marshall kirkpatrick Tags:#Analysis#Features#NYT#web Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Microblogging service Twitter’s habit of playing fast and loose with user passwords may be coming to an end, if a technical trial started today can be successfully implemented by its development team. Earlier this month, the company saw the accounts of users from Barack Obama to Fox News to Britney Spears get “hacked.” More importantly, millions of Twitter users hand out their passwords to strangers every day, because there’s no other way to access the fabulous ecosystem of applications built on top of the famous Twitter data platform, or API.Today Twitter opened up trial access to a new user sign-in protocol for third party developers – until it was swamped by demand and the trial was closed just two hours later. This isn’t just a geek story, though, this could impact all users of Twitter and other sites all around the web.The solution being explored (called OAuth) could not only make the much-watched Twitter more secure, it could help usher in an era where effective user security enables an explosion of mashups across every website we store our data in. Twitter is planning its own showcase of trusted applications, but this could be an important part of an even bigger story.Hi, It’s Nice to Meet You – Can I Have the Keys to Your House?Twitter’s hype and VC fortunes are largely founded on interfaces on desktops, iPhones and other unaffiliated webpages – built by developers who don’t work for Twitter. Those applications are all about interacting with user data stored on Twitter’s servers, and yet the company has offered nothing but the simplest method of accessing that user data by those outside apps. The makers of everything from desktop apps like Tweetdeck and Twhirl, to web services like FriendFeed, Twitterfeed and others have been required to ask users to give up their Twitter usernames and passwords in order to read and write to Twitter user data. And apps built outside of the Twitter.com web page are by far the best way to post messages to Twitter.Who wants to give some brand new website they’ve never seen before the password to their Twitter account – an increasingly important part of millions of peoples’ communication online? The fact is, many of us are doing so every day – and it makes a lot of us very uncomfortable. The recent hacking of Twitter accounts wouldn’t have been prevented by the steps Twitter is taking today, that hack required nothing more than a teenager running the most elementary brute force trial-and-error script until the password “happiness” was found for the login at twitter.com/admin. But these steps were called for much more loudly none the less by the Twitter community after those hacks.So Finally…Twitter Is Readying OAuth!Twitter’s proposed solution to making users all be “password-sluts” is a system called OAuth. It’s an open user-authentication protocol based in large part on work done years ago at Flickr. If you’ve used an outside application for, say, uploading your photos to Flickr, you’ve seen how it works. You tell the application “my name is marshallk on Flickr and I want to use your service to access my account there.” The service goes and asks Flickr for permission, Flickr pops up a window and says “this other website wants to access your private data on Flickr, can you prove you are really you and tell us to give them access?” Then you give Flickr your Flickr password, not the outside service. The idea is that with OAuth, users can say to a website – “I’d like to bring my Twitter data over to your site, but let me log into Twitter and give them permission to give it to you.”Right now, outside websites are forced to essentially pretend to be you after cajoling your secret password out of you, tricking Twitter into giving up the data, and then promising you that they will not abuse this secret password knowledge they’ve been entrusted with.It’s a pretty unsustainable situation.OAuth looks and feels to users a whole lot like the new Facebook Connect, or OpenID login. Why go with OAuth instead? Facebook Connect is a proprietary system that hoards all the user data over the long term and takes too much control over sites that use it. OpenID can’t be used by desktop apps and is too often ugly enough that you’d rather stay home than take it to a party. Enter OAuth, a technology that hopes to solve all those problems.By being an “open standard” it can essentially be replicated all around the web. That means that authenticating sites can just plug in a secure user login procedure with relative ease, and 3rd parties wanting to build a bridge between their apps and OAuth supporting apps don’t have to build to a new data interface (API) every time, because