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Submission + - Sheriff's Raid to Find Blogger Who Criticized Him Ruled Unconstitutional (theintercept.com)

schwit1 writes: An appellate court in Baton Rouge ruled Thursday that a raid on a police officer’s house in search of the blogger who had accused the sheriff of corruption was unconstitutional.

The Louisiana First Circuit Court of Appeals argued that Sheriff Jerry Larpenter’s investigation into the blog ExposeDAT had flawed rationale: the alleged defamation was not actually a crime as applied to a public official.

The unanimous ruling from the three-judge panel comes after police officer Wayne Anderson and his wife Jennifer Anderson were denied assistance in local and federal court.

Submission + - VA Invests in Failed Solar Projects, Veterans Linger on Wait List (heartland.org)

An anonymous reader writes: The Department of Veteran's Affairs Inspector General has found the VA wasted millions on solar panel installations that don't work.

Evidently, the Veteran's Administration (VA), does not have enough money to hire new doctors or take other actions to reduce wait times and improve treatment for our nation's military veterans, but it does have money to spend installing solar panels at its facilities, according by the VA's Inspector General (IG) detailed by the Washington Free Beacon.

While the VA has been under fire for wasting federal dollars as veterans’ wait times and other failings have persisted at VA medical facilities nationwide, the IG report reveals the VA spent more than $408 million to install solar panels on its medical facilities, yet many of the projects have experienced significant delays and cost overruns with some solar projects failing to function at all.

In a report issued August 3, 2016, the VA IG reported the VA had consistently failed to effectively plan and manage its solar panel projects, resulting in significant delays and additional costs. An audit of 11 of the 15 solar projects awarded between fiscal years 2010 and 2013, found only two of the 11 solar panel projects were fully completed.

Submission + - EU Copyright Reform Proposes Search Engines Pay For Snippets (thestack.com)

An anonymous reader writes: The European Commission is planning reforms would allow media outlets to request payment from search engines such as Google, for publishing snippets of their content in search results. The working paper recommends the introduction of an EU law that covers the rights to digital reproduction of news publications. This would essentially make news publishers a new category of rights holders under copyright law, thereby ensuring that “the creative and economic contribution of news publishers is recognized and incentivized in EU law, as it is today the case for other creative sectors.”

Submission + - Microsoft Bing uses Wikipedia (globally editable) data

RockDoctor writes: Though they're trying to minimise it, the recent relocation of Melbourne Australia to the ocean east of Japan in Microsoft's flagship mapping application is blamed on someone having flipped a sign in the latitude given for the city's Wikipedia page. Which may or may not be true. But the simple stupidity of using a globally-editable data source for feeding a mapping and navigation system is ... "awesome" is (for once) an appropriate word.

Well, it''s Bing, so at least no-one was actually using it.

Submission + - BleachBit stifles investigation of Hillary Clinton

ahziem writes: The IT team for presidential candidate Hillary Clinton used the open source cleaning software BleachBit to wipe systems "so even God couldn’t read them," according to South Carolina Rep. Trey Gowdy on Fox News. His comments on the "drastic cyber-measure" were in response to the question of whether emails on her private Microsoft Exchange Server were simply about "yoga and wedding plans."

Perhaps Clinton's team used an open source application because, unlike proprietary applications, it can be audited, like for backdoors. In response to the Edward Snowden leaks in 2013, privacy expert Bruce Schneier advised, "Closed-source software is easier for the NSA to backdoor than open-source software," in an article in which he stated he also uses BleachBit. Ironically, Schneier was writing to a non-governmental audience.

Submission + - WhatApp who previously promised privacy will now share data with Facebook. (boingboing.net)

ttyler writes: When messaging app WhatsApp was acquired by Facebook in 2014, WhatsApp co-founder Jan Koum promised the deal wouldn't affect users' privacy.
“We don’t know your birthday. We don’t know your home address,” Mr. Koum said to millions of WhatsApp users in a 2014 blog post. “None of that data has ever been collected and stored by WhatsApp, and we really have no plans to change that.”
Welp. The app now has a billion or so users, and their data will be shared in new ways with Facebook starting 30 days from today.

Submission + - Linux Turns 25, Happy Birthday!

prisoninmate writes: 25 years later, it turns out Linux is a big thing, and it's everywhere around us. Linux kernel powers your Android smartphone as you read this story on your 5.5-inch display, it's used by search engine giant Google, as well as 99.9% of the websites you're accessing daily. Linux kernel, as the core component of a GNU/Linux operating system, is everywhere around us, even if you don't see it. For God's sake, the whole Internet is powered by Linux! It's used in airplanes, on your Wi-Fi router, on smartwatches, smart TVs, and any other smart device you have in your home. Yes, even your smart fridge uses Linux, but we won't bother you with nonsense geek details because it's celebration time. Happy 25th birthday Linux!

Submission + - As Linux Turns 25: Torvalds Credits GPL for Sucess (eweek.com)

darthcamaro writes: There are a lot of things that make Linux work and today at the LinuxCon conference in Toronto, 25 years after he first announced Linux, Linus Torvalds talked about the highlight and the low-lights of Linux (so far). For low lights he talked about the process challenges during the Linux 2.4 timeframe. When asked why Linux hasn't ended up fragmented like UNIX — Torvalds had an easy answer — the GPL.

I love the GPL and see it as a defining factor in the success of Linux," Torvalds said.


Submission + - French government removed evidence of emissions cheating by Renault from report (ft.com) 1

An anonymous reader writes: In the past year, there was a steady flow of evidence for various forms of trickery in automobile emissions controls, prompting, among others, the French government to investigate the behaviour of a number of popular cars certified to conform to Euro 5 and Euro 6 emission standards.

While the report concluded that some Renault models emitted many times more nitrogen oxides (NOx) on the road than during the official emissions test, it did not mention that a Renault Captur SUV was observed to perform a cleaning procedure on its lean NOx trap (LNT) five times in a row when the prescribed preparations for emissions testing where made, rendering it much more effective in the test than under normal conditions.

Three members of the enquiry commission told the Financial Times that the French state, which owns a 20% interest in Renault, decided that these findings should remain confidential. A spokesperson of the French environment ministry denies that facts where hidden on purpose. Meanwhile, the anti-fraud agency in France continues its investigations into Renault's emissions practices.

Renault has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing, but it has agreed to voluntarily recall 15,000 cars to perform a software update that should reduce NOx emissions.

Submission + - Android 7 "Nougat" released (android.com)

LichtSpektren writes: Android 7.0 "Nougat" was just released. This version totes a multi-window view, the Vulkan API, VR support for more apps, improved battery saving and data saving capabilities, more customization options for dealing with notifications, background security updates, file-based encryption, and a new secure boot mechanism.

Submission + - 18-Year-Old Random Number Generator Flaw Fixed In Libgcrypt, GnuPG (helpnetsecurity.com) 1

An anonymous reader writes: Researchers have discovered a “critical security problem” that affects all versions of the Libgcrypt cryptographic library and, therefore, all versions of the GnuPG (a.k.a. GPG) hybrid-encryption software. The bug has now been fixed, and he advises users of GnuPG-2 to update Libgcrypt to version 1.7.3, 1.6.6, or 1.5.6, and users of GnuPG-1 to upgrade to version 1.4.21.

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