Posted by & filed under Google.

If your washing machine is on the blink and you’re looking for appliance repair, be wary — new evidence reveals that you can’t always trust Google when it comes to finding a reliable local appliance repair person.

A months-long investigation by CBC’s Marketplace found questionable business practices such as fake Google Maps addresses and bogus company names are plaguing the appliance repair industry.

In some areas, as many as 50 per cent of the local appliance repair companies returned in a Google Maps search appeared to be fake. Fake company names and locations change all the time, so a phoney company listing that appears on Google Maps one day may be gone the next, the investigation found.

Source: Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

Date: October 16th, 2020

Link: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/appliance-repair-industry-online-listings-1.5762489

Discussion

  1. ” Experts in online searching question why Google hasn’t been doing more to combat fraudulent map listings. ” Why do you think Google is not doing more to combat this problem?
  2. How might Google go about detecting this sort of issue?

Posted by & filed under 5G.

Apple’s new 5G-capable iPhone 12

New research from OpenSignal, which collects data from mobile users via a speed test app, shows just how early in the rollout of 5G we are – and how variable an experience customers are receiving.

Its report shows that, in Saudi Arabia and South Korea, 5G customers are getting average download speeds of over 300Mbps – many times higher than what is available on their 4G networks. In the United States, by contrast, the average 5G download is just 52Mbps, less than twice what is on offer via 4G.

Source: BBC Technology News

Date: October 16th, 2020

Link: https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-54574320

Discussion

  1. ” Marta Pinto, mobile device specialist at the research firm IDC, tells Tech Tent that it is in China that Apple really needs a 5G offering to compete: ”It’s important because you have other vendors there that already have a 5G device. It’s a ‘too big to fail’ market. “
    What does “too big to fail” market actually mean?
  2. Why are US operators ” mainly focused on using the kind of 5G spectrum that gives wide availability, rather than the highest speeds”?

Posted by & filed under COVID-19, FinTech.

Shutterstock

You may have heard the relatively new term “FinTech” bandied about, but what actually is it? And why is it important for all entrepreneurs to know about and understand?

FinTech stands for Financial Technologies, and in its broadest definition, that’s exactly what it is: technologies used and applied in the financial services sector, chiefly used by financial institutions themselves on the back end of their businesses.  But more and more, FinTech is coming to represent technologies that are disrupting traditional financial services, including mobile payments, money transfers, loans, fundraising, and asset management.

Source: Forbes

Date: October 16th, 2020

Link: https://www.forbes.com/sites/bernardmarr/2017/02/10/a-complete-beginners-guide-to-fintech-in-2017/#33a7c6b73340

Discussion

  1. Although this article is over 3 years old I have posted it because FinTech is something that should be covered, at least the basics, in every Intro to MIS class. One of the important things to discuss is “what is FinTech”?
  2. How has the global COVID-19 pandemic hastened the arrival of FinTech?

Posted by & filed under App Economy, COVID-19.

Quebec has joined the COVID Alert app, leaving B.C. and Alberta as the only remaining provinces with no immediate plans to activate the digital tool. Both Nova Scotia and P.E.I. have committed to joining in the coming days.

The federal government-administered smartphone app allows users to report a positive coronavirus test and alert others of a potential exposure.

Health Canada says more features could be on the way, but the federal agency says its priority remains to have all provinces and territories join the app “as is.”

Source: Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

Date: October 9th, 2020

Link: https://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/covid-alert-app-features-coronavirus-quebec-1.5751497

Discussion

  1. The installation and use of these “contact-tracing” apps comes down to a balance between privacy of the user of the app and the public health benefits for all of the use of the app. What are some of the privacy issues here?
  2. ” Fitness apps and automatic screen time logging provide examples of the way a COVID app could share data with users about their behaviour and help shape their actions.” Why do some people use and love fitness apps, whereas others don’t? How might this help inform how to get people to use the contract-tracing app?

Posted by & filed under Cyber Security, IT and Politics.

Beatrice Atobatele in new york

“Earlier this year, I attended a conference and was shocked to find that you could actually buy voting machines on eBay. So I bought one, two months ago, and have been able to open it up and look at the chips.”

Beatrice Atobatele is trying to hack one of the most commonly used voting machines in the US, to look for security vulnerabilities, but not with any criminal intentions.

Beatrice is actually one of more than 200 people who have signed up to a volunteer group of security experts and hackers called the Election Cyber Surge.

Source: BBC Technology News

Date: October 8th, 2020

Link: https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-54378961

Discussion

  1. “by understanding how this machine works, she hopes she can ensure any vulnerabilities are fixed. “I’ve bypassed the authentication itself,” she says.”
    What might she mean when she says “authentication” here?
  2. “The problem with US elections, Beatrice and others say, is how disjointed they are. Most estimates suggest there are about 8,000 separate election jurisdictions. The equipment and voting methods vary dramatically. And every step of the process is vulnerable to hackers and human error.”
    Some would say that have 8,000 different voting jurisdictions actually makes the voting process safer, as it is hard to impact a large amount of voting. What are your thoughts on this?