there’s a standard.It doesn’t always work perfectly. The Google-led OpenSocial initiative was supposed to herald a new day of data and application portability across scores of the social networks around the web (all the ones that are less popular than Facebook). Things like OAuth were supposed to make OpenSocial a “write once – apply everywhere” platform, but for political, technical and business reasons, it turned out much harder than that and almost no one cares anyway.The Moral of the Story: Never Give Your Twitter Password to a Stranger AgainIf the OAuth trial that started today is a success, you shouldn’t ever have to wince and hand over your Twitter username and password to a stranger again. That will be very nice. It’s the kind of thing that ought to be best practice everywhere that two applications swap spit (user data), and we hope it will be someday soon.A key part of “data portability” will be letting users feel secure and in control enough of their data to go ahead and use it in multiple places. That’s something Facebook has put a huge emphasis on, at the expense of open community standards and to the benefit of their business interests as the would-be only social networking game in town.Announcing (?) The Twitter App ShowcaseWhat’s Twitter’s plan for this surprisingly important technical direction they are exploring? We asked Twitter API lead Alex Payne and this is what he said:My goal for our OAuth launch is to give our users more control and confidence in their interactions with third-party Twitter-powered applications. Basic Auth has worked for a certain class of single-user application running on a trusted network, but OAuth will increase the reach of Twitter apps that can be used safely and securely on avariety of platforms. What’s more, OAuth gives us the data we need to build an application gallery to better showcase the great work Twitter developers are doing.Our launch plan entails a month or two in private beta, a similar amount of time in public beta, and then a final release. After the final release, we’ll allow OAuth to co-exist with Basic Auth for no less than six months, and hopefully not much longer. OAuth should bethe sole supported authentication mechanism for the Twitter API by the end of 2009.Those are solid gold words, right there. We hope the OAuth community and Twitter can nail this test and implementation, opening the door to a new era of interfaces and applications built by anyone on earth but securely leveraging Twitter user data. A Twitter ecosystem where people feel secure sharing their data could end up being a much bigger Twitter ecosystem.That should be not just be future of Twitter, that should be the future of data-centric online computing in every part of our lives. And Then The Dominoes FallMany people say that Twitter is changing the web all around it. It’s not just a symbol of a new communication paradigm, it’s training millions of people to communicate publicly in very short, rapid messages.That same influence could extend to helping spread secure, standards based user authentication protocols like OAuth.Is isn’t hard to imagine people saying “Twitter lets me use applications like Tweetdeck to send public messages to The_Real_Shaq – so why can’t my bank data be shared with Mint without me giving Mint my bank password? Why can’t my school transcripts be exposed to Netflix to get recommendations of the most popular movies related to the subjects I’m studying – without me giving Netflix my school password?” That kind of future could come all the faster if all of these services used a standardized authentication system, like OAuth. As of this September, that’s exactly what Netflix uses, in fact.You get the picture. Effective Twitter implementation of OAuth is a far more important matter than it might seem. This isn’t something small, dry and technical. This is the future of integrated, hyper-smart social computing being built right before our eyes. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Related Posts Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market
