ransomware

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pages: 309 words: 54,839

Attack of the 50 Foot Blockchain: Bitcoin, Blockchain, Ethereum & Smart Contracts by David Gerard

altcoin, Amazon Web Services, augmented reality, Bernie Madoff, bitcoin, blockchain, Blythe Masters, Bretton Woods, clean water, cloud computing, collateralized debt obligation, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, cryptocurrency, distributed ledger, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, Extropian, fiat currency, financial innovation, Firefox, Flash crash, Fractional reserve banking, index fund, Internet Archive, Internet of things, Kickstarter, litecoin, M-Pesa, margin call, Network effects, peer-to-peer, Peter Thiel, pets.com, Ponzi scheme, Potemkin village, prediction markets, quantitative easing, RAND corporation, ransomware, Ray Kurzweil, Ross Ulbricht, Ruby on Rails, Satoshi Nakamoto, short selling, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Singularitarianism, slashdot, smart contracts, South Sea Bubble, tulip mania, Turing complete, Turing machine, WikiLeaks

Later payment schemes included e-Gold or Liberty Reserve, premium rate SMS messages or international phone calls, or buying particular medicines on a particular website.205 The 2011 “police virus” pretended to be from the local police force and demanded payment by credit card.206 The 2013 “FBI MoneyPak” ransomware demanded payment via online money transfer services MoneyPak or Ukash. CryptoLocker, the first ransomware to use Bitcoin (though you could also pay by Moneypak or Ukash), showed up in September 2013. It was hugely successful, taking about $3 million, and spawned many imitators. Security professionals I spoke to say that the reason for the explosion in ransomware from about 2015 on is not Bitcoin (as media reports often claim), but the ready availability of ransomware builders in malware kits from the hacker underground since that time – so that any script-kiddie can use a kit to make their own ransomware. The best-known ransomware of late is probably WannaCry. The WannaCry attack of 12 May 2017 knocked out several NHS hospitals in the UK and companies around the world.

Reddit /r/alphabaymarket, 18 March 2017. [205] “Extortion virus code gets cracked”. BBC News, 1 June 2006. [206] “Why the police virus was so effective”. PC Advisor, 26 February 2013. [207] “New Ransomware Study Explores ‘Customer Journey’ of Getting Your Files Back”. F-Secure, 18 July 2016. [208] “Ransomware risk could cripple British businesses with many not ready, while others stockpiling bitcoins to pay up”. Citrix (press release), June 2016. [209] Chris Mayers. “Ransomware in the UK: One year on”. Citrix blog, 6 June 2017. Citrix give the questions and sample selection criteria in the comments. [210] “Incidents of Ransomware on the Rise: Protect Yourself and Your Organization”. FBI, 29 April 2016. [211] “Telstra Cyber Security Report 2017”. Telstra, 30 March 2017. [212] According to an NHS IT worker I know, who spent his Saturday reimaging PCs

In May 2017, AlphaBay, the largest darknet market, started offering Ethereum as an option204 – because Bitcoin was failing to serve its primary consumer use case. Ransomware Ransomware combines computer malware, encryption and anonymous payment systems. Malicious software spreads through email spam or exploiting computer security holes; it encrypts the files on your Windows PC and any shared folders it can access, and a message pops up telling you to send Bitcoins to the hacker’s address (usually an address per victim) to get the key to unlock your system before the deadline of a few days. Bitcoin is now the payment channel of choice, but ransomware existed for decades before Bitcoin. The first extortion malware was the “AIDS Trojan” or “PC Cyborg Trojan” in 1989, which would hide in the AUTOEXEC.BAT file on a DOS PC and, the ninetieth time it was run, encrypt all filenames on the disk and demand you send $189 to a post office box in Panama.


pages: 448 words: 117,325

Click Here to Kill Everybody: Security and Survival in a Hyper-Connected World by Bruce Schneier

23andMe, 3D printing, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, bitcoin, blockchain, Brian Krebs, business process, cloud computing, cognitive bias, computer vision, connected car, corporate governance, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, cuban missile crisis, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Heinemeier Hansson, Donald Trump, drone strike, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, fault tolerance, Firefox, Flash crash, George Akerlof, industrial robot, information asymmetry, Internet of things, invention of radio, job automation, job satisfaction, John Markoff, Kevin Kelly, license plate recognition, loose coupling, market design, medical malpractice, Minecraft, MITM: man-in-the-middle, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, national security letter, Network effects, pattern recognition, profit maximization, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, ransomware, Rodney Brooks, Ross Ulbricht, security theater, self-driving car, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, smart cities, smart transportation, Snapchat, Stanislav Petrov, Stephen Hawking, Stuxnet, The Market for Lemons, too big to fail, Uber for X, Unsafe at Any Speed, uranium enrichment, Valery Gerasimov, web application, WikiLeaks, zero day

journalCode=isec. 73“I think both China and the United States”: Gideon Rachman (5 Jan 2017), “Axis of power,” New World, BBC Radio 4, http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b086tfbh. 73“We have better cyber rocks to throw”: This quote is attributed to several people, but this is the earliest citation I could find: Fred Kaplan (12 Dec 2016), “How the U.S. could respond to Russia’s hacking,” Slate, http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/war_stories/2016/12/the_u_s_response_to_russia_s_hacking_has_consequences_for_the_future_of.html. 74In early 2018, the Indiana hospital Hancock Health: Charlie Osborne (17 Jan 2018), “US hospital pays $55,000 to hackers after ransomware attack,” ZDNet, http://www.zdnet.com/article/us-hospital-pays-55000-to-ransomware-operators. 74Ransomware is increasingly common: Brian Krebs (16 Sep 2016), “Ransomware getting more targeted, expensive,” Krebs on Security, https://krebsonsecurity.com/2016/09/ransomware-getting-more-targeted-expensive. 74Kaspersky Lab reported: Kaspersky Lab (28 Nov 2016), “Story of the year: The ransomware revolution,” Kaspersky Security Bulletin 2016, https://media.kaspersky.com/en/business-security/kaspersky-story-of-the-year-ransomware-revolution.pdf. 74Symantec found that average ransom amounts: Symantec Corporation (19 Jul 2016), “Ransomware and businesses 2016,” https://www.symantec.com/content/en/us/enterprise/media/security_response/whitepapers/ISTR2016_Ransomware_and_Businesses.pdf.

