National / International News
Los Angeles is considering raising its minimum wage from $9 to $15 an hour in order to help its 800,000 residents in poverty. But no major city has yet raised its wage this dramatically and this fast.
We've entered the age of Internet-connected cars, and the Massachusetts lawmaker says they're vulnerable to all kinds of data breaches.
A report released Monday says the security protocols in connected cars aren't nearly secure enough. It's yet another example of the basic dilemma posed by the Internet of Things: how to connect more devices to each other and the Internet, while making them easy to use, technologically innovative and private and secure.
Cars with wireless systems connected to the Internet are vulnerable to hacking and data theft, according to the Senate report, which found that auto-industry security measures are "inconsistent and haphazard."
"Every time you add a new point of connectivity to a device, you have increased the attack surface — more ways to gain access," says Steve Checkoway, a researcher at the Johns Hopkins University Information Security Institute. Checkoway participated in experiments in 2010 that showed how vulnerable cars can be.
Automakers are designing cars with the same kinds of wireless connectivity technologies that consumers have come to expect from their daily digital devices. Accordingly, cars are becoming subject to the same growing pains facing computers and smartphones – in addition to featuring digital door locks and thermostats.
Silicon Valley is grappling with a delicate balance: Keeping these products easy to use while implementing enough security to keep customers comfortable with using them.
"The out-of-the-box experience when you start up a product [is that] when you unpackage it, put it on the wall, it needs to be very seamless," says Tom Kerber, who heads research into the Internet of Things at Parks Associates. If customers have to grapple with too many steps to implement security protocols, Kerber says, they will reject products instead of adopting them.
In the meantime, Silicon Valley is churning out connected products based on the same model it used to churn out computers and apps. "Innovation in Silicon Valley is all about iteration and experimentation," says analyst Frank Gillett of Forrester Research.
Experimentation tends to mean that products aren't fully cooked when they come to market, he says. "So the idea is: Figure out the minimum viable product that will let you experiment with an idea, develop it and see if there's something there, and then figure out how to improve it, iterate it, make it better," Gillett says.
While companies often think about security when first releasing a product, their process of improving a product after launch means security is often playing catchup, he says, and that model is not likely to change soon.
The Internal Revenue Service said Friday that the average refund so far this year is running at $3,539.
So two things: First, who's got their taxes done already? Because, cut it out! You're making the rest of us look bad.
And secondly, you know that when you get a refund you've basically given the government an interest-free loan, right?
Brian Williams, the host of NBC Nightly News, is embroiled in a scandal over fabricated stories he told about experiences during the invasion of Iraq in 2003. He's taken a leave of absence from the show.
But just how important is an anchor like Williams to a news network in an era of declining network news viewership?
NBC took a ratings hit last week, according to preliminary numbers from Nielsen. It was a big dip, at 36 percent, but declining viewership for network news isn’t exactly, well, news. Fewer and fewer sets are tuned to these broadcasts after reaching a peak in the 1980s.
Is the evening-news tradition becoming irrelevant in this new era of 24/7 information? Or do the networks see a good reason to continue their investment? Williams' show, after all, is still a major source of ad revenue for NBC.
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The Washington-based International Consortium of International Journalist's story was based on documents leaked in 2008. HSBC says it ended those practices starting that year.
When a child falls ill with cancer, many of the drugs that might help are either experimental or unapproved for use in kids.
The man they’re calling “the rock star of anti-austerity” rocked financial markets Monday. Yanis Varoufakis — the new Greek finance minister — sent bank shares reeling on the Athens stock exchange with his comments on the euro.
Over the weekend, he warned that the eurozone would collapse if his country is forced out of the currency union by Germany’s refusal to accept a renegotiation of the terms of Greece’s bailout. Varoufakis said he believes that if Greece left the eurozone, investors will pull their money out of other heavily indebted euro countries – forcing them to leave too. With its biggest export market – the rest of Europe – then in turmoil, Germany could be the biggest loser.
President Obama says it would break protocol to meet with Netanyahu just two weeks before the Israel elections. Obama adds the two men have "real differences" over Iran.
Starting today, Cubans with an Internet connection and access to international payment methods will have access to a wide array of movies and shows. There are huge hurdles, though.