The Linkielist

Linking ideas with the world

Scammers Are Now Scanning Faces To Defeat Age verification Biometric Security Measures

For quite some time now we’ve been pointing out the many harms of age verification technologies, and how they’re a disaster for privacy. In particular, we’ve noted that if you have someone collecting biometric information on people, that data itself becomes a massive risk since it will be targeted. And, remember, a year and a Read more about Scammers Are Now Scanning Faces To Defeat Age verification Biometric Security Measures[…]

apple and google as monopoly characters holding big bags of cash in front of a store

EU to hit Apple with first ever fine in €500mn music streaming penalty

Brussels is to impose its first ever fine on tech giant Apple for allegedly breaking EU law over access to its music streaming services, according to five people with direct knowledge of the long-running investigation. The fine, which is in the region of €500mn and is expected to be announced early next month, is the Read more about EU to hit Apple with first ever fine in €500mn music streaming penalty[…]

You can now mark up your Google Docs with handwritten notes on Android devices

Google Docs is getting an annotation feature that will let you mark up your documents just like you might with a pen and paper. With today’s update, announced at MWC 2024, Google Docs users on Android devices can use a finger or stylus to write notes, highlight text and circle words to their heart’s desire. Read more about You can now mark up your Google Docs with handwritten notes on Android devices[…]

Reggaeton Be Gone – use a Raspberry Pi to jam bluetooth speakers when reggaeton music comes on

[…] Consider this scenario: Your wall-to-wall neighbor loves to blast Reggaeton music at full volume through a Bluetooth speaker every morning at 9 am. You have two options: A. Knock on their door and politely ask them to lower the volume. B. Build an AI device that can handle the situation more creatively. Reggaeton Be Read more about Reggaeton Be Gone – use a Raspberry Pi to jam bluetooth speakers when reggaeton music comes on[…]

yuzu nintendo switch emulator on android

Nintendo files lawsuit against creators of Yuzu emulator

[…] The 41-page lawsuit was filed against Tropic Haze, the company that makes Yuzu. (Nintendo also specifically references a person aliased as Bunnei, who leads development on Yuzu.) Yuzu is a free emulator that was released in 2018 months after the Nintendo Switch originally launched. The same folks who made Citra, a Nintendo 3DS emulator, Read more about Nintendo files lawsuit against creators of Yuzu emulator[…]

Meta will start collecting much more “anonymized” data about Quest headset usage

Meta will soon begin “collecting anonymized data” from users of its Quest headsets, a move that could see the company aggregating information about hand, body, and eye tracking; camera information; “information about your physical environment”; and information about “the virtual reality events you attend.” In an email sent to Quest users Monday, Meta notes that Read more about Meta will start collecting much more “anonymized” data about Quest headset usage[…]

$500 drone calculates its position with camera, Google Maps

[…] A team of drone enthusiasts have built a sub-$500 drone that uses a camera and Google Maps to provide itself with GPS co-ordinates, removing the need for a GPS satellite signal. And all of this was done in 24 hours during the El Segundo Defense Tech Hackathon. […] The drone uses a camera mounted Read more about $500 drone calculates its position with camera, Google Maps[…]

Vietnam to collect biometrics – even DNA – for new ID cards. Centralised databases never leak.

The Vietnamese government will begin collecting biometric information from its citizens for identification purposes beginning in July this year. Prime minister Pham Minh Chinh instructed the nation’s Ministry of Public Security to collect the data in the form of iris scans, voice samples and actual DNA, in accordance with amendments to Vietnam’s Law on Citizen Read more about Vietnam to collect biometrics – even DNA – for new ID cards. Centralised databases never leak.[…]

‘No one understands outsourcing the management of .nl domains to Amazon’

At the beginning of February, SIDN was in the news after announcing that it wanted to outsource part of its services to Amazon Web Services, the American web giant. According to SIDN, the reason for the outsourcing was that implementation on its own servers had become too expensive and too labor-intensive. Van Eeten: ‘SIDN has Read more about ‘No one understands outsourcing the management of .nl domains to Amazon’[…]

Wyze says camera breach let 13,000 customers briefly see into other people’s homes

Last week, co-founder David Crosby said that “so far” the company had identified 14 people who were able to briefly see into a stranger’s property because they were shown an image from someone else’s Wyze camera. Now we’re being told that number of affected customers has ballooned to 13,000. The revelation came from an email Read more about Wyze says camera breach let 13,000 customers briefly see into other people’s homes[…]

Chinese and US researchers show new side channel can reproduce fingerprints by listening to swiping sounds on screen

An interesting new attack on biometric security has been outlined by a group of researchers from China and the US. PrintListener: Uncovering the Vulnerability of Fingerprint Authentication via the Finger Friction Sound [PDF] proposes a side-channel attack on the sophisticated Automatic Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS). The attack leverages the sound characteristics of a user’s finger Read more about Chinese and US researchers show new side channel can reproduce fingerprints by listening to swiping sounds on screen[…]

Four-day week made permanent for most UK firms in world’s biggest trial

Of the 61 organisations that took part in a six-month UK pilot in 2022, 54 (89%) are still operating the policy a year later, and 31 (51%) have made the change permanent. More than half (55%) of project managers and CEOs said a four-day week – in which staff worked 100% of their output in Read more about Four-day week made permanent for most UK firms in world’s biggest trial[…]

