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Submission + - New Spin on "Big Brother" database for UK

POPE Mad Mitch writes: The BBC is reporting that in a move that both the opposition party and the Information Commission have condemned as another step towards a "Big Brother" society, Tony Blair is on monday going to unveil planas to build a single database to pull together and share every piece of personal data from all government departments, the claimed justification for which is to improve public services. Sharing information in this way is currently prohibited by the "over zealous" data protection legislation. An attempt to build a similar database was a key part of the, now severely delayed, ID card scheme.
Linux Business

Submission + - How do you advocate Linux in 5 mintues?

xtracto writes: I just returned from buying certain Linux magazine. While looking at the "Computing" stand in the library and right after I grabbed a copy of the Linux magazine a guy asked me if I used Linux, after that, the made told me he had tried to use Linux but that he found it difficult. I told him the first things that came to my mind, this is, that it depended on the distribution (to what answered that he tried using Kubuntu). I recommended him to look for a Linux User Group near his hometown (he told me he was not from nearby). What would you tell this kind of people?, Not so long ago a relative who is completely computer illiterate started talking about Linux (to my surprise) but the general thought is that "it is harder than Windows". What do you people say to advocate Linux, in very few words, considering people that tried to use it before or people that has never used it?

Headset Uses Bone-Conduction Technology 135

Wired reports that a new headset is on the way to solve all those background noise problems you have had with your cell phone in crowded areas. This new bluetooth headset uses "bone-conduction" technology that converts vibrations from you jaw into sound. The article claims it should be available as early as later this year for around $200.

The Economy of Online Crime 119

hdtv writes "You might call the thugs or thieves, but on their own closed forums and referral-only Web sites, they value honesty and reputation. Fortune magazine looks into the black market for stolen credit card numbers and identities. What's interesting is that so few of the criminals retrieve their information via breaking into online stores." From the article: "Gaffan says these credit card numbers and data are almost never obtained by criminals as a result of legitimate online card use. More often the fraudsters get them through offline credit card number thefts in places like restaurants, when computer tapes are stolen or lost, or using 'pharming' sites, which mimic a genuine bank site and dupe cardholders into entering precious private information. Another source of credit card data are the very common 'phishing' scams, in which an e-mail that looks like it's from a bank prompts someone to hand over personal data."

eSATA External Storage Drive Reviewed 100

Tom's Hardware has a practical look at an eSATA drive offering from Taiwanese storage firm Thecus. From the article: "Thecus' N2050 is one of the first external twin-drive RAID boxes that uses eSATA. As expected, its performance was far better than what USB 2.0 offers. The end result is impressive. The date transfer rate of 30 MB/s that USB 2.0 offers does indeed pale in comparison to 100 MB/s for eSATA, while the WD1500 drives are capable of delivering even better performance in RAID 0. It is also good to see that Thecus did not throw the USB 2.0 interface away, because it is a nice backup interface whenyou want to use the device with other computers via USB 2.0."

China Bans Running Your Own Email Server 304

Erwin_D writes "Under the guise of banning spam, China has ruled that running your own e-mail server has been banned, unless you have a license. To qualify for such a license, an 'e-mail service provider' must abide by some chilling rules: all e-mail must be stored for two months, and e-mail with discussing vaguely defined subject as network security or information security may not be transmitted. While the rules contains all the good measures we would all like to see to combat spam, such as prohibiting open relays and outlawing zombie network, the law is also geared toward controlling free speech. From the article: 'I believe that the intent to have an antispam regulation was a good one ... Unfortunately, it seems like during the policy formulation process, it got hijacked and went to one extreme.'"

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