Wednesday, January 25, 2017

How important is customer protection?  That determines how you design your processes.  For example, this breach is very uncommon.  Do you have a procedure to catch it? 
Adam Carter reports on a small-N breach that reminds us all how horrifying the consequences of a privacy breach can be:
A Hamilton woman says Telus violated her privacy and put her and her family in grave danger by allowing her stalker to access her phone account without her consent.
Ellie, whose name has been changed to protect her identity and safety, told CBC News that her ex-boyfriend was able to get her personal information and make changes to her account, just by having another woman call Telus and pose as her.
The security breach led to a terrifying weekend of harassing messages, she says, culminating with being assaulted and later, chased down in a car.  Police have laid charges against her ex in connection with these allegations, and Telus has acknowledged that her account security was breached.

Is this really a ‘fear of Trump’ thing?  Is that the only reason for them to do this?  Isn’t there an ethical argument here somewhere? 
Fearing Trump administration’s reach, Seattle City Council fights FBI and SPD’s ‘warrantless surveillance cameras’
Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant, the ACLU, and privacy advocates are championing an effort to regulate and remove surveillance cameras they claim have been installed without the city’s permission or knowledge.
   “I think that it is totally unacceptable for the city of Seattle to be complicit in federal law enforcement and intelligence agencies surveilling Seattle’s public spaces,” she said at a meeting of the Council’s Energy and Environment Committee Tuesday.  “As a sanctuary city, we should not be filming our general population and we certainly should not be sending that data to law enforcement agencies now being run by the Trump administration.  Many find this chilling and the Council has a duty to protect constituents from being surveilled.”

(Related).  Maybe Trump doesn’t want to tell anyone anything about government activities?  Maybe he wants to be free to make up ‘false news?’ 
WaPo Trump officials order agencies to restrict dispatches to public
by Sabrina I. Pacifici on Jan 24, 2017
Washington Post: “The new limits on public communications appear to be targeting agencies that are charged with overseeing environmental and scientific policy, prompting criticism from officials within the agencies and from outside groups focused on climate change.  A memo to EPA communications staff said “no social media will be going out” and incoming media requests will be “carefully screened.”

For my Data Management students.  More than half of the ‘senior executives’ surveyed are blind to the obvious? 
Companies Brace for Decade of Disruption From AI
Executives of the nation’s biggest corporations fear that major disruption is on the horizon.  This is a central finding of the 2017 Big Data Executive Survey from NewVantage Partners, which tracks the views of senior corporate executives on disruptive capabilities, ranging from Big Data to artificial intelligence.
According to the fifth annual survey, which was released this month, nearly half of senior executives surveyed — a remarkable 46.6% — see disruptive change coming fast, with many fearing that their companies are at significant risk of disruption or displacement.

Do you think the average CEO (or CIO for that matter) knows how live, streaming video could be used? 
Will Facebook miss the opportunity for cordless live television?
Last week, President Trump’s inauguration broke live video streaming records and became the largest live news event streamed, with 4.6 million viewers watching it concurrently at its peak.  The massive online turnout was the capstone for a year that witnessed the advent of Facebook Live, Instagram Live, Twitter’s #GoLive, and’s, as well as Periscope’s continued growth.  2016 was the year that pushed live video streaming into mainstream media and onto everyone’s phones.
   as the world’s largest and most mainstream social network, Facebook is in an advantageous position to capitalize on the synergistic social aspects that accompany live video.  It’s human nature to want to watch live events unfold with others  – it’s why we have watch parties for presidential debates or the Super Bowl.  Also, socialization on Facebook is less likely to attract trolls or harassment than on YouTube or Twitter — even amongst strangers — because it’s more difficult for users to hide behind anonymous usernames.

I don’t see this as unanticipated.  There are still companies making a good living selling tack for horses, black powder guns, record players and many other ‘obsolete’ products. 
Thanks, Amazon! Now indie bookstores are booming
   In the latest sign of the power of print, a spate of indie bookstores will enter the New York City area in the coming months, even as larger chains have exited.  Labor Department data show that the number of bookstores nationwide declined by 12% from 2012 to last year, but the American Booksellers Association, an independent bookstores trade group, has seen membership grow by almost 13% in the five years leading up to 2016.
Indies are thriving because of Amazon, not in spite of the internet behemoth.  This is a story of two different types of bookstores: one with vast inventory, low prices and algorithm-driven recommendations, and another that lures customers seeking tightly curated collections and a community of bookworms.

For my (not MBA) students who still think every well-known company must be profitable. 
Growth vs. Profits: Uber’s Cash Burn Dilemma
As global ride-hailing startup Uber heads toward a possible IPO this year, Wall Street’s eyes will be on its financials.  Revenues have continued to grow quickly for the eight-year-old Silicon Valley company, but the bottom line isn’t pretty: Uber was on track to lose about $3 billion in 2016 on net revenue of $5.5 billion, according to Bloomberg News.  That’s remarkable for a startup that has raised more than $11 billion with scant capital costs — it does not own a global fleet of cars or much of other hard assets.  Uber itself is valued at more than $60 billion.

For all my students.  Not sure I would feel comfortable working for someone who looked me up on their smartphone?  
Hiring managers and recruiters, like everyone else, use their mobile phones for everything — and that includes reading résumés.
You can bet that if your résumé doesn’t show up well on their phone, they’re going to skip right over it.  So you need to make sure that you’ll put your best (mobile) foot forward.

Interesting tech, looking for ideas. 
Seeing Through Walls Is the Least Cool Thing This Tech Does
   I looked toward a wall in the hotel room and saw a person-shaped image.  Back in reality, a Vayyar employee was stepping side to side in the bathroom.  I was able to track his movements from the other room.
To put it bluntly, I was seeing through walls.
   the company used its 3-D imaging sensor Walabot to scan a demonstration wall.  As the phone-like device was slowly swept side to side, an image on a nearby screen showed where the pipes hidden behind it were.  It could also see inside the wall as a mouse ran from one side to the other.
   Another demonstration I witnessed was a Vayyar employee go from standing to lying on the bathroom floor.  A sensor on the wall immediately started beeping.  As Melamed points out, this is a way to have peace of mind as older people take showers while protecting their privacy, because there's no camera.
In another test, I laid on a bed while a sensor hung from the ceiling.  I was told to breath normally, which was visible on a nearby monitor.  I then drew a deep breath and held it, which caused my image on the monitor to disappear.  Vayyar said its sensor, which detects the tiny movements of the lungs, could be used to diagnose sleep apnea.

Something to toss out to my students just before finals week? 
Without a word of warning, Nintendo has launched a new Pokemon game on Android and iOS.  It’s called Pokemon Duel, having previously been known as Pokemon Co-master in Japan.  Pokemon Duel is like a Pokemon board game for your mobile, which IS as geeky as it sounds.
In 2016, The Pokemon Company released a mobile game called Pokemon Co-master in Japan.  Pokemon Co-master, made in collaboration with Heroz Japan, paired virtual collectibles with a strategy game like Go or Shogi.  

Perhaps something like this could help my International students?
Slick Write Helps You Analyze Your Writing
Slick Write is a free tool that helps you analyze your writing or that of others.  To use Slick Write you can write new text in the provided text editor or copy and paste chunks of existing text into Slick Write's text editor.  Either way Slick Write will provide you with an analysis of your writing.  That analysis will include typical things like a word count, a readability score, and an estimated reading time for your document.  Slick Write will also analyze your use of adverbs and prepositional phrases throughout your document.
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