Will the ‘Internet of Things’ open your home to hackers?

first_img 4SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr by: Jason GlassbergAt this week’s RSA Conference in San Francisco, the world’s leading cyber minds aren’t just focusing on international super-hackers and possible future attacks on the electric grid. Do you know what else they’re worrying about?Your home.With the explosion of “Internet of Things” products, devices, appliances and machinery (Gartner predicts 4.9 million “connected things” this year), everything from Amazon’s cute little “Dash” buttons to “smart” toilets, self-diagnosing refrigerators and self-driving cars, there is growing concern that this rush of technological sophistication and convenience could also have dire consequences for personal security.After all, security often appears to be the last thing manufacturers think about when rushing these tricked-out products to market. In many cases, they lack safeguards to prevent even basic attacks. Take for instance, the baby monitor hacks in Washington, Texas and Minnesota, or the keyless door lock break-ins at Arizona hotels, the key fob car hacks across the U.S. and a variety of other threats demonstrated at hacker conferences, from Barnaby Jack’s insulin pump attack to Charlie Miller’s hijack of a car’s steering and breaking systems.Of course, many of the most talked about (i.e., hyped) threats are the least likely to affect the average person, but they do raise some serious questions. In the race to win over our living rooms, are businesses leaving the front door open? continue reading »last_img read more

Hoornstra: For foreign-born baseball players, coronavirus presents unique challenges

first_img Angels’ Mike Trout working on his defense, thanks to Twitter Jose Suarez’s rocky start sinks Angels in loss to Astros Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Angels offense breaks out to split doubleheader with Astros “It is extremely busy,” said Clifford Chin, Senior Counsel at Berry Appleman & Leiden. “Number one, it’s what information do we have? Number two, it’s assessing the various interpretations and risks. Number three, it’s the human element. Immigration isn’t just a business. It’s affecting peoples’ lives on a personal level.” In a hypothetical book about Sports and the Coronavirus, you can imagine each of those points deserving a chapter.Last Friday, for example, the acting director of the Department of Homeland Security issued an order exempting certain foreign professional athletes from entry restrictions. If you are not a citizen of the U.S., and you were physically present in China, Iran, the United Kingdom, Ireland, or most of the European mainland, you were barred from entering the U.S. for 14 days. The new order rescinds that ban for athletes, stating “that it is in the national interest to except aliens who compete in professional sporting events … including their professional staff, team and league leadership, spouses, and dependents.”Unless they are on vacation, those countries aren’t where you’ll typically find a baseball player spending his off-season. Last year, 105 players born in the Dominican Republic made an Opening Day roster. Venezuela (68), Cuba (19), Puerto Rico (18) and Mexico (8) followed. Japan and Canada (six each) produced the most players outside of Latin America.Those countries weren’t affected by the most recent ban. But it isn’t hard to imagine a sudden COVID-19 outbreak – such as the one that engulfed Brazil in May – making travel to the U.S. from certain regions less practical, even for a professional athlete.That’s more true for minor league players, who have been paid $400 a week since the season was officially suspended in March. Foreign players who receive seven-figure signing bonuses as teenagers steal the headlines, but they are in the minority. Most Latin American minor leaguers quickly flew home once the season was suspended, rather than remain in the U.S. and try to scrape by on their meager stipend. Angels’ poor pitching spoils an Albert Pujols milestone center_img Still, the agent for a Nicaraguan pitcher told me that players there are feeling less risk-averse than their American counterparts. Baseball might be their year-round job, if they compete in a winter league. Money is scarce, and they might not be trained in another field of employment. A similar problem faces foreign-born minor leaguers in major league organizations once they’re released from their contract – or those in the Oakland A’s system, who won’t be receiving their weekly stipend beginning June 1.“There will be a lot of kids not making a dime,” the agent told me. “What else do they know?”Minor league baseball players aren’t represented by a union. Neither are most players who compete only in the Latin American leagues. Still, their examples serve as a reminder of the unique interests facing the hundreds of major league players who call a foreign country home in the off-season. The novel coronavirus had the potential to unite the world around a common enemy. In the United States, that potential quickly disintegrated. Race, age, geography, and occupational-based hazards divided us into various tiers of risk. Some of us protested. Some of us lost our jobs, or sizable portions of our paychecks. Others – reportedly 100,000 and counting – have died as a result of COVID-19.Sports usually serves as a distraction from these kinds of headlines. Now, it is serving as a microcosm of how a not-so-common enemy strikes us all differently.Each Opening Day, Major League Baseball issues a press release detailing where its players come from. Last year, a total of 251 players represented 20 different countries and territories outside of the United States. Minor league rosters are no less diverse. So what happens to players when the United States closes its borders entirely to certain countries? Or when a foreign country closes its borders altogether, as is the case in the Dominican Republic?If you’re an immigration attorney who represents MLB teams and athletes, what happens is you get inundated with questions. Angels’ Shohei Ohtani spending downtime working in outfield Now, with the potential for a season to re-start in June with expanded rosters, attitudes are changing. But flights into the U.S. from Latin America are more scarce. One agent I spoke with this week represents a minor league client who will attempt to leave Panama on a humanitarian flight in June.Several agents I spoke with noted that Venezuelan players fall in a category of their own. In March, president Nicolas Maduro was indicted in United States federal court on three separate conspiracy charges – the latest wrinkle in the country’s political turmoil. With players reluctant to return home under these circumstances, many have been living and training at their team complexes in the Dominican Republic. At least one Venezuelan minor leaguer has been living with his minor league manager in the U.S.Consider the players’ families too. This became a sticking point early in negotiations between Major League Baseball and the MLB Players’ Association, when the league proposed quarantining players in a centralized location for an entire season. MLB’s most recent proposal to the union wouldn’t keep players apart from their families during the hypothetical 2020 season. But what if your family lives overseas during the off-season and was planning to relocate for six months? What if the season isn’t six months long anymore?As one agent told me, “A couple of my guys have said, ‘if we’re going to play three months, I’m not going to bring my wife and kids. They can be home and stay safe. Why have them stuck at a house or a hotel?’ Every guy’s going to be different on that.”Back to those various tiers of risk. A cardiologist in the Dominican Republic reportedly sampled 314 residents of Villa Juana, a neighborhood in the capital city of Santo Domingo. Forty percent of the tests came back positive for Covid-19, a number that was disputed by the country’s minister of health.Even if the actual rate of infection is lower on a city-, district-, or nation-wide level, the report contributed to doubts over the accuracy of state-reported testing in Latin American countries. Earlier this month, an outbreak of COVID-19 in Nicaragua forced the postponement of that country’s baseball season. Several players tested positive. One coach, Carlos Aranda, died from the disease.Related Articleslast_img read more

