Russia: “In the Name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit Virus Hits Russian Computers” and Demands Money”

#AceSecurityNews says  that New draft anti-terrorism legislation grants the FSB greater access to information about users of popular websites such as Google and Facebook;

The Federal Customs Service starts implementing tough new rules relating to parcel deliveries – much to the dismay of on-line shoppers; IT experts raise the alarm over a new virus that’s apparently on a mission from God – beginning its cyber attack by demanding money in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

Father,Son and Holy SpirtAccording to the latest news from the Manila Times and there post MOSCOW has added a spiritual dimension to the world of hacking, a new Trojan virus has emerged in Russia that locks computers and demands money for church repairs.

Victims may feel the urge to pray if their computers are hit by the malware, which claims to be acting “in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.” More specifically, the Trojan-Dropper.Win32.Dapato.dggc virus claims to be moved by the last of the three aspects of the Trinity to lock up user’s files.

Father,Son and Holy Spirit2Recovery is promised in return for a donation, which is allegedly to be spent on church restoration, the Kaspersky Lab antivirus company reported on its corporate blog.

A similar trick is often employed in the non-virtual world by Russian beggars, who dress up as priests and pretend to collect money for church needs.

The Russian-language Trojan is distributed as a .zip archive containing unspecified court documents allegedly intended for the user, Kaspersky Lab said on the blog on Monday.

The hackers behind the spiritual computer sabotage have not been identified. The Russian Orthodox Church has not commented on the allegedly pious malware at the time of publication.

Russia is undergoing an alleged religious revival, with numbers of believers – though not churchgoers – skyrocketing in recent years, according to polls.

Separately, Russia outranked the United States, Germany, China and Poland for the number of cyber-attacks on computers in 2013, Kaspersky Lab reported in December. 

 

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#acesecuritynews, #anti-terrorism-legislation, #cyberwarfare, #facebook, #father, #federal-security-service-russia, #fsb, #google, #holy-spirit, #holyspirit, #kaspersky-lab, #manila-times, #russian-orthodox-church, #target-corporation, #trinity, #trojan-horses, #united-states

#NSA #Darpa & #Google “Join Forces As Military Contractor”

#AceWorldNews says this post outlines the tie up between three parties, #NSA for Spying, #Darpa for the defence and research into robot’s as future warfare machine, where games become reality and #Google as the robotics provider and computerization techniques.

Google has spent the last decade building databases on everything, including each and every computer-using American citizen. Now it intends to join forces with the United States Military to put all that info to good use. The giant “swooshing sound” you are hearing right now is the major leap forward of the Mark of the Beast.

The DC: Google CEO Larry Page has rapidly positioned Google to become an indispensable U.S. military contractor. Google recently purchased Boston Dynamics, a robotics pioneer that produces amazing humanoid robots for the U.S. Defense Department.

This development invites attention to Google’s broader military contracting ambitions — especially since Boston Dynamics is the eighth robotics company that Google has bought in the last six months.

google-becomes-military-contractor-for-the-pentagon-war-machine

Just like drones are the future of air warfare, humanoid robots and self-driving vehicles will be the future of ground warfare according to U.S. defense plans.

There are many other reasons why the U.S. military is on path to become Google’s single largest customer. Likewise these reasons indicate Google has a closer working relationship with the NSA than it acknowledges publicly.

First, consider the military value of Google’s research and development efforts and the military contracting pipeline revenue it could represent.

Page created Google X, which is Google’s secretive research and development lab tasked with pursuing “moon-shot” technology breakthroughs. So far, Google X is best known for its earth-bound self-driving cars and Google Glass.

Tellingly, the purpose of the original “moon-shots” by the Soviet Union and America was military. The two Cold War superpowers were in a “space race” to publicly showcase the technological and military supremacy of their rival ideologies.

Simply, America’s Cold War “moon-shot” was about winning the military space and arms race with the former Soviet Union.

Even more tellingly, the greatest application for almost all of Google X’s “moon-shot” technological efforts — are military. Like drones, self-driving vehicles, and robot soldiers could enhance military surveillance and payload delivery while reducing risks to military personnel.

Google Glass’ advances in wearable augmented reality could offer American soldiers tactical advantages over enemy combatants. Google’s Project Loon could quickly provide a supplemental battlefield bandwidth advantage in remote areas.

Second, Google’s personnel hiring signals its aspirations for a closer Google-military relationship

English: This was the most up-to-date DARPA lo...

English: This was the most up-to-date DARPA logo as of January 2009. It is obsolete now. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In 2012, Google hired Regina Dugan, the head of DOD’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), DOD’s in-house “moon-shot” idea factory. At the time a Google spokesperson said: “Regina is a technical pioneer who brought the future of technology to the military during her time at DARPA.  She will be a real asset to Google.”

Simply, few people could have a better insider knowledge of the U.S. military’s future technology needs that Google could exploit than Ms. Dugan.

Third, Google has a long history of working for, and with, the NSA and the other U.S. intelligence services.

In 2004, Google purchased satellite mapping company Keyhole, which was strategically important enough to be funded by the CIA’s investment fund In-Q-Tel. Google turned the aptly named “Keyhole” surveillance capability into the wildly popular Google Earth and Google Maps service used by over a billion people and over one million websites.

In 2008, the San Francisco Chronicle reported that U.S. spy agencies use “Google equipment as the backbone of Intellipedia, a network aimed at helping agents share intelligence.” The article also reported that Google had a support contract with the NSA.

In 2010, the Washington Post reported that Google worked with the NSA to figure out how Chinese hackers broke into Google. The New York Times later reported that those Chinese hackers stole Google’s entire password system called Gaia.

Fourth, Google has too many unique capabilities and metadata sets that are of strategic value to the NSA to believe Google’s denials that it does not work closely with the NSA

Snowden’s NSA revelations have underscored the high value the NSA puts on collecting the metadata of who is communicating with whom, when, where, and how much.

Remember Google is metadata central. It is veritable surveillance catnip for the NSA Think about it. Google’s cookies track the Internet behavior of nearly 2 billion people. Over a billion people regularly use Google Search, Maps, Android, and YouTube. And about a half billion people use Gmail and Google + social media.

