Bonum Certa Men Certa

Links 3/6/2017: AryaLinux and BitKey Reviewed

GNOME bluefish



Free Software/Open Source

  • A list of open source tools for college
    I'd like to share my own philosophy regarding open source.

    I was first introduced to Linux by my programming teacher; he is a passionate believer in FLOSS and he converted me. I have a passionate belief in the technical superiority of open source tools over proprietary ones because they allow me the freedom to use them however I wish. Also, FLOSS has reduced the cost of my education significantly because I'm not required to buy expensive licenses, which lock me into specific software.

  • Locks in the classroom – 2017
    For the fifth year now, our grade nine students have been doing 3D modeling using Blender. Our students finished up their first assignments over a month ago, but it’s taken this long for me to get the top models together. So, with no further delay, here are the top models from each of the three grade nine classes (click on the pictures for Full HD renders).

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Former Mozilla CEO raises $35M in under 30 seconds for his browser startup Brave

        There’s been a whole lot of talk about initial coin offerings (ICO), company fundraising events based around the sale of cryptocurrencies, but not much in the way of action until yesterday. That’s when web browser maker Brave, founded by former Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich, raised $35 million from its ICO — and it did it in less than 30 seconds, too.

  • Databases

    • MySQL devs take cache behind shed, shot heard
      The developers of MySQL Server have decided its Query Cache feature is a bottleneck and killed it off.

      Looking over the number of results (and the diversity of advice offered) if you search “tuning MySQL query cache”, it's not entirely surprising.

      The problem is scalability, as MySQL Server product manager Morgan Tocker writes here.

  • BSD


  • Licensing/Legal

  • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

    • Open Hardware/Modding

      • The first open source 3D printer filament
        Until very recently, 3D printing companies sold only proprietary hardware and materials (including plastic filament) to print with them. This plastic was sold at exorbitant prices (up to hundreds of U.S. dollars per kg), even if it was a common material like ABS (the plastic used for Lego blocks). These companies were following the path of traditional desktop printing companies that rake in large profits selling toner and ink. Some companies still attempt to extort their customers by threatening warranty loss if they use filament from other manufacturers.

  • Programming/Development


  • [Old] Oral history interview with Ralph E. Griswold and Madge T. Griswold

    Dave Farber, who was one of the initial SNOBOL people with Bell Laboratories working with us on that, was invited to give a talk at the University of Michigan on the work on SNOBOL, and he wanted to give them a copy of the program. He looked up into the air somewhere and decided that a permission to give a talk on software constituted permission to release the software. Nobody at Bell Laboratories knew any better, because nobody had any idea of what a program was, at least in the patent department and the release procedure. That sort of happened and then that was used as a precedent for everything that followed. A pyramid was built on this precedent.

  • Health/Nutrition

  • Security

    • Could Firmware Expiration Dates Fix The Internet Of Broken Things...Before People Get Hurt?

    • Hacking and Linux Go Together Like 2 Keys in a Key Pair
      Ever since taking an interest Linux, with the specific aim of better understanding and enhancing my personal digital security, I have been fascinated by hacker conferences. As soon as I learned of their existence, I made a point of keeping tabs on the major conferences so I could browse through the latest videos in their archive once each one wraps up.

    • Backend Servers for 1,000 Apps Expose Terabytes of User Data
      There are 1,000 apps available for download today that despite not containing any malware or featuring glaring vulnerabilities, they communicate and store data on improperly secured backend servers, exposing user data along the way.

      This is the conclusion of an investigation conducted by mobile security experts from Appthority for their 2017 Q2 Enterprise Mobile Threat Report.

      The company's experts say they've analyzed the backend connections of 1,000 mobile apps to see if they connect to publicly-accessible servers.

    • 7 Popular WordPress Security Myths
      Because of its incredible popularity as a platform, WordPress enjoys a sizable, generous community of users that spend their time sharing information, resources, tips and insights with other WordPress users online. Understandably, online security is at the forefront of concerns for many site owners, and a lot of the online conversation about WordPress centers around the best ways to keep your site safe from hackers and security breaches. Despite the best of intentions from most users, there are a few myths surrounding WordPress security that persist and spread like wildfire, even if the recommendations they make don’t do anything to keep your site safe.
    • Pandemic
      Today, June 1st 2017, WikiLeaks publishes documents from the "Pandemic" project of the CIA, a persistent implant for Microsoft Windows machines that share files (programs) with remote users in a local network. "Pandemic" targets remote users by replacing application code on-the-fly with a trojaned version if the program is retrieved from the infected machine. To obfuscate its activity, the original file on the file server remains unchanged; it is only modified/replaced while in transit from the pandemic file server before being executed on the computer of the remote user. The implant allows the replacement of up to 20 programs with a maximum size of 800 MB for a selected list of remote users (targets).

