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Belgian Government Phishing Test Goes Off-Track 58 58

alphadogg writes: An IT security drill went off the tracks in Belgium, prompting a regional government office to apologize to European high-speed train operator Thalys for involving it without warning. Belgium's Flemish regional government sent a mock phishing email to about 20,000 of its employees to see how they would react. Hilarity and awkwardness ensued, with some employees contacting Thalys directly to complain, and others contacting the cops.

Comment Re:11 rear enders (Score 1) 549 549

Interestingly you don't mention how much harder bad weather conditions make driving for human drivers, as well. There is a reason that many more than usual accidents happen when the weather is bad, when it's snowing, late at night (sleepy drivers - never heard about a robot getting sleepy), or when the roads are bad and human drivers think they know it all and can continue at top speeds.

Actually, it always seems like many more than usual accidents happy the first two weeks of the snowy road season, and then people adjust to it.

I suspect that driverless cars would adjust quicker and you'd get better results than human drivers.

Nonetheless, the point that driverless cars need to be tested and verified in these conditions before being approved for general use is valid, though probably obvious.

Comment Re:11 rear enders (Score 4, Informative) 549 549

While perhaps true in some cases, it is rather clear from the linked video that it is entirely the human's fault in this case. Unless you have different 'rules of the road' than we do here and the driverless car was expected to do something else (what exactly are you expecting the driverless car to do? It isn't clear that there were lots of options from the video - perhaps move ahead a foot but it seems like that would at best delay the crash). There were two cars stopped at the light, the Google car was behind it, and there were about four or five car lengths between the Google car and the car that rear ended it. The two cars ahead and the Google car stopped well ahead of the at fault vehicle and the at fault vehicle did not slow down.

Comment Re: 11 rear enders (Score 1) 549 549

Well, perhaps fault is the wrong word. Obviously drivers are ultimately responsible for their own vehicles.

That being said, distracting things are distracting and I wonder if the same driver would have been distracted if there were no obvious markings that it was a self driving car.

Comment Re:11 rear enders (Score 0) 549 549

I think it is perhaps *partly* the Google car's fault. Not because of the way that the Google car drives.

I wonder if the Google car itself serves as a distraction to other drives. Perhaps other drivers find themselves driving behind a Google car, reach over to get their phones to take a picture or video or something, and the distraction causes them to make an error while driving.

Comment Re:Isn't Flash extinct? (Score 3, Insightful) 199 199

Yes, that was the narrative at the time - 'they are taking away our freedom'. In hindsight, even though I probably would have heavily criticized Apple for the move, and would have pointed to it as a reason to choose Android, the reality of the situation was, at least in my experience, that Flash on Android was a rather shitty experience that never really worked that well. And while it seemed arrogant and annoying that Steve Jobs tried to use his sway to annihilate Flash as a platform, I now believe that it was for the best. Flash has a heavy impact on battery life, is generally a lot slower, and is generally less secure than native alternatives.

So, yes, Apple made a seemingly arrogant move and exiled Flash from the iOS platform, but in the long run this drove development toward alternatives and pushed web developers to use technologies that were more mobile friendly (like using HTML for your content instead of some flash application) and I think the overall net effect for the web community has been positive.

Comment Re:The cost of doing business (Score 1) 215 215

Well sure. I guess I generally assume that when people say 'the cost will be passed on to customers' I read: 'the extra expense will result in an immediate increase in price for services'.

I mean, obviously people realize that the money ultimately comes from customers. If you presume that statement to say otherwise then you clearly misunderstand what is being said.

Comment Re:The cost of doing business (Score 2) 215 215

As poster above stated, there are a few alternatives:
1. Customer pays
2. Shareholders pay (in the form of less profit)
3. Employees pay in the form of not getting a raise or no increase in compensation
4. The company spends less money on other things to make up the cost

You generally don't change the customer cost too frequently - TWC most likely would not increase costs because they lost a single court case - with a market cap of 50 billion dollars 230k isn't really that much as a one off cost.

In all likelihood this particular cost would be eaten by shareholders in the form of less profit. You can't jerk employees around too much at the lower levels, and executives at the higher levels will probably just be allowed to keep playing. It isn't a significant enough amount of money to really worry about spending less elsewhere as the administrative cost to flip budgets around for such a small amount of money is probably not worth it.

In reality though, I would be rather surprised if an organization as big as TWC didn't have a budget line item at the beginning of the year for things like legal fees, penalties, court costs, etc etc. So in all likelihood, they had already planned to spend some amount of money, and this may or may not have had a big impact on that, and it may or may not cause them to go over budget on legal expenses.

If, over time, the trend of higher legal expenses continues, and overall expenses continue to increase, that would obviously factor into consumer prices. But I wouldn't expect cable/internet prices to rise because of one loss in court.

Comment Re: Tell me... (Score 4, Interesting) 172 172

I mostly agree, though it generally feels safer to hand your CC details over to a reputable vendor like amazon than some anonymous author selling a book on the internet using who knows what means to store your personal information. And who knows if Joe Author is storing your payment details securely or not. Or whether it is just some author's nephew who knows how to install some web script on shared hosting.

Sure you can call the CC company and get the payment reversed, but it is more hassle than not having to do it.

"Why waste negative entropy on comments, when you could use the same entropy to create bugs instead?" -- Steve Elias

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