Former NSA Director Michael Hayden has said “Gmail is the preferred Internet service provider of terrorists worldwide.”

Thus Google has the unique capability to surveil for the NSA the online behavior of a targeted group of people by country, language, interests, keywords, names, communications, physical location, movements, time and more.

Simply put, Google’s world’s largest computer already can do what the NSA wants to do most.

Add to all this Google’s unique capability to instantaneously translate 80 different languages across applications, and why wouldn’t the NSA covet a close working relationship with Google?

Finally, the behavior of America’s greatest military rivals, Russia and China, speaks volumes about the likely extent of unreported close cooperation between Google and NSA/DOD.

Remember it was the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency that invented the Internet in the early ‘70s. It is no coincidence that Russia and China have been the most hostile to allowing Google’s Internet dominance to extend into their countries.

In summation, the accumulating evidence indicates that the U.S. military is on path to become Google’s single largest customer.

Page’s strategic positioning of Google’s biggest investments to strongly align with future U.S. military needs are no coincidence. It is likely tacit confirmation of a much stronger relationship than Google has acknowledged to date.

Page’s creeping militarization of Google will increasingly become problematic for the privacy of Google’s foreign users, which generate over half of Google’s revenues. While U.S. law purportedly prevents the #NSA from surveilling Americans without a warrant, the NSA’s official mandate is to surveil foreign signals intelligence.

Scott Cleland is President of Precursor LLC, a consultancy serving Fortune 500 clients, some of which are Google competitors. He is also author of “Search & Destroy: Why You Can’t Trust Google Inc. Cleland has testified before both the Senate and House antitrust subcommittees on Google and also before the relevant House oversight subcommittee on Google’s privacy problems.

 

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#aceworldnews, #boston-dynamics, #google, #larry-page, #national-security-agency, #regina-e-dugan, #soviet-union, #united-states-armed-forces, #united-states-department-of-defense

“Google Working on Airfare Comparison Tool”

Google Is Working On Airfare Price Comparison Tool That Will Blow Everyone Out Of That Water

by Matthew Sparkes on Jan 13, 2014, 7:50 AM

Advertisement

Google is working on a new price comparison tool for airline travel which will “blow everyone else out of the water”, according to budget airline Ryanair.

Speaking to Irish newspaper the Sunday Independent, airline boss Michael O’Leary said that he was helping Google with some “exciting developments” in airline ticket sales.

The company has shared its pricing information with the company, which is developing a service that will display fares without bias and then direct customers to third party sites where they can buy tickets.

"Google will say, ‘Here are the fares,’ then you click straight through to Ryanair or someone else. It blows everyone else out of the water," said O’Leary.

"Because Google, being Google, want to show all of the prices from all of the airlines on display. They don’t want to charge us, they make all of their money out of advertising.

"They don’t want to have a limited or biased search. They want to be able to say they’ve screened all of these airlines on all of the routes. They need to find who has got the lowest airfare on these routes… and that’s us," he said.

O’Leary also said that Ryanair was working on incorporating more technology into its own services.

"In five years’ time, everyone on Ryanair will be paying on their mobile. You’ll pay for your drinks and snacks with your mobile. You’ll upgrade to priority boarding on your mobile,” he said.

This transmission is intended for the named addressee(s) only and may contain sensitive or protectively marked material up to RESTRICTED and should be handled accordingly. Unless you are the named addressee (or authorised to receive it for the addressee) you may not copy or use it, or disclose it to anyone else. If you have received this transmission in error please notify the sender immediately.

#aceworldnews, #airfare, #comparison-tool, #google, #michael-oleary, #ryanair, #working

” Google Will Use Your Google+ Photo In Ad’s Starting Today Unless You Turn It Off”

#AceSecurityNews by Ryan Bushey on Jan 10, 2014, 9:55 AM

After announcing a new update to their terms of service back in November, Google will start using your profile information in advertisements.

This means that your profile name and photo could pop up in the form of recommendation regarding an app in the Google Play Store.

Fortunately, there’s a way to opt out of it. Here’s how.

Once you access your Google+ profile, click on Home. A drop down menu should appear. Go to settings.

Google Shared Endorsements

After that, you’ll see the Shared Endorsements option. Click on Edit.

Google+ Settings

Scroll all the way down to the bottom. Make sure that box is unchecked if you don’t want your info appearing in these ads. Google needs permission to do this.

Google+ Shared Endorsements

This transmission is intended for the named addressee(s) only and may contain sensitive or protectively marked material up to RESTRICTED and should be handled accordingly. Unless you are the named addressee (or authorised to receive it for the addressee) you may not copy or use it, or disclose it to anyone else. If you have received this transmission in error please notify the sender immediately.

#acesecuritynews, #ads, #google, #photos

#AceGuestNews & Views: ” The Year Ahead – Beautiful Content Everywhere, Feeling the Love”

#AceNewsServices says l have a number of people that send me posts all year round and would like me to post their Guest Views some l have found not to our news groups ethos, but occasionally someone has thought it through and their views are worthy of print. These are their view’s and l thank them for their input.

Their Thoughts and Feelings about 2013 and 2014:   

More than anything 2014 is going to be a year of beauty, acceptance, and becoming more comfortable with the fact that we’re not alone. even in our own thoughts.

In 2013 we saw:

  1.  The demise (more of a lowering of expectations) of 3D and movement to the next era of insanely brilliant moving image brilliance with 4K content and growing possibilities
  2. The death (realignment) of the PC, rise of everything mobile, constant connection
  3. The stimulated deterioration of long-term thinking being replaced by ultra short-term images/messages that are replaced in a nanosecond by newer/funer images/messages
  4. Business pressures demanding a more rapidly deployed and flexible infrastructure that could respond/react in minutes/hours rather than days/weeks economically. The Cloud
  5. The “horror” to discover that even our most innocuous utterances, activities were being followed by someone, somewhere but not enough to skip a beat or a keystroke

The list at first blush may look like a very pessimistic view of our “progress” but actually the last two years have been a major seismic shift – forward – in becoming increasingly more comfortable with the speed of technology change/adoption. And it’s only getting better…faster.

