Pete Recommends – weekly highlights on cyber security issues – May 13 2018

Subject: You Can’t Opt Out Of Sharing Your Data, Even If You Didn’t Opt In
Source: FiveThirtyEight via beSpacific

FiveThirtyEight: “…Yonatan Zunger, a former Google privacy engineer, noted we’ve known for a long time that one person’s personal information is never just their own to share. It’s the idea behind the old proverb, “Three may keep a secret if two of them are dead.” And as far back as the 1960s, said Jennifer Lynch, senior staff attorney for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, phone companies could help law enforcement collect a list of all the numbers one phone line called and how long the calls lasted. …

Subject: When a stranger takes your face: Facebook’s failed crackdown on fake accounts
Source: The Washington Post

Katie Greenman’s Facebook profile mirrors all the things the 21-year-old Texas college student loves: cute animals, exotic travel and left-leaning political issues such as immigration reform and gun control.

But there is another Katie Greenman on Facebook — created by strangers and copying her full name, photos, home town and old workplace — that shares only ideas celebrated by President Trump, including an image showing Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama in federal prison. The fake account’s profile picture: a selfie of the real Greenman, sunbathing.

Facebook has championed face recognition and other artificial-intelligence tools as its secret weapons to combat political propaganda, hate speech and misinformation.
But the fakes highlight how the company is struggling to use the technology to fulfill its most basic mission — connecting real people around the world.

Subject: Google’s version of robocalls has small businesses skeptical
Source: USA Today – Talking Tech

Janell Goplen automatically hangs up the phone when she receives automated calls to her Clearwater restaurant in Newport, Oregon.

In the summer, Google will begin testing its controversial new plan to have the Google Assistant smartphone app make human-sounding calls for restaurant reservations and hair-cut appointments. If Goplen were to get the call and she sensed that it was robotic, “I’d hang up,” she says. “Google would have to let me know this was a Google reservation.”

But in the aftermath of the demo, many questions arose that Google was not willing to answer. Consumers bitterly complain about robocalls, which are rising despite regulatory vows to stop them. Doesn’t Duplex promise to usher in even more of them, albeit ones that can work for you? And is Google’s technology strong enough to really handle the transaction? What if the robot is put on hold or asked to press #5 for reservations?

Everywhere there is technology for good, there’s technology for bad, he notes, and if Google could figure out how to do it, so could rogues. “Who needs a call center anymore, if you can use technology to call millions of people at a low cost, without human involvement,” he asks.

Still, Weinstein worries about the technology getting into the wrong hands, and being used to make “hundreds” of fake appointments, just to mess with the business, call law enforcement with “false police reports,” and the like.

California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, and Washington State all have “all party” consent laws that restrict the recording of phone conversations and  require permission to be granted first, he notes.

Subject: 10 tips for verifying viral social media videos
Source: The Poynter Institute via beSpacific

Poynter – Danile Funke: “Of all types of misinformation, video is among the hardest to fact-check. First, it isn’t easily searchable like text and photos are. You can’t paste or upload a video on Facebook or Google to see if it’s true or even trending.  Second, there’s currently no way to see which videos are going viral on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. They’re essentially block boxes, and fact-checkers regularly gripe about how it makes their jobs harder. (Although there has been progress with fact-checking images on Facebook.)

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Subject: Your fingerprints aren’t as unique as a snowflake. Yet
Source: FCW

Governments and law enforcement bodies are searching for better fingerprint capture technology, and the results of a recent contest demonstrate they may be getting closer to a solution.

A report by the National Institute for Standards and Technology details results from a September 2017 challenge held by the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) to find more accurate (and less uncomfortable) method to capture fingerprints.

The project builds on previous work by IARPA over the past year to improve fingerprint analysis through better technology. In 2017, the agency stood up two programs: one called Odin, for detecting fake or altered fingerprints, and another, Nail to Nail [N2N], a form of contactless fingerprint analysis that has become the standard the agency is hoping to best through its prize challenge.

Last year the American Association for the Advancement of Science released a report concluding that any courtroom testimony or reports stating or implying that fingerprints collected from a crime scene belong to a single person are “indefensible and lack scientific foundation.” This was particularly true for latent fingerprint analysis, one of the metrics IARPA tracked through its N2N challenge.

Subject: IC3: 2017 Cyber Crimes and Trends
Source: Homeland Security Digital Library

On May 7, 2018 the FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) released a report on internet crime and scams during 2017. The report, titled, “2017 Internet Crime Report” covers the types, frequency, and trends in internet crimes and includes a wealth of data based on the complaints of internet crimes filed with the IC3 throughout 2017. The included 2017 data was compiled from 301,580 filed complaints and a reported monetary loss of over $1.4 billion.

The FBI published a press release announcing the report. The press release also included links to the IC3, a public service announcement, and a more detailed summary of the report that includes visuals.

The HSDL offers many additional resources related to the issue of cybersecurity. Visit the Featured Topics for more on Cyber Crime & National Security, Cyber Infrastructure Protection, Cyber Policy, and Electronic Surveillance.

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Subject: How to beat the cost of crime-solving tech
Source: FCW

Crime solving technologies — from developing algorithms, to unlocking encrypted smart phones, to probing the dark web, to analyzing DNA evidence — are becoming commonplace in solving or preventing crimes across the country.

One of law enforcement’s biggest challenges is how to pay for those capabilities, said David Denton, deputy assistant director, cyber, at Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations operations.

Posted in: Civil Liberties, Cybercrime, Cyberlaw, Cybersecurity, Privacy, Social Media