Osama Been Loanin': head of Oregon terror-cell borrowed $530,000 from fed-backed loan program

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Ammon Bundy is the leader of the domestic terror group that has occupied the Malheur National Widlife Refuge Building near Burns, Oregon because they believe the US federal government is an illegitimate, oppressive entity that must be stopped. Read the rest

T-Mobile's "Binge On" is just throttling for all video

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T-Mobile claims that its Binge On service (video that doesn't count against subscribers' data-caps) is a bit of pre-processing magic that makes the videos you watch load with less jitter and buffering, but that's not what's going on under the hood. Read the rest

Paypal rolls out the welcome mat for hackers

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It's not bad enough that Paypal is prone to shutting down your account and seizing your dough if you have a particularly successful fundraiser -- they also have virtually no capacity to prevent hackers from changing the email address, password and phone numbers associated with your account, even if you're using their two-factor authentication fob. Read the rest

Normalizing deviance: why tech companies repeatedly do stupid, destructive things

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"The normalization of deviance" is a sociological term describing how groups of people become accustomed to ignoring safety rules and best practices, becoming plagued with (sometimes fatal) problems that no one can seem to fix. Read the rest

$10 "bean to bar" chocolates were made from melted down Valrhona

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The Mast Brothers, a pair of bearded chocolatiers in Brooklyn, have built an empire on beautifully packaged "artisanal" chocolates that run $10/bar, billed as "bean to bar" confections. Read the rest

Pirate Bay cofounder invents an infernal device that will utterly bankrupt the music industry

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The record industry insists that all unauthorized copies represent lost sales. So Peter "brokep" Sunde, co-founder of The Pirate Bay, has built a machine that makes 100 copies per second of Gnarls Barkley's "Crazy," storing them in /dev/null (which is to say, deleting them even as they're created). Read the rest

Mall of America sues #Blacklivematter activists to force them to tweet protest cancellation

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Organizers of a demonstration in protest of the police shooting of Jamar Clark by Minneapolis police have been hit with a lawsuit by the Mall of America, which is seeking a court order requiring them to tweet and text a message announcing the cancellation of their protest. Read the rest

Israeli company's product can (allegedly) pwn any nearby mobile phone

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The Interapp from Tel Aviv's Rayzone Group is an intrusion appliance that uses a cache of zero-day exploits against common mobile phone OSes and is marketed as having the capability to infect and take over any nearby phone whose wifi is turned on. Read the rest

Juniper Networks backdoor confirmed, password revealed, NSA suspected

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Juniper Networks makes a popular line of enterprise firewalls whose operating system is called Screen OS. The company raised alarm bells with a late-day-on-a-Friday advisory announcing that they'd discovered "unauthorized code" in some versions of Screen OS, a strange occurrence that hinted at a security agency or criminal enterprise had managed to tamper with the product before it shipped. Read the rest

Billionaire Sheldon Adelson secretly bought newspaper, ordered all hands to investigate judges he hated

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No one knew who the mystery buyer of the Las Vegas Review-Journal was, just that $140m had changed hands under mysterious circumstances. But every reporter on the paper was ordered to drop everything and try to dig up dirt on three Clark County judges. Read the rest

Lifelock admits it lied in its ads (again), agrees to $100M fine

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Lifelock, the tragicomically awful identity-theft protection service, has settled the FTC's suit against it, agreeing to pay a $100M fine for violating its 2010 promise to end its deceptive advertising practices. Read the rest

Unevenly distributed futures: an interview with @internetofshit

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The @internetofshit account posts sardonic observations about the Internet of Things, which is filled with the most depressing array of useless, dangerously insecure, exploitative junk imaginable. Read the rest

The changing world of webcomics business models

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Thom from the Shadowbinders podcast writes, "Journalist Brady Dale from the New York Observer joins us this episode (MP3) as we talk about the changing business model of webcomics. Are webcomics 'dead' -- or just evolving? How will social media play into the business model of digital comics going forward? And what about the money -- where is the MONEY?!" Read the rest

Lifelock anti-identity theft service helped man stalk his ex-wife

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Suzanna Quintan's ex-husband bought a Lifelock account in her name, which let him monitor virtually everything she did in realtime, and then the company stonewalled and refused to help her shut down his access and figure out what he'd learned about her using it. Read the rest

Airbnb hosts consistently discriminate against black people

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Harvard Business School's Benjamin Edelman, Michael Luca, and Dan Svirsky created 20 identical Airbnb profiles, ten of which had names meant to sound African-American, ten of which were meant to sound white and undertook thousands of attempted Airbnb bookings in Baltimore, Dallas, LA, St Louis and DC. They found that black-seeming Airbnb users were 16% more likely to have their requests declined than white-seeming users. Read the rest

Experts baffled to learn that 2 years olds are being prescribed psychiatric drugs

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In 2014, US doctors wrote ~20,000 prescriptions for risperidone, quetiapine and other antipsychotics for children under the age of two; a cohort on whom these drugs have never been tested and for whom there is no on-label usage. Read the rest

Survey of wealthy customers leads insurer to offer "troll insurance"

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Chubb's new troll rider on its elite personal insurance package for its wealthiest customers now offers up to £50,000 to cover the cost of counselling, lost income, and professional anti-troll services (forensics, reputation management) for people who are targeted by online harassers. Read the rest

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