Check out Kate Knibbs’s article “Why Twitter’s Privacy Fight Matters.”
“Police arrested Malcolm Harris for disorderly conduct when he blocked traffic on the Brooklyn Bridge during the protests. This week, New York City Criminal Court Judge Matthew Sciarrino upheld a court order for the information and told Twitter to hand over access to Harris’ account, since the prosecution believes his tweets confirm he knew his actions were illegal. Harris maintains the police directed him to the bridge…” [click here to read the rest!]
Those who know me, know that I am a bit of a technology nerd. I have a tertiary qualification in IT, and thus I like to have all the shiny new toys, and I’m not averse to changing brands to take advantage of all that is new and shiny in techno-land. At the moment I’m into Nikon digital cameras, Toshiba laptops, iPads and for a smartphone, I use the Apple iPhone. It is far from being a perfect technology, and there is a lot of things you cant do with it that are available on other smartphones. Anybody who has used another phone prior to their purchase of an iPhone will know what I mean. However the iPhone does have other features which make it an invaluable tool. The ability to do iPhone to iPhone messaging (thus saving carrier costs), locate a lost phone, dump the data on it, and then make it about as useful as a paper weight in the wrong hands. Imagine, my surprise when I learnt that the iPhone is one of the most secure smartphones on the market.
Apple’s investments in iOS security are second to none. A recent report from MIT’s Technology Review said that Apple’s security measures in iOS have “crossed a significant threshold.” iOS is now so secure that it’s hard for law enforcement agencies to access the data in an iPhone that has been seized from a criminal. While this bad for law enforcement, who would seek to use the contained data as evidence against a criminal, but it certainly is good news for consumers.
“From a Department of Justice perspective, if that drive is encrypted, you’re done,” said Ovie Carroll, the Department of Justice’s director of the cyber-crime lab at the Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section of the agency. “When conducting criminal investigations, if you pull the power on a drive that is whole-disk encrypted you have lost any chance of recovering that data.”
Things weren’t always so tight with the iPhone. In fact, when first launched in 2007 the iPhone was so insecure that every single application had root access to the phone’s operating system. This meant that hackers could infiltrate the phone and control it against a user’s will. This was fixed in 2008 when Apple prevented applications from accessing iOS as a whole by “sandboxing” them.
“Apple’s security architecture is so sturdy, and so tightly woven into its hardware and software, that it is both easy for consumers to use encryption on their phones and very difficult for someone else to steal the encrypted information,” Technology Review said. Apple uses an Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) key in iOS that is protected even further when users decide to activate the phone’s PIN password lock option. A user who implements an eight digit pin would take investigators 15 years to crack, for example, MIT said. And I thought that I was stuck with the 4 character numeric password! iOS encrypts all of the data on an iPhone, unlike Android, which only encrypts part of the data. It also, reportedly, doesn’t take advantage of hardware encryption like iOS does.
A Newcastle area Christian school has banned wizards, witches and warlocks from its annual Book Week parade. The Harry Potter series of fantasy novels have also been banned from the school’s library.
Many schools celebrate Book Week by asking their students to dress up as their favourite book character. The principal of the school in question has told parents not to send their children as wizards, witches or warlocks, as it as “inconsistent with school values” or “not in line with its Christian ethos”
While Harry Potter characters were “out” at the school, it appears that Anakin Skywalker, The Mad Hatter, Peter Pan and other similar characters are ‘”in”. Using this analogy, it makes one wonder whether Darth Vader is “in” or “out?” What about Shrek, Puss In Boots or Donkey? What about characters from “Lord Of The Rings?” What about the Klingons or other alien characters from the “Star Trek” series? Santa Claus? Where does one stop?
The principal states that parents have the right to make decisions on whether their children are allowed to read such material – but don’t expect to do it at school it seems. It appears to this author that this may indeed be covert censorship, where the view of the “one” is seeking to influence the view of the “many”.
The principal states “we do not stock books from the Harry Potter series or other titles, which are subject to polarising public discussion”. I suggest the Bible is also a volume that has polarised public discussion over the millennia, but I would be sure there is a copy (or more) of that Text in the school’s library.
Children realise at a very early age what is reality and what is not. They accept anthropomorphism readily, knowing full well that animals, plants and such can’t actually speak, walk on their back legs or display other human attributes! They know that humans cannot fly but readily accept the characters of Superman and Spiderman! Then what stance does one take about the the “Transformers?”
The principal further states that the Harry Potter series topped the American Library Association’s 10 Most Challenged Books of the 21st Century. While this may be so, “Of Mice and Men” by John Steinbeck is also there in 5th place! I suspect that volume may also be found in the school’s library too! However, J. K. Rowling herself has not been on the Challenged Author’s list since 2003.
The ALA goes on to define a challenge as:
“An attempt to remove or restrict materials, based upon the objections of a person or group. Challenges do not simply involve a person expressing a point of view; rather, they are an attempt to remove material from the curriculum or library, thereby restricting the access of others”.
This I suspect is my biggest objection to school’s stance on this issue; the view of covert censorship and the restriction of access to this material to others. I find it all just a little bizarre!
Feel free to participate in the poll below on this subject:
George Brown is a decorated soldier and health professional and 40 year veteran in the field of emergency nursing and paramedical practice, both military and civilian areas. He has senior management positions in the delivery of paramedical services. Opinions expressed in these columns are solely those of the author and should not be construed as being those of any organization to which he may be connected.
He was born in the UK of Scottish ancestry from Aberdeen and a member of the Clan MacDougall. He is a member of the Macedonian community in Newcastle, and speaks fluent Macedonian. While this may seem a contradiction, it is his wife who is Macedonian, and as a result he embraced the Macedonian language and the Orthodox faith.
His interests include aviation and digital photography, and he always enjoys the opportunity to combine the two. Navigate to his Flickr site to see recent additions to his photo library.
Џорџ Браун е украсени војник и професионално здравствено лице и 40 годишен ветеран во областа на за итни случаи старечки и парамедицински пракса, двете воени и цивилни области. Тој има високи менаџерски позиции во испораката на парамедицински услуги. Мислењата изразени во овие колумни се исклучиво на авторот и не треба да се толкува како оние на било која организација тој може да биде поврзан.
Тој е роден во Велика Британија на шкотскиот потекло од Абердин и член на Kланот MacDougall. Тој е член на македонската заедница во Њукасл, и зборува течно македонски. Иако ова можеби изгледа контрадикција, тоа е неговата сопруга кој е македонски, и како резултат научил македонскиот јазик и ја примија православната вера.
Неговите интереси вклучуваат авијација и дигитална фотографија, и тој секогаш ужива во можност да се комбинираат двете. Отиди до неговиот Фликр сајт да видите последните дополнувања на неговата слика библиотека.