In 2014 we’ll see:

  1.  4K content production, delivery, enjoyment will increase more rapidly than many expect not just because people will buy UHD TV sets more quickly than anticipated but because more 4K content – new and old – will be appreciated and we’ll see a demand force the move more quickly than we did with  the shift from SD to HD. The change will also have a positive/negative effect on what we watch, when we watch it, where we watch it. OTT (over the top) quality streaming will enable more viewing options forcing the change of cable/satellite firms to become service providers, not gate keepers.
The first developers of IBM PC computers negle...

The first developers of IBM PC computers neglected audio capabilities (first IBM model, 1981). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

  1. First appearing in 1977 the PC has had a good run and is being rapidly augmented – not replaced – by new tablets and smartphones. It’s estimated that more than a half billion of the desktop/notebook systems are in use today and the technology is on track to keep them fresh and relevant. The challenge (opportunity) for the industry is to offer a range of screen sizes for tablets and smartphones so they meet the uses of each consumer not broad theoretical “groups.” The 9-12 inch tablet will establish itself as the entertainment/work device of choice by Gen X, Gen Yers while the 3-7 inch phone/phablet will become the communications/entertainment device of choice for Gen Cers
  • The instant-on acceptance of TVs and appliances has raised the expectations of people in almost everything they see, hear, do. It is difficult to “find the time” to sit through something as exciting and breathtaking as Alfonso Cuarón’s Gravity without the addition of show Tweets and 3-minute YouTube views of outtakes and goofs. Fortunately the human computer – the mind – is upgrading itself to make multitasking easier to manage, control, live with…I hope
  • Image representing SAP as depicted in CrunchBase

    Image via CrunchBase

    1. The Cloud will experience a lot of upheaval in 2014 that will also have a mixed effect on the computer hardware/software industry. The industry will experience a lot of change this year as startups will be squeezed out or acquired by others and the herd will be thinned to the point where the dominant players will be Amazon, IBM, Google, Microsoft. This consolidation of horrendously big data centers will also place a lot of pressure on hardware producers like Dell and HP as well as software providers such as Oracle, SAP and VMware which will have a much smaller prospective customer base. The saving grace for these organizations will be the growing SMB (small to medium business) segment which is growing very nicely
  • While we all “knew” that businesses were spying on each other and tracking customer activities on the Internet and we “knew” governments were spying on each other, 2013 marked the turning point where we now “really knew” it. While we will continue to give lip service to transparency, the security industry will enjoy solid – but futile – growth in every area – consumer, business, public organizations. Globally governments, businesses, individuals will use all the tools they can develop/find to keep their friends close and their enemies even closer. The black hats/white hats will finally become grey hats
  • Image representing IBM as depicted in CrunchBase

    Image via CrunchBase

    Conclusion: 

    • Lower cost video capture solutions like Black Magic’s 4K $400 and $4,000 cameras combined with high-performance, low-cost video post production systems will reduce overall content production costs so studios, indies and businesses will deliver more eye-popping content more quickly
    • Standards organizations like SMPTE (Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers) are already developing more efficient solutions for delivering (streaming) content rather than forcing native 4K content delivery. Rather than relying on pushing  more pixels through the already cramped pipe they will focus on more delivering higher frame rates, better bit rates and a broader color gamut more effectively with lower bandwidth requirements
    • While producing new 4K content is an expensive/time-consuming process, studios, content owners and firms like 4K Studios are finding they can mine their libraries of content, economically re-purpose/represent old movies/shows and find an eager market for the material
    • UHD TV set manufacturers are “stimulating” people to replace their “old” HD sets more quickly and are working directly with content owners to deliver material now rather than waiting for the cable gatekeepers to negotiate distribution
    • The perfect storm of new Xbox and PS4, growing array of versatile media players like Roku, Nuvola, NetFlix, Hulu and UltraFlix are giving consumers just the content they want – mixture of free/paid – helping legacy TV services to become less relevant
    • Today there are a half billion PCs in use and the sales growth has obviously slowed as mobile devices – tablets/smartphones – take more of the consumer’s budget. Still only about 230M + tablets will be sold this next year and more than 500M smartphones. Three players will continue to dominate the tablet market – Apple, Samsung, Amazon – and two will dominate the smart phone market – Apple and Samsung. The big struggle here will be in the OS arena – Android, iOS and Windows.  To be more in control of its own destiny you can expect to see Samsung move more of its mobile devices from Android to Baba in a slow, cautious fashion
    • Face it there are just too many cloud service companies in the pool and 25 percent of them will disappear this coming year either through acquisition or bankruptcy. The economy of scale plays too big of a roll for second tier service providers to make the heavy investment in infrastructure
    • Because C office folks see huge savings by buying into the cloud it also means less IT investment – servers, storage, software – which could reduce global IT spending to single-digit growth. It will also require a major focus shift from enterprise to SMB sales
    • I’m not quite certain why Snowdon’s “revelations” of the foul activities of the #NSA (National Security Agency) gets so much attention but it has certainly stimulated the security industry. People have put, gathering, grabbing big data on the Internet for years. Look in the mirror…you are big data. And there’s money to be made, things to be found in your data. It’s what people gave freely to get free stuff! It’s the financial motivation to mine that data that fuels Facebook’s/Google’s growth. It is just too tempting for governments, organizations not to tap into. It’s not that people didn’t know that spies, espionage, surveillance didn’t know it…it’s on the news and the storyline of every movie, TV show. Everyone is suddenly outraged even though he/she wants to know what the other is thinking/doing while protecting their thoughts/ideas/actions. Covering up my stuff while finding out dirt about the other guy is a big business, getting bigger. Just know everyone !

    <

    p style=”text-align:center;”>Is cheating, spying except you and me and…I’m not too sure about you.

    <

    p style=”text-align:left;”>Editor: Says if you have your own thoughts and feelings about 2013 or 2014 or anything really, just send me your details, by leaving a simple link to your site on the comments box, to a post or posts you would like to feature. Thank you.   