When thinking of retail theft, many envision teenagers shoplifting candy bars. Obviously, it’s much more than that. More than $44 billion in merchandise goes missing across the United States each year, driving up prices for paying customers and filling the coffers of gangs and terrorist organizations. In cities around the United States, a growing number of violent drug store robberies are putting employees and customers at risk, while data breaches siphon off in minutes what would take years to steal from stores.Through collaborations with computer engineers, sociologists and political scientists across campus as well as retail organizations across the country, Dr. Read Hayes of the University of Florida and the team with the Loss Prevention Research Council, or LPRC, works to thwart these criminals.“It’s an opportunity to use academic research to solve real-world problems,” Hayes said. “Retail crime can be very dangerous and violent, but even when it’s not, it affects everyone.”- Sponsor – Factors from the height of the shelves to the placement of the cash registers influence criminal decision-making, and the University of Florida and the LPRC want to understand them all. Through partnerships with a growing number of retail chain stores, LPRC researchers test innovations in theft prevention, watching how customers and criminals alike react.Just as interesting to the scientists are the deterrents that criminals don’t notice. Some, like hidden cameras, are meant to be invisible. But most are meant to be seen, because the goal of retail theft prevention isn’t to catch thieves, but deter them from stealing in the first place.Global Commitment to LP Research and DevelopmentThe LPRC conducts research to develop retail theft, crime and loss control solutions that improve the performance of its members and the retail industry. Founded in 2001 by leading retailers and Dr. Read Hayes in an effort to support the evidence-based needs of loss prevention decision-makers, the LPRC has grown to over 45 major retail chains. To date the LPRC has conducted over 90 real world loss prevention research projects for retailers and partners. The scope of these projects includes:Large-scale field experiments to provide decision-makers with impact and ROI dataDevelopment of statistical models for shortage reductionEmployee dishonesty and shoplifter dynamics researchSupply chain and violent crime research and developmentThe Loss Prevention Research Council conducts rigorous asset protection research and development combining professionals with practical loss prevention experience and expertise with university-trained research backgrounds. The team consists of full time and part time administrative personnel, project managers, and researchers.Innovation, collaboration and evaluation have been a focal point of the LPRC since its inception. All of the research and development projects conducted by the team and the LPRC solution partners have provided a wealth of information and practical learning experiences that help to prevent retail theft and other crimes, improve safety in the stores, and ultimately reduce retail shrink.Sharing the MessageAt LP Magazine, our goal is to provide an additional channel to help communicate the LPRC message. Beginning in April 2016 the team at the Loss Prevention Research Council has generously agreed to provide their insights and expertise to the loss prevention community by contributing ongoing articles to LP Magazine, which will be shared through our digital offerings. Our first article was provided by Brittany Griffin on “Maximizing the Millennial Potential in the Loss Prevention Industry,” discussing how our ability to effectively leverage skills, convey information and feedback will directly impact productivity. We are looking forward to more thoughts from the entire LPRC research team, and are excited to share these insights with the loss prevention community on a regular basis.To learn more about Dr. Hayes, the research efforts of the University of Florida, and the Loss Prevention Research Council, we encourage you to read “The Science of Stealing” from the University of Florida.You can also read the articles provided by Dr. Hayes in his regular column in the print edition of LP Magazine, as well as the feature article “From Store Detective to Research Scientist with the Loss Prevention Research Council” with Dr. Hayes. Stay UpdatedGet critical information for loss prevention professionals, security and retail management delivered right to your inbox. Sign up now
Ohio StateUrban Meyer is attempting to replace quite a bit of talent this summer. His Ohio State football team lost 15 players to the NFL, but the show goes on in Columbus, Ohio, which will likely still be home to a top 10 team. The Buckeyes will still be a top 10 team because Meyer has been recruiting at an extremely high level and there are plenty of of four and five-star prospects ready to step in. Those young players have apparently been performing fairly well this offseason. Ohio State released today a hype video titled, “Young Bucks On The Grind.” Check it out:15 #Buckeyes gone to the #NFL? Next man up.Young Bucks are on the #grind to make an impact in 2016.#GoBucks https://t.co/BlkMtf28M1— Ohio State Football (@OhioStateFB) June 23, 2016Ohio State opens fall camp in a little more than a month. The Buckeyes begin their 2016 season Sept. 3 at Ohio Stadium against Bowling Green.
