Articles by date

17 August 2017

Russia Rejects Neo-Nazis Domain and Forced Onto Dark Web to Stay Alive

The Neo-Nazi website for The Daily Stormer is currently on a bit of a world tour of top level domains trying to find a home. After first GoDaddy and then Google deleted their .com domain names, they then briefly tried a .ru domain, which was also quickly deleted.

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A running list of websites and apps that have banned, blocked, deleted, and otherwise dropped white supremacists (Quartz)

Last weekend’s “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, ostensibly a protest against the removal of a Confederate monument, drew hate groups that included neo-Nazis, Ku Klux Klan members, white supremacists, and gun-wielding militias. The rally turned violent shortly after it began on the evening of August 11, when counter-protestors and rally attendees clashed with one another. The violence continued throughout the weekend, leaving one woman dead after a man drove his car at full speed into a large group of counter-protestors.

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16 August 2017

Record-sized data centre planned inside Arctic Circle (BBC News)

The facility is set to be created at the Norwegian town of Ballangen, which is located inside the Arctic Circle.

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Internet speeds across Africa are still far below the global minimum standard (Quartz)

It would take more than a day to download a high definition movie of 7.5 gigabytes in countries with the slowest internet speeds in the world. It turns out most of those countries are in Africa, data from a global broadband speed league shows.

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Director Resigns as auDA Shows Signs of Listening to its Constituency

auDA has been in the news for all the wrong reasons in recent months. The .au policy and regulatory body announced they were going to “build and operate” the registry in-house, they imposed an onerous Code of Conduct on members and they withdrew all historical board minutes, agendas and reports (public versions) from their website.

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GoDaddy and then Google Reject Neo-Nazi’s Domain Registration

First GoDaddy and then 3 hours later Google rejected the domain name registration for the Daily Stormer, a neo-Nazi website, Monday. According to Whois, the domain name is still registered with Google.

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14 August 2017

Vanishing app: Snapchat struggles as Facebook bites back (The Guardian)

Is Snapchat – the social media app famous for its disappearing messages – in danger of doing a vanishing act of its own? It’s a question some are asking after investors turned on the company again this week following a second set of poor results which have turned a once-hot tech company into a stock market casualty.

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13 August 2017

In China, Facebook Tests the Waters With a Stealth App (New York Times)

Facebook and many of its apps have been blocked in China for years. To change that, Mark Zuckerberg has made a big point of meeting with Chinese politicians, reading stodgy Communist Party propaganda, studying Mandarin and — perhaps more daunting — speaking it in public.

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FCC faces backlash for saying Americans might not need fast home Internet (Ars Technica)

American Internet users are telling the Federal Communications Commission that mobile broadband is not a full replacement for fast home Internet service. This week, the FCC kicked off its annual analysis of broadband deployment and signaled that it might determine that smartphone access is a proper substitute for cable or fiber Internet. In doing so, the FCC could conclude that broadband is already being deployed to all Americans in a reasonable and timely fashion, and thus the commission could take fewer steps to promote deployment and competition.

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11 August 2017

Australian Regulator Takes Action Against Domain Registration Companies

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is taking action against 2 fraudulent businesses that have been sending out unsolicited notices to businesses. The ACCC alleges these notices look like renewal invoices for the business’s existing domain name but instead were for the registration of a new domain name, at a cost ranging from A$249 to $275.

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The Fate of Online Trust in the Next Decade (Pew Research Center)

Many experts say lack of trust will not be a barrier to increased public reliance on the internet. Those who are hopeful that trust will grow expect technical and regulatory change will combat users’ concerns about security and privacy. Those who have doubts about progress say people are inured to risk, addicted to convenience and will not be offered alternatives to online interaction. Some expect the very nature of trust will change.

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Ex-MI5 chief warns against crackdown on encrypted messaging apps (The Guardian)

A former head of MI5 has spoken out against curtailing use of encryption in messaging apps despite warning that Islamist terrorism will remain a threat for up to another 30 years.