Ars Technica, https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2014/01/is-your-refrigerator-really-part-of-a-massive-spam-sending-botnet. 76Attackers have bricked IoT devices: Pierluigi Paganini (12 Apr 2017), “The rise of the IoT botnet: Beyond the Mirai bot,” InfoSec Institute, http://resources.infosecinstitute.com/rise-iot-botnet-beyond-mirai-bot. 76Dick Cheney’s heart defibrillator: Dana Ford (24 Aug 2013), “Cheney’s defibrillator was modified to prevent hacking,” CNN, http://www.cnn.com/2013/10/20/us/dick-cheney-gupta-interview/index.html. 76In 2017, a man sent a tweet: David Kravets (17 Mar 2017), “Man accused of sending a seizure-inducing tweet charged with cyberstalking,” Ars Technica, https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2017/03/man-arrested-for-allegedly-sending-newsweek-writer-a-seizure-inducing-tweet. 77Also in 2017, WikiLeaks published information: Steve Overly (8 Mar 2017), “What we know about car hacking, the CIA and those WikiLeaks claims,” Washington Post, https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/innovations/wp/2017/03/08/what-we-know-about-car-hacking-the-cia-and-those-wikileaks-claims. 77Hackers have demonstrated ransomware: Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai (7 Aug 2016), “Hackers make the first-ever ransomware for smart thermostats,” Vice Motherboard, https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/aekj9j/Internet-of-things-ransomware-smart-thermostat. 77In 2017, an Austrian hotel: David Z. Morris (29 Jan 2017), “Hackers hijack hotel’s smart locks, demand ransom,” Fortune, http://fortune.com/2017/01/29/hackers-hijack-hotels-smart-locks. 77In 2017, the NotPetya ransomware: Russell Brandom (12 May 2017), “UK hospitals hit with massive ransomware attack,” Verge, https://www.theverge.com/2017/5/12/15630354/nhs-hospitals-ransomware-hack-wannacry-bitcoin. April Glaser (27 Jun 2017), “U.S. hospitals have been hit by the global ransomware attack,” Recode, https://www.recode.net/2017/6/27/15881666/global-eu-cyberattack-us-hackers-nsa-hospitals. 77delay surgeries: Denis Campbell and Haroon Siddique (15 May 2017), “Operations cancelled as Hunt accused of ignoring cyberattack warnings,” Guardian, https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/may/15/warning-of-nhs-cyberattack-was-not-acted-on-cybersecurity. 77route incoming emergency patients elsewhere: ITV (16 May 2017), “NHS cyber attack: Hospitals no longer diverting patients,” http://www.itv.com/news/2017-05-16/nhs-cyberattack-hospitals-no-longer-diverting-patients. 77We saw the harbinger of this trend: Sean Gallagher (25 Oct 2016), “How one rent-a-botnet army of cameras, DVRs caused Internet chaos,” Ars Technica, https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2016/10/inside-the-machine-uprising-how-cameras-dvrs-took-down-parts-of-the-internet. 5.

docid=2010-071400-3123-99. 71In 2017, the global shipping giant Maersk: Iain Thomson (28 Jun 2017), “Everything you need to know about the Petya, er, NotPetya nasty trashing PCs worldwide,” Register, https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/06/28/petya_notpetya_ransomware. Josh Fruhlinger (17 Oct 2017), “Petya ransomware and NotPetya: What you need to know now,” CSO, https://www.csoonline.com/article/3233210/ransomware/petya-ransomware-and-notpetya-malware-what-you-need-to-know-now.html. Nicholas Weaver (28 Jun 2017), “Thoughts on the NotPetya ransomware attack,” Lawfare, https://lawfareblog.com/thoughts-notpetya-ransomware-attack. Ellen Nakashima (12 Jan 2018), “Russian military was behind ‘Notpetya’ cyberattack in Ukraine, CIA concludes,” Washington Post, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/russian-military-was-behind-notpetya-cyberattack-in-ukraine-cia-concludes/2018/01/12/048d8506-f7ca-11e7-b34a-b85626af34ef_story.html. 71when Iran attacked the Saudi: Nicole Perlroth (23 Oct 2012), “In cyberattack on Saudi firm, U.S. sees Iran firing back,” New York Times, http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/24/business/global/cyberattack-on-saudi-oil-firm-disquiets-us.html. 71when North Korea used WannaCry: David E.


pages: 363 words: 105,039

Sandworm: A New Era of Cyberwar and the Hunt for the Kremlin's Most Dangerous Hackers by Andy Greenberg

air freight, Airbnb, Bernie Sanders, bitcoin, blockchain, call centre, clean water, data acquisition, Donald Trump, Edward Snowden, global supply chain, hive mind, Julian Assange, Just-in-time delivery, Kickstarter, Mikhail Gorbachev, open borders, pirate software, pre–internet, profit motive, ransomware, RFID, speech recognition, Steven Levy, Stuxnet, undersea cable, uranium enrichment, Valery Gerasimov, WikiLeaks, zero day

So had Sberbank in Russia, the German railway firm Deutsche Bahn, and the French carmaker Renault, along with other victims as far-flung as universities in China and police departments in India. The United States had, by sheer luck, largely been spared so far. But as the ransomware wave swelled, it was a matter of hours or even minutes until America would be engulfed, too. The nightmare of an uncontrolled NSA-zero-day-propelled worm wreaking havoc across the world had come to pass. And the result was the worst ransomware outbreak anyone had ever seen. “I picked a hell of a fucking week to take off work,” Hutchins wrote on Twitter. * * * ■ A hacker friend who went by the name “Kafeine” sent Hutchins a copy of WannaCry’s code, and Hutchins quickly began trying to dissect it. First, he spun up a simulated computer on his server, complete with fake files for the ransomware to encrypt, and ran the program in that quarantined test environment. He immediately noticed that before encrypting the fake files, the malware sent out a query to a certain very random-looking web address: iuqerfsodp9ifjaposdfjhgosurijfaewrwergwea.com.

Hutchins reacted in a way that perhaps no one ever before in history has reacted to seeing his computer paralyzed with ransomware: He leaped up from his chair and jumped around his bedroom, overtaken with joy. * * * ■ The goal of WannaCry’s creators remains a mystery. Were they seeking to make as much money as possible from their supercharged ransomware scheme? Or merely to inflict maximal global chaos? Either way, building a kill switch into their malware seemed like a strangely sloppy act of self-sabotage.*1 The WannaCry programmers had been careless in other ways, too. The payment mechanism built into their code was, effectively, useless: Unlike better-designed ransomware, WannaCry had no automated system for distributing decryption keys to victims who had paid, or even keeping track of who had paid and who hadn’t.

Security firms around the globe immediately began examining the new worm, primed by the previous month’s WannaCry outbreak. Researchers at Kaspersky noted that the new malware’s code somewhat resembled a piece of criminal ransomware called Petya that had been circulating since early 2016. Like that older ransomware, when this specimen infected a new machine, it immediately set about encrypting the computer’s so-called master file table—the part of a computer’s operating system that keeps track of the location of data in storage. It also encrypted every file on the machine individually; the effect was like a vandal who first puts a library’s card catalog through a shredder, then moves on to methodically pulp its books, stack by stack. But the new ransomware was distinguished from that earlier criminal code by crucial modifications—hence its name. Within twenty-four hours, a French security researcher named Matthieu Suiche would discover that in fact the code didn’t actually allow decryption after a ransom was paid.


pages: 443 words: 116,832

The Hacker and the State: Cyber Attacks and the New Normal of Geopolitics by Ben Buchanan

active measures, Bernie Sanders, bitcoin, blockchain, borderless world, Brian Krebs, British Empire, Cass Sunstein, citizen journalism, credit crunch, cryptocurrency, cuban missile crisis, data acquisition, Donald Trump, drone strike, Edward Snowden, family office, hive mind, Internet Archive, Jacob Appelbaum, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Julian Assange, Kickstarter, kremlinology, MITM: man-in-the-middle, Nate Silver, profit motive, RAND corporation, ransomware, risk tolerance, Robert Hanssen: Double agent, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, Steve Jobs, Stuxnet, technoutopianism, undersea cable, uranium enrichment, Vladimir Vetrov: Farewell Dossier, WikiLeaks, zero day

But if the WannaCry code could not connect to the domain, the attack would execute. In effect, by registering the domain name, Hutchins had activated a secret and likely unintentional kill switch that stopped the worm’s spread.28 As a result, the North Koreans’ first major ransomware experiment—from premature spread to ignominious end—inflicted at least $4 billion in damages but ultimately brought in only a pittance for the regime.29 This initial failure did not keep the North Koreans down for long or deter them from using ransomware in the future. By October 2017, they were ready to try again. This time, their plan was different: they would deploy ransomware not to get money directly, but instead as cover for an operation like the one they performed in Bangladesh. By causing a lot of disruption with digital hostage-taking, they could proceed, right under the noses of distracted bankers, to execute illicit transactions and take money from well-stocked accounts.

