Accidentally Uncovered a Nationwide Scam on Airbnb”
– Vice. A writer discovered through experience about a scam many on the
short-term rental site, Airbnb, have experienced: a last-minute cancellation
leading to a much inferior property and an interminable process for lodging
complaints and obtaining a refund. Airbnb seems lax about enforcing its own
policies against deceptive properties, and the incentive structure is weighted
against renters leaving candid reviews.
Unidentified Government Spied On Dissidents In India Using A WhatsApp Exploit”
– BuzzFeed News. Israel’s NSO Group’s spyware may have been used by
India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to surveil judges, activists,
academics, journalists, and politicians by exploiting a weakness in WhatsApp, a
messaging application used by more than 400 million Indians. This is, of
course, not the first time the NSO Group has been linked to spyware, and in
this case, the spyware, Pegasus, was inserted on phones through a call made
using WhatApp to the victim’s phone they did not even need to answer. India’s
Home Ministry has denied any connection and calls the reports “attempts to
malign the government of India,” and the NSO Group seemed to claim that any
such uses of its technology are contrary to their intended uses.
want faster data from the US, but Australia’s encryption laws could scuttle the
deal” – ABC (Australia). As the U.S. and Australia
negotiate a CLOUD Act agreement that would provide each country with a legal
process to obtain information on citizens from technology companies as part of
a law enforcement investigation, concerns and reservations are being raised in
both countries about the powers of the Australian government under the
“Telecommunications and Other Legislation Amendment (Assistance and Access) Act
2018” that allows it to direct technology companies to provide assistance in
decrypting user information without any judicial review.
Official Admits to Tracking Women’s Periods” – The Cut.
Health & Senior Services Director Dr. Randall Williams admitted during a
hearing that his office maintained a spreadsheet with women’s menstrual cycles
drawn from medical information the state had access to. He further admitted the
database was used to track “failed abortions” as a means of investigating
abortion and reproductive services clinics.
Tests New Disinformation Tactics in Africa to Expand Influence”
– The New York Times. Facebook and Stanford’s Internet Observatory
revealed vast, new evolved Russian disinformation efforts being deployed in
Africa with the goal of bringing successful tactics to the U.S. for next year’s
election. For now, these tactics seem to boost Russian interests in the region
and call into question American and French actions. The volume of both
disinformation creation and distribution have increased several times compared
to the 2016 U.S. election. These efforts have been tied to Yevgeny Prigozhin,
the Russian oligarch who runs the Internet Research Agency and is a close ally
of Vladimir Putin.
are using their Washington clout to stomp on the tech industry”
– Politico. As if the tech industry isn’t having enough trouble in
Washington, the lobbies representing the banks and other financial services
entities have worked to block cryptocurrencies and tech’s entry into any sector
of banking and finance and found willing allies on Capitol Hill.