    • WikiLeaks says CIA’s “Pandemic” turns servers into infectious Patient Zero

      "Pandemic," as the implant is codenamed, turns file servers into a secret carrier of whatever malware CIA operatives want to install, according to documents published Thursday by WikiLeaks. When targeted computers attempt to access a file on the compromised server, Pandemic uses a clever bait-and-switch tactic to surreptitiously deliver malicious version of the requested file. The Trojan is then executed by the targeted computers. A user manual said Pandemic takes only 15 seconds to be installed. The documents didn't describe precisely how Pandemic would get installed on a file server.

    • WannaCry: Can Linux save us?
      The idea is simple if you don’t have the money to upgrade to the latest Windows operating system, move to Linux, because, piracy and price issues are antithetical to the world of Linux. Linux based operating systems are mostly free to use. Even the enterprise solutions, like Ubuntu Server, OpenSuse Linux Enterprise, and Red Hat Enterprise, come at a fraction of what Microsoft charges. So, the inability to update/upgrade arising out of piracy/price issues is ruled out.

    • Opsec for a world where the laptop ban goes global

      If the Trump administration makes good on its promise to pack all potentially explosive laptops together in a blast-multiplying steel case in the plane's hold, it will be good news for would-be bombers -- and bad news for your data security.

    • The Linux Virus: how it can be
      Downloaded the virus for Linux.

      Unzipped it.

      Installed it under root.

      It didn't start. Spent 2 hours googling. Realised that the virus instead of /usr/local/bin installed itself into /usr/bin where user malware does not have the write permissions. That's why the virus could not create a process file.

    • Vault 7: Implant can remotely infect Windows boxes

      WikiLeaks has resumed its release of material from the Vault 7 dump after missing a week, with the overnight release of documents from the CIA's Pandemic project, a persistent implant for Microsoft Windows machines that share files with remote users in a local network.

    • Why the Chinese love clunky QR codes, despite privacy and security shortcomings

      But one other aspect has become more of an issue. After $14.5 million was stolen from Chinese citizens through the use of fraudulent QR codes, the state-owned newspaper China Daily published an op-ed on the topic of QR fraud [...]

    • [Older] Code Blue: 8k Vulnerabilities in Software to manage Cardiac Devices

      The analysis of hardware and software associated with implantable cardiac devices spanned four, separate vendors and product families, but found a wide range of security weaknesses, among them the use of permanent (or “hardcoded”) authentication credentials like user names and passwords and the use of insecure communications, with one vendor transmitting patient data “in the clear.” All four product families were found to be highly susceptible to “reverse engineering” by a knowledgeable adversary, exposing design flaws that might then be exploited in remote or local attacks, researchers Billy Rios of Whitescope and Dr. Jonathan Butts wrote in their report.

    • [Older] 'Thousands' of known bugs found in pacemaker code

      They found that few of the manufacturers encrypted or otherwise protected data on a device or when it was being transferred to monitoring systems.

      Also, none was protected with the most basic login name and password systems or checked that devices they were connecting to were authentic.

    • European IT security talents preparing for contest
      Teams of budding IT security specialist have begun preparing for the European Cyber Security Challenge (ECSC). The 150 winners from national competitions will gather for the final tournament, to be held in Málaga (Spain) from 30 October - 3 November. This year teams from 12 EU Member States and the EFTA countries Lichtenstein, Norway and Switzerland ar participating in the hacking contest.

    • Could Firmware Expiration Dates Fix The Internet Of Broken Things...Before People Get Hurt?

      Clark argues that we've already figured out how to standardize our relationships with automobiles, with mandated regular inspection, maintenance and repairs governed by manufacturer recalls, DOT highway maintenance, and annual owner-obligated inspections. As such, she suggests similar requirements be imposed on internet-connected devices [...]

  • Defence/Aggression

    • Manuel Noriega: feared dictator was the man who knew too much

      Panamanian general was a CIA asset and go-between in Central America’s dirty wars but became a monster the US could not control

    • Terror in Britain: What Did the Prime Minister Know?
      The unsayable in Britain’s general election campaign is this. The causes of the Manchester atrocity, in which 22 mostly young people were murdered by a jihadist, are being suppressed to protect the secrets of British foreign policy.


      The alleged suicide bomber, Salman Abedi, was part of an extremist group, the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, that thrived in Manchester and was cultivated and used by MI5 for more than 20 years.

      The LIFG is proscribed by Britain as a terrorist organisation which seeks a “hardline Islamic state” in Libya and “is part of the wider global Islamist extremist movement, as inspired by al-Qaida”.

