Facebook has a problem. Not the one where they admitted to being a megaphone for propaganda and psy-ops. Or the one where they narced on at-risk Australian teens. No, today's news concerns how the social giant/massive data collection scheme has (increasingly) become an unwilling platform for users to broadcast violent crimes, sexual acts, child exploitation and suicide.
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Video: Not treating fireworks -- AKA explosives -- with the respect they deserve is one of the most dangerous thing you can do. So after a couple of pranksters in Phoenix, Arizona, thought it would be funny to start a chain reaction on a shelf full of fireworks in a Walmart, humanity has reached a new low.
For years, the Secret Service has been tracking down the legendary "Russian-Israeli Note", one of the most sophisticated and common fake Benjamins ever made. This high-tech international ring was finally busted and indicted this week, thanks to years of good old-fashioned surveillance and legwork.
Committing insurance fraud, mail or otherwise, is universally a fairly dumb thing to do -- especially when your plan is literally designed to fail. Like, say, that of 29-year-old idiot Nathan Meunch and friend. Because if you're trying to pass off a soggy, dripping cardboard box stuffed with ice as a $4000 stack of iPads, chances are -- you're getting caught.
After a US District Court judged found Apple guilty of colluding with book publishers to fix the prices of ebooks last month, it was unclear what the actual consequences would be for the iPad-maker. Well with little pomp or circumstance, the US Department of Justice has just cleared that up, and it's not good for Apple.
We're already well aware of the damage malware can do to your machine, but apparently, guilty consciences don't fare all that well either. At least not for one 21-year-old man who, after getting a fake pop-up demanding a fine for the child pornography on his computer, decided to take his laptop straight to the police -- and was then promptly arrested on three counts of possession of child pornography.
Every sci-fi movie about inventions rising up to take over the world is built upon one unchangeable seed crystal: the moment when the technology does something its inventors never predicted. As The Verge reports, that's exactly what happened to Google engineers in 2010, with a truth-and-justice twist -- Google's AdWords software exposed a Chinese car theft scam.
Imagine you're the police. Imagine you're in your police car. Imagine eating a doughnut. Imagine complaining about life to your partner. Imagine seeing a car with two obviously blown tyres drive by. Imagine pulling that car over. Imagine seeing that the driver driving the car was using a makeshift steering wheel made from... locking pliers.
It's only natural to be a little skeeved out by the idea that the government is slurping up your private data behind the scenes, but there's a very public piece of your data being collected as well: the look on your face. There's already a national database of over 120 million faces in the US, and the Washington Post reports that it's slowly turning into the ultimate police tool.
Can you imagine what it would be like to report crimes via Facebook or call for a fire truck through Twitter? It would be pretty convenient, right? None of that scary "Call 000!" business. No ambling down to the precinct for filling out paperwork. No need to leave your living room actually. It would be equivalent to a socially networked Neighbourhood Watch.
Imagine this: You set it up the perfect kinky hook-up on the internet. You found a hot partner who wants to have sex with you, provided this sex happens on top of a pile of cash. So you find the pile of cash, you show up at the appointed time to get lucky, only to find out that it's not your lucky day at all.
It's no secret that the police aren't very good at breaking into encrypted iPhones, but they've been asking Apple for help. A lot of help. According to reports by CNET the government asks for so much help that the "please decrypt this iPhone for me" waiting list is at least seven weeks long.
WebMd, the hypochondriac's wet dream turned digital, is notorious for convincing invalid hopefuls that their pounding headache is actually just a tricky little combination of diabetes and cyanide poisoning. But crippling neuroticism apparently isn't the only negative side effect of our dependence on the site.