Juvenile criminal defense attorneys forced to agree to Taser's terms of service to see the state's evidence

California criminal defense attorney Rick Horowitz had a juvenile client, he was shocked when the prosecutor in the case told him that to see the evidence against his client, he'd have to log in to evidence.com, run by Taser International (now rebranded as Axon). Read the rest

Wells Fargo woulda gotten away with it too, if it wasn't for that darn trade union

For decades, Wells Fargo pressured its employees to commit millions of acts of fraud against its customers, using threats and blackballing to terrorize low-level employees. Read the rest

Wells Fargo board to force fraud-implicated former execs to repay $75m in bonuses

Former CEO John Stumpf (a major villain in the subprime scandal) previously lost $41m out of the $200m he made overseeing a multi-year fraud that stole from 2,000,000 of the bank's customers -- now he will have to repay another $28m. Read the rest

Hackers hijacked a bank's DNS and spent 5 hours raiding its customers' accounts

Kaspersky Labs reports that an unnamed large Brazilian financial institution with $27B in assets was compromised by hackers who took over its DNS -- by hijacking its NIC.br account -- and for 5 hours were able to impersonate the bank to all its online customers (and possibly to control its ATMs) in order to plunder their accounts and steal their credit card details. Read the rest

Video of a Brazilian cellphone-stealing gang at work

A team of six quietly surround their victim, who is walking down the sidewalk with his phone held up to his ear. He is oblivious. One team member deftly reaches out and snatches the phone from behind the victim. At the same time, another team member shoves the victim in the back, startling and disorienting him. By the time the victim turns around, the phone-snatcher is lost in the crowd, and everyone on the team walks along as if nothing happened.

[via] Read the rest

Penn State trustee "running out of sympathy" for "so-called" victims raped by the college's coach

Penn State coach Jerry Sandusky was convicted of multiple counts of raping the children in his care. He's spending the rest of his life in jail. It was covered up for decades by his disgraced boss Joe Paterno, who croaked before he could get nailed in court. The college's president, Graham Spanier, was himself convicted last week for child endangerment. But now all that's dealt with, a Penn State trustee has harsh words for their victims.

Penn State trustee Albert L. Lord said he is “running out of sympathy” for the “so-called” victims of former Nittany Lions assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, according to an email sent to The Chronicle of Higher Education.

"Running out of sympathy for 35 yr old, so-called victims with 7 digit net worth," Lord said in the email sent Saturday. "Do not understand why they were so prominent in trial. As you learned, Graham Spanier never knew Sandusky abused anyone."

Last September, the college "honored" Paterno at a game.

The fuck-you attitude Penn State brass has towards the victims is breathtaking. They've had to pay out $93m, but I guess that's pocket change to a college with a $4bn endowment.

Penn State trustee says he is 'running out of sympathy' for 'so-called' victims Read the rest

A rare class-action victory over Wells Fargo's fake accounts proves binding arbitration sucks

Wells Fargo got caught ripping off millions of customers by setting up fake accounts in their names, then billing them for "services" related to those accounts, sometimes tanking their credit-ratings, costing them jobs, even their houses -- but the company says you're not allowed to sue them because their employees fraudulently signed your name to a "binding arbitration" agreement that forces you to take your case to a fake judge whose salary they pay. Read the rest

Weird laws from around the world

(NSFW language)

Funny: In Florida, it's unlawful to have sex with a porcupine. Sad: In Russia, it's illegal to tell minors that gay people exist. (Sam O'Nella)

Read the rest

Store manager vs alleged shoplifter

KodyXO's video has everything going for it, from landscape-oriented 60fps footage to elderly ladies refereeing a wrestling match in a grocery store between a store manager and an alleged shoplifter. There's even an annoying photobomber!

EMPLOYEE: "You're shoplifting, you can't shoplift here!" THE ACCUSED: "Yeah? Why not?" EMPLOYEE: (momentarily baffled) "Wh.. Why not?"

The arrestee was reportedly charged with third-degree robbery.

Big retailers might let you walk off if the cops don't arrive in time, but stores can and do detain shoplifters. Rite-Aid's got its staffer's back, but one imagines there may be a chain-wide round of "why we just let them go" retraining days quite soon.

It's interesting to see how different media cast the events of the video. The local Hillsborough Tribune sticks to the facts, as it sees them...

The two fight over the purse, with the woman pulling, yanking and twisting in order to pry it from his grip. At one point the woman tries to punch the employee, and kicks him. He tells her that she is not allowed to shoplift in the store. Eventally the man wrestles her to the floor as she attempts to strike him.

"Ma'am, you need to chill out," a voice is heard on the video as the woman is on the ground. "You need to chill."

The woman screams "Let me go!" several times, but eventually relinquishes the purse to the employee as Washington County Sheriff's deputies arrive and arrest her. ... "You can use reasonable force to detain someone," Reimann said.