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Airbnb faces EU clampdown for not paying 'fair share' of tax (The Guardian)

EU finance ministers will discuss how to force home-sharing platforms such as Airbnb to pay their fair share of taxes and in the right tax domains next month after the French minister for the economy described the current situation as “unacceptable”.

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Facebook Muscles Into the Online Video Scene (Wired)

Facebook is moving into short-form, professional video with Watch. It is a latecomer to the field, following similar moves by rivals such as Twitter, Snap, Spotify and Reddit. But Facebook could still wind up being a big winner.

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10 August 2017

China and Russia go further in squelching Internet freedom: Editorial (Washington Post)

China’s Great Firewall, a massive system of Internet filters and blocking, has long had a crack in it. The firewall prevents most users inside China from accessing platforms outside the country, such as Facebook, Google and Netflix, in keeping with China’s desire to censor what can be seen and read. But popular software known as virtual private networks, or VPNs, permit a user inside China to tunnel through the firewall. Now the crack is being gradually cemented up.

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We can stop hacking and trolls, but it would ruin the internet: A new way to run the internet would scupper ransomware and hacking, but its authoritarian backers could control everything we do online (New Scientist)

Cyberterrorism fears are through the roof. Ransomware is wreaking havoc on corporations, hospitals and individuals. Printers can be hacked to take down the world’s largest websites. Put simply, the internet is a mess.

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'Bollywood blocks the Internet Archive' (BBC News)

Access to the Internet Archive is being barred within India. The move appears to be the result of two Bollywood production companies attempting to stop pirated copies of their films being viewed online within the country.

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09 August 2017

Encourage children to spend more time online, says former GCHQ head (The Guardian)

Parents should be encouraging their children to spend more time online in order to “save the country,” the former head of GCHQ has said.

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France, Germany aim to close tax loopholes for US tech companies (The Hill)

France and Germany are teaming up with other partners to close tax loopholes for U.S. tech giants like Apple and Google.

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UK organisations could face huge fines for cyber security failures (The Guardian)

British organisations could face fines of up to £17m, or 4% of global turnover, if they fail to take measures to prevent cyber-attacks that could result in major disruption to services such as transport, health or electricity networks.

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The Man Who Wrote Those Password Rules Has a New Tip: N3v$r M1^d! Bill Burr’s 2003 report recommended using numbers, obscure characters and capital letters and updating regularly—he regrets the error (Wall Street Journal)

The man who wrote the book on password management has a confession to make: He blew it. Back in 2003, as a midlevel manager at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, Bill Burr was the author of “NIST Special Publication 800-63. Appendix A.” The 8-page primer advised people to protect their accounts by inventing awkward new words rife with obscure characters, capital letters and numbers—and to change them regularly.

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07 August 2017

auDA Flying In Another Orbit, Like Pluto's, In Denial About CEO/Director Conflict of Interest

auDA. What planet are you on? Monday night they released an astonishing statement defending the demand class board appointment of Dr. Michaella Richards in October 2016. The announcement does nothing to address probably the most significant concern about her appointment, that is the undeclared conflict of interest between herself and CEO Cameron Boardman.

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UK Data Protection Bill: Facebook, Google and other internet companies will be forced to let people control their own data (The Independent)

Everyone will be given sweeping new powers to see what tech companies know about them and have it deleted, under a new bill.

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'Too Snobby' auDA Stuck in a Pre-1990s Time Warp

Following the auDA Special General Meeting last week, more of which is to come (or read some updates on the Domainer blog), I started to think how auDA is stuck in some pre-1990s time warp. And today retiring veteran Australian political journalist Laurie Oakes is reported by The Guardian as saying “journalists should not be ‘too snobby’ about digital startups”.

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06 August 2017

ITU releases 2017 global information and communication technology facts and figures (International Telecommunication Union)

New data released by ITU, the United Nations specialized agency for information and communication technologies (ICTs), show that 830 million young people are online, representing 80 per cent of the youth population in 104 countries. ITU's ICT Facts and Figures 2017​ also shows a significant increase in broadband access and subscriptions with China leading the way.

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