Articles by date

20 January 2017

ICANN Still Under US Laws But No Realistic Way Back For US Overnight

The US government does not have oversight of the IANA functions any more, but ICANN who oversees the IANA is still bound by Californian law. And Trump Commerce secretary nominee and billionaire investor Wilbur Ross said there's "no realistic way" to walk back the transition of U.S. oversight.

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19 January 2017

.RADIO Gears Up For Launch

The European Broadcasting Union is gearing up to launch the .radio new gTLD commencing with its launch of a Pioneers Programme commencing in February.

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Clearing Out the App Stores: Government Censorship Made Easier (New York Times)

There's a new form of digital censorship sweeping the globe, and it could be the start of something devastating.

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Facebook dismissive of censorship, abuse concerns, rights groups allege (Reuters)

Nearly 80 rights groups on Wednesday accused Facebook of "racially biased censorship" and failing to be more transparent about its removal policies and cooperation with law enforcement, adding to criticism the company has faced in recent months over its management of content on its network of 1.8 billion users.

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UK's GCHQ targets teenage girls to find cyber spies of the future (The Guardian)

Teenage girls are being invited to put their technology skills to the test in a competition that could unearth the cyber spies of the future.

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18 January 2017

Australia's over 55s hardest hit by 'invasive' identity theft, Scamwatch figures show (ABC News)

Almost a third of all people to report having their identity stolen last year are over the age of 55, according to figures from the Federal Government's Scamwatch website.

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Why WhatsApp's 'Backdoor' Isn't a Backdoor (Threat Post)

Accusations that WhatsApp has a backdoor intended for eavesdropping on user messages is being loudly rebuked by Facebook-owned WhatsApp and Open Whisper Systems, the company that developed the underlying encryption technology for the platform. Dismissal of the published claims by The Guardian are also coming from others in the security and crypto communities who say the allegations are outrageous.

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17 January 2017

WhatsApp vulnerability explained: by the man who discovered it (The Guardian)

There was an outcry when the Guardian published my information regarding a vulnerability within WhatsApp's implementation of end-to-end encryption, but much of the response misses the point.

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Facebook to roll out fake news tools in Germany (BBC News)

Facebook is introducing new tools in Germany to help combat the spread of fabricated news stories.

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Battery with inbuilt 'fire extinguisher' developed (BBC News)

Researchers have designed a lithium-ion battery that contains a fire-extinguishing material, which is released if the battery gets too hot.

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'Private' messaging not so private (InternetNZ)

Many messaging apps are not as private and secure as people think. Every message sent could be read by service providers, advertisers and other organisations - an invasion of people's privacy rights.

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Plans for Australia to adopt a 'Google tax' welcomed by advocacy group (The Guardian)

One of the biggest critics of multinational tax avoidance has welcomed the Coalition's proposed "Google tax", saying a similar tax in the UK looks likely to increase corporate tax payments by billions for the British government.

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15 January 2017

As WhatsApp becomes latest victim, are any messaging apps truly secure? (The Observer)

Is there a truly secure messaging app? One could spend hours examining all the encrypted communications tools available, from popular services such as WhatsApp and Facebook's Messenger to newcomers such as Signal and Wire. But while experts agree that some of these options are more secure than others, there always seems to be another flaw waiting to be discovered. This makes the search for a perfect app resemble the hunt for the goose that laid the golden egg.

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14 January 2017

The Guardian view on internet privacy: technology can't fix it: Editorial (The Guardian)

For anyone who is really concerned about keeping their thoughts private there is only one piece of reliable technology: write with a pen on paper, and burn what you've written when you're done. For the rest of us, who want to get things done, there is an inevitable trade-off which we still don't entirely understand. We now carry with us everywhere devices that give us access to all the world's information, but they can also offer almost all the world vast quantities of information about us. The sense of personal integrity and boundaries that seems self-evident is actually the product of particular social arrangements which are profoundly affected by technology even though it doesn't determine them. Technological change could move us towards our better selves or our worse ones, but things can't stay as they are.

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Electroshock Therapy for Internet Addicts? China Vows to End It (New York Times)

At the Addiction Treatment Center in eastern China, more than 6,000 internet addicts -- most of them teenagers -- not only had their web access taken away, they were also treated with electroshock therapy.

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12 January 2017

Australian Bank Finds Out The Hard Way It Should Have The .COM Too

One of Australia's big 4 banks has found out the hard way that it's a good idea for a large company to obtain its top level domain. Not just the country code Top Level Domain that the company operates in. The bank, NAB, formerly National Australia Bank, sent the account details of over 60,000 customers to instead of

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A lawyer rewrote Instagram’s terms of use 'in plain English' so kids would know their privacy rights (Washington Post)

It's no secret that teenagers love social media. Members of "Generation Z" can spend up to nine hours a day sharing photos on Instagram, consuming "content" on YouTube and talking to friends on Snapchat. (Just don't ask them to get excited about Facebook.) But how much do these teens understand what they’ve agreed to give up when they start an account with those sites?

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Facebook, Nodding to Its Role in Media, Starts a Journalism Project (New York Times)

Facebook is increasingly owning up to its role as one of the world's largest distributors of information by taking more responsibility for the millions of stories that flow through its site.

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How Netflix Is Deepening Our Cultural Echo Chambers (New York Times)

When "One Day at a Time" started its run on CBS in December 1975, it became an instant hit and remained so for almost a decade.

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Cookie banner frustration to be tackled by EU (BBC News)

Plans to cut down on the "annoying" cookie banners that web users face have been released by the European Union.

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UK's net providers to begin sending 'pirate' emails (BBC News)

UK ISPs are to start sending "educational letters" to customers identified as downloading copyright material without paying for it.

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Australian data retention law a ‘monumental stuff-up’, says internet users group (The Guardian)

The peak body for internet users in Australia has formally requested that a review of the attorney general's data retention scheme be brought forward, calling the legislation a "monumental stuff-up" as the government seeks to expand access to include civil lawsuits.

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11 January 2017

Facebook has created a monster it cannot tame (CNN)

Last week, two men and two women were arrested and now face hate crime and kidnapping charges for the abduction and torture of a man in Chicago. The city is notorious for its violent crime. The difference this time was that the crime was broadcast live to thousands of viewers around the world through Facebook.

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WhatsApp, Facebook and Google face tough new privacy rules under EC proposal (The Guardian)

Messaging services such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and Gmail will face tough new rules on the tracking of users under a revision to the ePrivacy Directive proposed by the European Commission on Tuesday.

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Data Could Be the Next Tech Hot Button for Regulators (New York Times)

Wealth and influence in the technology business have always been about gaining the upper hand in software or the machines that software ran on.

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