Read the rest

Anti-theft toilet paper dispenser with facial recognition technology

The public bathroom at Beijing's Temple of Heaven Park now has a toilet paper dispenser outfitted with a camera and facial recognition technology to prevent toilet paper theft. From the New York Times:

Before entering restrooms in the park, visitors must now stare into a computer mounted on the wall for three seconds before a machine dispenses a sheet of toilet paper, precisely two feet in length. If visitors require more, they are out of luck. The machine will not dispense a second roll to the same person for nine minutes.

At the Temple of Heaven Park, one of Beijing’s busiest tourist sites, many people said on Monday they were pleased by the new machines.

“The people who steal toilet paper are greedy,” said He Zhiqiang, 19, a customer service worker from the northwestern region of Ningxia. “Toilet paper is a public resource. We need to prevent waste...”

I agree with park visitor Wang Jianquan, 63: “The sheets are too short."

"China’s High-Tech Tool to Fight Toilet Paper Bandits" (NYT) Read the rest

Longstanding, unpatched Bluetooth vulnerability lets burglars shut down Google security cameras

A security researcher has published a vulnerability and proof-of-concept exploits in Google's Internet of Things security cameras, marketed as Nest Dropcam, Nest Dropcam Pro, Nest Cam Outdoor and Nest Cam Indoor; these vulnerabilities were disclosed to Google last fall, but Google/Nest have not patched them despite the gravity of the vulnerability and the long months since the disclosure. Read the rest

If Google wins its trade secrets suit against Uber, it could tank Uber

Google is suing Uber, alleging that the company recruited a former Google exec who had secretly offered to give them access to trade-secrets from Google's self-driving car project. Read the rest

13 shots fired into Tulsa gay center

Thirteen shots were fired into Tulsa's Dennis R. Neill Equality Center Monday from a passing truck or SUV. The Gayly reports that no-one was hurt.

Around 12:30 am last night a white, four door pickup pulled up in front of the Dennis R. Neill Equality Center and fired 13 shots at the windows and front door. Office Administrator Olivia Cotter discovered the damage to the protective glass on our windows and front door around 8:15 am Monday morning, March 6. ...

"We are working closely with Tulsa Police," said Oklahomans For Equality officials. "Captain Cathy Reynolds, the LGBTQ liaison with the Tulsa Police Department, has made our safety and security a top priority."

"I am sickened, yet not surprised, by the bullet holes that now riddle the front of the Dennis R. Neill Equality Center," said Geoffrey Brewster, Board President, Oklahomans for Equality. "They are the latest reminder of the deep-seated hatred some individuals have towards the LGBTQ community. Oklahomans for Equality condemns every act of hatred and violence perpetrated against any individual or group based upon difference.

"We are keenly aware after an event such as this, or the Pulse Night Club shooting in Orlando, FL, that sexual orientation and gender identity are not protected classes in current hate crime legislation. Even though hatred of difference is the motivation for such acts, our community is not equally protected under the law. This must change, and we call on our community and our allies to demand it."

Oklahoma legislators are planning to pass a bill that reportedly strips LGBTQ people of housing and employment protections. Read the rest

Synagogue vandalism suspect is accountant with a master's degree

Stuart Wright has two tattoos, writes Sam Charles of The Chicago Sun-Times: one says "Jesus is love" and the other is a swastika. This educated accountant from the suburbs was arrested late February and charged with a hate crime after someone smashed the window of a downtown synagogue and stuck swastikas on the doors.

Wright graduated from Hinsdale Central High School in 2003 and went on to the University of Iowa. He later received a master’s degree in accounting from DePaul University.

According to Wright’s LinkedIn profile, he worked as an accountant for four companies between June 2012 and September 2015. He became a certified public accountant in 2013 and his license is valid until September 2018, according to state records.

Property records show Wright’s father — a retired investment banker — owns a five-bedroom, six-bathroom house with a three-car garage in west suburban Oak Brook. It has been for sale since February 2016 with a price tag of nearly $1.5 million.

These lonely rich kids, with their SUVs and dreamy resentments, so mollycoddled they don't even notice the cameras: this is Trump's hottest demo and you'll be hearing more from it soon. Read the rest

Shark robs gas station

A man wearing a shark costume robbed a gas station in Christchurch, New Zealand. The shark and his accomplice were armed with a knife and a hammer. They robbed the store of "a haul of confectionery," aka candy. From Newshub:

The store attendants have been offered Victim Support counselling.

Police searched the area but failed to find the pair.

One was described as wearing a blue and white shark onesie, a grey cap, black gloves and socks, and had a dark blue bandana covering his face.

Read the rest

Uber uses data-mining to identify and block riders who may be cops, investigators or regulators

Greyball is Uber's codename for a program that tries to predict which new signups are secretly cops, regulators or investigators who could make trouble for the company, deployed in "Boston, Paris and Las Vegas, and in countries like Australia, China and South Korea" where the company was fighting with the authorities. Read the rest

Taser ships a pistol-holster sensor that triggers record mode in all nearby bodycams when cops draw their guns

The Signal Sidearm is a sensor designed to be fitted to a police pistol holster: when triggered, it wirelessly signals all nearby police bodycams to go into record-and-archive mode. It's made by Axon, the bodycam division of Taser International. Read the rest

More posts