Saturday, May 05, 2018

By now, any of my Computer Security students should know how to avoid this problem. (Hint: Never accept account changes via email alone.)
Amy Clancy reports:
KIRO 7 has uncovered documents detailing the Kirkland Police Department’s ongoing investigation into how a suspect, or ring of suspects, was able to hijack the school email account of Northwest University’s chief financial officer.
The hacking of CFO John Jordan’s email account has the Kirkland college out nearly $60,000.
According to detectives, the thieves secretly monitored Jordan’s emails and, when a legitimate payment was due to a school vendor, the hackers re-routed the money.
Read more on KIRO 7.

Perhaps I’ve mentioned that individuals generate a lot of data...
In the first full year of the Trump administration, the National Security Agency really went all out in efforts to surveil Americans. According to a new report released Friday, the agency sucked up more than 534 million US phone records in 2017, three times the amount it collected in 2016.
The report from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence revealed the agency has been undeterred in his pursuit of metadata from phone calls and text messages, which it gathers from telecommunications providers like Verizon and AT&T, even with the passage of laws in recent years designed to curb the invasive practice.
Metadata from collected from phone records do not reveal the content of a given conversation, but it tells the NSA basically everything else about the interaction. It reveals the phone numbers involved, the time contact is made, and how long a call was or how many characters were exchanged in text messages.

(Related) This one would be much more interesting.
Ben Hancock reports:
Editor’s Note: After deadline, the hearing in this case was moved from Thursday, May 3 to August 16. The story has been updated to reflect the change.
The highly publicized debate over whether a federal court could compel Apple to break the security features of the iPhone at the behest of the FBI was a rare moment in history. Most of the time, the public never has a clue when authorities come knocking to ask a company for help in accessing the digital communications of a criminal suspect.
But in August, we may learn more about whether the curtain of secrecy around past electronic surveillance in criminal investigations will be pulled back.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Kandis Westmore of the Northern District of California will hear from local prosecutors and two legal activists, Jennifer Granick of the American Civil Liberties Union and Riana Pfefferkorn of the Stanford Center for Internet and Society, over whether she should set up a process to determine which cases are still validly sealed and those that can be opened.
Read more on National Law Journal (free sub. Required).

Interesting and confusing. If I witness a hit-and-run, can I record the “personal information” to help identify the car (not the driver)?
Under Virginia law, “[t]he pictures and associated data stored in the Police Department’s A[utomated] L[icense] P[late] R[reader] database meet the statutory definition of ‘personal information.’” The court can’t tell on this record whether it constitutes an “information system.” Neal v. Fairfax County Police Dept., 2018 Va. LEXIS 42 (Apr. 28, 2018)
Read an excerpt from the opinion on

For the continuing discussion.
So you upload some genetic information, hoping to find relatives. Instead, the police use what you’ve uploaded to help find a killer. Do you have any grounds to scream “privacy violation?”
And if you think you do, what about all those thousands of posts you’ve read by now about no expectation of privacy in public, and privacy policies, blahblahblah. And what will GDPR do to all this anyway, right?
It’s a mess, I think. I’d love to go sit and listen to a panel of experts debate some of the issues these cases raise.
In the meantime, you may find this article from the New York Times, The Cold Case That Inspired the ‘Golden State Killer’ Detective to Try Genealogy, very interesting.

A vast problem; a half-vast solution?
Google sets new rules for U.S. election ads
… Under Google’s new rules, people or groups who want to advertise in elections will have to go through a process that includes producing a “government-issued ID” as well as other information, like a Federal Election Commission identification number and an IRS Employer Identification Number. Google says it aims to confirm that buyers are who they say they are and can legally participate in American elections.
Yes, but: The new policy will not cover ads that relate to politically contentious issues rather than a candidate, which was the case for many of the online ads placed by Russian operatives trying to interfere in the 2016 election. The company says it is looking at following Facebook in tightening restrictions on those ads as well.

Perhaps a joint venture where academics and businesses swap people and resources? Of course, if they want to pay me a ridiculous (see below) amount of money, I’d probably jump too.
Facebook Adds A.I. Labs in Seattle and Pittsburgh, Pressuring Local Universities
… Facebook is opening new A.I. labs in Seattle and Pittsburgh, after hiring three A.I. and robotics professors from the University of Washington and Carnegie Mellon University. The company hopes these seasoned researchers will help recruit and train other A.I. experts in the two cities, Mike Schroepfer, Facebook’s chief technology officer, said in an interview.
As it builds these labs, Facebook is adding to pressure on universities and nonprofit A.I. research operations, which are already struggling to retain professors and other employees.
… “It is worrisome that they are eating the seed corn,” said Dan Weld, a computer science professor at the University of Washington. “If we lose all our faculty, it will be hard to keep preparing the next generation of researchers.”
… But the supply of talent is not keeping up with demand, and salaries have skyrocketed. Well-known researchers are receiving compensation in salary, bonuses and stock worth millions of dollars. Many in the field worry that the talent drain from academia could have a lasting impact in the United States and other countries, simply because schools won’t have the teachers they need to educate the next generation of A.I. experts.

I still have a few of those odd round things…

For the next time I teach Math.
GeoGebra for PowerPoint - Access and Insert GeoGebra Within PowerPoint
GeoGebra is a favorite ed tech resource of math teachers all over the globe. PowerPoint is the default presentation tool on millions of computers in schools. You can use the two together through the GeoGebra PowerPoint Add-in.
The GeoGebra PowerPoint Add-in lets you access GeoGebra materials directly from your PowerPoint slides. You can also use the Add-in to create graphs, shapes, and spreadsheets within your slides.
The GeoGebra PowerPoint Add-in works in the desktop and online versions of PowerPoint.

(Related) I’m less likely to do this, but you never know.

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