Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Rethinking what everyone thought was wisdom?
Everything You Know About 'Secure' Passwords Is Wrong
Bill Burr, formerly of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, now says that his 2003 guide on creating strong, secure passwords could actually make you more vulnerable to hacking.
The document, "NIST Special Publication 800-63. Appendix A," was an 8-page guide to creating passwords, though the suggestions were easy to guess and ultimately led to lazy security practices.  The advice led users to insert obvious special characters in place of letters (like using a dollar sign instead of an "s"), tossing in a few numerals and potentially unexpected capital letters.  (The original recommendations are pages 46-54 on this archived document.)
Following this guidance, one might create a password like "P@sswrD1!" that looks complex but is easy to guess, thanks to such common substitutions.
   You can find our own guide to creating safe, strong passwords here.  We recommend using at least 15 characters in your passwords, as stronger computers can crack shorter passcodes quickly, as well as using upper-case and lower-case letters, special characters and numbers.  Don't use the same password in two places (especially with the same user name or email address) and store them all in a password manager.

Something for my Ethical Hacking students.

Think about this.  If I can’t deanonymize data myself, I’ll just buy data that is not anonymized.  That may be the same data purchased by someone who never mentions what happens in his “backroom.” 
Natasha Lomas reports:
A major update to the UK’s data protection rules will place new requirements and responsibilities on companies that process users’ personal data, including by making it easier for consumers to withdraw consent their data to be processed; view what data is held on them for free; ask for their data to be deleted; and move their data between service providers.
The government published a statement of intent yesterday for the forthcoming data protection bill, setting out its aims and thinking, and confirming it will repeal the existing Data Protection Act to avoid creating any legal conflicts or confusion.
Read more on TechCrunch.

[Editor’s note: In governments around the world, intelligence agencies produce “leadership profiles” of foreign heads of state and other key figures.  These assessments are provided to senior policymakers to inform their interactions with foreign counterparts and their decision-making involving the other country.  In this piece, Ned Price, a former CIA and NSC official, provides a simulation of how a foreign intelligence service might assess President Donald Trump.]

Yeah, and grandpa wouldn’t ride in them horseless carriage things either.
1 in 2 People Say They Won’t Fly In a Fully Automated Aircraft
The pilotless plane could save airlines as much as $35 billion per year, according to a new survey from UBS, reducing the cost of highly skilled employees ($31 billion), related training ($3 billion), and fuel ($1 billion).
The deployment of autonomous technology could result in significant fare cuts, an estimated one-tenth of the total in the U.S.
And yet 54% of passengers refuse to board a remote-controlled plane, according to the survey of 8,000 air passengers.

The End of Typing: The Next Billion Mobile Users Will Rely on Video and Voice
Instead of typing searches and emails, a wave of newcomers — “the next billion,” the tech industry calls them—is avoiding text, using voice activation and communicating with images. They are a swath of the world’s less-educated, online for the first time thanks to low-end smartphones, cheap data plans and intuitive apps that let them navigate despite poor literacy.
Incumbent tech companies are finding they must rethink their products for these newcomers and face local competitors that have been quicker to figure them out.
   “The way the journey seems to start today is with social messaging, YouTube and entertainment apps,” not email or social media, said Sandeep Kataria, chief commercial officer at Vodafone India. “Five years ago it was the other way around.”
In the year through June, use of YouTube in India has more than doubled, while Gmail use fell 15%, according to App Annie.  In the U.S., YouTube growth was 48% over the same period, while Gmail use was up 13%.
Facebook’s WhatsApp messenger service says its top two markets are India and Brazil.  It has become the first stop on the internet for many who have been using it instead of email or social media.

…and those are the good points?
Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation?
The generation growing up with smartphones and social media really is different.  They’re doing less driving, having less sex, and drinking less.  They’re also lonelier and more prone to depression.

Survey – more than 3 billions users of social media and growing
by on
TheNextWeb: “The latest Global Digital Statshot from We Are Social and Hootsuite reveals that the number of people using social media around the world has just passed the momentous three billion mark..”

Inspiration!  Let’s create an algorithm that tells when you’re being Presidential! 
Are you being sarcastic in your Tweets – new algorithm can discern your intent
by on
“We use millions of texts on Twitter containing emojis for training a deep learning model that understands many nuances of how language is used to express emotions.  For instance, it does well at capturing sarcasm and slang.  We beat state-of-the-art algorithms across many benchmarks datasets.  See our paper, blog post or FAQ for more details.
   Disclaimer: Note that the model has learned about language from the raw, uncurated expressions of individuals on social media.  We do not endorse in any way the emotional interpretation that the model has of any particular content…”

Dilbert, on the value of backups!

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