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    #aceguestnews, #aceguestviews, #acenewsservices, #alfonso-cuaron, #cloud, #cloud-computing, #google, #ibm, #national-security-agency, #netflix, #personal-computer, #samsung, #sap-ag, #television, #vmware, #youtube

    Google just made it so strangers can email your Gmail account – here’s how to stop them

    #AceNewsServices says follow the instructions on this site and switch of the latest Gmail changes – to stop strangers emailing you, without your permission #Privacy

    #gmail, #google

    #AceNewsServices says according to BI and Bloomberg they…

    #AceNewsServices says according to BI and Bloomberg they have reported that Google X, the cordoned-off branch of Google that’s spawned stuff like Google Glass and the driver-less car, is now meeting with the FDA to discuss medical devices.

    The whispered theory here is that there may be bio-sensors in Google Glass that will listen to your body and provide feedback to the device.

    The meeting included at least four Google workers, some of whom have connections with Google X — and have done research on sensors, including contact lenses that help wearers monitor their biological data. Google staff met with those at the Food and Drug Administration who regulate eye devices and diagnostics for heart conditions, according to the agency’s public calendar.

    More Soon ……………………………………………………………………………………………

    #bloomberg-television, #fda, #google, #google-glass

    #Tor: Hidden Service Protocol Making Searching the Web a Little More Secure #Privacy

    #AceSecurityNews says as many of you know l have written a number of articles relating to the recent spying and back-door tactics used by both the US #NSA and the UK #GCHQ  agencies. These together with a number of service providers and hidden service protocols, have led to people searching the web to try to find alternative ways, to protect their #data from these prying eyes.

    Startpage

    I personally have experimented with a number of search machines one such is Startpage and another is “DuckDuckGo” but the Tor Network favours “Startpage” and the bare essentials in add on’s and with the use of  this “Hidden Service Protocol” you can search the web a little more securely. So l thought l would like to share the simple instructions for setting up this network with my readers. To those that already use these types of relays and onion routers, my apologies.

    English: Tor Logo

    English: Tor Logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

    Here are 6 easy steps to learning how “Tor Actual Works” please share and comment as usual and thanks for taking time to read this post. 

    Tor makes it possible for users to hide their locations while offering various kinds of services, such as web publishing or an instant messaging server. Using Tor “rendezvous points,” other Tor users can connect to these hidden services, each without knowing the other’s network identity. This page describes the technical details of how this rendezvous protocol works. For a more direct how-to, see our configuring hidden services page.

    Step One: A hidden service needs to advertise its existence in the Tor network before clients will be able to contact it. Therefore, the service randomly picks some relays, builds circuits to them, and asks them to act as introduction points by telling them its public key. Note that in the following figures the green links are circuits rather than direct connections. By using a full Tor circuit, it’s hard for anyone to associate an introduction point with the hidden server’s IP address. While the introduction points and others are told the hidden service’s identity (public key), we don’t want them to learn about the hidden server’s location (IP address).

    Tor hidden service step one

    Step Two: The hidden service assembles a hidden service descriptor, containing its public key and a summary of each introduction point, and signs this descriptor with its private key. It uploads that descriptor to a distributed hash table. The descriptor will be found by clients requesting XYZ.onion where XYZ is a 16 character name derived from the service’s public key. After this step, the hidden service is set up.

    Although it might seem impractical to use an automatically generated service name, it serves an important goal: Everyone – including the introduction points, the distributed hash table directory, and of course the clients – can verify that they are talking to the right hidden service. See also Zooko’s conjecture that out of Decentralized, Secure, and Human-Meaningful, you can achieve at most two. Perhaps one day somebody will implement a Petname design for hidden service names?

    Tor hidden service step two

    Step Three: A client that wants to contact a hidden service needs to learn about its onion address first. After that, the client can initiate connection establishment by downloading the descriptor from the distributed hash table. If there is a descriptor for XYZ.onion (the hidden service could also be offline or have left long ago, or there could be a typo in the onion address), the client now knows the set of introduction points and the right public key to use. Around this time, the client also creates a circuit to another randomly picked relay and asks it to act as rendezvous point by telling it a one-time secret.

    Tor hidden service step three

    Step Four: When the descriptor is present and the rendezvous point is ready, the client assembles an introduce message (encrypted to the hidden service’s public key) including the address of the rendezvous point and the one-time secret. The client sends this message to one of the introduction points, requesting it be delivered to the hidden service. Again, communication takes place via a Tor circuit: nobody can relate sending the introduce message to the client’s IP address, so the client remains anonymous.

    Tor hidden service step four

    Step Five: The hidden service decrypts the client’s introduce message and finds the address of the rendezvous point and the one-time secret in it. The service creates a circuit to the rendezvous point and sends the one-time secret to it in a rendezvous message.

    At this point it is of special importance that the hidden service sticks to the same set of entry guards when creating new circuits. Otherwise an attacker could run his own relay and force a hidden service to create an arbitrary number of circuits in the hope that the corrupt relay is picked as entry node and he learns the hidden server’s IP address via timing analysis. This attack was described by Øverlier and Syverson in their paper titled Locating Hidden Servers.

    Tor hidden service step five

    In the last step, the rendezvous point notifies the client about successful connection establishment. After that, both client and hidden service can use their circuits to the rendezvous point for communicating with each other. The rendezvous point simply relays (end-to-end encrypted) messages from client to service and vice versa.

    One of the reasons for not using the introduction circuit for actual communication is that no single relay should appear to be responsible for a given hidden service. This is why the rendezvous point never learns about the hidden service’s identity.

    In general, the complete connection between client and hidden service consists of 6 relays: 3 of them were picked by the client with the third being the rendezvous point and the other 3 were picked by the hidden service.

    Tor hidden service step six

    There are more detailed descriptions about the hidden service protocol than this one. See the Tor design paper for an in-depth design description and the rendezvous specification for the message formats.

     

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    #acesecuritynews, #duckduckgo, #google, #home-page, #ip-address, #national-security-agency, #nsa, #startpage, #tor

    Ballmer calls Google a ‘monopoly’ that should come under antitrust scrutiny

    AceNewsServices says ” Just How Powerful Does Google Have To Become – Before the Anti-Trust Lobbyists Stop Being Afraid of Their Own Shadow” #googleantitrust

    #acesocialnews, #google, #monopoly, #steve-balmer

    ” Rise of the Patent Trolls”

    #AceGuestNews says this was provided by a guest and colleague who sends items to us on a regular basis, and asks should we like to feature the post. So we are pleased to give him a platform to air his article across our network .Hope you enjoy and please comment. Thanks, Editor.

