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Submission + - Obama: thank you Mitch McConnell - here is $2million for your hometown DAM 1

realized writes: The bill that ended the government shutdown and forestalled a debt crisis Wednesday night had at its core what the country expected: it funded the government and averted default. But that was not all.

In exchange for raising the debt limit, Mitch McConnell also got 2.1 billion in extra funding for his hometown dam project.

Though Mitch secured 2.1 billion for helping Obamacare and rising the limit, others also benefited though not as much. $450 million in Colorado flood relief and $600 million to fight forest fires was also passed as part of the bill.

Submission + - PiracyData Reports Most-Pirated Films Are Unavailable otherwise

realized writes: A new website PiracyData.org (managed by Mercatus Center at George Washington University) shows real time examples of why most people may be pirating movies... Because they can’t get the movies legally...

The website gathers data on the top pirated movies and checks to see if the movies are available to either stream, rent digitally, or digitally purchase.

On its current top 10 list of most pirated movies – none are available to stream legally, and only three are available to rent digitally.

The only options left are to Purchase digitally (only available for 6 of the movies) or... pirate.

Submission + - 35,000 vbulletin sites have already been hacked via exploit released last week

realized writes: Last week slashdot covered the Dangerous VBulletin Exploit In the Wild. Apparently hackers have been busy since then because according to security firm Imperva, more than 35,000 sites were recently hacked via this vulnerability. The sad part about this is that it could have all been avoided if the administrator of the websites just removed the “/install” and/or “/core/install” folders – something that you would think the installer should do on its own.

Submission + - Irish government close Apple's tax loophole (ibtimes.co.uk)

DavidGilbert99 writes: Ireland and particularly its tax system came under some extreme scrutiny earlier this year when it was revealed that Apple funnelled billions of dollars of revenue though three subsidiaries based on the island. Thanks to a loophole none of these subsidiaries were tax-resident in Ireland, meaning they didn't even have to pay Ireland's relatively low 12.5% corporation tax rate. Worryingly for Apple, Ireland's finance minister has just shut this loophole.

Submission + - Lavabit Briefly Allowing Users To Recover Their Data (itworld.com)

itwbennett writes: Former users of the Lavabit encrypted email service that was shut down in August have 72 hours (starting yesterday at 7 p.m. U.S. Central Time) to change their passwords and start recovering their data. 'Following the 72 hour period, Thursday, October 17th, the website will then allow users to access email archives and their personal account data so that it may be preserved by the user,' said Lavabit's founder and owner Ladar Levison.

Submission + - British Police Foil Kenyan Mall Massacre Copycat Plot (washingtonpost.com)

An anonymous reader writes: The Washington Post reports, "British law enforcement agencies averted a plot to orchestrate a large-scale terror attack similar to the assault on Kenya’s Westgate mall, an official said Monday. Police were questioning four men in their 20s on suspicion of terrorism after they were detained Sunday in pre-planned, intelligence-led raids. A British security official said the men were planning a shooting spree akin to the Westgate attack in Nairobi, in which at least 67 people died. ... in a series of statements, the force said the men were all British nationals between the ages of 25 and 29, with roots in Turkey, Pakistan, Algeria and Azerbaijan. ... the London police firearms unit took part in the arrests. British police rarely carry weapons and their involvement suggested concern that men might have been armed." — The Sydney Morning Herald has video. Prime Minister Cameron recently expressed concern regarding such a possibility.

Submission + - Obamacare's Healthcare.gov hidden terms says user has absolutely no privacy (weeklystandard.com)

realized writes: The ObamaCare website, Healthcare.gov has a hidden terms of service that is not shown to people when the sign up. The hidden terms, only viewable if you “view source” on the site says that the user has “no reasonable expectation of privacy regarding any communication or data transiting or stored on this information system”. Sadly, the $634 million dollar website still does not work for most people so its hard to confirm – though when its fixed in 2 months, we should finally be able to see it.

Submission + - "Western Express" credit-card fraud prosecution ends with jail sentences

realized writes: Involved in a ring that is responsible of trafficking more than 95,000 stolen credit cards and stealing more then $5 Million dollars, the last three people involved in "Western Express" were finally sentenced today.

EGOR SHEVELEV, a/k/a “Eskalibur” a/k/a "Esk,” 27 sentenced to 13 1/3-to-40 years in state prison
DOUGLAS LATTA, a/k/a “Realbusy,” 40 sentenced to 22-to-44 years in state prison
NNA CIANO, a/k/a “Angela Perez,” 41 sentenced to 19 2/3-to-47 years in state prison

You can read the opinion of the court of an earlier trial regarding the corporation behind the whole thing, "Western Express International" and its owner, VADIM VASSILENKO.

Submission + - Apple being sued over Passbook (venturebeat.com)

realized writes: Apple is currently being sued over four patents when it comes to passbook. The first two are in regards to "Information management and synchronous communications system with menu generation", and the second two titled "Information management and synchronous communications system with menu generation, and handwriting and voice modification of orders"

The company doing the suing is called Ameranth, a company that both Microsoft and Motorola have given strategic investments to.

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: Alkaline water – the real deal or snake oil? 3

realized writes: it seems more and more common that my friends are getting into these water ionizer which apparently can change the pH of a water from about 7 up to a 9.5 (more alkaline). There seems to be no real documentation and the only “news” I can find on the subject are press releases.
The companies selling these things operate on a pyramid. They have discussions and invite people in to “sell” the product. In these discussions you hear about friends of friends who were dying of stage 4 lung cancer and stopped all treatment but then started drinking this water and all of a sudden they are cured.
Has there been any actual scientific studies done on the benefits of drinking alkaline water (please don’t compare alkaline water to alkaline foods)? Is it just snake oil? Why are so many people spending anywhere from $3000-$6000 on these machines? Does it do anything to benefit the body?
Wireless Networking

Submission + - AT&T successfully sued after throttling customer in california (huffingtonpost.com)

realized writes: While everybody else is complaining about AT&T’s throttling, Matt Spaccarelli decided to sue, and won. The small claims court judge said “it wasn't fair for the company to purposely slow down his iPhone, when it had sold him an "unlimited data" plan.” And awarded Matt with $850 for his trouble. This could be good news for throttlers, who have reported being throttled after only 1.5gb or after watching a tv show on Netflix but still being well under 2gb of data usage.
Facebook

Submission + - Facebook Has 25 People Dedicated to Handling Gov Info Requests (forbes.com)

nonprofiteer writes: A profile of Facebook's CSO reveals that his 70-person security team includes 25 people dedicated solely to handling information requests from law enforcement. They get thousands of calls and e-mails from authorities each week, though Facebook requires police to get a warrant for anything beyond a subscriber's name, email and IP address. CSO Joe Sullivan says that some gov agency tried to push Facebook to start collecting more information about their users for the benefit of authorities:

"Recently a government agency wanted us to start logging information we don’t log. We told them we wouldn’t start logging that piece of data because we don’t need it to provide a good product. We talked to our general counsel. The law is not black-and-white. That agency thinks they can compel us to. We told them to go to court. They haven’t done that yet.”

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