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Submission + - JetBlue giving all passengers free in-flight Fly-Fi high-speed Wi-Fi (betanews.com)

BrianFagioli writes: Today, JetBlue announces something miraculous for travelers. Every one of its passengers will have access to free in-flight high-speed Wi-Fi, which it calls 'Fly-Fi'. This is on every single aircraft in its fleet. In other words, if you are flying JetBlue, you get free high-speed internet

Comment Social inertia (Score 1) 74

What was ethical and even honorable behavior in the past is now seen as horribly wrong. Programming an AI to behave ethically will need to include flexibility and a way to respond to changes (growth?) in society. Otherwise we get stagnation that will lead to explosive revolutions. And therein lies an attack surface.

Submission + - They came for my Craigslist but I said nothing. Then they came for my Backpage.. (latimes.com)

nerdpocalypse writes: Six years after Craigslist's adult section shut down, Backpage's adult section suddenly stopped and put up a banner decrying government censorship. This comes in the context of Congressional investigations into facilitation by Backpage of prostitution, child prostitution, and sex trafficking. The owners were brought up on similar charges in California last month but they were thrown out due to the Communications Decency Act of 1996 which says basically that if website owners decide not to closely monitor content they are not liable for that content.
The Senate launched an investigation. The same owners are due to testify in front of the Senate this week. They threw in the towel, or rather the red banner.

Submission + - A Case of Legalized Software Vulerability Exploitation? (cio.com)

Required Snark writes: CIO Magazine reports that a venture capital firm teamed up with a medical software security company to monetize a flaw they found in a medical device. The security company is MedSec, and the device is a pacemaker manufactured by St. Jude Medical. The venture capital firm is unnamed.

For better or worse, a security firm’s attempt to cash in on software bugs — by shorting a company’s stock and then publicizing the flaws — might have pioneered a new approach to vulnerability disclosure.

Last August, security company MedSec revealed it had found flaws in pacemakers and other healthcare products from St. Jude Medical, potentially putting patients at risk.

However, the controversy came over how MedSec sought to cash in on those bugs: it did so, by partnering with an investment firm to bet against St. Jude’s stock.

Is this a good development or another litigation nightmare that will consume resources and deter innovation? Given that companies find critical flaws and never disclose (or even fix) them, is the legal system and effecting stock values a reasonable remedy?

This is the first instance of clearly explosive trend. One security researcher said “Every single hedge fund has reached out to me.”

Submission + - Browser Form Autofill Profiles Can Be Abused for Phishing Attacks (bleepingcomputer.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Browser autofill profiles are a reliable phishing vector that allow attackers to collect information from users via hidden form fields, which the browser automatically fills with preset personal information and which the user unknowingly sends to the attacker when he submits a form.

There's an online demo where you can test this behavior. [GIF]

Browsers that support autofill profiles are Google Chrome, Safari, and Opera. Browsers like Edge, Vivaldi, and Firefox don't support this feature, but Mozilla is currently working on a similar feature.

Submission + - What is the most useful nerd watch today?

students writes: For about 20 years I have used Casio Databank 150 watches. They were handy because they kept track of my schedule and the current time. They were very cheap. They require very little maintenance, since the battery lasts more than a year and the bands last even longer. Since they were waterproof, I do not even have to take them off (or remember where I put them!). They were completely immune to malicious software, surveillance, and advertising. However, their waterproof gaskets have worn out so they no longer work for me. Casio no longer makes them or any comparable product (their website is out of date). I don't want a watch that duplicates the function of my cell phone or computer. What is the best choice now?

Comment internationally awesome (Score 1) 88

I'm on T-mobile. Moved to brazil a year ago. I get 4g and stream audio a LOT (local college radio from back home.) I use the hotspot fairly often too. I have never gotten throttled that I could see.
      Also, whenever I'm on WiFi, here or in the US, all my calls go over that connection. NO international fees at all, unlimited time. People at home just dial my US number and have no idea I'm 5000 miles away, and they don't get billed for it. The funny part is when I'm home in the US, my calls etc. go over my fios connection, so T-mobile is using their competitor's infrastructure. Gives me a good chuckle.

Submission + - Ultrasound Tracking Could Be Used to Deanonymize Tor Users (bleepingcomputer.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Ultrasounds emitted by ads or JavaScript code hidden on a page accessed through the Tor Browser can deanonymize Tor users by making nearby phones or computers send identity beacons back to advertisers, data which contains sensitive information that state-sponsored actors can easily obtain via a subpoena.