    “A Good Patent is Good, a Great Lawyer is Even Better”

    “It’s a dangerous business, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no telling where you might be swept off to.” – Bilbo, “The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring,” New Line Cinema, 2001

    A friend and his partners recently received the first of three patents after more than three years.

    Maybe in the next 12 months they’ll get the other two.

    It’s a great concept and I’d tell you more but then I’d have to ….

    Patents are vital to keep innovation and competition moving forward.

    If you didn’t have some protection – personal and/or company – why pour all the brainpower, time, effort, money into an idea just to have someone rip you off?

    We get it!

    When companies get strapped for money, they often sell their patents to other companies.

    Kodak sold about thousand of their patents to a pool formed by Google, Facebook, Samsung and Apple for $527M.

    Oh, also in on the deal were Intellectual ventures and RPX (remember these names).

    Patents have always been used and abused as protection and clubs.

    Software Patents

    But things went wild when folks started getting software patents in the early ‘60s.

    In the late ‘90s things took off.

    Folks were getting patents for any concept or “what if” idea they could articulate in the filing – usually so broad you could drive a semi through sideways.

    As Elrond commented, “I was there the day the strength of Men failed.”

    Obviously, the Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) didn’t have a clue about software (few normal people do!) so they signed off on almost anything.

    While Al Gore said, “I took the initiative in creating the Internet,” he didn’t claim (as is widely asserted) he invented it and he didn’t try to patent it.

    Tim Bernes-Lee is widely credited with inventing the Web, but a firm called Eolas owned a patent covering the “interactive Web.”

    Eolas took millions from companies with the patent that was later invalidated.

    Patents like that never should have been filed or granted because of prior art (evidence the key concepts were widely known before folks even filed).

    The flow of vague patents created a new and very profitable ying/yang industry – patent licensing firms and patent assertion entities (PAEs).

    Trolls Emerge

    The latter are more commonly known by their less attractive name, patent trolls.

    As Gimli said, “Never trust an Elf!”

    Trolling – People who manage patents or have purchased tons of software patents may not necessarily be Patent Assertion Entities (PAEs) or more commonly known as patent trolls. However, if they spend most of their time sending out threat letters, being abusive on the phone (especially with a Texas drawl) then look out.

    PAEs/trolls span the spectrum:

    –        Legal shell companies that shotgun letters to businesses claiming infringement, demanding payment

    –        Firms like Intellectual Ventures (remember the Kodak patent sale) which buy technology patents, assemble large portfolios and generate licensing  payments that run into the millions of dollars

    –        Firms that license patents on behalf of others, hammering out reasonable agreements like talent agents

    According to Eugene R. Quinn Jr., patent attorney with Zeis Widerman & Malek and founder of IP-Watchdog, the best business to be in is being a patent troll. The number of suits have doubled in recent years to 4,73l cases in 2012 from 2,304 in 2009 and the cost – to the firms and consumers who must ultimately pay the costs – has been tremendous.

    Filing Growth – While even PAE lawsuits were down during the past recession, they recovered rapidly–faster than the national economy. But instead of quietly settling, a growing number of firms are joining forces to fight the frivolous suits.

    The annual payouts for PAE lawsuits were estimated to be $29B in 2011. Only a fraction ($6B) went to the actual inventors.

    The rest?

    Well yeah!! Lawyers and troll expenses including overhead, marketing, profits.

    Most of the time, trolls go after small to medium-size businesses like in 2011, when a troll firm targeted coffee shops for setting up Wi-Fi networks for customers, “suggesting” they pay a licensing fee of $5-$20,000 (far less than going to court).

    Proving Innocence

    Hey, you’re guilty until you prove yourself innocent!!

    Big Targets – PAEs with questionable software patents are not afraid of taking on industry giants, especially when the patents are so ambiguous about possibly have a touch of validity. In addition, if their claims are “small” enough — $10,000 to $50,000, many organizations justify the payments as being less than the cost of a long trial with judges and juries ill-equipped to address the issues.

    Of course, they are equal opportunity suers, litigators.

    After all, trolls can’t be sued for patent infringement because they don’t make anything … just lawsuits.

    The PAEs usually have a complex shell company structure that is almost impossible to penetrate so it’s hard to figure out who’s doing what and where the money goes.

    Apple is not only more popular than Coke, they (and unfortunately, their partners) are also popular with the trolls.

    IPNav, for example – an ultra active PAE, has sued more than 1,600 companies in the United States.

    Bilbo saw what IPNav had done and said, “Gracious, you have been productive.”

    “Aggressive” – Some of the most aggressive PAEs are firms that if you’re fortunate you’ve never heard of – and we hope you never do. The software patents issued in the early ‘90s were so vague that they could cover web sites, the Internet and almost anything. The key for successful litigation is to find a friendly or unscrupulous judge and sue away.

    The overachiever has lawsuits pending with almost everyone in the industry including, Google, Hitachi and Adobe.

    Howdy Pardner

    Or take lowly little Lodsys that bought a patent in 2011 and went after iPhone app developers. Lodsys has sued about 200 end-users as well as developers and claims 500 firms have paid for its vague patents.

    And Lodsys has a sweet deal down there in Marshall, Tx.

    They can’t get US District Judge Leonard Davis since his son “Bo” Davis is Lodsys’ lawyer so the cases get redirected to the other Judge in the East Texas town … Gilstrap.

    Those Californicator lawyers are not going to ’ slip anything past this boy!!!

    Today, the Patent Office does a much better job of insisting software-patent applicants be specific.

    However, between 500,000 and a million software patents have been granted – some valid, some questionable.

    The legal system provides incentives’ for firms to pay the trolls to go away rather than prove the patents invalid.

    Fighting Back

    Increasingly though, firms like Rackspace, Martha Stewart, Apple, many more (large and small) are returning fire.

    The FTC (Federal Trade Commission) is taking a closer look at PAEs that spend most of their time in court, i.e., if they accounted for more than 60 percent of the 4,000 patent lawsuits filed in last year.