Akon Could Change the Way Students See in Class

first_imgAkon will be in Liberia today, according to a release from Bridge, and many are hoping that his visit will not only shine more light to the fact that the Liberian government is doing everything to help the educational system, but will also connect Liberia with what Akon has been cooking, known as “Akon Lighting Africa.”Indeed, parts of Liberia are completely dark and due to the criminal activities of many who have been illegally stealing LEC current, causing the loss of thousands of dollars in revenue, some who have electricity illegally have watched their ‘hookups’ being disconnected.I recently visited Hill Town, Bomi County, where a not-for-profit organization called More Than Me has one of its six schools given to them by Bridge. The school has about 122 plus girls and 179 plus boys (the number has risen since this article was written). One thing that struck me about the school was the fact that it had a lot of infrastructure problems – no chairs or desks, ceilings and smiling faces. More Than Me has spent more than US$5,000 to renovate it and so far there is a huge difference.More Than Me has 12 capacity leaders for their seven schools, two per school. The role of these individuals is to build the capacity of teachers, train on site, improve learning and to watch over their teachers.Recently during my tour at Hill Town elementary, I met Aiessate Cooper, the only girl child in the 6th grade. According to her father, who is also the principal of the school, his daughter was brought to the school when it was clear that More Than Me would be taking over the school.Meanwhile, the environment is not safe for the children without light. Some students arrive on campus as soon as ‘day break,’ when the sun is just setting, having walked for miles.Light is essential and also a security measure in preventing things that can only happen when it is dark from reaching pupils who arrive at school that early. Villages like Hill Town and the only school there that teaches students from ABC to the 6th grade are keeping their fingers crossed that Akon’s project will reach them.As of now, More Than Me supplies its school electricity using a generator that drains its resources. And due to bad road conditions and distance, sometimes the school is unable to get items necessary for its operations.Meanwhile, the new initiative “Light to learn” will be bringing Akon to Liberia as a guest of Bridge Partnership Schools, the Ministry of Education and other partners to initiate this new project aimed at popularizing and growing the right to use affordable energy resources to foster quality learning even in remote villages.“Join us on October 20-21 at J W Pearson, Monrovia; and Zuluyee, Nimba County. All 24 Bridge Partnership Schools have been preparing to compete in Regional and National competitions where the top 4 finalists will compete as the STAR of the show! Who will the 2 winners be,” Gboko Stewart posted on facebook.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Lakers notes: L.A. tries to pick up defense