For a good technical analysis of NotPetya, see Anton Cherepanov, “Analysis of TeleBots’ Cunning Backdoor,” ESET, July 4, 2017; David Maynor, Aleksandar Nikolic, Matt Olney, and Yves Younan, “The MeDoc Connection,” Threatsource [Cisco Talos newsletter], July 5, 2017; Microsoft Defender ATP Research Team, “New Ransomware, Old Techniques: Petya Adds Worm Capabilities,” Microsoft Security blog, June 27, 2017; Karan Sood and Shaun Hurley, “NotPetya Technical Analysis—A Triple Threat: File Encryption, MFT Encryption, Credential Theft,” CrowdStrike, June 29, 2017; Symantic Security Response, “Petya Ransomware Outbreak: Here’s What You Need to Know,” Symantec blog, October 24, 2017. 9. It did not launch this attack if antivirus from Symantec, Norton, or Kaspersky was present. Microsoft Defender ATP Research Team, “New Ransomware, Old Techniques: Petya Adds Worm Capabilities,” 8–9. 10. Greenberg, Sandworm, 151–153. 11. Greenberg, “The Untold Story of NotPetya.” 12.

While traditionally spies would have sought to copy the data stored within big organizations, like many modern profit-motivated criminals, the North Koreans were not after secrets. They instead deployed a technique known as ransomware, in which hackers encrypt the hard drive of their target computer and delete any backups. The decryption key remains unknown to the target. If the target does not have a surviving backup of the data, the only way to recover the information is to pay the hackers a ransom in return for the decryption key. Given the value of the data, institutions are often willing to do this. In February of 2017, North Korean hackers started testing the early stages of their new ransomware. They infected a single organization, still unknown, in which the code spread quickly to around a hundred computers. In the scheme of global cybersecurity, this was an imperceptible rounding error, and scarcely anyone noticed.


pages: 409 words: 112,055

The Fifth Domain: Defending Our Country, Our Companies, and Ourselves in the Age of Cyber Threats by Richard A. Clarke, Robert K. Knake

A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Amazon Web Services, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, bitcoin, Black Swan, blockchain, borderless world, business cycle, business intelligence, call centre, Cass Sunstein, cloud computing, cognitive bias, commoditize, computer vision, corporate governance, cryptocurrency, data acquisition, DevOps, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Edward Snowden, Exxon Valdez, global village, immigration reform, Infrastructure as a Service, Internet of things, Jeff Bezos, Julian Assange, Kubernetes, Mark Zuckerberg, Metcalfe’s law, MITM: man-in-the-middle, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Network effects, open borders, platform as a service, Ponzi scheme, ransomware, Richard Thaler, Sand Hill Road, Schrödinger's Cat, self-driving car, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, smart cities, Snapchat, software as a service, Steven Levy, Stuxnet, technoutopianism, Tim Cook: Apple, undersea cable, WikiLeaks, Y2K, zero day

Although Bitcoin was supposed to be a safe way of doing business because it involved a publicly viewable blockchain record, it has actually turned out to be easy to use it to hide money flows. Bitcoin is the coin of the realm when it comes to ransomware, allegedly very difficult to trace. Faramarz Savandi and Mohammad Mansouri knew how to do it. The two Iranians wrote their own version of ransomware software and it became known as the SamSam kit. The two men hit about two hundred networks in the United States over two years and collected more than $6 million in Bitcoin. The damage that their ransomware did to networks was estimated at $30 million. Among their victims were numerous hospitals and medical facilities (MedStar Georgetown, Kansas Heart Hospital, Hollywood Presbyterian, LabCorps), and city governments and agencies (Atlanta, Newark, the Port of San Diego).

As we have been saying for years, cybercrime pays, at least if you are willing to live in Tehran or someplace similar and never use your ill-gotten gains to vacation somewhere nice that has an extradition treaty with the United States. Andy Ozment, a former White House and Homeland Security official, has provocatively proposed that ransomware may be one of the more useful regulatory mechanisms we’ve got, essentially imposing fines on companies that have not invested in basic cybersecurity. It is a compelling argument, but we think it is time to remove the incentive for cyber criminals to use ransomware by having a government law or regulation that bans paying the ransom or institutes a fine in addition to whatever ransom is paid. Ransomware is funneling billions of dollars to the underground economy. As DEF CON cofounder Jeff Moss has pointed out, even if most of those billions of dollars go to buying Maseratis and leather jackets in Moscow suburbs, the remaining millions are going to buying more and better capabilities, expanding teams, and attracting more criminal groups to the business.

While WannaCry got the public’s attention, corporate and government IT security professionals had already been aware of the growing risk of ransomware. A year earlier, a virus known as Petya (named after a Soviet weapon in a James Bond movie) had demonstrated significant success in attacking Windows-based systems and then spreading encryption throughout the infected network. Analysis of Petya by U.S. cybersecurity firms later revealed that it employed an attack technique based on the National Security Agency’s EternalBlue weapon. Then in late June 2017, malware resembling Petya spread with unprecedented speed around the world, attacking Microsoft servers and then jumping to all connected devices on the affected corporate networks. In major companies seemingly selected at random, and at their facilities in scores of nations, computer screens froze and flashed messages demanding payment. It looked like ransomware again.


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Tools and Weapons: The Promise and the Peril of the Digital Age by Brad Smith, Carol Ann Browne

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, AI winter, airport security, Albert Einstein, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, Boeing 737 MAX, business process, call centre, Celtic Tiger, chief data officer, cloud computing, computer vision, corporate social responsibility, Donald Trump, Edward Snowden, en.wikipedia.org, immigration reform, income inequality, Internet of things, invention of movable type, invention of the telephone, Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg, minimum viable product, national security letter, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, pattern recognition, precision agriculture, race to the bottom, ransomware, Ronald Reagan, Rubik’s Cube, school vouchers, self-driving car, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, Skype, speech recognition, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, Tim Cook: Apple, WikiLeaks, women in the workforce

What if WannaCry’s designers wanted to ensure that they could turn off the malware before Monday morning, so they could avoid causing too much disruption in China or North Korea itself? Finally, there was something fishy about the ransomware message and approach used by WannaCry. As our security experts noted, North Korea had used ransomware before, but their tradecraft had been different. They had selected high-value targets such as banks and demanded large sums of money in a discreet way. Indiscriminate demands to pay three hundred dollars to unlock a machine represented a departure, to say the least. What if the whole ransomware approach was just a cover to throw the press and public off the real message, which was intended to be more discreetly understood by US and allied officials? If North Korea was responding with its own cyberattack to a US cyberattack, then the whole episode was even more significant than people have appreciated.