Posted by & filed under Internet of Things.

Cellmate

The maker of a male chastity toy that was vulnerable to a hack attack has suggested the device can be easily removed with a screwdriver.

Researchers found a flaw in Cellmate’s app that could have let hackers simultaneously remotely lock all the devices in use, with no manual release.

Now the Chinese firm has defended the product, saying it can be cracked open.

It added that anybody trapped in their chastity toy could also call its customer hotline to be released.

The flaw was found by security firm Pen Test Partners, which shared its findings with Guandong-based Qiui, which makes the Cellmate toy.

Source: BBC Technology News

Date: October 8th, 2020

Link: https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-54468207

Discussion

  1. This device is part of the “Internet of Things”. What is/are the “Internet of Things”.
  2. Why are Internet of Things devices so vulnerable to hack attacks?

Posted by & filed under Self-driving vehicles.

The name of the Scottish indie band We Were Promised Jetpacks alludes to disappointment that the future isn’t all it was cracked up to be.

Well, you can now buy a functioning jet pack if you have a spare $600,000.

A self-driving taxi to pick you up at your Canadian home? That’s still in the future. Some experts say the distant future.

That’s certainly not what it felt like a few years ago, and enthusiasts who expected things to move much faster are beginning to sound discouraged.

When I wrote about robot taxis in 2015, I quoted experts from Google’s self-driving car project — since spun off as a subsidiary under the name Waymo and still considered by people I spoke to as the one to beat — saying autonomous vehicles would be “available to the public in two to five years.”

Source: Canadian Broadcasting News

Date: October 1st, 2020

Link: https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/driverless-cars-pittis-1.5739153

Discussion

  1. ” Certainly one technique, Wells said, might be to designate some areas as autonomous-only, where the vehicles all follow the same rules without the presence of pesky humans. ” What do you think about this idea?
  2. What sorts of areas could you set up as “autonomous-only” right now?

Posted by & filed under Cyber Security.

The world has changed— and your cybersecurity budget needs to change with it. In the last year, attackers have shifted tactics to target cloud collaboration tools, distributed employee populations, misconfigured cloud instances, work-from-home environments, and more. This year, it’s critical to take a hard look at your budget, and formulate a plan that protects your organization from these evolving threats. In this fast-paced talk, we’ll review how the cyber landscape has changed, and provide strategic guidance on how to prioritize your cybersecurity investment in the coming year.

Source: LMG Security

Date: October 1st, 2020

Link to video: https://youtu.be/9QAUjEvuHyU

Discussion

  1. This is a 1 hour video, so it really is possibly useful for a homework or forum discussion assignment on cyber security. This video is about bugeting for cyber security, so it is very applicable to anyone in business

Posted by & filed under Cyber Security, IT and Politics.

Woman on mobile phone in front of Singapore skyline

Singapore will be the first country in the world to use facial verification in its national identity scheme.

The biometric check will give Singaporeans secure access to both private and government services.

The government’s technology agency says it will be “fundamental” to the country’s digital economy.

It has been trialled with a bank and is now being rolled out nationwide. It not only identifies a person but ensures they are genuinely present.

“You have to make sure that the person is genuinely present when they Dauthenticate, that you’re not looking at a photograph or a video or a replayed recording or a deepfake,” said Andrew Bud, founder and chief executive of iProov, the UK company that is providing the technology.

The technology will be integrated with the country’s digital identity scheme SingPass and allows access to government services.

“This is the first time that cloud-based face verification has been used to secure the identity of people who are using a national digital identity scheme,” said Mr Bud.

Source: BBC Business

Date: October 1st, 2020

Link: https://www.bbc.com/news/business-54266602

Discussion

  1. What are some possible ethical issues with using facial recognition systems to identify people for government services?
  2. What sorts of cybersecurity might this system have in place?

Posted by & filed under Digital Divide, Space-based internet.

Chawathil First Nation lies just 600 metres north of the Trans-Canada Highway in southwestern B.C., but it feels much more remote when you try to log onto the internet from here.

That’s apparent when, from behind a Plexiglas barrier at the band office, finance manager Peter John attempts to run an online speed test to measure the dial-up connection. 

It takes nearly two minutes for the page to load, and once it does, the meter shows the download speed is an agonizingly slow one megabit per second (Mbps)

With that kind of setup, it means students struggle with online classes, and the band can’t hold video meetings. 

“Everything they could get out of the internet, they’re not able to really get it because it’s not there,” John said.

Source: Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

Date: September 25th, 2020

Link: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/covid-19-highlights-urban-rural-digital-divide-1.5734167

Discussion

  1. The “Digital Divide” is defined in various ways. Make sure you have a solid definition
  2. How might space-based internet change how rural communities get access to the internet?