By BeauHD from Slashdot's restrictive-ethics-policy department
A new "ethics" policy from NPR details new rules to stop promoting NPR One and its podcasts on the air, to ultimately please local station managers who pay the largest share of NPR's bills.
Chris Turpin, V.P. for news programming and operations, writes: As podcasts grow in number and popularity we are talking about them more often in our news programs. We are also fielding more and more questions from news staff and Member stations about our policies for referring to podcasts on air. To that end, we want to establish some common standards, especially for language in back announces. Our hope is to establish basic principles that are easy to understand and allow plenty of flexibility for creativity. These guidelines apply to all podcasts, whether produced by NPR or by other entities. No Call to Action: We won't tell people to actively download a podcast or where to find them. No mentions of npr.org, iTunes, Stitcher, NPR One, etc.
Basically, NPR won't promote "the lauded, loved app that is basically the future of NPR" to listeners who would be most interested in it. How do you feel about NPR's new policy?Read Replies (0)
By BeauHD from Slashdot's time-to-get-physical department
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Reuters: Activist hedge fund Starboard Value LP moved on Thursday to overthrow the entire board of Yahoo Inc, including Chief Executive Marissa Mayer, who has struggled to turn around the company in her nearly four years at the helm. Starboard, which has been pushing for changes at Yahoo since 2014 and owns about 1.7 percent of the company, said it would nominate nine candidates for the board. The proxy fight comes as Yahoo is pressing ahead with an auction of its core Internet business, which includes search, mail and news sites. Yahoo and Starboard could still come to an agreement before the company's annual meeting, expected to be in late June. If they cannot avoid a proxy fight and the Yahoo board election is taken to a shareholder vote, attention will swing to the large mutual and index funds that own the stock and will carry heavy weight in the final tally. Yahoo and Starboard representatives met on March 10 to discuss ways the two sides could avoid a proxy fight, according to people familiar with the matter. But those talks broke down, in part because Starboard was upset by Yahoo's announcement that same day that it appointed two new board directors, these people say.Read Replies (0)
By BeauHD from Slashdot's give-me-your-money department
An anonymous reader quotes a report from CNBC: A Kentucky hospital is operating in an internal state of emergency following an attack by cybercriminals on its computer network, Krebs on Security reported. Methodist Hospital, based in Henderson, Kentucky, is the victim of a ransomware attack in which hackers infiltrated its computer network, encrypted files and are now holding the data hostage, Krebs reported Tuesday. The criminals reportedly used new strain of malware known as Locky to encrypt important files. The malware spread from the initial infected machine to the entire internal network and several other systems, the hospital's information systems director, Jamie Reid, told Krebs. The hospital is reportedly considering paying hackers the ransom money of four bitcoins, about $1,600 at the current exchange rate, for the key to unlock the files.Read Replies (0)
By manishs from Slashdot's security-woes department
Reader itwbennett writes: A Trojan program, dubbed USB Thief by researchers at security firm ESET, infects USB drives that contain portable installations of popular applications such as Firefox, NotePad++, or TrueCrypt, and it also seems to be designed to steal information from so-called air-gapped computers. "In the case we analyzed, it was configured to steal all data files such as images or documents, the whole windows registry tree (HKCU), file lists from all of the drives, and information gathered using an imported open-source application called 'WinAudit'," the ESET researchers said. The stolen data was saved back to the USB drive and was encrypted using elliptic curve cryptography. Once the USB drive was removed, there was no evidence left on the computer, the ESET researchers added.Read Replies (0)
By manishs from Slashdot's we-made-ai-corrupt department
Reader Penguinisto writes: Recently, Microsoft put an AI experiment onto Twitter, naming it "Tay". The bot was built to be fully aware of the latest adolescent fixations (e.g. celebrities and similar), and to interact like a typical teen girl. In less than 24 hours, it inexplicably became a neo-nazi sex robot with daddy issues. Sample tweets from it proclaimed that "Hitler did nothing wrong!", then went on to blame former President Bush for 9/11, stated that "donald trump is the only hope we've got", and other similar instances. As the hours passed, it all went downhill from there, eventually spewing racial slurs and profanity, demanding sex, and calling everyone "daddy". The bot was quickly removed once Microsoft discovered the trouble, but the hashtag is still around for those who want to see it in its ugly raw splendor.Read Replies (0)
By manishs from Slashdot's you-gotta-reward-people department
