Articles by date

03 January 2015

Canadian ISPs and VPNs Now Have to Alert Pirating Customers (TorrentFreak)

Starting today Canadian Internet providers are required to forward copyright infringement notices to their subscribers. This notification scheme provides a safe harbor for ISPs but is also expected to result in a surge in piracy settlement schemes. The new law further causes trouble for VPN providers, who are now required to log customers for at least six months.

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02 January 2015

Are Existing gTLD Registrations Suffering From New gTLDs?

Could .net be one of a number of gTLDs suffering from the success of new gTLDs? As of 30 June 2014, Verisign noted in their Domain Name Industry Brief there were 15.2 million .net domains under management (DUM). But according to the latest figures provided by RegistrarStats, there are now 14,998,404 DUMs.

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Digital Tax Increase to Take Effect in Europe (New York Times)

Europe's tax showdown could be headed straight to people's wallets. With the new year, a change in fiscal rules in the European Union is increasing the tax on many purchases of digital content like e-books and smartphone applications.

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Editorial: In Foiling Gmail, China Foils Itself (New York Times)

Back at the turn of the century, when China began trying to crack down on the Internet, Bill Clinton said, "Good luck. That's sort of like trying to nail Jell-O to the wall."

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Web Freedom Is Seen to Be Growing as a Global Issue in 2015 (New York Times)

Government censorship of the Internet is a cat-and-mouse game. And despite more aggressive tactics in recent months, the cats have been largely frustrated while the mice wriggle away.

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Cleanse web of all child abuse images, urges NSPCC chief (The Guardian)

The head of the NSPCC has called for the removal of all child abuse images from the internet.

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01 January 2015

When Internet addiction is actually a good thing (Washington Post)

A new study from researchers at the University of Hong Kong claims that 420 million people are addicted to the Internet, about 6 percent of the world's population. That 6 percent number may not sound high but it is - it's actually more than three times the rates of pathological gambling observed in even the most gambling-obsessed nations around the world. Taken at face value, this study supports the notion that the rapid rate of technological adoption around the world is being taken way out of control, and that we're awash in gadgets, phones and digital devices.

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Sony Hacking Attack, First a Nuisance, Swiftly Grew Into a Firestorm (New York Times)

It was three days before Thanksgiving, the beginning of a quiet week for Sony Pictures. But Michael Lynton, the studio's chief executive, was nonetheless driving his Volkswagen GTI toward Sony's lot at 6 a.m. Final planning for corporate meetings in Tokyo was on his agenda -- at least until his cellphone rang.

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BitTorrent Zeitgeist: What People Search for in 2014 (TorrentFreak)

Popular torrent sites get millions of visitors every day, but what have all of those people been searching for? Today we present the BitTorrent Zeitgeist 2014, a list of the top 50 most searched for phrases and keywords on one of the most-used public BitTorrent indexes during the past year.

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31 December 2014

Over 80 Percent of Dark-Web Visits Relate to Pedophilia, Study Finds (Wired)

The mysterious corner of the Internet known as the Dark Web is designed to defy all attempts to identify its inhabitants. But one group of researchers has attempted to shed new light on what those users are doing under the cover of anonymity. Their findings indicate that an overwhelming majority of their traffic is driven by the Dark Web's darkest activity: the sexual abuse of children.

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Editorial: Deterring Cyberattacks From North Korea (New York Times)

The recent cyberattack on Sony Pictures, which the Obama administration said was committed by North Korea, shows how far the United States still has to go to deter such intrusions, despite warnings by officials and experts about cybersecurity dangers. Countless assaults on America's computer networks by China and other foreign governments, hackers and criminals have demonstrated the urgent need for safeguards.

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30 December 2014

Backlash in Berlin over NSA spying recedes as threat from Islamic State rises (Washington Post)

In a crescendo of anger over American espionage, Germany expelled the CIA's top operative, launched an investigation of the vast U.S. surveillance programs exposed by Edward Snowden and extracted an apology from President Obama for the years that U.S. spies had reportedly spent monitoring German Chancellor Angela Merkel's cellphone.

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Gmail blocked in China (The Guardian)

Google's Gmail was blocked in China after months of disruptions to the world's biggest email service, with an anti-censorship advocate suggesting the country's "great firewall" was to blame.

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29 December 2014

Inside the NSA's War on Internet Security (Der Spiegel)

US and British intelligence agencies undertake every effort imaginable to crack all types of encrypted Internet communication. The cloud, it seems, is full of holes. The good news: New Snowden documents show that some forms of encryption still cause problems for the NSA.

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A Wi-Fi Problem for US Hotels? Industry Group Seeks Guidance From FCC on Blocking Other Wireless Networks Set Up on Hotel Properties (Wall Street Journal)

Modern technology has made it possible for people to set up their own personal Wi-Fi networks anywhere they want. Except in the occasional Marriott.

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Surge in illegal sales of drugs as gangs exploit 'phenomenal market' online (The Guardian)

The rise of social media and greater internet access through smartphones are factors behind a huge rise in illicit sales of pharmaceuticals, according to the chief enforcement official at Britain's medicines regulator.

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Can Iceland become the 'Switzerland of data'? (Al Jazeera)

On a cold, windy December afternoon in the southern Icelandic town of Reykjanesbaer, this former NATO airbase looked like nothing more than a huge warehouse from the outside.

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28 December 2014

A heart-warming twist in the tale of the books industry (The Observer)

The most fascinating and, in many ways, cheering story of 2014 is almost wholly counterintuitive: the survival of the printed book. Turning pages back from digital grave shock! Legacy longform wins fight for life! Robert McCrum told part of the tale a couple of weeks back as he chronicled Waterstones' battle into renewed profit. But you - the reader - seem to be writing new chapters month by month and Christmas by Christmas.

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North Korea Accuses U.S. of Staging Internet Failure (New York Times)

North Korea lashed out at the United States on Saturday, blaming it for disruptions that cut off the nation's already limited connections to the Internet, while once again rejecting American accusations that it was behind the hacking of Sony Pictures.

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Pornographic videos flood YouTube Video-sharing website (BBC News)

Video-sharing website YouTube has removed hundreds of pornographic videos which were uploaded in what is believed to be a planned attack.

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Hundreds of Pirate Bay Copies Emerge, Is The Hydra Alive? (TorrentFreak)

While the Pirate Bay's domain continues to wave a pirate flag, there's no sign of a pending return yet. However, many supporters of the notorious torrent site are keeping its torrents widely available. In just a week nearly 400 Pirate Bay copies have appeared online. But is the Hydra really alive?

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27 December 2014

Risks in Using Social Media to Spot Signs of Mental Distress (New York Times)

The Samaritans, a well-known suicide-prevention group in Britain, recently introduced a free web app that would alert users whenever someone they followed on Twitter posted worrisome phrases like "tired of being alone" or "hate myself."

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U.S. Tech Firms Face Showdown With Russian Censors (Wall Street Journal)

Facebook Inc., Twitter Inc. and Google Inc. have started resisting Russian government orders to remove information about a rally next month in support of opposition leader Alexei Navalny, raising the prospect of a showdown over the Kremlin's efforts to control online information.

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New Study May Add to Skepticism Among Security Experts (New York Times)

A number of private security researchers are increasingly voicing doubts that the hack of Sony's computer systems was the work of North Korea.

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Iran to expand policy of 'smart filtering' of the internet (Reuters)

Iran is to expand what it calls "smart filtering" of the internet, a policy of censoring undesirable content on websites without banning them completely, as it used to, the government said on Friday.

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