Collaborating Authors

Palantir Knows Everything About You


High above the Hudson River in downtown Jersey City, a former U.S. Secret Service agent named Peter Cavicchia III ran special ops for JPMorgan Chase & Co. His insider threat group--most large financial institutions have one--used computer algorithms to monitor the bank's employees, ostensibly to protect against perfidious traders and other miscreants. Aided by as many as 120 "forward-deployed engineers" from the data mining company Palantir Technologies Inc., which JPMorgan engaged in 2009, Cavicchia's group vacuumed up emails and browser histories, GPS locations from company-issued smartphones, printer and download activity, and transcripts of digitally recorded phone conversations. Palantir's software aggregated, searched, sorted, and analyzed these records, surfacing keywords and patterns of behavior that Cavicchia's team had flagged for potential abuse of corporate assets. Palantir's algorithm, for example, alerted the insider threat team when an employee started badging into work later than usual, a sign of potential disgruntlement. That would trigger further scrutiny and possibly physical surveillance after hours by bank security personnel. Over time, however, Cavicchia himself went rogue. Former JPMorgan colleagues describe the environment as Wall Street meets Apocalypse Now, with Cavicchia as Colonel Kurtz, ensconced upriver in his office suite eight floors above the rest of the bank's security team. People in the department were shocked that no one from the bank or Palantir set any real limits.

Bipartisan law would force Internet giants including Google and Facebook to reveal search algorithms

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Google, Facebook and other internet giants would disclose the algorithms they use to return search results under new legislation proposed by US law makers. The bipartisan Filter Bubble Transparency Act also would require the online companies to offer users an unfiltered search option that delivers results without any algorithmic tinkering. Senator John Thune, a Republican from North Dakota, filed the bill on Friday. The legislation was co-sponsored by Republican senators Jerry Moran of Kansas and Marsha blackburn of Tennessee, as well as Democrats Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut and Mark Warner of Virginia. Senator John Thune, a Republican from North Dakota, filed the bipartisan'Filter Bubble Transparency Act,' which would require internet companies to reveal algorithms used to determine online searches The online firm, owned by Alphabet, like other internet companies relies on algorithms - a highly-specific set of instructions to computers - that track users' behavior and location Thune says the legislation is needed because'people are increasingly impatient with the lack of transparency,' on the internet, reports the Wall Street Journal.

Russians are hacking into NATO soldiers' cellphones

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Western military officials say Russia has been hacking into the cellphones of NATO soldiers stationed in Eastern Europe in an attempt to steal information, track troop levels and intimidate soldiers. Troops, officers and government officials of NATO member countries who spoke with the Wall Street Journal says that the sophistication of the hacking indicates it's being coordinated by the Russian government. It's believed that Russian agents are using antennae and specialized drones to hack into the phones of NATO soldiers stationed along Russia's border with the Baltic states, tracking the soldiers' whereabouts and stealing personal information off of their phones. Western military officials say Russia has been hacking into the personal cellphones of NATO soldiers stationed in the Baltic states. Pictured above is a U.S. soldier in Estonia, near the Russian border The Russians are using antennae and drones to hack into soldiers' cellphones to track their movements and steal their personal information, it was reported.

Nikon reveals the best videos shot through a microscope

Daily Mail - Science & tech

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Zuckerberg takes out ads to apologize as Facebook data misuse crisis intensifies

USATODAY - Tech Top Stories

A copy of'The Observer' shows an advertisement paid by Facebook in London, March 25, 2018. Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg apologized for a "breach of trust" involving misused data from millions of Facebook users. The ads also appeared in The New York Times, Washington Post and Wall Street Journal. SAN FRANCISCO -- As Facebook continues to buffet winds of criticism, its founder took out full page ads in U.S. and British newspapers Sunday to apologize to consumers for not properly securing their personal data. "This was a breach of trust, and I'm sorry we didn't do more at the time," Mark Zuckerberg said in the signed ad, which was published in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post and six British papers.