    • The MacArthur Model for Afghanistan
      Afghanistan is an expensive disaster for America. The Pentagon has already consumed $828 billion on the war, and taxpayers will be liable for trillions more in veterans’ health-care costs for decades to come. More than 2,000 American soldiers have died there, with more than 20,000 wounded in action. For all that effort, Afghanistan is failing. The terrorist cohort consistently gains control of more territory, including key economic arteries. It’s time for President Trump to fix our approach to Afghanistan in five ways.

  • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

    • The Meaning Of Assange’s Persecution
      Nearly five years ago, Ecuador granted WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange political asylum at its London embassy. The original purpose of the asylum was to avoid extradition to the United States. Two years earlier, Swedish authorities had launched an investigation of Assange for sexual assault. Sweden has now dropped that investigation.

      Assange called the Swedish decision to end the investigation an “important victory for me and for the U.N. human rights system.” But, he said, the “proper war was just commencing,” because the London Metropolitan Police warned if Assange leaves the Ecuadorian Embassy, they would arrest him on a 2012 warrant issued after he failed to appear at a magistrate’s court following his entry into the embassy.

      The original reason for granting asylum to Assange remains intact. The U.S. government has been gunning for Assange since 2010, when WikiLeaks published documents leaked by whistleblower Chelsea Manning. Those documents, which included the Afghan and Iraq war logs and U.S. State Department cables, were ultimately published in the New York Times, the U.K. Guardian, and the German magazine Der Spiegel.

    • UK Government Department Says It Will Cost $7 To Send It An Email, But Only If You Are A Foreigner

      Last June, the UK held a referendum on whether to stay in the European Union, or to make a British exit -- Brexit. The majority of those casting their votes -- but only 36% of the UK electorate -- chose to turn their backs on Europe and its people. Since then, the British government has been taking every opportunity to burnish its xenophobic credentials, and with some success: recent figures show that EU citizens who have been resident in the UK for years are leaving in droves.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife/Nature

    • As hurricane season begins, NOAA told to slow its transition to better models

      Perhaps most questionable is a "request" to limit the ability of forecasters to predict hurricanes and other severe weather with computer modeling. "NOAA requests a reduction of $5,000,000 to slow the transition of advanced modeling research into operations for improved warnings and forecasts," the budget blue book states.

    • Bailing on the Paris Agreement Leaves No Cure for Climate Change

      President Trump’s decision to quit the Paris Climate Agreement means that even if the United States once again goes all-in on a treaty to reduce carbon emissions—even if climate becomes a determinative issue in the 2020 elections—the world will not trust the US to keep its policy stable. At the poker table of international negotiations, the US has become that unpleasant player whose utter lack of skill makes them unpredictable. Win or lose, it’s no fun at all.

    • Ditching the Paris Agreement Risks the Economy Even As It Harms the Planet

    • Musk Joins CEOs Calling for U.S. to Stay in Paris Climate Deal

      The appeals from chief executives such as Tesla Inc.’s Elon Musk, Tim Cook of Apple Inc. and Dow Chemical Co.’s Andrew Liveris come as Trump’s advisers also present him with closing arguments on the potential risks and rewards of remaining a party to the global pact. Trump also got an earful from foreign leaders and Pope Francis urging him to stay in the agreement during his first international trip as president.

    • Great Barrier Reef can no longer be saved, Australian experts concede
      The Great Barrier Reef – a canary in the coal mine for global warming – can no longer be saved in its present form partly because of the “extraordinary rapidity” of climate change, experts have conceded.

      Instead, action should be taken to maintain the World Heritage Site's 'ecological function' as its ecological health declines, they reportedly recommended.

      Like coral across the world, the reef has been severely damaged by the warming of the oceans with up to 95 per cent of areas surveyed in 2016 found to have been bleached.

    • Trump makes Europe (feel) great again
      Donald Trump just accomplished the impossible — a united Europe.

      The spectacle (and specter) of his chaotic presidency has already given the Continent’s establishment a powerful weapon in the battle against populism, helping centrist, pro-EU politicians ride to victory in a string of elections from Austria to France.

      Trump’s decision to ditch the Paris climate deal only cements his reputation in Europe as a danger to the planet, transforming Europe’s newfound air of superiority into a full swagger.

    • The Republicans who urged Trump to pull out of Paris deal are big oil darlings

    • The President’s decision to leave the Paris Agreement will likely hurt America even more than the environment

      But last week, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt expressed antipathy towards the 2015 agreement.

      During an interview on the morning news program Fox & Friends, Pruitt stated: "Paris is something we need to look at closely. It's something we need to exit, in my opinion."

