Saturday, August 27, 2016

“Where’s the sport in that?”  It must be election season again.  Would they change their minds if we tell them that Russia has already scanned their machines? 
Two swing states decline DHS security for voting machines
In August, DHS offered to help states thwart potential hacking amid cybersecurity concerns about just how easily a U.S. election could be manipulated.
Georgia and Pennsylvania, however, have opted out.  Instead, the two states will rely on their own systems to monitor potential election hacking, reports NextGov.

Mobile is more popular to hackers as well as advertisers.
Mobile Bank Heist: Hackers Target Your Phone
   Cyberthieves are using such so-called malware to steal banking credentials from unsuspecting consumers when they log on to their bank accounts via their mobile phones, according to law-enforcement officials and cybersecurity specialists.
It is difficult to quantify how much money has been stolen as a result of the mobile-phone malware, mostly because the thieves can access an account through any normal channel after they steal credentials through a phone.  Still, the prevalence of the malware is significant enough that it has caught the attention of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and U.S. banking regulators.
   The malware typically gets onto a phone when a user clicks on a text message from an unknown source or taps an advertisement on a website.  Once installed, it often lies dormant until the user opens a banking app.
   The Federal Reserve said earlier this year that 53% of smartphone users with bank accounts had used mobile banking in the previous 12 months, up from 43% in 2011.
   A recent study conducted by SAS and Javelin Strategy & Research found that fewer than one-third of smartphone owners use mobile antivirus or anti-malware software on their phones.

Another of those articles that impact all my students.
58 Percent of Small Businesses Already Have International Customers, Survey Finds
Small businesses are breaking barriers and going international, a new study by foreign exchange company USForex has found.
The survey shows 58 percent of small businesses already have international customers, while 72 percent plan to grow their international customer base by 2017.  About 96 percent of these small businesses, in fact, are confident about conducting business abroad.
Going global is no longer an option for successful small- and medium-sized businesses — it’s a strategic imperative,” said Karin Visnick, head of North America, USForex.

Would they do this to Uber drivers?  Will Taxi driver defect to Uber? 
From the Rutherford Institute:
A federal appeals court has upheld New York City’s program of warrantless and continuous GPS surveillance of taxi drivers, ruling that drivers are not protected by the Fourth Amendment’s bar on unreasonable searches and seizures when on the job.  The Rutherford Institute appealed to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals on behalf of taxi drivers who were being forced by government officials to attach GPS tracking devices to their taxis.
In a 2-1 decision, the Second Circuit held that taxi drivers do not have a protected privacy interest in the vehicles they drive.  The dissenting opinion, issued by Circuit Judge Rosemary S. Pooler, takes issue with the lower court’s premise that taxi drivers should be stripped of all Fourth Amendment protections.  Rebutting the view that the government’s surveillance is conspicuous, that taxis are not truly private property, and that the tracking system was installed pursuant to regulations, Pooler declared, “The physical invasion of a constitutionally protected area is no less actionable under the Fourth Amendment merely because it is conspicuous.  To hold otherwise would allow the government to conduct unreasonable searches merely by announcing them.”
Read more on the Rutherford Institute.

Is this the “best possible” solution?  What makes a single word ‘newsworthy?’ 
Facebook is trying to get rid of bias in Trending news by getting rid of humans
Facebook will no longer employ humans to write descriptions for items in its Trending section, which attracted controversy over allegations of political bias in May.  Topics appearing in the Trending section will now appear solely as a short phrase or single word, with an indication of the number of people discussing it on the social network.
Quartz confirmed from multiple sources that Facebook has laid off the entire editorial staff on the Trending team—15-18 workers contracted through a third party.  The Trending team will now be staffed entirely by engineers, who will work to check that topics and articles surfaced by the algorithms are newsworthy.

Will this change when Google starts sending users to news sites outside the EU?
Internet Companies May Have to Pay Publishers for News Under New EU Rules
News aggregators like Alphabet Inc. ’s Google news search may have to pay publishers to list snippets of articles on their websites under plans by the European Union’s executive body to update the bloc’s copyright rules.

Beware of falling peperoni!
Domino’s Gets Approval For Fresh Pizza Deliveries By Drone In New Zealand

Believe it or not, I do have discerning nerds in my classes. 
The discerning nerd's guide to Raspberry Pi hardware (2016 mid-year edition)
In my "Ultimate Guide to Raspberry Pi Operating Systems" (Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3) I listed pretty much every noteworthy operating system and OS variant available for the Raspberry Pi family of single board computers.  But what of the hardware all this OS goodness runs on?  It's not like there's just one Raspberry Pi board.  So, if you don't know your Model A from your Zero from your generation 3 Model B, this is the guide for you.
Also make sure you check out my 7 ways to make your IoT-connected Raspberry Pi smarter and 9 Raspberry Pi programming tools bundled with Raspbian, both of which are full of Raspberry Pi and Internet of Things goodness.

Saturday already?
Hack Education Weekly News
   “Members of Congress are in an unusual position as they demand an explanation for Mylan NV's 400 percent price hike for the EpiPen and focus attention squarely on its CEO: Heather Bresch,” Bloomberg reports.  Bresch, whose father is a senator from West Virginia, had successfully lobbied to have Epipens, which contain life-saving anti-allergy medication, be purchased by public schools.  Bresch had previously been involved in another education-related scandal when, in 2007, it was revealed she had been awarded an MBA by West Virginia University even though she’d only completed half of the required credits.
   “The University of Chicago is attacking academic freedom,” says New Republic’s Jeet Heer.  The school’s dean of students, has sent a letter to the freshman class saying that,
Our commitment to academic freedom means that we do not support so called “trigger warnings,” we do not cancel invited speakers because their topics might prove controversial, and we do not condone the creation of intellectual “safe spaces” where individuals can retreat from ideas and perspectives at odds with their own.
   I can’t think of anything I loathe more about back-to-school each year than the release of the Beloit College Mindset list.  Here’s the latest one for the Class of 2020.
   Bored with Pokemon Go?  Try this exciting new app to “catch ’em all” and participate in a mainstreaming of surveillance culture: a mobile app for finding bank robbers, built by the FBI.
   Via the BBC: “University hit 21 times in one year by ransomware.”  The university: Bournemouth, which apparently has a cybersecurity centre.

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