As a technology director, my job is not just to keep the servers up and the network running. My job is to support and enhance technology’s potential for teaching and learning. My job is to lay the groundwork for innovation and excellence in education. If I am not taking instructional needs into account when I make decisions that impact teachers and students, I am not doing my job.
You may have heard on the news about an ugly new “ransomware” bug that can infect your computer. This particular one is bad because many of the virus protection companies don’t have a fix out for it yet. (Currently, the fix is to pay the $300 to get your data back.)
Ways to minimize your risk at home:
Keep your virus protection up-to-date (AVG / Mcafee / Norton – you should only have one installed! More is neverbetter)
“Even if the attack proves to be real, this isn’t a casual, fast trick. The attacker would have to be lucky enough to get a perfect print of the correct finger to unlock the iPhone, which means they’d have to find that specific print, or be forced to try several fake prints. Anyone this intent on hacking your iPhone would need prolonged access to it.”
A suburban Los Angeles school district is now looking at the public postings on social media by middle and high school students, searching for possible violence, drug use, bullying, truancy and suicidal threats.
Though critics liken the monitoring to government stalking, school officials and their contractor say the purpose is student safety.
Fighting test cheating is an age-old battle, as shown by recent major scandals involving pencil-and-paper exams. But worries about hacking and other sophisticated forms of cheating, such as wirelessly transmitting questions outside of an exam room, has testing companies, test-security firms and academics rushing to develop measures to reduce or catch cheating. Companies plan to soon start selling security packages to school districts and licensing boards.
When you use the Internet, you entrust your online conversations, thoughts, experiences, locations, photos, and more to companies like Google, AT&T and Facebook. But what happens when the government demands that these companies to hand over your private information? Will the company stand with you? Will it tell you that the government is looking for your data so that you can take steps to protect yourself?
The Electronic Frontier Foundation examined the policies of 18 major Internet companies — including email providers, ISPs, cloud storage providers, and social networking sites — to assess whether they publicly commit to standing with users when the government seeks access to user data. We looked at their terms of service, privacy policies, and published law enforcement guides, if any. We also examined their track record of fighting for user privacy in the courts and whether they’re members of the Digital Due Process coalition, which works to improve outdated communications law. Finally, we contacted each of the companies with our conclusions and gave them an opportunity to respond and provide us evidence of improved policies and practices. These categories are not the only ways that a company can stand up for users, of course, but they are important and publicly verifiable.
While some Internet companies have stepped up for users in particular situations, it’s time for all companies that hold private user data to make public commitments to defend their users against government overreach. The purpose of this report is to incentivize companies to be transparent about what data flows to the government and encourage them to take a stand for user privacy when it is possible to do so.
I gave a class of twelve year olds a selection of genuine spam emails and asked them to write down what their replies to these would be. It mostly purported to be from a distressed Nigerian monarch living in exile looking for a friendly Briton to share a fortune with. Some of the kids quickly twigged and wrote sarcastic, tongue-in-cheek responses. But a few of them seemed genuinely intrigued and happy to enter into correspondence; others tried to negotiate the terms to make more money. It was this naivety and innocence that I wanted to address in the pupils. They had to become aware of dastardly tricks.
450,000 Yahoo accounts were compromised, along with large quantities of database information that hacker group “DD3Ds Company” say they found completely unencrypted
420,000 Formspring username and password hashes leaked this week, forcing the company to reset the passwords of all 28 million registered users in an effort to protect users’ data source
» It hasn’t been a great summer for cyber-security, particularly when you consider how many well-known companies keep getting caught with lackluster security in place. So, how many more of these stories do you think it will take before major corporations quit storing user data in plain-text format?