Tag: NPR

14
Oct
2020
Posted in website

Virginia Extends Voter Registration Deadline Until Oct. 15 After Website Outage : NPR

Virginia’s online voter registration system went down on the worst day possible: the last day that residents are allowed to register to vote.

Bill Smith/Flickr


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Bill Smith/Flickr

A federal judge in Richmond has ruled that Virginia must extend online and in-person voter registration until 11:59 p.m. on Oct. 15.

The order comes after a construction project accidentally cut a fiber internet line yesterday that took down several state websites, including the Department of Elections website on the last day of voter registration.

U.S. Judge John A. Gibney Jr. made the ruling early Wednesday morning in a lawsuit brought by several voter rights groups.

“There’s really not a lot of harm to the Commonwealth and the state registrars by extending the period of registration in this case,” Gibney Jr. said in the teleconference hearing, “but there is tremendous harm to the people who want to register to vote and to the people who are helping people register to vote.”

Attorney General Mark Herring, who supported the lawsuit, announced the news on Twitter as well.

Voter advocates filed a lawsuit Tuesday to extend Virginia’s deadline.

“Eligible Virginia citizens should not have to pay the price for this technological failure. Unless the voter registration deadline is extended to October 15, 2020, Plaintiffs’ members and others will be deprived of their constitutional right to vote in the November 3, 2020, election,” reads the suit filed by the New Virginia Majority Education Fund, the Virginia Civic Engagement Table and the League of Women Voters of Virginia.

Problems erupted early Tuesday morning when voters noticed they could not access online registration. The

12
Oct
2020
Posted in technology

How To Protect Your Privacy Online In 8 Tips : Life Kit : NPR

Your tech is watching you.

Jackie Ferrentino for NPR

Your tech is watching you.

Jackie Ferrentino for NPR

Before I became a reporter at NPR, I worked for a few years at tech companies.

One of the companies was in the marketing technology business — the industry that’s devoted in part to tracking people and merging their information, so they can be advertised to more effectively.

That tracking happens in multiple senses: Physical tracking, because we carry our phones everywhere we go. And virtual tracking, of all the places we go online.

The more I understood how my information was being collected, shared and sold, the more I wanted to protect my privacy. But it’s still hard to know which of my efforts are actually effective and which are a waste of time.

So I reached out to experts in digital security and privacy to find out what they do to protect their stuff – and what they recommend most to us regular folks.

Here’s what they told me.

1. To protect your accounts, practice good security hygiene.

There are some steps that make sense for almost all of us, says Eva Galperin, the director of cybersecurity at the Electronic Frontier Foundation. Those include using strong passwords, two-factor authentication, and downloading the latest security updates.

She and other experts make a distinction between privacy and security when it comes to your data. Security generally refers to protecting against someone trying to access your stuff — like stealing your credit card number or hacking your accounts. Privacy is more often used to talk about keeping your movements from being tracked for purposes of advertising or surveillance.

It turns out that the steps to protect your security are more clear-cut than those for privacy — but we’ll come back to that.

Use strong passwords or passphrases for your accounts. Longer than a

12
Oct
2020
Posted in computer

15-Year-Old Computer Whiz Who Died In 2006 Could Become 1st Millennial Saint : NPR

Cardinal Agostino Vallini, left, holds a relic of 15-year-old Carlo Acutis, an Italian boy who died in 2006 of leukemia, during his beatification ceremony celebrated in the St. Francis Basilica, in Assisi, Italy, on Saturday.

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Cardinal Agostino Vallini, left, holds a relic of 15-year-old Carlo Acutis, an Italian boy who died in 2006 of leukemia, during his beatification ceremony celebrated in the St. Francis Basilica, in Assisi, Italy, on Saturday.

Gregorio Borgia/AP

A teenage computer gamer and programmer from Italy who devoted the final years of his life to the church until his death in 2006 was beatified over the weekend, making him the first millennial to be put on the path to Catholic sainthood.

