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More say in the privacy of personal data?

Is decentralisation inevitable? Is personal data is being manipulated for political gain? How can we harness the power of super-intelligent AI while preventing the catastrophe of robotic takeover? Are pop lyrics getting more repetitive?


Want more say in the privacy of personal data? 🛡 The latest CR Consumer Voices survey revealed that "92% of Americans think companies should have to get permission before sharing or selling users' online data". Key takeaway: "though consumers say they want stronger privacy protections, federal actions are moving the rules in the opposite direction." For example, how the FCC recently voted to overturn net neutrality rules.

Is decentralisation inevitable? 💭 Using the example of e-commerce, Jeremy Epstein explains how change is inevitable - so we either need to adapt and be prepared, or it will come as a surprise. Epstein argues that decentralisation may make "a number of industries and institutions will go away in 5, 10 or 20 years". --> Check out the decentralised bank project. 🔥

UK PM Theresa May proposed introducing huge regulations on the way the internet works in order to position the UK as "the global leader in the regulation of the use of personal data and the internet". 😳 May wants the government to decide what is and isn't published on the internet, rather than leaving it up to private businesses like Google and Facebook. -- This comes after the UK government won the right to collect everyone's browsing history. 😬

Is our personal data is being manipulated for political gain? The Information Commissioner, Elizabeth Denham, opened a formal investigation into the use of data analytics for political purposes. 🕵 Denham warned that messages sent to people "based on identifying data" via social media could be breaking the law. ⛔ The investigation will explore "practices deployed during the UK’s EU Referendum campaign". -- Interesting article on how election law can't cope with data harvesting.

Muhammad Rabbani, the director of British human rights group Cage, has been charged under terrorism law for refusing to hand over his phone and laptop passwords at the UK border. 😳 Rabbani told The Guardian that he refused access due to his laptop containing sensitive information on an "alleged torture involving the US intelligence agencies".

Dame Fiona Caldicott claimed that the Google's collection of 1.6 million patients records from the NHS was on an "inappropriate legal basis". 👊 The controversial deal between Google's DeepMind and the NHS shared and processed patient data under "implied consent". The concept of "consent" has created confusion over how companies can ensure "informed consent" (in particular as a GDPR requirement). -- Interesting opinion from The Guardian on the data-sharing deal:

The company that wants to organise the world’s data needs to respect its users’ privacy, especially if they are patients in the NHS. DeepMind’s cavalier approach needs to be penalised and admonished.

-- A study conducted by Compuware Corporation revealed that 62% of businesses still at high risk of non-compliance fines under the upcoming GDPR changes. 😨 The countdown begins! 🔥


INTERESTING factsheet on the unprecedented WannaCry ransomwear attack. 👾 Key points:

  • Developed by "equation group", an exploit developer group associated with the NSA, and leaked to the public by "the shadow brokers"

  • Microsoft fixed this vulnerability on March 14, 2017 🤔

How can we harness the power of super-intelligent AI while also preventing the catastrophe of robotic takeover? 🤖 Worthwhile TED talk.

Why do white men dominate movie roles?

A visual introduction to machine learning. 💜

🍁 Neat visualisation of trees in downtown Vancouver:

Trees in downtown Vancouver, via Reddit


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