Winners of the Public Sector Modernisation Division’s (PSMD) Customer Service Competition 2012/13 will be announced by June 2013. Members of the public are being invited to vote for the public sector entity and individual that are delivering the best customer service. The deadline for receipt of all nominations is January 31, 2013. Consultant of the PSMD, Cabinet Office, Fabian Brown, told JIS News that the six-month timeline between the submission of nominations and announcement of winners is to allow for detailed analysis to ensure that the most deserving person and entity are selected. He said that judges will be required to go into the field to observe the entities, to look at videos or documentation, and do a detailed analysis of data, “so that at the end of the day, the winner really can stand up to serious scrutiny.” Members of the public can vote for any public sector entity or individual of their choice by using the toll free line 1888-991-2752 or by voting online at www.cabinet.gov.jm. Customers can also place their entry forms in voting boxes available at the various entities. According to Mr. Brown, nominations are not restricted to the entity at which the person is doing business. “It does not matter, once a box is available… it is a government wide process,” he said. The communication consultant is urging entities to place competition posters, nomination forms and nomination boxes in conspicuous areas in their customer interface areas, so that customers will be informed about the competition and encouraged to vote for the entity or individual of their choice. Additionally, he said, customer service officers and frontline employees should encourage members of the public to submit nominations. All public sector bodies are eligible to enter the competition, including central civil service organisations, executive agencies, public companies, statutory bodies and government departments. Categories to be awarded in this year’s competition are the Most Improved Customer Service Entity, Most Creative Entity, Best Customer Service Officer and the Best Joined-up Service. The main prize is the best Customer Service Entity. The competition, implemented in 1994, under the National Customer Service Programme, Cabinet Office, was initiated as a means of recognising sustained commitment to service excellence. It was also intended to promote continuous improvement in the quality of service.
APTN National NewsDrivers will be putting the pedal to the metal this weekend in Montreal.They’re taking part in a NASCAR racing series.And two Mohawk racers are coming home to grab the checkered flag.APTN National News reporter Tom Fennerio has their story.
The City of Fort St. John also today announced that the Grand Opening of the new Spray Park, which was planned to take place on Friday, has been postponed. The City’s Communications Coordinator Ryan Harvey said that the ceremony was postponed due to inclement weather that was forecast on Friday. Harvey added that a new date for the ceremony has not yet been announced, but that an announcement should be expected early next week. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The City of Fort St. John received another cheque from the Rotary Club of Fort St. John for the renovations to the Rotary Spray Park.Mayor Lori Ackerman was on hand at the Rotary Club’s meeting on Thursday to receive a $20,000 cheque on behalf of the City. Both clubs raised the money over the last year through a number of fundraisers, including the Mega Lottery, Drive-thru Breakfast, and from selling the bricks that ring the newly-renovated spray park next to the North Peace Arena.Scott Wisdahl with the Rotary Club said that with today’s $20,000 donation, the Club reached a milestone with a cumulative total of $100,000 in donations for the spray park’s upgrades.
FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The North Peace Light Horse Association (NPLHA) is holding their Annual Stacy Memorial Silent Auction Fundraiser.The NPLHA is a local not for profit, a member-run equestrian facility that’s goal is to promote skill in horsemanship, in both adults and juniors alike. The Silent Auction is in honour of member Stacy Michalski Ollenberger who passed away unexpectantly on November 4, 2015.The NPLHA shares that in Stacy’s quest of obtaining normalcy, she revived the Horse Show in 2012. Through her illness, she realized an appreciation of community and friends, therefore believing in paying it forward. In Stacy’s memory and to remind NPLHA members and the community of her commitment to the NPLHA a portion of the proceeds from the silent auction will be donated back into the community, to help a local school’s breakfast program this fall.The Auction has raised $5,904.51 of its $8,000.00 goal with new items being added to the silent auction daily. To view the Auction; CLICK HERE
New Delhi: Tax evasion is likely to get more difficult if not impossible with the entry of Big Data Analytics into the Income Tax (I-T) Department’s realm of tools to check tax evasion starting April 1. The Rs 1,000 crore programme named “Project Insight” would track social networking profiles of people and keep a tab on the expenditure patterns through the photographs and videos uploaded on social media. If the purchases and travel expenses are found to be disproportionate to the declared income of a person, the I-T officials would be informed of the mismatch and actions would follow. According to informed sources, the I-T Department has given the tax officials access to the software from March 15. “If you are travelling to a foreign country and posting pictures on social media, or buying a luxury car which is beyond your means as per your returns filed, the I-T Department can use Big Data to analyse them and check the mismatch between your earnings and spendings. The process can easily use the complete trail even for the new tax filer,” said people in the know of things. “The I-T Department can also prepare a master file containing all the details and key information about individuals and corporates,” they said. The main objective of the project is to catch the tax evaders and increase the number of people filing returns and paying taxes. The Insight Project will feature an integrated information management system, which will harness machine learning to help take the right step at the right time. The software would also collect web pages and documents that could be probed by the I-T Department. With the usage of Big Data Analytics, India is set to join a league of countries such as Belgium, Canada and Australia which already use Big Data to keep a check on tax evasion. Since the inception of the technology in Britain in 2010, the system has prevented the loss of around 4.1 billion pound (Rs 36,942 crore) in revenue. The software would ensure the overall scrutiny of all the returns filed and selection based on numerous small parameters from which the probability of tax evasion is likely to be nil, according to analysts.
