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Privacy

+ - Should "Do not call" list include SMS mess

VirtualUK writes: "There are a number of recent startups that use SMS (mobile phone text) messaging to form something akin to the social networking interactions that we're so familiar with the likes of Friendster, MySpace et al. While online social networking sites are typically 'opt-in' and provided free (as in beer) of charge, these newer SMS based sites are sending unsolicited text messages which are often at cost to the recipient and provide no 'opt-out' facility unless you become a reluctant member of their service. In light of changing phone usage shouldn't privacy laws be updated to keep in touch?"
Biotech

+ - Two Tests for the Drug GHB Flawed->

SoyChemist writes: Wired reports that two major tests for the rave and date rape drug Gamma Hydroxy Butyrate are flawed. The field test by police can be set off by Dr. Bonner's all natural soap, and the more rigorous GC-MS test can be misleading because GHB is slowly produced in urine while it sits in a refrigerator. In an overburdened forensic lab, a urine sample may wait in a refrigerator for several months before testing. This might result in a false positive test result. Scientists at the FBI laboratory in Quantico, Virginia, have discovered that urine samples, kept in a refrigerator for six months, spontaneously produce significant amounts of the drug GHB or other chemicals that can result in a false positive result from the most stringent test used by forensic labs. This could cause all sorts of innocent people to test positive for exposure to the illicit substance. Several months ago, the owner of a natural soap company showed that a common field test kit used by police to identify GHB can be set off by his products.The FBI report appears in the July issue of Forensic Science International.
Link to Original Source
United States

+ - Court: Cops Can Steal and Lie to Conduct Searches->

Spamicles writes: "Police officers faked a car jacking in order to search a car that was suspected to be used in drug trafficking. They discovered drugs and arrested the owners of the car. A lower court ruled that the warrant-less search and seizure violated the Fourth Amendment and that the drugs could not be used as evidence. This ruling was overturned today."
Link to Original Source
Republicans

+ - Congressman Orrin Hatch caught pirating software

Rocketship Underpant writes: "Orrin Hatch, the Congressman viewed by many as a shill for corporate copyright interests, recently stated that people who download copyrighted materials should have their computers destroyed as punishment. However, as Wired.com reports, Hatch's own website uses copyrighted software without permission — a Javascript menu system developed by a British company. Is Mr. Hatch accepting volunteers to go through his home and office destroying all his computers, or were his comments to Congress just a bunch of hypocritical hot air?"

Computer Science is the only discipline in which we view adding a new wing to a building as being maintenance -- Jim Horning

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