    Bilbo explained the FTC’s objectives, “I don’t know half of you half as well as I should like, and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.”

    Highly successful patent trolls, Intellectual Ventures, insists their business model actually helps inventors and many of their clients who have received payments agree.

    Adam Mossoff, law professor at George Mason University, says the PAEs are licensing firms practicing their property rights and their purpose isn’t to file lawsuits but license patents.

    But even if someone can straighten out the U.S. patent system, there are new issues on the horizon because The EU is working on a unified patent court system.

    Firms like Google, Apple, Microsoft and hordes of others that have spent millions defending themselves, have nightmares that Europe could become a similar battleground.

    Kevin Mooney, British patent lawyer and chairman of the EU court system drafting committee, doesn’t see a major problem, “It would be nonsense if we allowed one court, Romania perhaps, to become the Eastern District of Texas.”

    Thanks to Gilstrap; Marshal, Tx is known worldwide!!!!

    End ‘Em All

    Of course, there’s the other extreme that want to put an end to software patents. That’s tough to do because software, good software, does so much for us that the innovation and developer have to be protected/compensated.

    As Boromir said, “I ask only for the strength to defend my people!”

    With software there’s black, white and a thousand shades of grey.

    If you get slapped with a suit – any large/small firm can – experts say to fight back, get support from others that have been targeted.

    Oh yeah…stay outta’ Marshall, Texas!

     

    #aceguestviews, #al-gore, #apple, #facebook, #google, #intellectual-property, #intellectual-ventures, #pae, #patent, #patent-assertion-entities, #patent-infringement, #patent-office, #patent-troll, #software-patents, #united-states-patent-and-trademark-office

    “Tracking Santa The Norad Way For Sixty Three Years”

    English: NORAD Tracks Santa logo.

    English: NORAD Tracks Santa logo. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

    #AceChristmasNews says it is 63 years ago since, the North American Aerospace Defense Command has tracked Santa Claus on Christmas Eve, as he makes his way around the world delivering gifts to all the good boys and girls.

    In 2012 the tradition continued, and showed even more ways that you and your little ones can follow Father Christmas‘ progress. A stunning 25 million people from around the globe are predicted to follow Santa in real-time on-line, on mobile phones and tablets, by email and phone.

    What makes the program so special is that more than 1,250 Canadian and American uniformed personnel and Defense-Department civilians volunteer their time on Christmas Eve to answer thousands of phone calls and emails. What’s more, organizations such as Microsoft, Analytical Graphics Inc., Verizon, Vision-box and over 50 others support NORAD.

    Interestingly, the popular tradition actually began by mistake, as Capt. Jeff Davis, director of NORAD and the U.S. Northern Command Public Affairs, recently revealed in a guest post on Microsoft’s official blog:

    t’s hard to believe it all started with a typo. A program renowned the world over — one that brings in thousands of volunteers, prominent figures such as the First Lady of the United States, and one that has gone on for more than five decades — all started as a misprint.

    That error ran in a local Colorado Springs newspaper back in 1955 after a local department store printed an advertisement with an incorrect phone number that children could use to ‘call Santa.’ Except that someone goofed. Or someone mistook a three for an eight. Maybe elves broke into the newspaper and changed the number. We’ll never know.

    Official seal of the North American Aerospace ...

    Official seal of the North American Aerospace Defense Command. Note that the oceans’ colour is supposed to be “turquoise” http://www.norad.mil/about_us/heraldry.htm but has consistently been rendered, in recent years, as frankly greenish. Older memorabilia uses a bluer colour, ranging up to light blue. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

    But somehow, the number in the advertisement changed, and instead of reaching the ‘Santa’ on call for the local department store, it rang at the desk of the Crew Commander on duty at the Continental Air Defense Command Operations Center, the organization that would one day become the North American Aerospace Defense Command, or ‘NORAD.’

    And when the commander on duty, Col. Harry Shoup, first picked up the phone and heard kids asking for Santa, he could have told them they had a wrong number.

    But he didn’t, instead, the kind-hearted colonel asked his crew to play along and find Santa’s location. Just like that, NORAD was in the Santa-tracking business.

    2012 Improvements Are Made:

    Santa is already on his way across the globe delivering presents to the boys and girls on his Nice List. The 2012 NORAD Santa Tracker is currently tracking good ol’ Saint Nick as he makes  his way across the world to deliver presents on Christmas.

    You can watch a live video of Santa’s journey below thanks to Norad’s hightech Santa Tracker, but you can also interact with the Santa tracking team via Facebook and Twitter. NORAD will be posting a constant stream of updates via social media sites today.

    If you want to talk to the team first hand, you can even give NORAD a call.

    Santa’s navigation team can be reached at 877-HI-NORAD (877-446-6723). They’ll be able to give you Santa’s current location and may even be able to tell you when to expect your  presents.

    2013 Technology Steps Up:

    For the second straight year, Microsoft has partnered with the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) to monitor Santa’s progress around the globe. Microsoft redid the site this year, however, to allow excited children armed with Surface tablets to spin an interactive Claymation-styled globe around (beginning Dec. 24) and pinpoint when the jolly old elf will arrive in their neighborhood.

    The site, now live, offers several holiday-themed games (unlocked using an Advent calendar motif), holiday videos, and music. There’s also “secret Santa” files that talk about the tracker’s history, which began when an advertisement offering to help kids track Santas accidentally published the phone number of CONAD, NORAD’s predecessor. The Director of Operations when, Colonel Harry Shoup, had his staff check the radar for indications of Santa making his way south from the North Pole, according to NORAD.

    Years later, Google provided the first “data” that established the Santa Tracker Web site.(For the record, NORAD says its joint radar and satellite tracking system, together with a network of “Santa-Cams” and U.S. and Canadian jet fighters, provide up-to-the-minute alerts on Santa’s progress.) But two years ago, Google and NORAD parted ways, for unexplained reasons, and went with Microsoft instead.. Last year, Google’s revamped Santa tracker offered an opportunity to chat with Santa, download an Android app, and track him via Google+.

    NORAD Santa Tracker’s Santa VillageNORADSANTA.ORG
    The Santa Village hides videos and games.