      Pruitt’s statement raises an interesting question. What would happen if the United States walked away from the Paris Agreement?

    • Climate’s Brexit moment
      , European leaders blasted and bemoaned Donald Trump’s decision Thursday to pull the U.S. out of the Paris climate agreement.

      In private, a different sentiment is emerging among policymakers and politicians on the Continent — relief.

      It’s a relief, in part, to return to a familiar dynamic. During decades of negotiations over emissions pacts from Kyoto to Paris, America mostly played spoiler. The reprisal of that role creates, in the view of EU officials, fresh diplomatic and policy opportunities.

      Call it the Brexit Effect, Part II. While the British vote to leave the bloc last June was a shock to the European system, for the Continent the result almost a year on is, for the time being, a stronger sense of EU cohesion and a revived Franco-German partnership, as Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker put it in an interview Thursday.

    • Elon Musk to Trump: You quit Paris, so I quit you
      "Am departing presidential councils. Climate change is real. Leaving Paris is not good for America or the world," Musk said Thursday on Twitter, shortly after the president announced from the Rose Garden that he would begin the process of leaving the accord.

    • What’s 76 years old and finished? The American century!

  • Finance

    • Your Phone May Have Been Built by an Intern

      An analysis from Hong Kong Polytechnic University details an intern labor pipeline in which some 18 million Chinese youth are funneled into vocational schools to be programmed as labor bots, powering assembly lines through the systematic cheapening of student labor. These interns are often subjected to worse conditions and lower wages than the standard employees they work alongside.

    • Brexit: Five signs that leaving the EU is starting to hurt the UK economy

      Canada this week became the last of the world’s major advanced economies to report quarterly economic growth figures, confirming that the UK is indeed the worst-performing of its G7 peers so far this year.

      The UK economy expanded by 0.2 per cent in the first three months of 2017, a sharp slowdown from just under a year ago, when it was outpacing Germany, Japan and the US.

      Here’s a roundup of the other facts and figures indicating that Brexit is starting to bite.

    • Labour is the true party of workers – that's why we are investing in the UK's industrial future

      It has been a long time since voters faced such a stark choice in an election.

      The Conservatives have run a wholly negative election campaign. They’ve evaded all substantial questions of policy, choosing instead to stoke up tensions ahead of a showdown in Brussels in the hope of distracting from their plans for continuing austerity at home.

      In contrast, Labour’s manifesto has focused on concrete policies to rewrite the rules in favour of the majority of people in Britain, and has struck a chord with millions up and down the country. Remarkably for this kind of document, it was shared on social media more than 63,000 times in the days after its launch.

    • Labour pledges to create one million 'decent jobs'

      Jeremy Corbyn has pledged to create one million good quality jobs to unleash "the untapped potential of every part of the country" if the party wins next week's General Election.

      In a speech in Yorkshire on Friday, Jeremy Corbyn highlighted plans to pump €£250 billion into industry.

      Labour say they will raise the money through a new National Investment Bank and create a network of Regional Development Banks and a National Transformation Fund.
    • UK now the worst-performing advanced economy in the world after post-Brexit vote slump
      The UK is now the worst-performing advanced economy in the world, with growth slumping to just 0.2 per cent in the first three months of the year.

      It means Britain is bottom of the G7 group of advanced economies, while Canada has surged to the top, with an expansion of 0.9 per cent in the period.

      After Canada became the last G7 nation to report figures on Wednesday, the UK’s position at the bottom of the list was confirmed.

    • Are Students a Class?
      Students usually don’t think of themselves as a class. They seem “pre-class,” because they have not yet entered the labor force. They can only hope to become part of the middle class after they graduate. And that means becoming a wage earner – what impolitely is called the working class.

  • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Noam Chomsky: Neoliberalism Is Destroying Our Democracy

      What was the wondrous economy that was then being praised? It was one in which the wages, the real wages of American workers, were actually lower than they were in 1979 when the neoliberal period began. That’s historically unprecedented except for trauma or war or something like that.

    • Eric Schmidt publicly defends Jared Kushner. Next day, Trump shutting DoL division investigating Google

      That’s right: As luck would have it, three days after the DoL reminded Google that compliance with its anti-discrimination investigation was the price of being a government contractor, and just hours after Eric Schmidt issues his bizarre public defense of Jared Kushner, news broke that the Trump administration was planning to disband the organization doing the investigation.

    • New York Times eliminates its public editor, wants readers to do the job

      In a memo to the newsroom, New York Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. explained the elimination of the role — as well as public editor Elizabeth Spayd — saying that the responsibility has “outgrown that one office,” and expressed his faith that the public, and a new department will help them maintain their relationship with their readers.