A portrait of Carlo Acutis, who died of leukemia at age 15, was unveiled at the beatification ceremony at the Basilica of Saint Francis of Assisi. In it, he is wearing a red polo shirt and his curly hair is ringed by a faint halo of light.

Acutis has been called the “patron saint of the Internet.” He created a website to catalog miracles and managed sites for local Catholic organizations.

“Carlo used the internet in service of the Gospel, to reach as many people as possible,” Cardinal Agostino Vallini, the papal legate for the Assisi basilicas, said during his homily.

Vallini kissed the boy’s mask-wearing parents, Andrea Acutis and Antonia Salzano, after reading the proclamation decreed by Pope Francis.

“He was considered a computer genius,” his mother told Vatican News. “But what did he do? He didn’t use [computers] to chat or have fun.”

She told an Italian newspaper that from age from age 3 her son would ask to visit churches the family passed in Milan.

”There was in him a natural predisposition for the

07
Oct
2020
Posted in technology

Judge Orders Twitter To Unmask FBI Impersonator Who Set Off Seth Rich Conspiracy : NPR

A federal judge has ordered Twitter to reveal account information related to an anonymous user who allegedly peddled a fake FBI report pertaining to the death of Democratic National Committee aide Seth Rich.

Jeff Chiu/AP


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A federal judge has ordered Twitter to reveal account information related to an anonymous user who allegedly peddled a fake FBI report pertaining to the death of Democratic National Committee aide Seth Rich.

Jeff Chiu/AP

Updated 8:50 p.m. ET Wednesday

A federal judge in California has ordered that Twitter reveal the identity of an anonymous user who allegedly fabricated an FBI document to spread a conspiracy theory about the killing of Seth Rich, the Democratic National Committee staffer who died in 2016.

The ruling could lead to the identification of the person behind the Twitter name @whyspertech. Through that account, the user allegedly provided forged FBI materials to Fox News. The documents falsely linked Rich’s killing to the WikiLeaks hack of Democratic Party emails in the lead-up to the 2016 election.

While Twitter fought to keep the user’s identity secret, U.S. Magistrate Judge Donna Ryu in Oakland, Calif., ordered on Tuesday that the tech company must turn over the information to attorneys representing Rich’s family in a defamation suit by Oct. 20.

It is the latest twist in a years-long saga over a conspiracy theory that rocked Washington, caused a grieving family a great deal of pain and set off multiple legal battles.

In a now-retracted story, Fox News falsely claimed that Rich’s computer was connected to the leak of Democratic Party emails provided to WikiLeaks, and that Rich’s slaying was related to the purported leak. The theory was even debunked in special counsel Robert Mueller’s report.

The Washington Times later reported in 2018 that Rich’s brother, Aaron Rich,

07
Oct
2020
Posted in technology

McAfee Founder Arrested In Spain And Accused Of Tax Evasion : NPR

John McAfee giving a speech on Aug. 16, 2016, in Beijing, China. McAfee has been arrested on tax evasion charges in Spain.

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John McAfee giving a speech on Aug. 16, 2016, in Beijing, China. McAfee has been arrested on tax evasion charges in Spain.

Visual China Group via Getty Images

Computer antivirus pioneer John McAfee tweeted last year that he hadn’t filed a tax return in eight years.

It was OK, he explained. He was “done making money.” His “net income is negative.”

“Taxation is illegal,” he said.

Now McAfee has been arrested in Spain on tax evasion charges. The U.S. Justice Department has accused him of failing to file tax returns from 2014 to 2018 despite making millions, according to an indictment unsealed on Monday.

He allegedly made money from “promoting crypto-currencies, consulting work, speaking engagements and selling the rights to his life story for a documentary.” His extradition to the U.S. is pending, according to the Justice Department.

Prosecutors said he evaded taxes by directing his income to be paid into bank accounts and cryptocurrency exchange accounts set up in others’ names, according to the indictment. He also allegedly concealed assets, including real property, a vehicle and a yacht, by putting them in other people’s names.

He could face up to 30 years in prison and $1.75