    For Microsoft, it’s another opportunity to show off how sites designed for Internet Explorer and touch can mimic the apps that its platforms have unfortunately lacked. Microsoft has archived other, similar sites at its ”Reimagine the Web” site. Bing Maps will track Santa this year.

    It looks like Google will be directly competing with NORAD this year, however.

    “On Christmas Eve we’ll be proudly showcasing a preview of Santa’s dashboard—the technology that powers his sleigh during his around-the-world journey,” Google says. “We have received this special preview from one of Santa’s many developer elves, who are hard at work in the North Pole helping Santa prepare for his big day. Santa’s dashboard—featuring the latest and greatest in Google Maps technology and sleigh engineering—will allow you to follow his progress around the world, and also learn a little about some of his stops along the way.”

    Don’t worry, though. As Stefan Weitz, Bing’s general manager, tweeted last month (as noted by Search Engine Land) Microsoft and Google have teamed up to avoid placing Santa in different locations throughout Christmas Eve night.

    NORAD OFFICIAL SITE:

    #christmas, #google, #microsoft, #norad, #norad-tracks-santa, #north-american-aerospace-defense-command, #santa, #santa-claus

    DNA Testing Startup 23andMe Hits A Snag As FDA Shuts Down Sales Of Home Testing Kit

    #AceHealthNews says that 23andme in mire as US-FDA prevents use of “Home Testing Kits even after Google poured 23 million into project #healthcare
    QUOTE: Part of 23andMe’s mission is to help people assess their risk and the risk of their offspring for genetic, inheritable diseases and conditions, and that’s what the FDA has apparently taken issue with!

    #23andme, #google, #us-fda

    Can Optical Character Recognition Software – Provide Answer to Security with Emails

    Just months after Edward Snowden controversially lifted the lid on digital surveillance being conducted by the U.S. and other governments, the issue of on-line privacy is back in the spotlight.
    Earlier this month Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg expressed concern that users’ trust in internet companies had been damaged by the revelations. Google’s Eric Schmidt also called for greater transparency from the U.S. government over surveillance.
    Sang Mun’s response was more direct — the Korean designer has created four new fonts called ZXX that aim to disrupt the Optical Character Recognition (OCR) systems used by Google and others to analyze text.http://edition.cnn.com/2013/09/30/tech/web/nsa-contractor-surveillance-proof-font/

    #acesecuritynews, #edward-snowden, #facebook, #google, #ocr, #privacy

    SANTA MONICA CA – A federal appeals court…

    SANTA MONICA, CA – A federal appeals court ruled a few days ago that Google’s interception of messages from private Wi-Fi networks is not exempt from federal wire-tap laws, opening the way for a class action suit in the Wi-Spy case to move forward with possible damages amounting to billions of dollars.

    A three-judge panel for the U.S. Court of Appeals for Ninth Circuit Court upheld the decision of Judge James Ware, who refused Google’s motion to dismiss the suit when he denied Google’s claim that their activities were exempt from the wiretap law because data transmitted over a Wi-Fi network is a “radio communication” and is “readily accessible to the public.”

    Google’s Street View Cars not only were photographing the roads they travelled around the world, but were also collecting “payload” data – including emails, documents, photos, passwords, and other private information — transmitted over Wi-Fi networks as the cars drove by.
    http://www.consumerwatchdog.org/newsrelease/us-appeals-court-rules-google-not-exempt-wiretap-law-wi-spy-suit

    #acenewsservices, #consumerwatchdog, #google, #street-view, #wire-tap

    No PRISM. No Surveillance. No Government Back Doors. You Have our Word on it.

    Giant US government Internet spying scandal revealed

     

    Ixquick

    Ixquick (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

     

     

     

    The Washington Post and The Guardian have revealed a US government mass Internet surveillance program code-named “PRISM”. They report that the NSA and the FBI have tapped directly into the servers of nine US service providers, including Facebook, Microsoft, Google, Apple, Yahoo, YouTube, AOL and Skype, and began this surveillance program at least seven years ago. (clarifying slides)

     

    These revelations are shaking up an international debate.

     

    StartPage has always been very outspoken when it comes to protecting people’s Privacy and civil liberties. So it won’t surprise you that we are a strong opponent of overreaching, unaccountable spy programs like PRISM. In the past, even government surveillance programs that were begun with good intentions have become tools for abuse, such as tracking civil rights and anti-war protesters.

     

    Programs like PRISM undermine our Privacy, disrupt faith in governments, and are a danger to the free Internet.

     

    StartPage and its sister search engine Ixquick have in their 14-year history never provided a single byte of user data to the US government, or any other government or agency. Not under PRISM, nor under any other program in the US, nor under any program anywhere in the world.

     

    Here’s how we are different:

     

    • StartPage does not store any user data. We make this perfectly clear to everyone, including any governmental agencies. We do not record the IP addresses of our users and we don’t use tracking cookies, so there is literally no data about you on our servers to access. Since we don’t even know who our customers are, we can’t share anything with Big Brother. In fact, we’ve never gotten even a single request from a governmental authority to supply user data in the fourteen years we’ve been in business.
    • StartPage uses encryption (HTTPS) by default. Encryption prevents snooping. Your searches are encrypted, so others can’t “tap” the Internet connection to snoop what you’re searching for. This combination of not storing data together with using strong encryption for the connections is key in protecting your Privacy.
    • Our company is based in The Netherlands, Europe. US jurisdiction does not apply to us, at least not directly. Any request or demand from ANY government (including the US) to deliver user data, will be thoroughly checked by our lawyers, and we will not comply unless the law which actually applies to us would undeniably require it from us. And even in that hypothetical situation, we refer to our first point; we don’t even have any user data to give. We will never cooperate with voluntary spying programs like PRISM.
    • StartPage cannot be forced to start spying. Given the strong protection of the Right to Privacy in Europe, European governments cannot just start forcing service providers like us to implement a blanket spying program on their users. And if that ever changed, we would fight this to the end.

     

    Privacy. It’s not just our policy, it’s our mission.

     

    Sincerely,

    Robert E.G. Beens
    CEO StartPage.com and Ixquick.com

     

     

    #computer-surveillance, #google, #government-surveillance, #internet, #internet-surveillance, #ip-address, #ixquick, #startpage, #technology, #united-states, #washington-post, #youtube

    Giant US government Internet spying scandal revealed!

