US tells Germany to stop using Huawei equipment or lose some intelligence access

Found on The Verge on Tuesday, 12 March 2019
Browse Politics

The Trump administration has been pressing allies to end their relationships with Huawei, but Germany, moving ahead with its plans, has not moved to ban the company from its networks.

According to the Journal, a letter sent from the US Ambassador to Germany warns the country that the US will stop sharing some secrets if it allows Huawei to work on its next-generation 5G infrastructure.

At least they are open and direct about it. The sad thing however is that there are not that many alternatives, considering that almost every major manufacturer produces in China; so every hardware could have backdoors.

Less than a month to go before Google breaks hundreds of thousands of links all over the Internet

Found on Philip Greenspun’s Weblog on Monday, 11 March 2019
Browse Internet

Google purchased Picasa, a super efficient photo editor that offered seamless integration with online publishing (e.g., you add a photo to an album on your desktop computer and it automatically gets pushed to the online version of the album).

It was so easy to publish the photos via Picasa that I just linked to the photo album from the HTML page. Now I will have to move the photos somewhere else, edit the HTML file, git push, git pull, etc. Then repeat for every other blog posting and web page that links to a Picasa-created album.

So, in other words, someone is annoyed because a free service ends and his "cloud gallery" vanishes. Just learn from it and do not trust the cloud to be there forever; if you want to have control over your data, take care of it yourself. Maybe some people will learn this valueable lesson with Picasa going down.

Wildlife World Zoo: Jaguar attacks selfie-taker

Found on BBC News on Sunday, 10 March 2019
Browse Various

When she crossed the barrier and approached the enclosure to photograph herself with the jaguar, it swiped out through the fencing, leaving deep gashes on her arms.

"The jaguar lets go of the girl somewhat because the claw catches on just her sweater. At that moment, I grabbed the girl around the torso and pulled her away from the cage and it unlatches from her claw.

People just get more and more stupid.

JavaScript infinite alert prank lands 13-year-old Japanese girl in hot water

Found on Ars Technica on Saturday, 09 March 2019
Browse Legal-Issues

The malicious code in question? An infinite loop that popped up an alert message, immediately showing a new message each time you click OK.

The code itself is extraordinarily simple; it's literally nothing more than an infinite loop and an alert box that prints a kaomoji and a short message that translates as "It's no use closing it so many times."

This is just ridiculous and police should not waste its time with things like that.

800+ Million Emails Leaked Online by Email Verification Service

Found on Security Discovery on Friday, 08 March 2019
Browse Internet

On February 25th, 2019, I discovered a non-password protected 150GB-sized MongoDB instance. This is perhaps the biggest and most comprehensive email database I have ever reported.

In addition to the email databases this unprotected Mongo instance it also uncovered details on the possible owner of the database – a company named ‘’ – which offered the services of ‘Enterprise Email Validation’. Unfortunately, it appears that once emails were uploaded for verification they were also stored in plain text. seems to be down and gone now. Nothing to be sad about, because it looks like all they did was to spam the submitted email address with pointless mails to filter out those which are dead. So, more like a tool for spammers than for legit business people.

Zuckerberg: Facebook will shift focus to private networks instead of open ones

Found on Ars Technica on Thursday, 07 March 2019
Browse Internet

On Wednesday, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg published a more-than-3,000-word blog post that seems to declare a major shift in Facebook's strategy. In it, he says he believes that "a privacy-focused communications platform will become even more important than today's open platforms."

Zuckerberg has announced privacy initiatives in the past, but then not delivered on them. This lengthy blog post guarantees nothing but the start of a new phase of the conversation.

It's just another one of his lies; don't fall for it. He will still use every information about you.

5G is 'ready' once you redefine 'ready'... and then redefine 'reality'

Found on The Register on Wednesday, 06 March 2019
Browse Technology

If the industry had one job at Mobile World Congress last week, it was to tell the world that 5G – the biggest thing since "electricity or the automobile", according to Qualcomm's CEO* – was almost upon us.

5G is really an umbrella term that covers so many new technologies and opens up so many new business use cases. Under the umbrella is almost every theoretical use case, business model and bleeding edge labs innovation any one has dreamt up in the past decade.

5G is the next dotcom bubble. Salespersons are lobbying politicians, and that means a big failure is about to happen.

Two in five 'AI startups' essentially have no AI, mega-survey of nearly 3,000 upstarts finds

Found on The Register on Tuesday, 05 March 2019
Browse Various

A full 40 per cent of tech companies describing themselves as "AI startups" had no evidence of machine-learning tech "material" to what the firms actually did, a report by VC investor MMC Ventures.

VC investment in AI has increased 15x in five years, the firm estimated. MMC also found that a greater proportion of AI startups are highly valued – for now.

Obviously. AI is just another buzzword that makes investors drool; like 5G, Smartwhatever, Cloud and Agile. Many of the so-called experts don't even have a clue and define AI as "algorithms".

French tax on internet giants could yield 500 million euros per year: Le Maire

Found on Reuters on Monday, 04 March 2019
Browse Internet

Le Maire told Le Parisien newspaper the tax is aimed at companies with worldwide digital revenue of at least 750 million and French revenue of more than 25 million euros.

The paper listed Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple (the four so-called “GAFA” companies) but also Uber, Airbnb, Booking and French online advertising specialist Criteo as targets.

How about making them pay the current taxes first, for a start?

Revealed: Facebook’s global lobbying against data privacy laws

Found on The Guardian on Sunday, 03 March 2019
Browse Politics

Facebook has targeted politicians around the world – including the former UK chancellor, George Osborne – promising investments and incentives while seeking to pressure them into lobbying on Facebook’s behalf against data privacy legislation, an explosive new leak of internal Facebook documents has revealed.

The documents, which have been seen by the Observer and Computer Weekly, reveal a secretive global lobbying operation targeting hundreds of legislators and regulators in an attempt to procure influence across the world, including in the UK, US, Canada, India, Vietnam, Argentina, Brazil, Malaysia and all 28 states of the EU.

If that does not underline the need to make privacy and data protection an important issue, then what else? Facebook knows very well that its entire business model is about to collapse when other nations realize the dangers of total surveillance and come up with similar laws.