Lily Hay Newman, “How an Accidental ‘Kill Switch’ Slowed Friday’s Massive Ransomware Attack,” Wired, May 13, 2017, https://www.wired.com/2017/05/accidental-kill-switch-slowed-fridays-massive-ransomware-attack/. Back to note reference 10. Andy Greenberg, “The Untold Story of NotPetya, the Most Devastating Cyberattack in History,” Wired, August 22, 2018, https://www.wired.com/story/notpetya-cyberattack-ukraine-russia-code-crashed-the-world/. Back to note reference 11. Ibid.; Stilgherrian, “Blaming Russia for NotPetya Was Coordinated Diplomatic Action,” ZDNet, April 12, 2018, https://www.zdnet.com/article/blaming-russia-for-notpetya-was-coordinated-diplomatic-action. Back to note reference 12. Josh Fruhlinger, “Petya Ransomware and NotPetya Malware: What You Need to Know Now,” October 17, 2017, https://www.csoonline.com/article/3233210/petya-ransomware-and-notpetya-malware-what-you-need-to-know-now.html.

NHS England, accessed November 14, 2018, https://www.england.nhs.uk/about/about-nhs-england/. Back to note reference 2. Kim Zetter, “Sony Got Hacked Hard: What We Know and Don’t Know So Far,” Wired, December 3, 2014, https://www.wired.com/2014/12/sony-hack-what-we-know/. Back to note reference 3. Bill Chappell, “WannaCry Ransomware: What We Know Monday,” NPR, May 15, 2017, https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/05/15/528451534/wannacry-ransomware-what-we-know-monday. Back to note reference 4. Nicole Perlroth and David E. Sanger, “Hackers Hit Dozens of Countries Exploiting Stolen N.S.A. Tool,” New York Times, May 12, 2017, https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/12/world/europe/uk-national-health-service-cyberattack.html. Back to note reference 5. Bruce Schneier, “Who Are the Shadow Brokers?”


pages: 1,380 words: 190,710

Building Secure and Reliable Systems: Best Practices for Designing, Implementing, and Maintaining Systems by Heather Adkins, Betsy Beyer, Paul Blankinship, Ana Oprea, Piotr Lewandowski, Adam Stubblefield

anti-pattern, barriers to entry, bash_history, business continuity plan, business process, Cass Sunstein, cloud computing, continuous integration, correlation does not imply causation, create, read, update, delete, cryptocurrency, cyber-physical system, database schema, Debian, defense in depth, DevOps, Edward Snowden, fault tolerance, fear of failure, general-purpose programming language, Google Chrome, Internet of things, Kubernetes, load shedding, margin call, microservices, MITM: man-in-the-middle, performance metric, pull request, ransomware, revision control, Richard Thaler, risk tolerance, self-driving car, Skype, slashdot, software as a service, source of truth, Stuxnet, Turing test, undersea cable, uranium enrichment, Valgrind, web application, Y2K, zero day

So that these compromises don’t require manual intervention from a human responder, the security team establishes a mechanism to automatically wipe and replace compromised cloud test instances. In this case, a ransomware worm would also not require much forensics or incident response attention. Although Organization 2 doesn’t prevent the ransomware from executing (as in Organization 1’s case), Organization 2’s automated mitigation tools can contain the risk. Organization 3 has fewer layered defenses and limited visibility into whether its systems are compromised. The organization is at much greater risk of the ransomware spreading across its network and may not be able to respond quickly. In this case, a large number of business-critical systems may be affected if the worm spreads, and the organization will be severely impacted, requiring significant technical resources to rebuild the compromised networks and systems.

Three criminal actors in China had this exact idea in 2014–2015 and made a few million dollars by stealing sensitive information from unsuspecting law firms. In the past 10 years, attackers have also realized that victims will hand over money when their sensitive data is threatened. Ransomware is software that holds a system or its information hostage (usually by encrypting it) until the victim makes a payment to the attacker. Commonly, attackers infect victim machines with this software (which is often packaged and sold to attackers as a toolkit) by exploiting vulnerabilities, by packaging the ransomware with legitimate software, or by tricking the user into installing it themselves. Criminal activity does not always manifest as overt attempts to steal money. Stalkerware—spying software that’s often sold for as little as $20—aims to gather information about another person without their knowledge.

Ideally, they should identify what kinds of risks are severe versus acceptable in their environment before an incident happens. The response to an incident will depend on the type of environment where the incident happened, the state of the organization’s preventative controls, and the sophistication of its response program. Consider how three organizations might respond to the same threat—a ransomware attack: Organization 1 has a mature security process and layered defenses, including a restriction that permits only cryptographically signed and approved software to execute. In this environment, it’s highly unlikely that well-known ransomware can infect a machine or spread throughout the network. If it does, the detection system raises an alert, and someone investigates. Because of the mature processes and layered defenses, a single engineer can handle the issue: they can check to make sure no suspicious activity has occurred beyond the attempted malware execution, and resolve the issue using a standard process.


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Spam Nation: The Inside Story of Organized Cybercrime-From Global Epidemic to Your Front Door by Brian Krebs

barriers to entry, bitcoin, Brian Krebs, cashless society, defense in depth, Donald Trump, employer provided health coverage, John Markoff, mutually assured destruction, offshore financial centre, payday loans, pirate software, placebo effect, ransomware, Silicon Valley, Stuxnet, the payments system, transaction costs, web application

For starters, the work done by Savage, Microsoft, and the brand holders who worked with the International Anti-Counterfeiting Coalition (IACC) to make it far more expensive for partnerka programs to obtain credit card processing effectively killed off much of the rogue antivirus or scareware industry that ChronoPay had so carefully nurtured. But in its place, a far more insidious threat has taken hold: ransomware. Much like scareware, ransomware is most often distributed via hacked or malicious sites that exploit browser vulnerabilities. Typically, these scams impersonate the Department of Homeland Security or the FBI (or the equivalent federal investigative authority in the victim’s country) and try to frighten people into paying fines to avoid prosecution for supposedly downloading child pornography and pirated content. Ransomware locks the victim’s PC until he either pays the ransom or finds a way to remove the malware. Increasingly, ransomware attacks encrypt all of the files on the victim’s PC, holding them for ransom until victims pay up. Victims are instructed to pay the ransom by purchasing a prepaid debit card or cash voucher, sold at convenience stores or retail outlets the world over.

Victims are then told to send the attackers the voucher code or card number that allows the bad guys to redeem the information for cash. “I don’t think it’s an accident that we’ve seen ransomware rise as it’s become harder for these partnerka programs to find a continuous supply of banks to help them process cards for scareware payments,” Savage said. “You have a bunch of people who are used to making good money for whom fake antivirus software and scareware have become problematic and for whom pharma is not really an option. There’s a void in the ecosystem where people can make money. It’s not at all an accident that these ransomware schemes essentially are bypassing traditional payment schemes.” The past few years have also witnessed a noticeable change in the ways that botmasters are using the resources at their disposal.

In other words, it’s very possible that a cybercriminal right now is selling your personal information to someone else and making a pretty penny off it. “Much like the Inuit Eskimos made sure to use every piece of the whale, we’re seeing an evolution now where botmasters are carefully mining infected systems and monetizing the data they can find,” Savage said. “The mantra these days seems to be, ‘Why leave any unused resources on the table’?” While some are using ransomware and data harvesting, Savage said, many other former affiliates and managers of failed scareware, pharma, and pirated software partnerkas are casting about for the next big thing. “It’s a period of innovation, and people clearly are looking around for another sweet spot that’s as good as pharma, which made more money more reliably than anything else out there,” he said. “A few affiliate programs are trying to peddle pirated e-books and movies; others are getting into [advertising] payday loans.


