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Now On Video: GCHQ Destroying Laptop Full of Snowden Disclosures 237

An anonymous reader writes "On Saturday 20 July 2013, in the basement of the Guardian's office in Kings Cross, London, watched by two GCHQ technicians, Guardian editors destroyed hard drives and memory cards on which encrypted files leaked by Edward Snowden had been stored. This is the first time footage of the event has been released."

App Auto-Tweets False Piracy Accusations 231

An anonymous reader writes "Certain iPhone and iPad applications from a Japanese company have broken software piracy detection mechanisms that are sending out tweets on the user's own Twitter account, saying, 'How about we all stop using pirated iOS apps? I promise to stop. I really will. #softwarepirateconfession.' The trouble is, it's sending these out on accounts of users who actually paid up to $50 or more for the software and who are legally using it. The app is asking for access to users' Twitter accounts, but does not give the reason why it is asking, so the author of the article concluded (rightly) that things were being done deliberately. Would you want your legally purchased software to send out messages to all of your contacts on Twitter or on other social networks saying that you were a software pirate? Would you excuse the writers of the software if it was just an error in their piracy detection measures?"

Iranian Police Tracking Dissidents Using Tech From Western Companies 161

chrb writes "A recent article at Bloomberg discusses Western companies supplying monitoring equipment to Iran. There are few regulations restricting the sale of intelligence monitoring systems to the Iranian government, and large corporations like Ericsson and Nokia have supplied the equipment used to identify dissidents and suppress anti-government protests. '[One such system from Creativity Software] can record a person’s location every 15 seconds — eight times more frequently than a similar system the company sold in Yemen, according to company documents. A tool called "geofences" triggers an alarm when two targets come in close proximity to each other. The system also stores the data and can generate reports of a person's movements. A former Creativity Software manager said the Iran system was far more sophisticated than any other systems the company had sold in the Middle East.'"

TSA's VIPR Bites Rail, Bus, and Ferry Passengers 658

OverTheGeicoE writes "TSA's VIPR program may be expanding. According to the Washington Times, 'TSA has always intended to expand beyond the confines of airport terminals. Its agents have been conducting more and more surprise groping sessions for women, children and the elderly in locations that have nothing to do with aviation.' In Tennessee earlier this month, bus passengers in Nashville and Knoxville were searched in addition to the truck searches discussed here previously. Earlier this year in Savannah, Georgia, TSA forced a group of train travelers, including young children, to be patted down. (They were getting off the train, not on.) Ferry passengers have also been targeted. According to TSA Administrator John Pistole's testimony before the Senate last June, 'TSA conducted more than 8,000 VIPR operations in the [previous] 12 months, including more than 3,700 operations in mass-transit and passenger-railroad venues.' He wants a 50% budget increase for VIPR for 2012. Imagine what TSA would do with the extra funding."

Mastercard, Visa To Help Target Ads 222

New submitter ThatsMyNick writes "The two largest credit-card networks, Visa Inc. and MasterCard Inc., are pushing into a new business: using what they know about people's credit-card purchases for targeting them with ads online. 'A MasterCard document obtained by the Journal outlines some of the company's plans, which included linking Web users with purchases. According to document, the credit card provider said it believes "you are what you buy." ... Visa is planning a similar service, which would aggregate its customers' purchase history into segments, including location, to make ads more effective at appealing to people in a respective area.'"

TSA Doing Random Truck Searches On Tennessee Highway 578

OverTheGeicoE writes "TSA is expanding its presence to the American road system. As part of its Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response (VIPR) program, TSA agents are now working at 5 weigh stations and two bus stations in Tennessee. They are randomly checking trucks with 'drug and bomb sniffing dogs', and encouraging truck drivers to join their First Observer Highway Security Program and report anything suspicious that they see to authorities. VIPR is allegedly not a response to any particular threat."

Facebook Cookies Track Users Even After Logging Out 352

First time accepted submitter Core Condor writes "According to Australian technologist Nik Cubrilovic: 'Logging out of Facebook is not enough.' He added, Even after you are logged out, Facebook is able to track your browser's page every time you visit a website. He wrote in his blog: 'With my browser logged out of Facebook, whenever I visit any page with a Facebook like button, or share button, or any other widget, the information, including my account ID, is still being sent to Facebook.' After explaining the cookies behavior he also suggested a way to fix the tracking problem: 'The only solution to Facebook not knowing who you are is to delete all Facebook cookies.'"

Senators Want Secret Warrantless Wiretap Renewal 198

An anonymous reader writes "A group of Senators are meeting in secret today, while most people are focused on the 'debt ceiling' issue, in order to try to rush through a renewal of the FISA Amendments Act, which expressly allowed warrantless wiretapping in the U.S. The law isn't set to expire until next year, but some feel that the debt ceiling crisis is a good distraction to pass the extension without having to debate the issue in public. The meeting is being held in secret, but it's not classified, so people can demand to know how their Senator voted."
The Almighty Buck

IRS Wants a Cut of Sales On eBay and Craigslist 517

Ponca City, We love you writes "In 2009, $60 billion worth of items were sold on eBay, meaning 'extra' money for many sellers, whose activities may provide them with taxable income. Now the Washington Post reports that beginning next year, a new law will require 'the gross amount of payment card and third-party network transactions to be reported annually to participating merchants and the IRS.' Also, for 2011 tax returns, 'taxpayers who annually sell more than $20,000 worth of goods and have more than 200 electronic transactions' will receive a new IRS form, known as 1099-K, for reporting the proceeds. The new tax issues shouldn't be a concern for people who sell just a few small items online for less than they paid for them, because as the IRS points out, income from auctions that resemble a garage or yard sale 'generally' isn't required to be reported. But if an online garage sale turns into a business with recurring sales and purchases of items for resale, it may be considered an online auction business. 'Generally, transactions resulting in a gain are reportable, regardless of whether the taxpayer is conducting a business,' says Gil Charney, principal tax researcher at The Tax Institute at H&R Block. The real reason behind the law is simple: Research shows taxpayers do a much better job of reporting taxable income when they know the IRS is receiving information about their transactions."
GNU is Not Unix

How Hardware Makers Come To Violate Free Software Licenses 186

H4x0r Jim Duggan writes "Veteran violation chasers Shane Coughlan and Armijn Hemel have summarized how license violations are caused in the consumer electronics market under time-to-market pressure and thin profit margins: 'This problem is compounded when one board with a problem appears in devices supplied to a number of western companies. A host of violation reports spanning a dozen European and American businesses may eventually point towards a single mistake during development at an Asian supplier.' They also discuss the helpful organizations which have sprung up and the documents and procedures now available."

China In the Habit of Copying and Redirecting US Sites? 468

Want to know why US web companies have trouble making it in China? gaz_hayes passed us a link to the blog commiepod, which suggests that successful US websites are targeted by 'Chinese government backed companies.' "These companies copy the site, deploy it on a .cn domain, and then DNS poison or forcefully lower the bandwidth the US site. Just a few weeks ago and were DNS poisoned across the entire Chinese internet and were being redirected to their Chinese competitor Baidu. This probably explains Google's 3rd quarter market share in China." This is a fairly serious accusation; anyone else have first-hand experiences that would back this up?

Let's organize this thing and take all the fun out of it.