Washington DC: A 31-year-old Indian national has been sentenced to eight years and nine months in prison on Monday for his involvement in a major call centre scam under which he and his co-conspirators extorted money from American residents by impersonating tax officers, the US Department of Justice said. Nishitkumar Patel, who had pleaded guilty to the charges on January 9, has also been asked by a Florida court to pay USD 2,00,000, forfeit cash and a 2015 Land Rover that was seized in October 2018. According to court documents, Patel connived with the US-based co-conspirators and the India-based call centres to extort money from American residents by impersonating Internal Revenue Service (IRS) officers between 2014 and 2016. The IRS is the revenue service of the United States federal government. During this period, they mislead the victims in believing that they owed money to the IRS and would be arrested and fined if they did not pay their alleged taxes back immediately, as per the documents. The conspirators collected the fraud proceeds by withdrawing cash from prepaid cards purchased and funded by victims; hiring other conspirators (runners) to retrieve money wired by the victims to those runners; and/or hiring runners to open bank accounts into which victims deposited fraud proceeds, revealed the documents. The defendants collected the proceeds by providing the runners with the victims’ names, locations, and amounts paid. The runners were directed to retrieve the fraud proceeds in cash and turn the funds over to the defendants, often less a payment to the runner for opening the account or conducting the transaction, according to the documents. Four others have already pleaded guilty for their roles in the scheme. On March 25, Alejandro Juarez was sentenced to 15 months in federal prison. Hemalkumar Shah, Sharvil Patel and Brenda Dozier are currently awaiting sentencing. “We here at IRS CI recognise the heartache and concern these crooks cause innocent people. This is why we are eager to team up with our law enforcement partners to track down these impersonators in whatever corner of the globe they may be hiding in,” said special agent in-charge Mary Hammond of IRS Criminal Investigations, Tampa Field Office.
Tony Khan attacked a fan on Twitter after the supporter asked him to step down from his position as Fulham lost against Burnley.Fulham FC was defeated 2-1 by Burnley in yesterday’s English Premier League fixture.And fans are angry as their team lay in the 19th position in the table, just three points ahead of the last place.One Fulham supporter took his frustration to Twitter, where he asked the team’s vice-chairman Tony Khan to step down from his position.Official: Tottenham sign Fulham youngster Ryan Sessegnon Andrew Smyth – August 8, 2019 Tottenham have sealed another transfer deadline day deal to sign the highly-rated Ryan Sessegnon from Fulham.“Never. I’ll die at this club. Go to hell,” replied Khan.“To squad, staff, and supporters, some people are waving the white flag and saying we should surrender, people said the same when we were 6 & 4 points behind the past 2 seasons; we closed the gap both times,” he was quoted as saying by The Independent.“Our squad has great moments, but they’ve shown their abilities more often than they’ve gotten the points we need. But we can close this gap.”“As with last January we’ll make multiple signings to improve the squad, but it’s on our players now to fight, finish & win. Come on Fulham!” he concluded.