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECoach Doc Rivers a “fan” from way back of Jazz’s Jordan Clarkson Lakers coach Phil Jackson, meanwhile, was upset by defensive breakdowns in the fourth quarter. The Lakers twice tied the score in the last four minutes only to watch it slip away. Jackson was perplexed as Smush Parker and Devean George lost track of Utah guard Keith McLeod in a screen around the basket. McLeod was left alone by Parker and flipped in a layup with 1:17 remaining to put the Jazz in front for good. “It was a mistake, it was a big mistake,” Jackson said. “Smush automatically switched. You can’t do that when you’re that man. You have to get called to help.” Jackson even talked to his team about how their late-game decisions could translate to the choices they make in life, especially when it comes to evaluating risk and reward. But the Lakers found their defense lacking in the first game without Bryant, a 98-94 loss to Utah on Sunday. The Jazz came to Staples Center as the league’s 28th-ranked offensive team but totaled 53 points by halftime and too many easy baskets late. “We have to play a better defensive game,” Odom said. “I think we thought we were going to win that game just by beating them on offense. We can’t let them get 98 at home. We should be able to sit on this team a little bit and stop them.” EL SEGUNDO – As soon as Kobe Bryant was suspended by the NBA last week, Lamar Odom hit upon a theme for the Lakers in the two games they would play without their superstar guard, the league’s second-leading scorer. To win without their best offensive player, Odom reasoned, the Lakers would need to play their best defensive games of the season. center_img “If you’re doing the same things in your life,” Jackson said, “you’re living a pretty scattered and hectic life and you’ve got to really take this opportunity to change.” The Lakers have lost their past four games by a combined 13 points. They are 5-8 in games decided by five points or less this season. “Our situation is that we’re still a team that’s sitting above .500 and we have to learn how to win close games because that’s what it comes down to in the playoffs,” Jackson said. They also have some history to avoid tonight in Salt Lake City. Not since March 6, 1994 has a Jackson-coached team lost five consecutive games. The Lakers twice suffered through four-game losing streaks in Jackson’s first tenure. Foul shooting: The Lakers missed 5 of 8 free throws in the fourth quarter Sunday and went 15 of 25 from the line in the game. Yet there was one bright spot. Forward Kwame Brown, shooting 46.8 percent from the line this season, sank both free throws when he went to the line in the second quarter. Jackson said he was told it was the first time all season Brown had done so. Also: Rookie center Andrew Bynum hasn’t played in the past five games. … Bryant attended practice Monday but still was feeling under the weather. Ross Siler, (818) 713-3610 [email protected] LAKERS at UTAH Tipoff: 6 p.m., Delta Center TV/Radio: Ch. 9; 570-AM, 1330-AM (Spanish) Lakers (15-15) update: The last time they were in Salt Lake City, the Lakers prevailed 105-101 at the end of a three-hour overtime marathon. Kobe Bryant drew a controversial foul with 0.4 seconds left in regulation and sank two free throws. Bryant fouled out with 2:07 remaining in overtime. Utah (15-16) update: The Jazz has won four in a row and could return to .500 for the first time since Nov. 14 with a victory tonight. Forward Andrei Kirilenko, who has missed 10 games this season, is averaging 18 points and 9.8 rebounds in four games since returning from back spasms. – Ross Siler 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more