Saturday, September 09, 2017

More on Equifax.
Equifax security breach debacle thickens with improbable denials
… there’s no mention of whether the stolen data is encrypted or not.
… The credit-reporting service said late Thursday in a statement that it discovered the intrusion on July 29. Regulatory filings show that three days later, Chief Financial Officer John Gamble sold shares worth $946,374 and Joseph Loughran, president of U.S. information solutions, exercised options to dispose of stock worth $584,099. Rodolfo Ploder, president of workforce solutions, sold $250,458 of stock on Aug. 2. None of the filings lists the transactions as being part of 10b5-1 scheduled trading plans.
Melin later reported on Equifax’s claim that none of the three — the CFO, the president of U.S. information solutions, and president of workforce solutions — knew about the breach when they sold their stock:
The three “sold a small percentage of their Equifax shares,” Ines Gutzmer, a spokeswoman for the Atlanta-based company, said in an emailed statement. They “had no knowledge that an intrusion had occurred at the time.”
You can draw your own conclusions.
… The fact that the breached entity (Equifax) is offering to sign consumers up for its own identity protection services strikes me as pretty rich.

(Related). Business should never be about, “What can we get away with?”
Equifax updates user agreement at prodding of New York Attorney General
Equifax has changed its terms of service to note that users checking to see if they've been affected by a massive breach it endured are not waiving their right to file a class action lawsuit.
Prior to the update, users on social media pointed out that individuals using Equifax's tool to see if their information was compromised in a massive data breach could be giving up their rights to file or join a lawsuit against the company.

This suggests to me that they will move to machines that have not been “White Hat Tested.”
Virginia scraps touchscreen voting machines
The Virginia State Board of Elections moved Friday to do away with touchscreen voting machines in the state by November’s election, a move aimed at boosting security.
The board decided to phase out the machines this year after the Virginia Department of Elections recommended that the touchscreen voting machines be decertified. The recommendation came after security experts breached numerous types of voting machines with ease at the DEF CON cybersecurity conference in Las Vegas in July, according to The Richmond Times-Dispatch.
The move comes amid heightened concerns over foreign interference in future elections, in light of the U.S. intelligence community’s conclusion that Russia used cyberattacks and disinformation to interfere in the 2016 presidential election.
Virginia’s gubernatorial election will take place in November, meaning that the move to get rid of the machines would result in 22 localities having to replace their equipment less than two months before the vote.

Like a tax haven for patents. I like it!
How to Protect a Drug Patent? Sell it to a Native American Tribe
The drugmaker Allergan announced Friday that it had transferred its patents on a best-selling eye drug to the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe in upstate New York — an unusual gambit to protect the drug from a patent dispute.
Under the deal, which involves the dry-eye drug Restasis, Allergan will pay the tribe $13.75 million. In exchange, the tribe will claim sovereign immunity as grounds to dismiss a patent challenge through a unit of the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The tribe will lease the patents back to Allergan, and will receive $15 million in annual royalties as long as the patents remain valid.
… Mr. White said the tribe was approached in April by a Dallas law firm, Shore Chan DePumpo, which proposed the idea. The tribe has already taken ownership of patents owned by a technology company that Mr. White declined to name, but said the Allergan arrangement is the tribe’s first pharmaceutical deal.

Perspective. Banks are finally getting into the Mobile Banking business! (Perhaps it should be called ‘Banking as a Service?”
Zelle, a payment network backed by major US banks, is launching a standalone app
Zelle, a new payment service backed by more than 30 US banks, will launch its standalone app on September 12th to take on competitors like Venmo and Square Cash. The network had been quietly powering money transfers for major US banks including Bank of America, Chase, Wells Fargo, and Citibank since launching in June.
While the Zelle app won’t have social components like a share feed, comments, or a Like button, the company says it’s targeted toward users who value instantaneous transactions. Since the network works directly with banking partners, money can be transferred between accounts — regardless of bank affiliations — for free, and can be withdrawn in minutes. In comparison, Venmo balances need to be “cashed out,” and it can take at least 24 hours until that money is available in your bank account. Venmo parent company PayPal recently offered instant withdrawal for 25 cents per transaction, but has yet to roll out a similar feature on Venmo.
To use the Zelle app, customers have to sign up for a Zelle account then link their bank information. Users can send money using a contact’s email address or phone number, but the recipient must also sign up for a Zelle account to complete the transaction. You can avoid all of this by continuing to use your bank’s own app which is likely already powered by Zelle, but it’s an option for someone who wants a single-purpose app for quickly transferring money.

Is it still “too good to be true?”
With the number of video streaming services increasing all the time, it’s tempting to assume the death of cinema is nigh. After all, why would you pay $10 for one film when you can enjoy a whole month of Netflix for less?
Perhaps I’m being facetious. Going to the movie theater is still an enjoyable activity. However, it’s hard to deny that with progressively larger TV screens, better picture quality, and improvements in speaker systems, the difference between watching at home and heading to the cinema is narrowing.
One company — MoviePass — is trying to reverse the trend and inject new life into the theater-going experience. But what is MoviePass? How does it work? And how can it save you money? Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about using MoviePass.

I think my student know of many more sites like these, but this is a start.
Ah, schadenfreude! So universal is our tendency to laugh at the misfortune of others that the Germans invented a term for it. Not to be left behind, the internet coined its own term: “Fail.” Let’s witness the best (or worst?) of these.
Well, let’s be clear, this isn’t the worst of the web. Fails are all about genuine attempts that went horribly wrong. Fails encompass everything from unintentional slapstick to hilarious arguments. And they don’t discriminate between sites, whether you are Facebook, Google Maps, or something else.

An obvious downside of Artificial Intelligence.

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