The attack relies on the practice of ultrasound cross-device tracking (uXDT) that allows advertisers to link users to different devices by using inaudible ultrasounds secretly emitted via their ads. Nearby devices pick up these sounds and ping the advertisers' server with details about the user's devices. In tests, the research team has intercepted some of the traffic these ultrasound beacons trigger on behalf of the phone, traffic which contains details such as the user's real IP address, geo-location coordinates, telephone number, Android ID, IMEI code, and device MAC address.

Submission + - Ringing in 2017 With 90 Hacker Friendly Single Board Computers (hackerboards.com)

DeviceGuru writes: HackerBoards has just published its annual New Year's round-up of Linux- and Android-friendly single board computers. This time around, there are 90 boards in the list, all of which are briefly profiled with links to their sources. There's also a big Google Docs spreadsheet that compares the key specs of all 90 boards, which range in price from $5 to $199 for their lowest cost models. "Community backed, open spec single board computers running Linux and Android... play a key role in developing the Internet of Things devices that will increasingly dominate our technology economy in the coming years," says the post.

Submission + - Everyday things on the web the EU Commission wants to make illegal (juliareda.eu)

schwit1 writes: In a few days, scandal-prone Günther Oettinger will stop being Europe’s top internet policy maker – he’s being promoted to oversee the EU budget.

But before leaving, the outgoing Digital Commissioner submitted dangerous plans that undermine two core foundations of the internet: Links and file uploads. While Oettinger is going away, his lobby-dictated proposals are here to stay.

These proposals are pandering to the demands of some news publishers to charge search engines and social networks for sending traffic their way (yes, you read that right), as well as the music industry’s wish to be propped up in its negotiations with YouTube.

Here’s what may otherwise become illegal:
01 Sharing what happened 20 years ago
02 Tweeting a creative news headline
03 Posting a blog post to social media
04 Pinning a photo to an online shopping list
05 A search engine indexing the web for you
06 A portfolio hosting site not monitoring your uploads
07 Github allowing unmonitored commits
08 Wikipedia ACCEPTING unmonitored uploads
09 Training your own artificial intelligence

Despite all the new restrictions on hyperlinks and uploads, sites like MegaUpload, which was famously shut down by US authorities for allegedly systematically infringing copyright, would not be affected.

That’s proof: This law is not aimed at sites that actually play fast and loose with copyright – it’s meant to get social networks and search engines to fork over money to struggling European cultural industries.

Submission + - Trump's Treasury pick appears to be part of a federal investigation (muckrock.com)

v3rgEz writes: Trump's transition strategy of picking some of the shadiest people on earth is still going strong. The latest: According to the FBI, his Treasury pick Steven Mnuchin is involved with an "ongoing investigation", as reported by Mike Best over at the FOIA site MuckRock. Best requested Mnuchin's FBI files, but the request was rejected under the grounds of an open investigation, likely related to Mnuchin's superbly-timed exit from Relativity Media — right before it cratered.

Submission + - Weapons of Math Destruction Author: Models are Opinions Embedded in Math (latimes.com)

dangle writes: The LA Times has an interview with "Weapons of Math Destruction" author Cathy O'Neil discussing her concerns about the social consequences of ill-considered mathematical modeling. She discusses the example of a NYC Department of Education algorithm designed to grade school teachers that no one outside of the coders had access to. "The Department of Education did not know how to explain the scores that they were giving out to teachers," she observes. "...(T)he very teachers whose jobs are on the line don’t understand how they’re being evaluated. I think that’s a question of justice. Everyone should have the right to know how they’re being evaluated at their job," she argues. Another example discussed is a Los Angeles Department of Children and Family Services risk-modeling algorithm developed by SAS to score children according to their risk of being abused so that social workers can better target their efforts. Depending on the ethical considerations, such an algorithm could intentionally overweight factors such as income or ethnicity in a way that could tip the balance between right to privacy and protection of abused minors one way or another. "I want to separate the moral conversations from the implementation of the data model that formalizes those decisions. I want to see algorithms as formal versions of conversations that have already taken place," she concludes.

Submission + - Heat-activated penile implant might restore sexual function

randomErr writes: Brian Leis, from Southern Illinois University, hoping that a heat-activated memory metal called Nitinol (NiTi) will create a better implant for men with erectile dysfunction. Nitinol is a nickel-titanium alloy which remains flaccid at body temperature but can "remember" an expanded shape and return to that shape when heated. The heat source will be a remote-control device that can be waved over the penis, using induction to heat the NiTi a few degrees above body temperature and ratcheting open the alloy prosthesis to expand the penis in length and girth. "We're hoping that, with a better device, a better patient experience, and a simpler surgery, more urologists would perform this operation, and more patients would want to try the device," Le sa

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