On Wednesday, it was reported that FBI has contracted Cellebrite, an Israeli software provider specializing in mobile phone forensics, for $15,000 to break into the iPhone. It is believed that Cellebrite knows of a flaw in the iPhone which could allow circumvention of iOS' built-in security layers. Cellebrite could have worked with Apple on this flaw, but it chose to help FBI instead. It doesn't take rocket science to understand why Cellebrite chose to take the other route. The New York Times says that many security firms and hackers would love to work with Apple to further improve its products, but they don't because of a lack of incentive. There's little to no monetary incentive in helping the company with finding loopholes in its products. Apple -- unlike a number of Silicon Valley giants including Facebook, Microsoft, Google, Mozilla, and recently added to the list, Uber -- doesn't maintain a Bug Bounty program. Nicole Perlroth and Katie Benner report for the Times: When hackers do find flaws in Apple's code, they have little incentive to turn them over to the company for fixing. [...] Apple, which has had relatively strong security over the years, has been open about how security is a never-ending cat-and-mouse game and how it is unwilling to engage in a financial arms race to pay for code exploits. The company has yet to give hackers anything more than a gold star. When hackers do turn over serious flaws in its products, they may see their name listed on the company's website -- but that is it. That is a far cry from what hackers can expect if they sell an Apple flaw on the thriving underground market where a growing number of companies and government agencies are willing to pay hackers handsomely.Read Replies (0)
By timothy from Slashdot's good-for-some-people department
itwbennett writes: A new vulnerability in Windows and Samba, called Badlock, is set for disclosure on April 12, according to Badlock.org. Yes, this vulnerability has its own website and logo and therein lies the problem. In a Twitter exchange with CSO Online's Steve Ragan, Johannes Loxen, who registered the Badlock domain, called the pre-patch marketing a win-win, saying, 'A serious bug gets attention and marketing for us and our open source business is a side effect for us of course.' As Ragan notes, 'PR-driven vulnerability disclosure isn't something new,' and 'can be useful sometimes.' Marketing around Heartbleed, for example, 'generated tons of news coverage and quick reaction by administrators who worked long hours to patch vulnerable systems. There have been several since Heartbleed,' says Ragan. But in the case of Badlock, a 20-day lead time gives criminals plenty of time to tear Samba apart.Read Replies (0)
By timothy from Slashdot's he's-gotta-take-some-awesome-vitamins-for-that department
mrspoonsi writes with this excerpt from the BBC: Navinder Sarao, the trader accused of helping to trigger the U.S. "flash crash," can be extradited to face trial, a court has ruled. Mr Sarao traded on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange from his parents' home near Heathrow Airport in London. Mr Sarao, 37, is accused of contributing to events on 6 May 2010, when the Dow Jones share index briefly fell more than 1,000 points. The flash crash on 6 May 2010 temporarily wiped nearly $1 trillion off the value of shares. US authorities want Mr Sarao to stand trial on 22 criminal counts. They allege he is guilty of "spoofing" — the practice of placing large orders that manipulate the markets and then cancelling or changing them, allowing him to buy or sell at a profit. Mr Sarao's spoofing netted him a profit of $40m (£28m), they argue. The charges that Mr Sarao faces carry sentences totalling a maximum of 380 years.
Reader whoever57 links to a similar report at the New York Times, which notes "This is not the last step for Mr. Sarao, as the extradition must next be reviewed by the Home Secretary." "As the submitter," writes whoever57, "it's not clear to me how this man did anything different from the high-speed and algorithmic traders do every day."Read Replies (0)
By BeauHD from Slashdot's straight-from-the-source department
An anonymous reader quotes a report from WashingtonPost: District regulators approved a $6.8 billion merger between Pepco Holdings and Exelon on Wednesday, creating the largest publicly-held utility in the country. The merger means that Pepco will now be absorbed by a company with the largest number of nuclear reactors in the country and widespread operations throughout the mid-Atlantic, Midwest, and New England. In voting 2 to 1 to approve the deal, the D.C. Public Service Commission said it "was in the public interest," noting that it would deposit $72.8 million in a "customer investment fund," set aside $11.25 million for energy efficiency and conservation programs targeted toward low-income residents, and carve out $21.55 million for pilot projects such as modernizing the electric distribution grid. "These benefits, among others, would not be available to District ratepayers if the merger is not approved," the commission said in a statement.Read Replies (0)
By BeauHD from Slashdot's check-it-once-check-it-twice department
An anonymous reader writes: According to Business Insider, "[Apple] worries that some of the equipment and cloud services it buys has been compromised by vendors who have agreed to put "back door" technology for government spying, according to a report from The Information's Amir Efrati and Steve Nellis." With many of its cloud-based services like iTunes, the App Store, and iCloud requiring enormous data center to operate, Apple hasn't been able to build all the data centers it needs, and has instead been using services from its rivals, namely Amazon Web Services and Microsoft. Google recently landed Apple as a customer for the Google Cloud Platform. "Meanwhile, [Apple] has embarked on yet another attempt to build more of its own data centers to handle all of that, called Project McQueen, reports Jordan Novet at VentureBeat, and the project is having a rough go of it, reports The Information." Apple suspects that backdoors have been added to many of the servers it has been ordering from others. "At one point, the company even had people taking photographs of the motherboards in the computer servers it was using, then mark down exactly what each chip was, to make sure everything was fully understood."Read Replies (0)