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Future Crimes: Everything Is Connected, Everyone Is Vulnerable and What We Can Do About It by Marc Goodman

23andMe, 3D printing, active measures, additive manufacturing, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, airport security, Albert Einstein, algorithmic trading, artificial general intelligence, Asilomar, Asilomar Conference on Recombinant DNA, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, Baxter: Rethink Robotics, Bill Joy: nanobots, bitcoin, Black Swan, blockchain, borderless world, Brian Krebs, business process, butterfly effect, call centre, Charles Lindbergh, Chelsea Manning, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, computer vision, connected car, corporate governance, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, data acquisition, data is the new oil, Dean Kamen, disintermediation, don't be evil, double helix, Downton Abbey, drone strike, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, Filter Bubble, Firefox, Flash crash, future of work, game design, global pandemic, Google Chrome, Google Earth, Google Glasses, Gordon Gekko, high net worth, High speed trading, hive mind, Howard Rheingold, hypertext link, illegal immigration, impulse control, industrial robot, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Internet of things, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, job automation, John Harrison: Longitude, John Markoff, Joi Ito, Jony Ive, Julian Assange, Kevin Kelly, Khan Academy, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, Kuwabatake Sanjuro: assassination market, Law of Accelerating Returns, Lean Startup, license plate recognition, lifelogging, litecoin, low earth orbit, M-Pesa, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Metcalfe’s law, MITM: man-in-the-middle, mobile money, more computing power than Apollo, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Nate Silver, national security letter, natural language processing, obamacare, Occupy movement, Oculus Rift, off grid, offshore financial centre, optical character recognition, Parag Khanna, pattern recognition, peer-to-peer, personalized medicine, Peter H. Diamandis: Planetary Resources, Peter Thiel, pre–internet, RAND corporation, ransomware, Ray Kurzweil, refrigerator car, RFID, ride hailing / ride sharing, Rodney Brooks, Ross Ulbricht, Satoshi Nakamoto, Second Machine Age, security theater, self-driving car, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, smart cities, smart grid, smart meter, Snapchat, social graph, software as a service, speech recognition, stealth mode startup, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, strong AI, Stuxnet, supply-chain management, technological singularity, telepresence, telepresence robot, Tesla Model S, The Future of Employment, The Wisdom of Crowds, Tim Cook: Apple, trade route, uranium enrichment, Wall-E, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Wave and Pay, We are Anonymous. We are Legion, web application, Westphalian system, WikiLeaks, Y Combinator, zero day

Schwartz, “Malware Toolkits Generate Majority of Online Attacks,” Dark Reading, Jan. 18, 2011. 95 To unlock their computers: David Wismer, “Hand-to-Hand Combat with the Insidious ‘FBI MoneyPak Ransomware Virus,’ ” Forbes, Feb. 6, 2013. 96 Thus users in the U.K.: EnigmaSoftware, “Abu Dhabi Police GHQ Ransomware.” 97 Another, even more pernicious: Mark Ward, “Crooks ‘Seek Ransomware Making Kit,’ ” BBC News, Dec. 10, 2013. 98 Nearly 250,000 individuals: Dave Jeffers, “Crime Pays Very Well: CryptoLocker Grosses up to $30 Million in Ransom,” PCWorld, Dec. 20, 2013. 99 Automated ransomware tools: Dennis Fisher, “Device-Locking Ransomware Moves to Android,” ThreatPost, May 7, 2014. 100 The police lieutenant: Violet Blue, “CryptoLocker’s Crimewave: A Trail of Millions in Laundered Bitcoin,” ZDNet, Dec. 22, 2013; Bree Sison, “Swansea Police Pay Ransom After Computer System Was Hacked,” CBS Boston, Nov. 18, 2013.

Alarmingly, the malware presents a ticking-bomb-type countdown clock advising users that they only have forty-eight hours to pay $300 or all of their files will be permanently destroyed. Akin to threatening “if you ever want to see your files alive again,” these ransomware programs gladly accept payment in Bitcoin. The message to these victims was no idle threat. Whereas previous ransomware might trick users by temporarily hiding their files, CryptoLocker actually uses strong 256-bit Advanced Encryption Standard cryptography to lock user files so that they become irrecoverable. Nearly 250,000 individuals and businesses around the world have suffered at the hands of CryptoLocker, earning an estimated $30 million for its developer. Automated ransomware tools have even migrated to mobile phones, affecting Android handset users in certain countries. Not only have individuals been harmed by the CryptoLocker scourge, so too have companies, nonprofits, and even government agencies, the most infamous of which was the Swansea Police Department in Massachusetts, which became infected when an employee opened a malicious e-mail attachment.

Savvy users thought rebooting might resolve the problem, but when they did, they were met with the blaring siren noise and the same implacable red alert screen. Paying the $49 fee was the only way to regain access to their own computers and data (a deluxe version with unlimited tech support was available for $79). So what exactly was this pioneering software product Innovative Marketing had created? It was called crimeware, a whole new product category within the software industry—software that commits crime. Crimeware, sometimes called scareware, ransomware, or rogue antivirus, is nothing more than a malicious computer program that plays on a user’s fear of virus infection. We’ve all been trained to be on the lookout for antivirus alerts and to run our security software when a problem is detected. Thus it seemed entirely logical that when System Defender’s critical system pop-up message appeared on the screens of users around the world, the best and commonsense course of action was to click on the “remove all threats” button.


pages: 499 words: 144,278

Coders: The Making of a New Tribe and the Remaking of the World by Clive Thompson

2013 Report for America's Infrastructure - American Society of Civil Engineers - 19 March 2013, 4chan, 8-hour work day, Ada Lovelace, AI winter, Airbnb, Amazon Web Services, Asperger Syndrome, augmented reality, Ayatollah Khomeini, barriers to entry, basic income, Bernie Sanders, bitcoin, blockchain, blue-collar work, Brewster Kahle, Brian Krebs, Broken windows theory, call centre, cellular automata, Chelsea Manning, clean water, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, computer vision, Conway's Game of Life, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, Danny Hillis, David Heinemeier Hansson, don't be evil, don't repeat yourself, Donald Trump, dumpster diving, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, Ernest Rutherford, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, Firefox, Frederick Winslow Taylor, game design, glass ceiling, Golden Gate Park, Google Hangouts, Google X / Alphabet X, Grace Hopper, Guido van Rossum, Hacker Ethic, HyperCard, illegal immigration, ImageNet competition, Internet Archive, Internet of things, Jane Jacobs, John Markoff, Jony Ive, Julian Assange, Kickstarter, Larry Wall, lone genius, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, Mark Shuttleworth, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, microservices, Minecraft, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Nate Silver, Network effects, neurotypical, Nicholas Carr, Oculus Rift, PageRank, pattern recognition, Paul Graham, paypal mafia, Peter Thiel, pink-collar, planetary scale, profit motive, ransomware, recommendation engine, Richard Stallman, ride hailing / ride sharing, Rubik’s Cube, Ruby on Rails, Sam Altman, Satoshi Nakamoto, Saturday Night Live, self-driving car, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Silicon Valley startup, single-payer health, Skype, smart contracts, Snapchat, social software, software is eating the world, sorting algorithm, South of Market, San Francisco, speech recognition, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, TaskRabbit, the High Line, Travis Kalanick, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, universal basic income, urban planning, Wall-E, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, WikiLeaks, women in the workforce, Y Combinator, Zimmermann PGP, éminence grise

