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Submission + - Cisa amendment would allow US to jail foreigners for crimes committed abroad (theguardian.com)

An anonymous reader writes: An amendment to a controversial cybersecurity bill will allow US courts to pursue and jail foreign nationals even if the crimes they commit are against other foreigners and on foreign soil.

The main aim of the amendment to the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act (Cisa), which passed a key Senate hurdle on Thursday, is to lower the barrier for prosecuting crimes committed abroad. But the amended law would make it a crime punishable by US prison time not merely to clone the credit card or steal the Netflix password of an American citizen, but to take unauthorized information from any American company, no matter where it happens.

In other words, if a French national hacks a Spanish national’s MasterCard, she could be subject to 10 years in US prison under laws changed by the bill.

Submission + - Innocent adults are easy to convince they commited a serious crime

binarstu writes: Research recently published in Psychological Science quantifies how easy it is to convince innocent, "normal" adults that they commited a crime. The Association for Psychological Science (APS) has posted a nice summary of the research. From the APS summary: 'Evidence from some wrongful-conviction cases suggests that suspects can be questioned in ways that lead them to falsely believe in and confess to committing crimes they didn’t actually commit. New research provides lab-based evidence for this phenomenon, showing that innocent adult participants can be convinced, over the course of a few hours, that they had perpetrated crimes as serious as assault with a weapon in their teenage years.'

Submission + - Climate Change Report Predicts More Weather Disasters (im4change.org)

An anonymous reader writes: As fatal rains batter parts of the north Indian hill state of Uttarakhand, following a summer that also saw hundreds of deaths from heat waves, a new assessment out on June 19 from the World Bank warns of increasingly difficult effects of climate change on several parts of South Asia in the next 20-30 years.

Submission + - Google Respins Its Hiring Process for World Class Employees 1

An anonymous reader writes: Maybe you've been intrigued about working at Google, but unfortunately you slept through some of those economics classes way back in college. And you wouldn't know how to begin figuring out how many fish there are in the Great Lakes. Relax; Google has decided that GPA's and test scores are pretty much useless for evaluating candidates, except (as a weak indicator) for fresh college graduates. And they've apparently retired brain teasers as an interview screening device. SVP Laszlo Beck admitted to the New York Times that an internal evaluation of the effectiveness of its interview process produced sobering results: 'We looked at tens of thousands of interviews, and everyone who had done the interviews and what they scored the candidate, and how that person ultimately performed in their job. We found zero relationship. It’s a complete random mess'. This sounds similar to criticism of Google's hiring process occasionally levied by outsiders. Beck says Google also isn't convinced of the efficacy of big data in judging the merits of employees either for individual contributor or leadership roles, although they haven't given up on it either.

Submission + - The other hacking scandal

Presto Vivace writes: Suppressed report reveals that law firms, telecoms giants and insurance companies routinely hire criminals to steal rivals' information

Soca, dubbed “Britain’s FBI”, knew six years ago that blue-chip institutions were hiring private investigators to obtain sensitive data – yet did next to nothing to disrupt the unlawful trade. The report was privately supplied to the Leveson Inquiry into press ethics in 2012 yet the corruption in other identified industries, including the law, insurance and debt collectors, and among high-net worth individuals, was not mentioned during the public sessions or included in the final report.

Submission + - Canadians Should Also Be Demanding Surveillance Answers (michaelgeist.ca)

An anonymous reader writes: Privacy and surveillance have taken centre stage this week with the revelations that U.S. agencies have been engaged in massive, secret surveillance programs that include years of capturing the meta-data from every cellphone call on the Verizon network (the meta-data includes the number called and the length of the call) as well as gathering information from the largest Internet companies in the world including Google, Facebook, Microsoft, and Apple in a program called PRISM. Michael Geist explains how many of the same powers exist under Canadian law and that it is very likely that Canadians have been caught up by these surveillance activities.

Submission + - MIT President Tells Grads to 'Hack the World'

theodp writes: On Friday, MIT President L. Rafael Reif exhorted grads to 'hack the world until you make the world a little more like MIT'. A rather ironic choice of words, since 'hack the world' is precisely what others said Aaron Swartz was trying to do in his fateful run-in with MIT. President Reif presumably received an 'Incomplete' this semester for the promised time-is-of-the-essence review of MIT's involvement in the events that preceded Swartz's suicide last January. By the way, it wasn't so long ago that 2013 commencement speaker Drew Houston and Aaron Swartz were both welcome speakers at MIT.

Submission + - Inside PRISM: Why the Government Hates Encryption (vortex.com)

Lauren Weinstein writes: Now, what's really going on with PRISM? The government admits that the program exists, but says it is being "mischaracterized" in significant ways (always a risk with secret projects sucking up information about your citizens' personal lives). The Internet firms named in the leaked documents are denying that they have provided "back doors" to the government for data access.

Who is telling the truth?

Likely both. Based on previous information and the new leaks, we can make some pretty logical guesses about the actual shape of all this.

Here's my take.

Microsoft

Submission + - Microsoft's Hidden Windows 8 Feature: Ads (hothardware.com)

MojoKid writes: "Despite the fact that I've been using Windows 8 for the past three weeks, I somehow managed to overlook a rather stark feature in the OS: ads. No, we're not talking about ads cluttering up the desktop or login screen (thankfully), but rather ads that can be found inside of some Modern UI apps that Windows ships with. That includes Finance, Weather, Travel, News and so forth. On previous mobile platforms, such as iOS and Android, seeing ads inside of free apps hasn't been uncommon. It's a way for the developer to get paid while allowing the user to have the app for free. However, while people can expect ads in a free app, no one expects ads in a piece of software that they just paid good money for."
Microsoft

Submission + - Microsoft download potentially private/sensitive files due to SmartScreen filter (blogspot.co.uk) 1

An anonymous reader writes: Internet Explorer's SmartScreen filter phones home to Microsoft with information about files a user has downloaded, not only do they have the file name but a short time afterwards they download three copies of the file to MSN servers! Security researchers from the UK have updated research information from 2011 testing IE's SmartScreen filter on IE10 and believe that this is a major invasion of privacy.

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