    • The Loneliness of Donald Trump
      Once upon a time, a child was born into wealth and wanted for nothing, but he was possessed by bottomless, endless, grating, grasping wanting, and wanted more, and got it, and more after that, and always more. He was a pair of ragged orange claws upon the ocean floor, forever scuttling, pinching, reaching for more, a carrion crab, a lobster and a boiling lobster pot in one, a termite, a tyrant over his own little empires. He got a boost at the beginning from the wealth handed him and then moved among grifters and mobsters who cut him slack as long as he was useful, or maybe there’s slack in arenas where people live by personal loyalty until they betray, and not by rules, and certainly not by the law or the book. So for seven decades, he fed his appetites and exercised his license to lie, cheat, steal, and stiff working people of their wages, made messes, left them behind, grabbed more baubles, and left them in ruin.

    • UK General Election polls: Jeremy Corbyn in shock surge as Labour leader now more popular than Theresa May in London

    • The Latest: France says no trace of Russian hacking Macron

    • Theresa May backs plan to sell off 'underused' NHS assets to property developers
      Theresa May has backed a plan that describes NHS resources as a “source of untapped value” and called on the health service to take “a more commercial approach” to selling off its assets.

      The Prime Minister was accused of backing the sell-off of parts of the NHS after she said she would implement the so-called Naylor Review, a 42-page report commissioned by Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt.

      The review, published in March, calls for the disposal of NHS assets to the private sector, recommending that “inefficiently used” or unused NHS land and property should be sold to property developers.

    • Theresa May protest track, Liar Liar GE2017, number four on Official Singles Chart
      A song accusing Theresa May of being a "liar" has entered the Official Singles Chart at number four.

      The track has also reached number two on the iTunes download chart.

      It's performed and produced by Captain Ska, promoted by campaign organisation the People's Assembly Against Austerity and features speeches and news interviews from Theresa May.

    • Faces of the mega-rich Tory donors helping raise €£19,000 an hour to get Theresa May back into power
      Fat cat donors are helping the Conservative Party fundraise nearly €£19,000 an hour to keep Theresa May in Downing Street.

      Bankers, business tycoons and hedge fund bosses make up this list of millionaire donors who have each pumped at least €£100,000 into the Tory war chest since the election campaign began.

      Figures from the Electoral Commission show the Tory Party raised €£9.5million from donations between May 3 and 23 - more than all other parties combined and equivalent to €£18,888 an hour.

  • Censorship/Free Speech

    • It’s official: you’re not allowed to say ‘Islamist extremism’

      In fact, it is now almost impossible to say the words ‘Islamist terrorism’ without being booed or finding yourself accused of being an Islamophobe or a racist.

    • Right to speak freely about engineering is subject of 1st Amendment lawsuit

      Mats Jarlstrom, who has an engineering degree from Sweden, has performed a variety of research and has concluded that yellow lights should last longer to allow for vehicles turning right. The state's response was not to consider his advice, but to fine him. Last summer, he was fined $500 (PDF) by the Oregon State Board of Examiners for Engineering and Land Surveying because he was found to be practicing engineering without a license. While states require engineers to have licenses and pass exams, Oregon also requires a license to even discuss engineering publicly or even to say you're an engineer.

    • EC praises Facebook over reasonably proficient hate speech clampdown

      All four firms have done their bit, according to the EC, and have made moves to limit the kind of terror talk that keeps people awake at night. Facebook has done the best though and is the only firm to fully comply with the code of conduct.

    • Man fined $4,000 for 'liking' defamatory posts on Facebook

      The case is believed to be the first time a court has interpreted a "like" as an explicit endorsement of a post.

    • Ethiopia shut down the country’s internet to beat exam cheats

      Since Nov. 2015, more than 500 anti-government protestors have been killed and thousands of others arrested while demanding land reform and an end to human rights violations. The government responded by declaring a state of emergency, shutting down the mobile internet, and banned the use of social media networks to document the ongoing unrest in the country. A Brookings Institution report showed that the shutdown cost the country’s booming economy millions of dollars in revenue.

    • Ethiopia turns off internet nationwide as students sit exams

      Ethiopia has shut off internet access to its citizens, according to reports from inside the country, apparently due leaked exam papers for the nation’s grade 10 examinations.

      Outbound traffic from Ethiopia was shutdown around 4pm UK time on Tuesday, according to Google’s transparency report, which registered Ethiopian visits to the company’s sites plummeting over the evening. By Wednesday afternoon, access still had not been restored.