Indeed, the world of for-profit cybercrime is growing remarkably huge, as malware becomes easier to buy, or even rent, online. The stakes of cyberattacks can be enormous, as the WannaCry malware of 2017 showed. It was a piece of “ransomware”: Once it infected a computer, it encrypted all the contents so the owner couldn’t read or use them. Then it popped up a neatly designed little text box explaining that “We guarantee that you can recover all your files safely and easily. But you have not so enough time.” The language was cheery, if a bit stilted—possibly the result of a Chinese speaker writing in English, some suspect. And the interface was quite slick. The overall goal of ransomware, these days, is to seem as professional as possible; some even have helplines to assist the victims in figuring out how to acquire Bitcoin, the main currency for paying ransoms.

security experts suspected: “Cyber Attack Hits 200,000 in at Least 150 Countries: Europol,” Reuters, May 14, 2017, accessed August 19, 2018, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-cyber-attack-europol/cyber-attack-hits-200000-in-at-least-150-countries-europol-idUSKCN18A0FX; Julia Carrie Wong and Olivia Solon, “Massive Ransomware Cyber-attack Hits Nearly 100 Countries around the World,” Guardian, May 12, 2017, https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/may/12/global-cyber-attack-ransomware-nsa-uk-nhs; Thomas P. Bossert, “It’s Official: North Korea Is Behind WannaCry,” Wall Street Journal, December 18, 2017, accessed August 19, 2018, https://www.wsj.com/articles/its-official-north-korea-is-behind-wannacry-1513642537. in-demand infosec talent is: Reeves Wiedeman, “Gray Hat,” New York, February 19, 2018, accessed August 19, 2018, http://nymag.com/selectall/2018/03/marcus-hutchins-hacker.html.

So he went to a URL-registering service, and set up the URL for $10.69. It had an effect, even better than he expected: It stopped WannaCry in its tracks. It turns out the URL worked like a “kill switch.” Once it existed, every copy of WannaCry shut down. “It was all over in a few minutes,” he tells me, marveling at the speed of its crash. Possibly the malware authors had included a kill switch in case they lost control of their spread of the ransomware—“in case shit got too bad,” as Hutchins says dryly. But either way, he had prevented a mammoth amount of damage. He’d shut down WannaCry before much of the US turned on its computers and opened for business, which likely meant billions saved. Pretty soon, Hutchins was a global celebrity, with newspapers feting him as the white-hat hacker who “accidentally” saved the world. It was a rapid rise.


pages: 299 words: 88,375

Gray Day: My Undercover Mission to Expose America's First Cyber Spy by Eric O'Neill

active measures, autonomous vehicles, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, computer age, cryptocurrency, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, Edward Snowden, Fall of the Berlin Wall, fear of failure, full text search, index card, Internet of things, Kickstarter, Mikhail Gorbachev, ransomware, rent control, Robert Hanssen: Double agent, Ronald Reagan, Skype, thinkpad, web application, white picket fence, WikiLeaks, young professional

WannaCry and NotPetya—indeed, most of the most damaging cyberattacks we’ve seen in the past few years—are both examples of what’s called ransomware, a cunning malware that encrypts digital files and demands a ransom to unlock them. Often the attacker tricks human targets into infecting their own computer systems by enticing them to open an infected attachment or click on a malicious link. Ransomware attacks are so successful that they have grown faster than any other cybercrime in the last five years, rising from an estimated $350 million in damage costs in 2015 to $1 billion in 2016 and $5 billion in 2017. We are not stopping the problem. Cybersecurity Ventures, a global cybersecurity researcher, predicts that global ransomware damage costs will exceed $11.5 billion annually by 2019. Successful ransomware attackers target soft targets, those with inferior security and the most to lose if their computer systems are locked away.

Those who did pay quickly learned that the ransom demand was a hoax: all the data was already gone. More than 150 countries desperately fought the attack, but resistance was futile. The malware leapt across borders at the speed of thought, worming its way through businesses and government agencies, wreaking havoc in banks and universities, shutting down airports and bringing hospitals to a standstill. After infecting a Windows computer, the WannaCry ransomware worm encrypted files on the hard drive, making them impossible to access, then demanded a ransom payment in order to decrypt them. WannaCry was so deadly in part because it relied on some of the best hacking tools that exist—tools that were created by the US government. As espionage has evolved, American spy agencies have evolved with it. The FBI has focused on defending against the new threats.

Most of us rinse and repeat our lives. We are content to wake and sleep, work and play. To carve out happiness in family and friends, children, and achievement. But some want more. Robert Philip Hanssen was the greatest spy in US history. His reign lasted over two decades in a time when espionage required immense skill and patience. Breaking his record will be next to impossible in a world of WikiLeaks and ransomware. Hanssen’s dreams demanded greatness. Heroes work and toil to scrape out their place in history. Villains take shortcuts. But both heroes and villains stretch to touch the infinite. Spying made Hanssen feel that he belonged to something far greater than himself. To the Russians he was an unknown national hero. To his family, he was a provider and a role model with uncompromising morals.


pages: 305 words: 93,091

The Art of Invisibility: The World's Most Famous Hacker Teaches You How to Be Safe in the Age of Big Brother and Big Data by Kevin Mitnick, Mikko Hypponen, Robert Vamosi

4chan, big-box store, bitcoin, blockchain, connected car, crowdsourcing, Edward Snowden, en.wikipedia.org, Firefox, Google Chrome, Google Earth, Internet of things, Kickstarter, license plate recognition, Mark Zuckerberg, MITM: man-in-the-middle, pattern recognition, ransomware, Ross Ulbricht, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Skype, Snapchat, speech recognition, Tesla Model S, web application, WikiLeaks, zero day, Zimmermann PGP

In some cases the encrypted files contain personally identifiable information such as Social Security numbers, which may qualify the attack as a data breach and thus incur more costs. Although the key to unlock the files can always be purchased for a flat fee of $500 to $1000, those who are infected typically try other means—such as breaking the encryption themselves—to remove the ransomware. That’s what Simone’s mother tried. When she finally called her daughter, they were almost out of time. Almost everyone who tries to break the ransomware encryption fails. The encryption is really strong and requires more powerful computers and more time to break it than most people have at their disposal. So the victims usually pay. According to Simone, the Dickson County, Tennessee, sheriff’s office paid in November 2014 a Cryptowall ransom to unlock 72,000 autopsy reports, witness statements, crime scene photographs, and other documents.

The hackers often demand payment in Bitcoin, meaning that many average people will have a hard time paying.16 Bitcoin, as I mentioned, is a decentralized, peer-to-peer virtual currency, and most people do not have Bitcoin wallets available for withdrawal. Throughout the Times piece, Simone reminds readers that they should never pay the ransom—yet she did just that in the end. In fact the FBI now advises people whose computers are infected with ransomware to simply pay up. Joseph Bonavolonta, the assistant special agent in charge of the FBI’s cyber and counterintelligence program in Boston, said, “To be honest, we often advise people just to pay the ransom.” He said not even the FBI is able to crack the ultrasecure encryption used by the ransomware authors, and he added that because so many people have paid the attackers, the $500 cost has remained fairly consistent over the years.17 The FBI later came out to say it’s up to the individual companies to decide whether to pay or contact other security professionals.

