read our preview of the hearing here.

An interesting exercise.  Perhaps we could automate this process to compare all countries as the laws change?  Would be fun to try with IBM’s Watson and a few other free tools!
If These Canadians Lived in the United States, How Would They Protect Their Privacy?
by Sabrina I. Pacifici on
Regan, Priscilla M. and Bennett, Colin and Bayley, Robin, If These Canadians Lived in the United States, How Would They Protect Their Privacy?  The Functional Equivalence of Privacy Redress Mechanisms in Canada and the US (May 10, 2016). 2016 Privacy Law Scholars Conference, George Washington University, June 2-3, 2016. Available at SSRN:
“Recent commentary has contended that, despite the fact that the U.S. Does not have a comprehensive data protection statute nor a data protection authority, the entire regime for the protection of privacy is essentially and functionally equivalent to those in other advanced democratic states.  We subject that hypothesis to empirical examination by investigating seven actual complaints and investigations conducted under the Canadian Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA).  These are real cases brought by real individuals. In each case, we ask the question, if these same fact situations occurred in the U.S.  How would these individuals try to advance their privacy rights and seek redress? We examine cases from different sectors: credit reporting, insurance, online advertising, online dating, banking, hotels and cellular communications.  The cases are not representative.  Nevertheless, our results highlight the advantages of a single point of contact, a comprehensive legal framework, and of a system that relies less on litigation.”

As a concerned citizen, I might start an independent LLC to gather funds earmarked for all potential political hot buttons.  I would take a modest 98% administration fee. 
The Rise of Dark Money in US Elections
by Sabrina I. Pacifici on
Dark Money Watch, a project of MapLight, is a hub for information about dark money in U.S. elections.  Our goal is to support investigations of dark money in order to help the public understand how hidden donors can influence our political system….  Dark money comes from groups that are not required to disclose their donors.  It pays for ads and other efforts to influence elections, but voters often don’t know who is behind those efforts.”

For my geekier students.
Meet Google's cool new natural language tool, Parsey McParseface
Google announced a new SyntaxNet open-source neural network framework that developers can use to build applications that understand human language.  As part of that release, Google also introduced Parsey McParseface, a new English language parser that was trained using SyntaxNet.
The launch is a move to democratize the tools for building applications powered by machine learning.

Perspective.  This is why we’re adding bots to our course offerings.
Half the Web's traffic comes from bots
Roughly half of all Web traffic comes from bots and crawlers, and that's costing companies a boatload of money.

That's one finding from a report released Thursday by DeviceAtlas, which makes software to help companies detect the devices being used by visitors to their websites.
Non-human sources accounted for 48 percent of traffic to the sites analyzed for DeviceAtlas's Q1 Mobile Web Intelligence Report, including legitimate search-engine crawlers as well as automated scrapers and bots generated by hackers, click fraudsters and spammers, the company said.
   "We used to think of bots as passive ambient noise," Cremin said. "That's now changed to the point where they actually interact with the sites they visit and mimic human traffic exactly."

Because eventually they’re gonna get you.
Act NOW to Keep Your Windows 10 Upgrade Free After July 29

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