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+ - US Gov't funded internet privacy tools

Submitted by Presto Vivace
Presto Vivace (882157) writes "Internet privacy, funded by spooks: A brief history of the Broadcasting Board of Governors

The BBG was formed in 1999 and runs on a $721 million annual budget. It reports directly to Secretary of State John Kerry and operates like a holding company for a host of Cold War-era CIA spinoffs and old school “psychological warfare” projects: Radio Free Europe, Radio Free Asia, Radio Martí, Voice of America, Radio Liberation from Bolshevism (since renamed “Radio Liberty”) and a dozen other government-funded radio stations and media outlets pumping out pro-American propaganda across the globe. ... ... Between 2012 and 2014, Radio Free Asia’s Open Technology Fund poured more than $10 million into Internet privacy projects big and small: open-source encrypted communication apps, next-generation secure email initiatives, anti-censorship mesh networking platforms, encryption security audits, secure cloud hosting, a network of “high-capacity” Tor exit nodes and even an anonymous Tor-based tool for leakers and whistleblowers that competed with Wikileaks.

Though many of the apps and tech backed by Radio Free Asia’s OTF are unknown to the general public, they are highly respected and extremely popular among the anti-surveillance Internet activist crowd. OTF-funded apps have been recommended Edward Snowden, covered favorably by ProPublica and The New York Times’ technology reporters and repeatedly promoted by the Electronic Frontier Foundation. Everyone seems to agree that OTF-funded privacy apps offer some of the best protection from government surveillance you can get. In fact, just about all the featured open-source apps on EFF’s recent “Secure Messaging Scorecard” were funded by OTF.


+ - Dan Gillmor Says Goodbye to Apple, Google and Microsoft

Submitted by Presto Vivace
Presto Vivace (882157) writes "We are losing control over the tools that once promised equal opportunity in speech and innovation—and this has to stop

Control is moving back to the center, where powerful companies and governments are creating choke points. They are using those choke points to destroy our privacy, limit our freedom of expression, and lock down culture and commerce. Too often, we give them our permission—trading liberty for convenience—but a lot of this is being done without our knowledge, much less permission. ... The tools I use now are, to the extent possible, based on community values, not corporate ones.


Comment: Re:Actually, ADM Rogers doesn't "want" that at all (Score 1) 406

by gclef (#49127589) Attached to: NSA Director Wants Legal Right To Snoop On Encrypted Data

A few more thoughts:

1) Part of the reason this whole thing is coming up is that Apple said that were going to modify the encryption on iPhones so that they couldn't decrypt them either. It's at that point that the big push for breakable encryption started. So, saying that this is just about companies giving the NSA data that the companies already have isn't true. A subpoena/NSL/FISA court order is sufficient for legal access to data that the companies already have. If that were all the NSA/FBI/etc wanted, then they already have the tools to get that data.

2) given that, it is imperative upon the people asking for the change to explain why supoenas/NSLs/FISA court orders are insufficient. I haven't heard a single thing about that, *except* in the context of companies like Apple enabling encryption and *not* escrowing the keys. That puts a lie to the idea that this is just about accessing data that the companies already have.

Lastly, please don't make "talk like adults"'re assuming bad faith on the part of your commenters, (me, in this case) which you have no evidence of. This is a very passive-aggressive way of insulting your debate partner. If you'd really like to debate, this is not helpful.

Comment: Re:Actually, ADM Rogers doesn't "want" that at all (Score 5, Interesting) 406

by gclef (#49121283) Attached to: NSA Director Wants Legal Right To Snoop On Encrypted Data

There are multiple problems with your statement. Lets look at them all, shall we:

What he "wants", when US-based companies hold data that still can technically be accessed for legitimate foreign intelligence purposes supported by our system of law

No. The trigger for this isn't that companies are holding's that users have data, and the NSA wants to force the companies to keep/get access their users data even if the company doesn't want to, so that the NSA can access it also. This is a *very* different proposition. If Apple doesn't want to hold its user's data, why should the NSA force them to just so that the NSA can read it? That seems to be the NSA's problem, not Apple's.

If, on the other hand, you live in a world where simply crying "Encryption!" is some kind of barrier that magically sanctifies the underlying data

Saying "encryption" does not make the data magical, but it also doesn't entitle the NSA to special treatment. If they can break it, fine. If they can't, there is no valid reason for me to make it easy for them.

then I would ask what you think about the German and Japanese codes in WWII?

Attacking RSA/DSA/AES/etc is the NSA's job. If they can do that, fine. Deliberately weakening an existing system to make it *easier* for them to do those attacks isn't our job, or our problem. If they want to beat their heads against AES, go for it. But that's not a valid reason for country-wide key escrow.

Lastly, on the specialness of America: Do we really believe that the US is the only one who has the "right" to access any backdoor/golden-key/whatever? That's absolute nonsense. If the US forces Apple, Google, MS, etc to build key escrow into their devices so that the NSA can read the data on them, then that key will be used by every government on the earth. If you really believe that the NSA will manage to keep exclusive control of a master key for all encryption for a given major vendor, then I'm going to call you delusional.