What if you did interact with a phisher and as a result lost all the data—all the personal photographs and private documents—on your infected PC or mobile device? That’s what happened to author Alina Simone’s mother. Writing in the New York Times, Simone described what it was like for her mother—who was not technologically inclined—to be up against a sophisticated enemy who was using something called ransomware.15 In 2014 a wave of extortionist malware hit the Internet, targeting individuals and corporations alike. Cryptowall is one example: it encrypts your entire hard drive, locking you out of every file until you pay the attacker to give you the key to unlock your files. Unless you have a full backup, the contents of your traditional PC or Android device will be inaccessible until you pay the ransom.


pages: 170 words: 49,193

The People vs Tech: How the Internet Is Killing Democracy (And How We Save It) by Jamie Bartlett

Ada Lovelace, Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Andrew Keen, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, basic income, Bernie Sanders, bitcoin, blockchain, Boris Johnson, central bank independence, Chelsea Manning, cloud computing, computer vision, creative destruction, cryptocurrency, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Dominic Cummings, Donald Trump, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Filter Bubble, future of work, gig economy, global village, Google bus, hive mind, Howard Rheingold, information retrieval, Internet of things, Jeff Bezos, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Julian Assange, manufacturing employment, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, meta analysis, meta-analysis, mittelstand, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Network effects, Nicholas Carr, off grid, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, payday loans, Peter Thiel, prediction markets, QR code, ransomware, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, Renaissance Technologies, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Mercer, Ross Ulbricht, Sam Altman, Satoshi Nakamoto, Second Machine Age, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Silicon Valley startup, smart cities, smart contracts, smart meter, Snapchat, Stanford prison experiment, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, strong AI, TaskRabbit, technological singularity, technoutopianism, Ted Kaczynski, the medium is the message, the scientific method, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, The Wisdom of Crowds, theory of mind, too big to fail, ultimatum game, universal basic income, WikiLeaks, World Values Survey, Y Combinator

This is a good thing for individual freedom but a bad thing for law enforcement agencies, who find their scope of work increasing all the time – and who are often helpless to respond. The more connected we are, the more vulnerable we are. A Russian can now steal your money without leaving his bunker in Volgograd. If I were so inclined (I’m not) I could turn on my anonymous Tor browser, jump onto the dark net, fire some ransomware into the world, and wait for bitcoin ransom payments from the unsuspecting internet users who had clicked on my malicious link. None of this requires much in the way of skill or know-how.5 And yet successful prosecution for cybercrime is negligible. There’s barely a thing our police can do about Russian hackers. They cannot stop the trade in stolen data. They’re struggling to remove illegal pornography from the internet.

Sometimes they will be lifesaving: a smart fire alarm might immediately turn on your phone alarm, unlock your door and contact the fire brigade. But they will also be vulnerable, because the security standards for these ‘IoT’ devices are notoriously bad. There have already been high-profile examples of cardiac devices, cars, a baby monitor and home webcams being hacked. This will get very personal. It won’t be long, for example, before your smart coffee machine will be hacked with ransomware – and you are asked to pay a small ransom just to regain access to your morning caffeine. Every day it gets a little simpler to be a cybercriminal. Earlier this year it was reported that there is now easily available code called AutoSploit that automatically searches for vulnerable IoT devices. Once it finds them, it scans the Metasploit database, which lists hacking exploits, to find the best form of attack.

(The calculation is actually incorrect: when I asked him, May explained that Cyphernomicon was only a first draft, and that he’d never got round to checking it as carefully as he would have liked.) 4 As explained in Attack of the 50-Foot Blockchain by David Gerard (CreateSpace, 2017), Szabo has studied law, and seems to take quite a cautious approach to this issue, unlike others. 5 Kelly Murnane, ‘Ransomware as a Service Being Offered for $39 on the Dark Net’, www.forbes.com, 15 July 2016. 6 See Gerard, Attack of the 50-Foot Blockchain for an excellent discussion of this issue. 7 Annie Nova, ‘“Wild west” days are over for cryptocurrencies, as IRS steps up enforcement’, www.cnbc.com, 17 January 2018. 8 ‘A Simple Guide to Safely and Effectively Tumbling (Mixing) Bitcoin’, https://darknetmarkets.org, 10 July 2015.


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The Perfect Weapon: War, Sabotage, and Fear in the Cyber Age by David E. Sanger

active measures, autonomous vehicles, Bernie Sanders, bitcoin, British Empire, call centre, Cass Sunstein, Chelsea Manning, computer age, cryptocurrency, cuban missile crisis, Donald Trump, drone strike, Edward Snowden, Google Chrome, Google Earth, Jacob Appelbaum, John Markoff, Mark Zuckerberg, MITM: man-in-the-middle, mutually assured destruction, RAND corporation, ransomware, Sand Hill Road, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Skype, South China Sea, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Stuxnet, Tim Cook: Apple, too big to fail, undersea cable, uranium enrichment, Valery Gerasimov, WikiLeaks, zero day

They reported that at around eleven-thirty in the morning computers across the country abruptly stopped working. ATMs were failing. Later the news got worse. There were reports that the automatic radiation monitors at the old Chernobyl nuclear plant couldn’t operate because the computers that controlled them went offline. Some Ukrainian broadcasters briefly went off the air; when they came back, they still could not report the news because their computer systems were frozen by what appeared to be a ransomware notice. Ukraine had suffered cyberattacks before. But not like this one. The unfolding offensive seemed targeted at virtually every business in the country, both large and small—from the television stations to the software houses to any mom-and-pop shops that used credit cards. Computer users throughout the country all saw the same broken-English message pop onto their screens. It announced that everything on the hard drives of their computers had been encrypted: “Oops, your important files have been encrypted…Perhaps you are busy looking to recover your files, but don’t waste your time.”

“There’s a low cost of entry, it’s largely asymmetrical, there’s some degree of anonymity and stealth in its use. It can hold large swaths of nation-state infrastructure and private-sector infrastructure at risk. It’s a source of income.” At an earlier time, North Korea counterfeited crude $100 bills to finance the country’s operations. That grew more difficult as the United States made the currency harder and harder to copy. But ransomware, digital bank heists, and hacks of South Korea’s fledgling Bitcoin exchanges all made up for the loss of the counterfeiting business. Today the North may be the first state to use cybercrime to finance its state operations. Bangladesh was hardly the only victim, and not even the first. In 2015 there was an intrusion into the Philippines, then the Tien Phong Bank in Vietnam. In February 2016 hackers got inside the website of Poland’s financial regulator and infected visitors—from the central banks of Venezuela, Estonia, Chile, Brazil, and Mexico—in hopes of also breaking into those banks.