    • A Pro-Trump Writer Just Sued A Fusion Reporter For Accusing Her Of Making A "White Supremacist" Gesture
      A pro-Trump journalist and political activist sued a Fusion reporter in federal court in Washington, D.C. Thursday, the most serious action yet in the emerging conflict between mainstream news outlets and the insurgent conservative media that has set up shop in the nation’s capital.

      In the complaint, shared with BuzzFeed News, lawyers for Cassandra Fairbanks allege that Emma Roller, the Fusion journalist, defamed their client when she tweeted an image of Fairbanks at the White House making what Roller claimed in a caption is a “white power hand gesture.”

    • Man Found Guilty for Liking Comments on Facebook

  • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Google will block bad ads (even its own) with a filter built into Chrome

      And that starts with the way Chrome displays ads. As Ramaswamy explains, “In dialogue with the Coalition and other industry groups, we plan to have Chrome stop showing ads (including those owned or served by Google) on websites that are not compliant with the Better Ads Standards starting in early 2018.” It’s unclear whether the new ad blocker would be an option that user could disable or a feature built into the Blink rendering engine that powers the browser.

    • Google prepares publishers for the release of Chrome ad-blocking

      The biggest online advertiser will now block ads; the Web won't look the same.

    • Google Will Help Publishers Prepare for a Chrome Ad Blocker Coming Next Year [iophk: "what about ads that serve malware?"]

      Unacceptable ad types include those identified by the Coalition for Better Ads, an industry group made up of various trade bodies and online advertising-related companies that says it aims to improve consumers’ experience with online advertising.

    • Ice agents are out of control. And they are only getting worse
      With arrests of non-violent undocumented immigrants exploding across the country, it’s almost as if Immigration and Customs Enforcement (Ice) agents are having an internal contest to see who can participate in the most cruel and inhumane arrest possible. The agency, emboldened by Trump’s xenophobic rhetoric, is out of control – and Congress is doing little to stop them.

      Last week, Ice agents ate breakfast at a Michigan restaurant, complimented the chef on their meal and then proceeded to arrest three members of the restaurants kitchen staff, according to the owner.

      Depraved stories like this are now almost too prevalent to comprehensively count: Ice has arrested undocumented immigrants showing up for scheduled green card appointments at a US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) office. They’ve arrested a father after dropping his daughter off at school. An Ice detainee was even removed forcefully against her will from a hospital where she was receiving treatment for a brain tumor.

    • In Trump’s America, Black Lives Matter activists grow wary of their smartphones
      As a long-time political activist, Malkia Cyril knows how smartphones helped fuel Black Lives Matter protests with outraged tweets and viral video. But now Cyril is having second thoughts about her iPhone.

    • Parents have no right to dead child's Facebook account, German court says

      In the ruling, which overturned a lower court's decision, the Berlin appeals court said the right to private telecommunications extended to electronic communication that was meant only for the eyes of certain people.

    • Is it OK to keep posting photos of my kids on Facebook?
      Congratulations! Not just on the baby, but on arriving at a central dilemma of modern parenting so early in the day. You love your baby, your friends and family love your baby, and a technology exists to bring you all closer. What possible harm is there in that?

      I should say from the off I’m a killjoy about Facebook. Spending more than a few minutes on it fills me with dread. I have no self-discipline. I click on links to news stories about people getting their heads caught in machines and miracle skin creams you can import from Japan. I ogle the spouses of people I haven’t seen for three decades and think: “Hmm, could’ve done better.” A slew of recent studies shows that people get depressed by holding themselves up to the lives of others as they appear on social media and that bear only a passing resemblance to real life. Generally, people don’t post photos of themselves getting the bus to work or slumming it in economy, but if they fly business class to the Caribbean, here are 40 photos of the experience to make you feel bad.

    • Tell the UK Government: No Backdoors in Crypto

    • Why We're Suing the FBI for Records About Best Buy Geek Squad Informants

      Law Enforcement Should Not Be Able to Bypass the Fourth Amendment to Search Your Devices

    • Top Defense Contractor Left Sensitive Pentagon Files on Amazon Server With No Password

    • Mandatory data retention laws drive 100% uptake in VPN software

      Australians are getting increasingly concerned about their privacy due to the new data retention law driving a 100% increase in VPN software use since enacted on 13 April.

    • 86% of people want a law to protect private info: Study

      A private company, LocalCircle, conducted a survey among 9,653 citizens and asked them if India should have a privacy law to prevent organisations, private or public, from accessing information on individuals without their written authorisation.

      A whopping 86% of respondents voted in favour of a law to protect private information. Only 9% said there was no need of a law and the rest offered no comment.

    • US judge sentences man to six months for refusing to unlock his iPhone

  • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Trump administration approves tougher visa vetting, including social media checks [iophk: "the US closes its borders"]

      The Trump administration has rolled out a new questionnaire for U.S. visa applicants worldwide that asks for social media handles for the last five years and biographical information going back 15 years.

