Posts by Pavlos Efraimidis

Pavlos S. Efraimidis is an Associate Professor in Algorithms and Director of the Algorithms and Privacy Research Unit (https://euclid.ee.duth.gr). He received his PhD in Informatics in 2000 from the University of Patras under the supervision of Paul Spirakis. His main work is on algorithms and his current research interests are in the fields of algorithmic game theory and algorithmic aspects of privacy. He has published over 35 refereed technical papers and book chapters, and has participated in 11 national and European research projects. His professional experience includes working as a researcher for the Computer Technology Institute (http://www.cti.gr/), and as a computer engineer in the high performance computing field (Parsytec Computer GmbH, Aachen, Germany) and the financial sector (ASYK - Athens Stock Exchange, Athens, Greece).

WhatsApp rises as a major force in news media – BBC News

The private instant messaging app is surging in popularity as a way to share and discuss the news.

WhatsApp is becoming one of the prevailing ways people discover and discuss news, according to a study.

But use of the messaging app appears to vary widely between countries.

In Malaysia, more than 50% of those surveyed said they used WhatsApp for news at least once a week. But in the US, the figure was only 3%, and in the UK it was 5%.

The Digital News Report also indicates the Brexit debate has led to growing mistrust of the UK’s media.

 

Source: WhatsApp rises as a major force in news media – BBC News

Yahoo closes internet prodigy’s news app – BBC News

Yahoo has announced it is shutting down its award-winning News Digest app at the end of this month.

It was launched in 2014 and is based on a technology developed by a British teenager that compressed other news outlets’ reports into shorter articles.

Yahoo was reported to have paid £20m for the tech and offered its creator Nick D’Aloisio a full-time job, but he opted instead to go to university.

The closure marks one of the first cuts made since Verizon bought Yahoo.

The telecoms company paid $4.5bn (£3.6bn) for the internet services firm in a deal that was completed on 13 June.

Source: Yahoo closes internet prodigy’s news app – BBC News

Cybersecurity Faces 1.8 Million Worker Shortfall By 2022

(ISC)2 report shows the skills shortage is getting worse.

Over the next five years, the number of unfilled cybersecurity jobs will rise to a whopping 1.8 million, a 20% increase from 2015 estimates, according to a new (ISC)2 survey released today.

Driving this widening shortage is not only the often discussed lack of qualified workers but also a greater need to bring in more warm bodies to tackle the rapidly evolving ways that cybercriminals and attackers are launching their nefarious activities, according to the report. It’s getting easier for low-tech criminals to get into hacking, thanks to malware-as-a-service operations and crimeware kits.

Source: Cybersecurity Faces 1.8 Million Worker Shortfall By 2022

How Privacy Became a Commodity for the Rich and Powerful – The New York Times

It used to signal a quiet, anonymous life. Now privacy is a premium that may be out of reach for ordinary citizens.

Recently I handed over the keys to my email account to a service that promised to turn my spam-bloated inbox into a sparkling model of efficiency in just a few clicks. Unroll.me’s method of instant unsubscribing from newsletters and junk mail was “trusted by millions of happy users,” the site said, among them the “Scandal” actor Joshua Malina, who tweeted in 2014: “Your inbox will sing!” Plus, it was free. When a privacy policy popped up, I swatted away the legalese and tapped “continue.”

Last month, the true cost of Unroll.me was revealed: The service is owned by the market-research firm Slice Intelligence, and according to a report in The Times, while Unroll.me is cleaning up users’ inboxes, it’s also rifling through their trash. When Slice found digital ride receipts from Lyft in some users’ accounts, it sold the anonymized data off to Lyft’s ride-hailing rival, Uber.

Source: How Privacy Became a Commodity for the Rich and Powerful – The New York Times

Election 2017: Was it Facebook wot swung it? – BBC News

A surge of enthusiasm for Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party was evident on social media. Did it translate into votes?

If you were surprised by the general election result, particularly the relative gains made by Labour and the worse-than-predicted Conservative performance, you probably weren’t keeping a close eye on Facebook.

