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Comment Canadian law arguably prohibits this (Score 2) 320

CASL, our anti-spam law, specifically requires informed consent before anyone installs anything on someone else's computer. There's a class action suitin the wings, waiting for "private right of action" to allow suits this summer.

The CRTC is the only organization that can lay charges, and you should see the rats scurrying around trying to keep the right to lay suits from coming into force (;-))

Comment Re:Nonsense (it's a vexed problem) (Score 2) 124

Spam has economic, legal, technical and psycological causes. That suggests that if you try and treat it as a technical problemalone, you're going to wonder why it isn't fixed already.

I live in Canada, where spammers get fined, over the loud objections of the sleasy side of the business community, and it's having an effect in tle legal and pyscological domains. This summer, the law will also allow suing spammers, which takes it into the ecomomic dimain as well.

If this, along with technical solutions like spamcop.net, starts to significantly cut it down, then I expect other countries will start doing the same things.

Hey, in ten or twenty years, we might get past spam!

Submission + - The Federal Government's Student-Loan Fraud (investors.com)

An anonymous reader writes: “President Obama had a great idea back in 2010: nationalize the student loan program, and its problems would soon go away. It didn’t happen. Instead, more people are refusing to pay their student loans than ever before. . . . By taking over the student loan program, Obama in essence politicized it. Last year on the campaign hustings, both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders repeatedly talked about making college “free.” That is, they want to socialize the costs, but privatize the benefits, of a college education. Still surprised people aren’t paying their loans?”

Submission + - U.S. Carbon Dioxide Emissions Fall 3 Percent (reason.com)

An anonymous reader writes: The International Energy Agency is reporting data showing that economic growth is being increasingly decoupled from carbon dioxide emissions. Basically, human beings are using less carbon dioxide intensive fuels to produce more goods and services. The IEA attributes the relatively steep drop in U.S. emissions largely to the ongoing switch by electric generating companies from coal to cheap natural gas produced using fracking from shale deposits. Renewals also contributed a bit to the decline. From the IEA:

Global energy-related carbon dioxide emissions were flat for a third straight year in 2016 even as the global economy grew, according to the International Energy Agency, signaling a continuing decoupling of emissions and economic activity. This was the result of growing renewable power generation, switches from coal to natural gas, improvements in energy efficiency, as well as structural changes in the global economy.


Submission + - Hash indexes are faster than Btree indexes? (blogspot.in)

amitkapila writes: PostgreSQL supports Hash Index from a long time, but they are not much used in production mainly because they are not durable. Now, with the next version of PostgreSQL, they will be durable. The immediate question is how do they perform as compared to Btree indexes. This blog has tried to answer that question.

Submission + - US-CERT: HTTPS Interception Weakens TLS (threatpost.com)

msm1267 writes: Recent academic work looking at the degradation of security occurring when HTTPS inspection tools are sitting in TLS traffic streams has been escalated by an alert published Thursday by the Department of Homeland Security.

DHS’ US-CERT warned enterprises that running standalone inspection appliances or other security products with this capability often has a negative effect on secure communication between clients and servers.

“All systems behind a hypertext transfer protocol secure (HTTPS) interception product are potentially affected,” US-CERT said in its alert.

HTTPS inspection boxes sit between clients and servers, decrypting and inspecting encrypted traffic before re-encrypting it and forwarding it to the destination server. A network administrator can only verify the security between the client and the HTTP inspection tool, which essentially acts as a man-in-the-middle proxy. The client cannot verify how the inspection tool is validating certificates, or whether there is an attacker positioned between the proxy and the target server.

Submission + - Firefox 52 forces pulseaudio, dev claims that telemetry is essential (mozilla.org) 3

jbernardo writes: While trying to justify breaking audio on firefox for several linux users by making it depend on pulseaudio (and not even mentioning it in the release notes), Anthony Jones, who claims, among other proud achievements, to be "responsible for bringing Widevine DRM to Linux, Windows and Mac OSX", informs users that disabling telemetry will have consequences — "Telemetry informs our decisions. Turning it off is not without disadvantage."
The latest one is, as documented on the mentioned bug, that firefox no long has audio unless you have pulseaudio installed. Many bug reporters suggest that firefox telemetry is disabled by default on many distributions, and also that power users, who are the ones more likely to remove pulseaudio, are also the ones more likely to disable telemetry.
As for the pulseaudio dependence, apparently there was a "public" discussion on google groups, and it can be seen that the decision was indeed based on telemetry.
So, if for any reason you still use firefox, and want to have some hope it won't be broken for you in the future, enable all the spyware/telemetry.

Submission + - NY bill would require removal of inaccurate, irrelevant or excessive statements (washingtonpost.com) 1

schwit1 writes: In a bill aimed at securing a "right to be forgotten," introduced by Assemblyman David I. Weprin and (as Senate Bill 4561 by state Sen. Tony Avella), New York politicians would require people to remove 'inaccurate,' 'irrelevant,' 'inadequate' or 'excessive' statements about others...
  • Within 30 days of a "request from an individual,"
  • "all search engines and online speakers] shall remove ... content about such individual, and links or indexes to any of the same, that is 'inaccurate', 'irrelevant', 'inadequate' or 'excessive,'' "
  • "and without replacing such removed ... content with any disclaimer [or] takedown notice."
  • " '[I]naccurate', 'irrelevant', 'inadequate', or 'excessive' shall mean content,"
  • "which after a significant lapse in time from its first publication,"
  • "is no longer material to current public debate or discourse,"
  • "especially when considered in light of the financial, reputational and/or demonstrable other harm that the information ... is causing to the requester's professional, financial, reputational or other interest,"
  • "with the exception of content related to convicted felonies, legal matters relating to violence, or a matter that is of significant current public interest, and as to which the requester's role with regard to the matter is central and substantial."

Failure to comply would make the search engines or speakers liable for, at least, statutory damages of $250/day plus attorney fees.

Submission + - Canadian privacy czar examines border agency's searching of electronic devices (ottawacitizen.com)

wlssenatus writes: Canada's Office of the Privacy Commissioner, which has enforcement powers over federal agencies governed by the Privacy Act, has launched an investigation into the Canada Border Services Agency's practice of searching the electronic devices of travellers at the Canadian border. Meanwhile, U.S. Customs and Border Protection searches have gone up by a factor of five over the past year (23877 Oct 2015-2016) and are increasing even more under the new administration, with 5000 in February alone. EFF reports that agents use a Cellebrite device to copy the electronic information for later perusal and analysis.

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