    The Washington Post and The Guardian have revealed a US government mass Internet surveillance program code-named “PRISM”. They report that the NSA and the FBI have been tapping directly into the servers of nine US service providers, including Facebook, Microsoft, Google, Apple, Yahoo, YouTube, AOL and Skype, and began this surveillance program at least seven years ago. (Imageclarifying slides)

     

    These revelations are shaking up an international debate.

     

    Start Page has always been very outspoken when it comes to protecting people’s privacy and civil liberties. So it won’t surprise you that we are a strong opponent of overreaching, unaccountable spy programs like PRISM. In the past, even government surveillance programs that were begun with good intentions have become tools for abuse, for example tracking civil rights and anti-war protesters.

     

    Programs like PRISM undermine our Privacy, disrupt faith in governments, and are a danger to the free Internet.

     

    StartPage and its sister search engine Ixquick have in their 14-year history never provided a single byte of user data to the US government, or any other government or agency. Not under PRISM, nor under any other program in the US, nor under any program anywhere in the world. We are not like Yahoo, Facebook, Google, Apple, Skype, or the other US companies who got caught up in the web of PRISM surveillance.

     

    Here’s how we are different:

     

    • StartPage does not store any user data. We make this perfectly clear to everyone, including any governmental agencies. We do not record the IP addresses of our users and we don’t use tracking cookies, so there is literally no data about you on our servers to access. Since we don’t even know who our customers are, we can’t share anything with Big Brother. In fact, we’ve never gotten even a single request from a governmental authority to supply user data in the fourteen years we’ve been in business.

    • StartPage uses encryption (HTTPS) by default. Encryption prevents snooping. Your searches are encrypted, so others can’t “tap” the Internet connection to snoop what you’re searching for. This combination of not storing data together with using strong encryption for the connections is key in protecting your Privacy.

    • Our company is based in The Netherlands, Europe. US jurisdiction does not apply to us, at least not directly. Any request or demand from ANY government (including the US) to deliver user data, will be thoroughly checked by our lawyers, and we will not comply unless the law which actually applies to us would undeniably require it from us. And even in that hypothetical situation, we refer to our first point; we don’t even have any user data to give. We will never cooperate with voluntary spying programs like PRISM.

    • StartPage cannot be forced to start spying. Given the strong protection of the Right to Privacy in Europe , European governments cannot just start forcing service providers like us to implement a blanket spying program on their users. And if that ever changed, we would fight this to the end.

     

    Privacy.

     

    It’s not just our policy – it’s our business.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Courtesy of

    Robert E.G. Beens
    CEO StartPage.com and Ixquick.com

    #aol, #facebook, #fbi, #google, #guardian, #ixquick, #nsa, #prism, #privacy, #search-engines, #security, #skpe, #social-media, #startpage, #twitter, #washigton-post, #yahoo, #youtube

    Judge orders Google to comply with FBI’s secret NSL demands | Politics and Law – CNET News

    A federal judge has ruled that Google must comply with the FBI’s warrantless requests for confidential user data, despite the search company’s arguments that the secret demands are illegal.

    CNET has learned that U.S. District Judge Susan Illston in San Francisco rejected Google’s request to modify or throw out 19 so-called National Security Letters, a warrantless electronic data-gathering technique used by the FBI that does not need a judge’s approval. Her ruling came after a pair of top FBI officials, including an assistant director, submitted classified affidavits.

    The litigation taking place behind closed doors in Illston’s courtroom — a closed-to-the-public hearing was held on May 10 — could set new ground rules curbing the FBI’s warrantless access to information that Internet and other companies hold on behalf of their users. The FBI issued 192,499 of the demands from 2003 to 2006, and 97 percent of NSLs include a mandatory gag order.

    via Judge orders Google to comply with FBI’s secret NSL demands | Politics and Law – CNET News.

    #business, #fbi, #google, #httpwww-facebook-comacedebtnews, #nsl

    Love Of Money And The Route Of All Evil Comes Home To Roost In 2013-2016

    Are banks still too big to fail?

    The worship of Mammon

    The worship of Mammon (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

    Of course they are, as the banks were allowed to build a system designed only to favour themselves! Based on the premise they will eventually not need us, as we and our debts created by them, will bring them down! It is true that we funded their corrupt system, but we are now their biggest liability, and not the cash cow we once were! So to stop that happening, we will become surplus to requirements and they will close their doors to us, and using their system control this world from their ivory towers!

    There are three areas of control in this world that holds the very fabric of society together, these are food, clothing and our homes! By invading the privacy of our homes, with Smart TV’s and Google Glasses they begin to spy on us! By watching us like lab rats in our own environment the way we eat, what we eat and how we live our lives ,using smart fridges, smart meters and smarter computers , they will control our very existence!

    Once they have amassed all this information in servers bigger than 10 story buildings, they will know how we think and using this information, sell it to the highest bidder! This will then allow those that buy it, to control our lives like never before, deciding not just what we eat, wear or what house we live in, but designing the environment around us, to fit their design, not ours!

    If and when they control our food, clothes and homes ,they will control our lives and by controlling our lives ,will control all of us! Then if we step out of line refuse to toe the line or just disagree with their design, we will become surplus to their requirements! We become the pestilence that needs eradicating, that is using up all the “Earths” resources thus not leaving enough ,for the “Haves” our foraging turned into greed, to be stopped anyway they can!

    This is when the “ Love Of Money Becomes The Root Of All Evil” and the world of man becomes the world of haves controlling the have-nots ,by their so-called “Power” thus eradicating “God” from our conscience and leaving “Evil” to rule the “Earth” in the name of “Mammon” !

    Our news desk receives many such links to documents worth sharing one such can be found at this link:

    Machines Begin Taking Social Out of Social Media https://docs.google.com/document/d/1IJX_gKqwpNhDvgv9lxjfhdiR81Dlp7aYLmrR8Z7gmKk/edit

    #android, #cash-cow, #companies, #gadgets, #google, #google-tv, #internet, #lab-rats, #search-engines, #searching, #smart-meters, #smart-tv, #technology, #tools