Tech Firm Ubiquiti Suffers $46M Cyberheist

Published: August 9, 2015

“This fraud resulted in transfers of funds aggregating $46.7 million held by a Company subsidiary incorporated in Hong Kong to other overseas accounts held by third parties.”

Networking firm Ubiquiti Networks Inc. disclosed this week that cyber thieves recently stole $46.7 million using an increasingly common scam in which crooks spoof communications from executives at the victim firm in a bid to initiate unauthorized international wire transfers.


This is an old crime in new (and more expensive) clothing. Wire transfer fraud has been around for as long as wire transfer has existed.

Belgian regulators demand Facebook stop tracking logged-out users

Published: May 17, 2015

“The Belgian data protection authority has told Facebook to stop tracking users who logout or those that have never registered for the social network.”

The Belgian privacy commission has told Facebook to stop tracking the internet activities of people who have not registered with the site or have logged out, after a “staggering” report showed alleged breaches of EU privacy law.

“Facebook tramples on European and Belgian privacy laws”, the data protection authority said in a statement. “Facebook has shown itself particularly miserly in giving precise answers,” it continued, adding that the results of its investigation were “disconcerting” and that it would take legal action if its recommendations were not followed.

Willem Debeuckelaere, president of the Belgian privacy commission, said that the way Facebook is treating its users’ private lives “without respect needs tackling”, and that “it’s make or break time.”

According to a report commissioned by the Belgian data protection agency Facebook has been tracking users on a long-term basis who visit any page — be it a fan page, profile or any other portion of the site that does not require a Facebook account to visit — belonging to the domain.

The opinion published on Friday noted that because Facebook has the power to link internet users’ browsing habits to their real identity, social network interactions and sensitive data including medical information, religious, sexual and political preferences, it is in a unique position compared to most of the other cases of so-called “third-party tracking”.

[Source: The Guardian]

Via BoingBoing.

Fair use: a guide for artists

Published: March 17, 2015

This may be useful to web designers:

The College Art Association has created a Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for the Visual Arts, helping the field of people who make, study and showcase the visual arts figure out how to make a fair use call. The field is abuzz with the news, and even in related fields, word is out — musicians are interested, too.

Fair Use for the Visual Arts

Via Boing Boing.

Canada’s Supreme Court: Linking isn’t libel

Published: October 30, 2011

Linking to libel is not libel, according to a recent ruling from the Canadian Supreme Court. Boing Boing reports:

The Canadian Supreme Court has unanimously ruled that linking does not constitute libel, arguing that subjecting linkers to the same libel risks as publishers would cause the Web to collapse. This reverses earlier, free-speech-chilling decisions by lower Canadian courts and is a watershed for Internet freedom in Canada.

Cory Doctorow @ Boing Boing

BBC News reports:

“The court recognises that simply posting a link to material that may be libellous is a far cry from publishing or repeating the libel, let alone endorsing what has been said in the linked post,” Dean Jobb, a journalism professor at University of King’s College told Canada’s Globe and Mail newspaper.

BBC News

Libel is the communication of a statement that makes a claim, expressly stated or implied to be factual, that may give a negative image. See Defamation.

GE Demands Removal of Hoax Website

Published: April 14, 2011

Fair use parody? Or phishing, copyright and trademark infringement?

It seems GE isn’t laughing about the hoax implemented by the Yes Men and US Uncut. Yesterday, the activist groups posted a fake press release allegedly from GE stating the company intended to donate its entire $3.2 billion tax refund to the US Treasury. The website,, is a fake website hosted by BlueHost (the real GE-owned website is

GE immediately demanded the hoax website be taken down, which US Uncut views as an attack on their freedom of speech. Bryan Fansler, GE’s deputy chief information security officer, contacted Bluehost and, according to US Uncut, “waved some scary sounding legal phrases,” and successfully got Bluehost to take down the site for “a combination of Phishing, Copyright and Trademark infringement.”

Duncan Meisel, a US Uncut representative, calls this a violation of the group’s First Amendment rights. “[Fansler] isn’t a lawyer,” says Meisel. “This is a case of straight-up intimidation to silence criticism of one of America’s largest and most important corporations.”

Furthermore, Meisel believes there is precedent to use GE’s likeness in a satirical fashion. “Our right to fair use of their logo, copyright and trademarks is far more well established than their shady tax strategy,” says Meisel, adding US Uncut intends to fight the removal of the website

Allison Kilkenny @ The Nation