There was a sharp distinction between Tory and Labour styles when it came to social media. The Conservative focus seemed to be sharp, paid-for attack ads. Labour’s presence was much more organic, and perhaps more effective with it.

Source: Election 2017: Was it Facebook wot swung it? – BBC News

How Facebook’s tentacles reach further than you think – BBC News

Share Lab uses flow charts and data analysis to map one of the greatest forces shaping our world – Facebook.

Facebook’s collection of data makes it one of the most influential organisations in the world. Share Lab wanted to look “under the bonnet” at the tech giant’s algorithms and connections to better understand the social structure and power relations within the company.

A couple of years ago, Vladan Joler and his brainy friends in Belgrade began investigating the inner workings of one of the world’s most powerful corporations.

The team, which includes experts in cyber-forensic analysis and data visualisation, had already looked into what he calls “different forms of invisible infrastructures” behind Serbia’s internet service providers.

Source: How Facebook’s tentacles reach further than you think – BBC News

Borussia Dortmund bus attack suspect ‘planned to profit from falling share price’ (The Telegraph)

German police have arrested a man with dual Russian citizenship on suspicion of bombing the Borussia Dortmund team bus in an elaborate plot to make money if the team’s share price fell.

German police have arrested a man with dual Russian citizenship on suspicion of bombing the Borussia Dortmund team bus in an elaborate plot to make money if the team’s share price fell.

The 28-year-old dual German and Russian national, named only as Sergei W,  is believed to carried out the attack in order to make a profit selling shares in the team.

He had bought options on Borussia Dortmund stock in advance of the attack and planned to make a profit as the share price fell in the wake of injuries to key players, prosecutors said in a statement.

Source: Borussia Dortmund bus attack suspect ‘planned to profit from falling share price’

How the Republicans Sold Your Privacy to Internet Providers – The New York Times

President Trump might soon sign a bill that lets internet service providers sell your web browsing history and other personal information.

On Tuesday afternoon, while most people were focused on the latest news from the House Intelligence Committee, the House quietly voted to undo rules that keep internet service providers — the companies like Comcast, Verizon and Charter that you pay for online access — from selling your personal information.

Source: How the Republicans Sold Your Privacy to Internet Providers – The New York Times

Here’s how the death of online privacy rules affects you – CNET

What just happened?

The House of Representatives on Tuesday voted 215-205 to stop FCC regulations from taking effect that would have required broadband and wireless companies to ask your permission before sharing sensitive information about you, such as the websites you visit, the apps you use or even your location. The rules would have also set standards for broadband providers to protect information they collect and store. And they would have set requirements for when and how companies would inform you if your data was stolen.

The House vote follows a 50-48 vote in the Senate, which invoked the Congressional Review Act. This law gives Congress the power to override regulations adopted by federal agencies before they go into effect.

Tuesday’s vote basically kills rules that the Democrat-led FCC adopted in October. Now that bill will go to Trump to sign.

Source: Here’s how the death of online privacy rules affects you – CNET

Blockchains Could Add Trillions of Dollars to the Global Economy | HuffPost

Imagine if the entire global economy could run simply on connected smartphones: no cloud, no servers,no central power, no government. This capability is coming, like it or not. Servers and cloud computing can provide ledgers to be queried along with other elements that are nice to have when stored on the cloud such as large files, audios, videos, etc. Other than that, everything can be enabled on the distributed and decentralized non-ledger-based blockchain.

What is the Blockchain technology?Think of the ability to transfer ownership without an intermediary. Then think of a system that records the correlation of these transfers as time goes by, and it does so every 30 seconds (block) while ensuring correlation with the next block, and so on. This is what is meant by a “blockchain.” As long as the representation doesn’t divulge information on the transfer event itself, then you are safe from a privacy perspective, and you can therefore store sensitive data representation with proof of your transaction. This could be used for patents, images, titles, deeds, audit trails, smart contracts, etc.

Source: Blockchains Could Add Trillions of Dollars to the Global Economy | HuffPost