    • [Older] We Know Where You Are, What You Are Doing and We Will Catch You: Testing Deterrence Theory in Digital Drug Markets

      An analysis of trade data from two large and illegal e-commerce websites, collected on a daily basis for ten months, examined how market revenue was affected by (1) media coverage of police work on such markets and (2) the highly publicized conviction and life-sentencing of a market founder.

    • Silk Road founder loses appeal and will serve life in prison

      The Silk Road network's creator Ross Ulbricht vowed to fight his lifetime prison sentence when it was handed down two years ago. But today, the US Second Circuit officially denied his appeal, sending him away for a long, long time.

    • Silk Road Creator Ross Ulbricht Loses His Life Sentence Appeal

      The three-judge appellate panel nonetheless affirmed the decision of the lower court—albeit with notes of muted criticism of American drug laws.

    • Appeals court upholds Ross Ulbricht’s life sentence for creating Silk Road

      On appeal, Ulbricht had argued that the evidence gathered with five warrantless "pen/trap orders," which allowed the government to monitor IP addresses associated with traffic to and from Ulbricht's home router, violated his Fourth Amendment rights. But the appeals court didn't find that Ulbricht had any privacy right in the IP addresses that were communicating with him. Citing the 1979 precedent Smith v. Maryland, which allows investigators to gather dialed phone numbers without a warrant, the panel of judges said that IP addresses were similar.

    • Silk Road mastermind Ross Ulbricht loses legal appeal [iophk: "bitcoin is not anonymous"]

    • Ross Ulbricht Loses His Appeal Over Conviction and Sentencing in Silk Road Case [UPDATED]

      "Two aspects of the pre-arrest investigation into Ulbricht are particularly relevant to this appeal: (1) the pen/trap orders that the government obtained to monitor Internet Protocol ("IP") address traffic to and from various devices associated with Ulbricht; and (2) the corrupt behavior of two Baltimore agents who worked on the Silk Road investigation."

    • Silk Road Founder Loses Appeal and Will Serve Life, but the Darknet Is Rising

    • Duterte Threatens Communist Peace Negotiators with Arrest, Accuses Them of 'Fucking the Govt'
      The ongoing peace process between the Philippine communists and the government has faced opposition from U.S.-backed oligarchs and military figures.

      President Rodrigo Duterte threatened peace negotiators representing the National Democratic Front of the Philippines with immediate arrest if they set foot in the country, in the latest sign that the peace process between the government and the communist movement is reaching new lows amid the imposition of martial law in the southern island of Mindanao.

    • Murder case dropped after man serves 25 years in prison
      Prosecutors dropped all charges Thursday against a Detroit man who accused police of pinning a murder on him by seizing his mother's gun and switching bullets in a case that kept him in prison for 25 years.

    • House Overwhelmingly Supports Bill Subjecting Teen Sexters to 15 Years in Federal Prison
      Teens who text each other explicit images could be subject to 15 years in federal prison under a new bill that just passed the House of Representatives. Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas), ranking member of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, has called the measure "deadly and counterproductive."

    • Trump Administration Returns Copies of Report on C.I.A. Torture to Congress
      Senators, spies and a president spent years in a pitched battle over how the history is told of one of the most controversial chapters of America’s campaign against terrorism, the detention and interrogation of prisoners in secret C.I.A. jails.

      But recent moves by the Trump administration have increased the likelihood that much of what is known about the macabre humiliations that unfolded in those jails around the world will remain hidden from public view.

      Congressional officials said on Friday that the administration had begun returning to Congress copies of a 6,700-page Senate report from 2014 about the C.I.A. program. The move raises the possibility that most of the copies could be locked in Senate vaults indefinitely or even destroyed — and increases the risk that future government officials, unable to read the report, will never learn its lessons.

  • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

    • To kill net neutrality rules, FCC says broadband isn’t “telecommunications”

      The Federal Communications Commission's plan to gut net neutrality rules and deregulate the Internet service market may hinge on the definition of the word "broadband."

    • As America’s FCC tries to dismantle NN, French authorities back net neutrality in France

      In sharp and deliberate contrast to America’s bullheaded rush into destroying net neutrality protections, net neutrality in France is alive and well. French internet service providers (ISPs) and telecoms have 9 months to comply with ARCEP’s new pro-net neutrality position – which includes explicit directions not to block or throttle p2p or VPN traffic.