+ - Silicon Valley Unionization Starts From The Bottom Up->

Submitted by jfruh
jfruh (300774) writes "Unionization has long been resisted in Silicon Valley, both by management and by tech workers for whom high pay is an acceptable tradeoff for long hours and job instability. But as employees beyond programmers are pulled into the tech industry's orbit, Silicon Valley may have to reckon with workers with different ideas. For instance, the drivers who shuttle Facebook employees to and from the company's campus are now represented by the Teamsters, and just won a pay increase from $18 to $24.50 an hour."
Link to Original Source

+ - Adware Privdog worse than Superfish

Submitted by Presto Vivace
Presto Vivace (882157) writes "Comodo ships Adware Privdog worse than Superfish

tl;dr There is an adware called Privdog that gets shipped with software from Comodo. It totally breaks HTTPS security.

From Naked Capitalism's summary:

So here we have the CEO of a Certificate Authority (CA), Comodo, who is also the CEO of Privdog, whose product subverts the certificate authority system. Oh, and Comodo ships that very product with its software. These bottom feeders make Bill Gates look like St. Francis of Assisi. How deep does the rot in the software industry go, anyhow?

I am beginning to believe that Richard Stallman is right, living in freedom means using free and open software."

+ - IT'S NOT RACE, IT'S NOT SEX, the tech world's real discrimination problem is age->

Submitted by bricko
bricko (1052210) writes "IT’S NOT RACE, IT’S NOT SEX, the tech world’s real discrimination problem is age.

The Tech Industry’s Darkest Secret: It’s All About Age
They don’t prepare you for this in college or admit it in job interviews. The harsh reality is that if you are middle-aged, write computer code for a living, and earn a six-figure salary, you’re headed for the unemployment lines. Your market value declines as you age and it becomes harder and harder to get a job.

What the tech industry often forgets is that with age comes wisdom. Older workers are usually better at following direction, mentoring, and leading. They tend to be more pragmatic and loyal, and to know the importance of being team players. And ego and arrogance usually fade with age."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Why? (Score 2) 253

by gclef (#49105841) Attached to: Will Greek Finance Minister Varoufakis Support Cryptocurrency In Greece?

There's one problem it won't fix: the Greek debts to EU are not going to shift to the a currency just because Greece does. The debts to the rest of the EU will remain in Euros, and if the Greek "new Drachma" devalues massively compared to the Euro, the relative loan repayments in new Drachma will go up correspondingly.

Greece can't print their way out of the loans. They can print their way to cheaper exports, yes....but the can't print their way out of the loans.

+ - Gadgets that spy on us

Submitted by Presto Vivace
Presto Vivace (882157) writes "It’s not just Samsung TVs — lots of other gadgets are spying on you

But Samsung’s televisions are far from the only seeing-and-listening devices coming into our lives. If we’re going to freak out about a Samsung TV that listens in on our living rooms, we should also be panicking about a number of other emergent gadgets that capture voice and visual data in many of the same ways. ... .... Samsung’s competitor, the LG Smart TV, has basically the same phrase about voice capture in its privacy policy: “Please be aware that if your spoken word includes personal or other sensitive information, such information will be among the Voice Information captured through your use of voice recognition features.”

It isn't just TVs, Microsoft's xBox Kinect, Amazon Echo, GM's Onstar, Chevrolet’s MyLink and PDRs, Google's Waze, and Hello's Sense all have snooping capabilities. Welcome to the world of Stasi Tech."

Comment: Re:When is routing updated to reflect map changes? (Score 1) 77

by AndrewBuck (#49081171) Attached to: Gets Routing

Awesome work. This kind of feedback is exactly what OSM needs to become the best map. Right now there are places where it is better than other maps and places where it is worse, but it does not take very many people deciding to do what you just did to make it the best everywhere.


Comment: Re:When is routing updated to reflect map changes? (Score 1) 77

by AndrewBuck (#49079107) Attached to: Gets Routing

The different routers update on different schedules, but they generally take at least a day to do so. Redrawing the map to show an update only modifies the local area, whereas updating the routing graph can have large changes. I know work is being done to support incremental updates but I am not sure when this will be supported (and again each routing engine would do it on their own since they all work differently, they just pull down the same data from OSM). I know for OSRM they update once a day by rebuilding the entire routing graph from scratch and then dropping the old graph table and loading in the new one. Building the worldwide routing graph takes like 18 hours so they can only do it once a day currently.


+ - What Intel's $300 million diversity pledge really means->

Submitted by itwbennett
itwbennett (1594911) writes "Intel’s Rosalind Hudnell responsible for implementing the company’s much-publicized $300 million initiative to bring more women and under-represented minorities into its workforce by 2020. But even with Intel’s renewed commitment to diversity, the company’s workforce will still be just about 32 percent women in five years, Hudnell estimated. Here's a rough breakdown of how the money will be spent: The funds will be applied over five years to change hiring practices, retool human resources, fund companies run by minorities and women, and promote STEM education in high schools."
Link to Original Source

Nothing is finished until the paperwork is done.