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Submission + - Lawsuit Against US Gov Alleges 60,000,000 Medical Records Seized (dailycaller.com)

An anonymous reader writes: The Daily Caller reports a troubling development for privacy: ". . .Robert Barnes filed the lawsuit . . . on behalf of a John Doe Company and individuals . . . “In a case involving solely a tax matter involving a former employee of the company, these agents stole more than 60,000,000 medical records of more than 10,000,000 Americans," . . . there was no warrant authorizing the seizure of the medical records and the records were not germane to the IRS search. “These medical records contained intimate and private information . . . that by its nature includes information about treatment for any kind of medical concern, including psychological counseling, gynecological counseling, sexual or drug treatment, and a wide range of medical matters . . . ” the complaint reads. The records are believed to concern the medical records of every judge in California, every state court employee in California, members of the Screen Actors Guild and Directors Guild, and people in “all walks of life.”" — More at Forbes. The Health Care Office at IRS has a new boss. The agency is a key enforcer for the Affordable Care Act.

Submission + - Leaked Heartland Institute Memo Authenticity Questioned (theatlantic.com)

sithkhan writes: "After the explosive leak of the Heartland Institute documents on Thursday, the documents were looked over by a reporter for The Atlantic. Seems all the leaked documents are similar and consistent, with the exception of one: that damning memo.
FTFA:
" 1. All of the documents are high-quality PDFs generated from original electronic files . . . except for the "Climate Strategy" memo. (Hereinafter, "the memo"). That appears to have been printed out and scanned, though it may also have been faxed.
Either way, why? After they wrote up their Top Secret Here's All the Bad Stuff We're Gonna Do This Year memo, did the author hand it to his secretary and say "Now scan this in for the Board"? Or did he fax it across the hall to his buddy?
This seems a strange and ponderous way to go about it--especially since the other documents illustrate that the Heartland Institute has fully mastered the Print to PDF command.
It is, however, exactly what I would do if I were trying to make sure that the document had no potentially incriminating metadata in the pdf."

There's much more to read and consider at the link.

The author gives two caveats, which are somewhat at odds with one another."

Patents

Submission + - China Now #1 Patent Filer (reuters.com)

smitty777 writes: China has passed the US as the number one filer of patents this year, according to a report by Thompson Reuters. With an average annual increase of 16.7%, China has filed 314,000 patents last year. This brings the total share of China in worldwide holdings up from %54 to %58. However, according to legal expert Elliot Papageorgiou: ""One thing is volume, quality is quite another. The return, or the percentage of grants, of the patents is still not as high in China as, say, in the U.S., Japan or some places in Europe." This was also a record year for patent filing over all, according to the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). According to their numbers, worldwide patent applications are up %7.2, at 1.98 million in 2010. FTA: "WIPO Director General Francis Gurry on Tuesday attributed the rise to the “knowledge economy” and globalization led by U.S. and Chinese innovation."

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