    • How we brought the internet to Standing Rock
      Last spring a group I follow on Facebook started sharing information about an oil pipeline, called the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL), that was planned to go in the ground in North Dakota, and the Water Protectors, teenagers from the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation who were standing up to try to stop that from happening. As I watched the story unfold over the next few months, I knew that I wanted to go out there and see how the nonprofit organization I work for, Geeks Without Bounds, could help.

    • Netflix CEO says net neutrality is ‘not our primary battle’

      “It’s not narrowly important to us because we’re big enough to get the deals we want,” Hastings said. It was a candid admission: no matter what the FCC decides to do with Title II, Netflix isn’t worried about its ability to survive. Hastings says that Netflix is “weighing in against” changing the current rules, but that “it’s not our primary battle at this point” and “we don’t have a special vulnerability to it.”

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Lexmark categorically told it can't prevent you from refilling toner cartridges

      The US Supreme Court ruled by 10 votes to two that the current model shared by a number of companies of selling low-priced hardware and profiting through the exorbitant price of supplies was unlawful.

    • Trademarks

    • Copyrights

      • Urgent: Please Write to MEPs to Stop Awful Copyright Proposals
        As that post from the Pirate Party MEP, Julia Reda, explains, there is an attempt to make two aspects of the copyright proposals even worse, using procedural tricks. The main threat is the imposition of blanket upload filters, with Internet sites essentially obliged to act as copyright police for everything.

        The other is to introduce a new ancillary copyright for publishers that would mean that they could demand licensing fees for using even tiny snippets from their articles for 50 years after they were published. Both of these would destroy the Internet as we know it.

      • EFF Asks the Federal Circuit to Fix its Terrible API Copyright Decision
        EFF, joined by Public Knowledge, filed an amicus brief today asking the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit to revisit one of its worst decisions ever. Three years ago this month, in Oracle v. Google, the Federal Circuit held that the Java Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) could be copyrighted. APIs are, generally speaking, specifications that allow computer programs to communicate with each other and with human users, and are different than the code that implements a program. The Federal Circuit’s decision was every bit as bad as some of its oft-criticized patent law decisions. Treating APIs as copyrightable has a profound negative impact on interoperability and innovation. And it goes against decades of tradition and common practice in the software world.

      • Pornhub Piracy Stopped Me Producing Porn, Jenna Haze Says

        With YouTube's safe harbor protections under pressure from record labels, a related issue is facing the adult industry. In response to Conan O'Brien wishing Pornhub a happy 10th anniversary, former adult star Jenna Haze has called out to fans not to support the site, accusing it of stealing her content and forcing her out of the porn production business.

      • Wikipedia Joins the Fight for Fair Use in Australia

        Australia's ongoing debate over the introduction of a new fair use right took a turn last week when Wikipedia joined the fray. The world's largest online encyclopedia now displays a banner to its Australian users encouraging them to support a joint campaign of Australia's major digital rights groups to modernize its dated copyright law by legalizing the fair use of copyright works.

      • Just 9 days left to reject the worst version of EU copyright expansion plans yet

        With the Parliament tending towards a reasonable position, some are resorting to dirty tactics to defend – or even extend – these disastrous plans by any means necessary.

      • ACT NOW! In 9 days, the European Parliament could pass a truly terrible copyright expansion

      • Why politicians don’t, and can’t, understand the Internet

        Businesspeople are not much better in this regard. Where politicians understand power in terms of what they can regulate, businesspeople understand power in terms of ownership. But the Internet is neither; it cannot be owned nor regulated. As pointed out succinctly by Searls and Weinberger, the Internet is an agreement. It is a technical agreement between billions of people how to get a packet of data from point A to point B, where no point is worth more than any other.

      • EU Piracy Filter Proposals Being Sabotaged Says MEP Julia Reda

        Member of the European Parliament Julia Reda has warned that efforts are underway to sabotage the Parliamentary process relating to the EU's plans for mandatory piracy filtering. The Pirate Party member says there's now just over a week to protest against an 'alternative compromise' text that makes current plans look "tame".

      • European Supreme Court’s pirate streaming ruling reiterates need for Analog Equivalent Rights

        The concept of Analog Equivalent Rights is simple and straightforward: our children should have at least as strong civil liberties in their digital environment, as our parents had in their analog environment. It’s not rocket science. It’s not unreasonable, either. It even sounds like something that would be obvious – that our children shouldn’t have weaker or fewer civil liberties just because they communicate using a new technology. Yet, that’s exactly what is happening.

      • Hollywood Sees Illegal Streaming Devices as ‘Piracy 3.0’

        After hunting down torrent sites for more than a decade, Hollywood now has a more complex piracy threat to deal with. According to the Motion Picture Association, illegal streaming devices can be seen as "Piracy 3.0," offering a Netflix-like experience to consumers, but without rightsholders getting paid.

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