Varda Space, Rocket Lab nail first-of-its-kind spacecraft landing in Utah, bring back space grown drugs

A spacecraft containing pharmaceutical drugs that were grown on orbit has finally returned to Earth today after more than eight months in space. Varda Space Industries’ in-space manufacturing capsule, called Winnebago-1, landed in the Utah desert at around 4:40 p.m. EST. Inside the capsule are crystals of the drug ritonavir, which is used to treat Read more about Varda Space, Rocket Lab nail first-of-its-kind spacecraft landing in Utah, bring back space grown drugs[…]

Universal Antivenom for Snake Bites Might Soon Be a Reality

[…] a team of scientists says they’ve created a lab-made antibody geared to counteract toxic bites from a wide variety of snakes. In early tests with mice, the uber-antivenom appeared to work as intended. Snake antivenom is typically derived from the antibodies of horses or other animals that produce a strong immune response to snake Read more about Universal Antivenom for Snake Bites Might Soon Be a Reality[…]

Video generation models as world simulators by OpenAI Sora

[…] Our largest model, Sora, is capable of generating a minute of high fidelity video. Our results suggest that scaling video generation models is a promising path towards building general purpose simulators of the physical world. This technical report focuses on (1) our method for turning visual data of all types into a unified representation Read more about Video generation models as world simulators by OpenAI Sora[…]

Canadian college M&M Vending machines secretly scanning faces – revealed by error message

[…] The scandal started when a student using the alias SquidKid47 posted an image on Reddit showing a campus vending machine error message, “Invenda.Vending.FacialRecognitionApp.exe,” displayed after the machine failed to launch a facial recognition application that nobody expected to be part of the process of using a vending machine. Enlarge / Reddit post shows error Read more about Canadian college M&M Vending machines secretly scanning faces – revealed by error message[…]

iOS and Android users face scans used to break into bank accounts

[…] GoldPickaxe and GoldPickaxe.iOS target Android and iOS respectively, tricking users into performing biometric verification checks that are ultimately used to bypass the same checks employed by legitimate banking apps in Vietnam and Thailand – the geographic focus of these ongoing attacks. The iOS version is believed only to be targeting users in Thailand, masquerading Read more about iOS and Android users face scans used to break into bank accounts[…]

livall smart helmets

Whoops: ‘Smart’ Livall Helmet Allowed Real Time Surveillance And Location Tracking Of A Million Customers

[,,,] a company named Livall makes “smart” bike helmets for skiers and cyclists that includes features like auto-fall detection, GPS location monitoring, and integrated braking lights. The problem: the company apparently didn’t spend enough time securing the company’s app, allowing pretty much anybody to listen in on and track the precise location data of a Read more about Whoops: ‘Smart’ Livall Helmet Allowed Real Time Surveillance And Location Tracking Of A Million Customers[…]

a picture of an eye staring at your from your mobile phone

European human rights court says backdooring encrypted comms is against human rights

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has ruled that laws requiring crippled encryption and extensive data retention violate the European Convention on Human Rights – a decision that may derail European data surveillance legislation known as Chat Control. The Court issued a decision on Tuesday stating that “the contested legislation providing for the retention Read more about European human rights court says backdooring encrypted comms is against human rights[…]

New evidence changes key ideas about Earth’s climate history – it wasn’t that hot

A new study published in Science resolves a long-standing scientific debate, and it stands to completely change the way we think about Earth’s climate evolution. The research debunks the idea that Earth’s surface (across land and sea) has experienced really hot temperatures over the last two billion years. Instead, it shows that Earth has had Read more about New evidence changes key ideas about Earth’s climate history – it wasn’t that hot[…]

23andMe Thinks ‘Mining’ Your DNA Data Is Its Last Hope

23andMe is in a death spiral. Almost everyone who wants a DNA test already bought one, a nightmare data breach ruined the company’s reputation, and 23andMe’s stock is so close to worthless it might get kicked off the Nasdaq. CEO Anne Wojcicki is on a crisis tour, promising investors the company isn’t going out of Read more about 23andMe Thinks ‘Mining’ Your DNA Data Is Its Last Hope[…]

US judge dismisses authors’ ridiculous copyright claim against OpenAI

A US judge has dismissed some of the claims made by writers in a copyright infringement lawsuit against OpenAI, though gave the wordsmiths another chance to amend their complaint. The case – Paul Tremblay et al vs OpenAI – kicked off in 2023 when novelists Paul Tremblay, Christopher Golden, and Richard Kadrey, and writer-comedian-actress Sarah Read more about US judge dismisses authors’ ridiculous copyright claim against OpenAI[…]

France uncovers a vast Russian disinformation campaign in Europe

RUSSIA HAS been at the forefront of internet disinformation techniques at least since 2014, when it pioneered the use of bot farms to spread fake news about its invasion of Crimea. According to French authorities, the Kremlin is at it again. On February 12th Viginum, the French foreign-disinformation watchdog, announced it had detected preparations for Read more about France uncovers a vast Russian disinformation campaign in Europe[…]

vanadium crystal bar and cube

Key advance for capturing carbon from the air

A chemical element so visually striking that it was named for a goddess shows a “Goldilocks” level of reactivity — neither too much nor too little — that makes it a strong candidate as a carbon scrubbing tool. The element is vanadium, and research by Oregon State University scientists has demonstrated the ability of vanadium Read more about Key advance for capturing carbon from the air[…]