Burma worst for blogger bans The Observer
Burma has been judged the worst country in the world for online restrictions in a report looking at the repression faced by bloggers. The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists, which has compiled a list of the 10 worst countries to be a blogger, says it wants to shame those governments which are most aggressively attempting to curtail and censor web activity. Bloggers inside Burma proved invaluable in passing out information during the September 2007 uprisings, leading to the ruling military junta blocking the internet completely for a period. Iran, where a young blogger died in prison last month, was named as the second-worst country. Omid Mir Sayafi died in Tehran’s Evin jail, which is known to hold political prisoners, after being arrested for allegedly insulting Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, in a blog he posted.
Merck and Elsevier Published Fake Journal Michael Geist
Multiple sources are pointing to a new report that Merck paid Elsevier, a leading publisher, to produce several volumes of the Australasian Journal of Bone and Joint Medicine, which appeared to be a peer-reviewed journal, but was really little more than marketing material for the pharmaceutical company.
Cyber chief needs to be in White House: experts Reuters
The cybersecurity chief named to battle Internet viruses and larger challenges facing the information technology networks used by U.S. companies and national defense should be based in the White House, experts told a congressional panel on Friday. Cybersecurity is important enough to warrant a White House staffer with real authority and a real budget, said Larry Clinton, president of the Internet Security Alliance and one of those who made recommendations to the Obama team. “It can’t be just a figurehead,” he told an Energy and Commerce subcommittee. “We tend to think it should be somewhere in the White House structure.” No date has been set for when, or if, such an appointment would be made.
Over 8M Virginian patient records held to ransom Wikileaks
On Thursday, April 30, the secure site for the Virginia Perscription Monitoring Program (PMP) was replaced with a $US10M ransom demand: “I have your shit! In *my* possession, right now, are 8,257,378 patient records and a total of 35,548,087 prescriptions. Also, I made an encrypted backup and deleted the original. Unfortunately for Virginia, their backups seem to have gone missing, too. Uhoh For $10 million, I will gladly send along the password.” The site, https://www.pmp.dhp.virginia.gov/pmpwebcenter/login.aspx appears to have been entirely disabled and is presently unavailable. The linked file provides the full ransom message. The PMP is used by pharmacists and others to discover perscription drug abuse The PMP declined to comment, although when contacted, appeared to be aware of the issue, instantly referring enquiries to the director of the DHP, who is presently unavailable.
Facebook shuts down KKK group CNet News
The Isle of Man is, perhaps, one of the lesser-known parts of the world.Perched in the Irish Sea, slightly to the left of some of the more miserable parts of England, it is most famous for a motorcycle race in which someone always seems to get killed.Now the Isle, whose strange three-legged flag looks like something the Masons might appreciate, is famous for something more: a Ku Klux Klan Facebook group.It seems some wise and sensitive people decided to get together and “Keep the Isle of Man white and free from foreigners.” They dubbed themselves the “Isle of Man KKK.”95 deep-thinking humans from the island’s population of some 76,000 signed up for this group. One described the group’s goal as wanting to “clense (sic) the Isle of Man”. The members left charming messages such as “Damn blacks and indians (sic), coming over here taking our jobs – who the **** do they think they are?”
Craigslist suspect charged with assault in RI case Associated Press
A medical student accused in Boston of killing a masseuse he met on Craigslist has been charged in Rhode Island with assaulting a stripper in a hotel. Rhode Island Attorney General Patrick Lynch announced the arrest warrant Monday for Philip Markoff on assault and weapons counts. Authorities previously said the 23-year-old Markoff was the suspect in the April 16 robbery attempt at a Holiday Inn Express in Warwick. An exotic dancer from Las Vegas who offered lap dances told Rhode Island authorities she was bound with cord and held at gunpoint by a man she met through Craigslist.
Amazon to introduce “big screen” Kindle device this week AppleInsider
Amazon.com is expected to introduce later this week a version of its Kindle digital eBook reader with a larger display screen fitted for presentation of newspapers, magazines and textbooks in a more traditional format, according to reports. The big-box retailer and online bookseller on Monday began issuing to members of the media invitations to a special press conference this Wednesday, May 6th at 10:30 a.m. that will take place at Pace University in Manhattan. These invites arrived just hours after a report in the New York Times cited people briefed on Amazon’s plans as saying the retailer was gearing up to introduce “a larger version of its Kindle wireless device tailored for displaying newspapers, magazines and perhaps textbooks.”
Web providers must limit internet’s carbon footprint, say experts The Guardian
The internet’s increasing appetite for electricity poses a major threat to companies such as Google, according to scientists and industry executives. Leading figures have told the Guardian that many internet companies are struggling to manage the costs of delivering billions of web pages, videos and files online in a “perfect storm” that could even threaten the future of the internet itself. “In an energy-constrained world, we cannot continue to grow the footprint of the internet we need to rein in the energy consumption,” said Subodh Bapat, vice-president at Sun Microsystems, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of web servers. Bapat said the network of web servers and data centres that store online information is becoming more expensive, while profits come under pressure as a result of the recession.
The Facebook Police Shut Down One Of The Most Popular Public Profiles All Facebook
This morning I got an email from the owner of the ‘Cristiano Ronaldo’ public profile stating that he had been disable after attracting over 2.85 million fans. The reason? Most likely because the public profile wasn’t an official public profile and despite the owner having semi-approval from the soccer player’s agency, Facebook proceeded to shut it down. It’s not the first time we’ve seen large ‘unofficial’ public profiles shut down. Months ago Facebook disabled the ‘Homer J Simpson’ public profile which had become one of the top 5 most popular profiles at the time. Facebook never told us why the public profile had been disabled but it would be safe to assume that the owner wasn’t the legitimate brand manager. Does it make sense for Facebook to aggressively shut down unofficial public profiles? Here’s a letter the owner of the Crisitiano Ronaldo public profile admin received from the player’s agency:
Court finds Telstra misused Optus customer data Australian IT
Optus has won a Federal Court ruling against Telstra in which it was alleged that Australia¿s dominant telco misused Optus’ confidential information for its own marketing gains in the 1990s.Optus claimed that in the period 1993 to 2000, Telstra breached an access agreement by obtaining confidential information about Optus’ long distance telephony traffic. The traffic information, which included the number of calls made, the source of call, the destination, duration, time, kind of call and value, was used to track the success of Optus’ marketing campaigns. This information was provided by Telstra Wholesale to Telstra Retail where it was used to launch marketing and advertising attacks in the long distance call market in a bid to lure customers away from Optus. The sharing of information between Telstra’s wholesale and retail arms also allowed the telco to monitor in real time, the success of Optus’ marketing initiatives and special offers.
(Thanks, Di and Marc, for your contributions)
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