It was a standard piece of the TAO’s toolbox because it exploited a vulnerability in Microsoft Windows servers—an operating system so widely used that it allowed the malware to spread across millions of computer networks. No one had seen anything like it in nearly a decade, since a computer worm called “Conficker” went wild. In this case, the North Korean hackers married the NSA’s tool to a new form of ransomware, which locks computers and makes their data inaccessible—unless the user pays for an electronic key. The attack was spread via a basic phishing email, similar to the one used by Russian hackers in the attacks on the Democratic National Committee and other targets in 2016. It contained an encrypted, compressed file that evaded most virus-detection software. And once it burst alive inside a computer or network, users received a demand for $300 to unlock their data.


pages: 348 words: 97,277

The Truth Machine: The Blockchain and the Future of Everything by Paul Vigna, Michael J. Casey

3D printing, additive manufacturing, Airbnb, altcoin, Amazon Web Services, barriers to entry, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bernie Madoff, bitcoin, blockchain, blood diamonds, Blythe Masters, business process, buy and hold, carbon footprint, cashless society, cloud computing, computer age, computerized trading, conceptual framework, Credit Default Swap, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, cyber-physical system, dematerialisation, disintermediation, distributed ledger, Donald Trump, double entry bookkeeping, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, failed state, fault tolerance, fiat currency, financial innovation, financial intermediation, global supply chain, Hernando de Soto, hive mind, informal economy, intangible asset, Internet of things, Joi Ito, Kickstarter, linked data, litecoin, longitudinal study, Lyft, M-Pesa, Marc Andreessen, market clearing, mobile money, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, Network effects, off grid, pets.com, prediction markets, pre–internet, price mechanism, profit maximization, profit motive, ransomware, rent-seeking, RFID, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ross Ulbricht, Satoshi Nakamoto, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, smart contracts, smart meter, Snapchat, social web, software is eating the world, supply-chain management, Ted Nelson, the market place, too big to fail, trade route, transaction costs, Travis Kalanick, Turing complete, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, unbanked and underbanked, underbanked, universal basic income, web of trust, zero-sum game

Let’s compare our current: See two paired articles by John Crossman: “The ‘Shared Secret’ Identity Model Is Finished,” Medium, February 24, 2016, https://medium.com/@john_17722/the-shared-secret-identity-model-is-finished-59bd30e1da6a, and “The Device Identity Model,” Medium, February 26, 2016, https://medium.com/@john_17722/the-device-identity-model-6444ca6328f9. A 2016 cyber-attack on insurer Anthem Health: Anna Wilde Mathews, “Anthem: Hacked Database Included 78.8 Million People,” The Wall Street Journal, February 24, 2015, https://www.wsj.com/articles/anthem-hacked-database-included-78-8-million-people-1424807364. the so-called WannaCry ransom attacks: Ian Scherr, “WannaCry Ransomware: Everything You Need to Know,” CNET, May 19, 2017, https://www.cnet.com/news/wannacry-wannacrypt-uiwix-ransomware-everything-you-need-to-know/. That’s why initiatives like MedRec: Ariel Ekblaw and Asaf Azaria, “MedRec: Medical Data Management on the Blockchain,” PubPub, September 19, 2016, https://www.pubpub.org/pub/medrec. New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman: Thomas Friedman, The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2005) In The Age of Cryptocurrency, we reported: Paul Vigna and Michael J.

This fuels nervousness among all who care deeply about the fundamental human right of privacy. Without true privacy, unhindered open economic access and social interaction will remain a pipe dream, privacy advocates say, since unwanted public exposure limits people’s capacity to engage in free expression and free commerce. That’s why various programmers are designing digital currencies that are less traceable. You might ask, why shouldn’t we be able to catch those odious ransomware hackers when they cash out for dollars? Well, for one thing, the forever-recorded block history of a specific coin’s brushes with the law can undermine its value relative to another. As Zooko Wilcox-O’Hearn, founder of a new cryptocurrency called Zcash, explains, it’s all about ensuring a currency’s “fungibility”—the principle that “if you’re going to pay someone with something, and you have two of them, it doesn’t matter which one you give them.”

The tech sector has spent a lot of time discussing its promise to help the financially excluded (including those excluded from the tech sector itself). Nine years on, though, adoption of the digital currency by people outside of the tech sector remains low. Part of the problem is that cryptocurrencies continue to sustain a reputation among the general public for criminality. This was intensified by the massive “WannaCry” ransomware attacks of 2017 in which attackers broke into hospitals’ and other institutions’ databases, encrypted their vital files, and then extorted payments in bitcoin to have the data decrypted. (In response to the calls to ban bitcoin that inevitably arose in the wake of this episode, we like to point out that far more illegal activity and money laundering occurs in dollar notes, which are much harder to trace than bitcoin transactions.


pages: 268 words: 76,702

The System: Who Owns the Internet, and How It Owns Us by James Ball

Bill Duvall, bitcoin, blockchain, Chelsea Manning, cryptocurrency, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Douglas Engelbart, Edward Snowden, en.wikipedia.org, Firefox, Frank Gehry, Internet of things, invention of movable type, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, Julian Assange, Kickstarter, Leonard Kleinrock, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, Minecraft, Mother of all demos, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Network effects, Oculus Rift, packet switching, patent troll, Peter Thiel, pre–internet, ransomware, RFC: Request For Comment, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, Rubik’s Cube, self-driving car, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, Snapchat, Steve Crocker, Stuxnet, The Chicago School, undersea cable, uranium enrichment, WikiLeaks, yield management, zero day

Computers were locking up, and then restarting with a locked screen saying the system’s contents had been encrypted – and would be kept locked unless a payment of $300 in Bitcoin (the anonymous online currency) was made within three days. After three days, the price would double. After seven, the data would be irretrievably deleted for ever. This is a type of attack known as ransomware, named because it holds your computer and data hostage in hope of a quick profit if you pay up. But something about this attack was wrong: ransomware is best targeted at home users, who lack backups and easy access to IT support, and who need their data. This attack, though, appeared targeted at major corporate networks – and it was spreading alarmingly fast, to targets with nothing in common. Within hours, dozens of NHS hospitals had been hit, as had Telefonica in Spain, and major networks in Russia, Ukraine, India and dozens of other countries.

I reported some of its revelations, with independent corroboration, here: https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/jamesball/us-hacked-into-irans-critical-civilian-infrastructure-for-ma 13https://www.thebureauinvestigates.com/stories/2018-09-13/bureau-wins-case-to-defend-press-freedom-at-the-european-court-of-human-rights 14https://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/24/nsa-surveillance-world-leaders-calls 15As with other stories, they did agree to redact certain specific details (for example, particular models of software, or company names, when specific reasons were given). 16The Guardian version of this story can be viewed here: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/05/nsa-gchq-encryption-codes-security 17This was helpfully tweeted by the BBC’s technology editor, Rory Cellan-Jones: https://twitter.com/ruskin147/status/1096327971131088896/photo/1 18The following account of WannaCry is based on interviews with the Symantec staff in the chapter, my own reporting from the time (https://www.buzzfeed.com/jamesball/heres-why-its-unlikely-the-nhs-was-deliberately-targeted-in, https://www.buzzfeed.com/jamesball/gchq-is-facing-questions-over-last-weeks-ransomware-attack, https://www.buzzfeed.com/jamesball/a-highly-critical-report-says-the-nhs-was-hit-by-the), and some details from this later Washington Post report: https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/us-set-to-declare-north-korea-carried-out-massive-wannacry-cyber-attack/2017/12/18/509deb1c-e446-11e7-a65d-1ac0fd7f097e_story.html?utm_term=.5616081ea532 19https://www.theregister.co.uk/2019/02/14/marcus_hutchins_evidence/ 20https://techcrunch.com/2018/01/09/chinas-kunlun-completes-full-buyout-of-grindr/ 21https://techcrunch.com/2019/02/11/reddit-300-million/ 22https://bpr.berkeley.edu/2018/02/09/a-call-for-caution-indias-aadhaar/ 23This is, as this article explains, a simplification – but about as close as can be explained in one sentence: https://www.wired.co.uk/article/china-social-credit-system-explained 7 THE RULEMAKERS 1You can watch it, if you’d like, here (but I recommend giving it a miss): https://dailycaller.com/2017/12/13/ajit-pai-wants-you-to-know-you-can-still-harlem-shake-after-net-neutrality-video/ 2https://www.salon.com/2017/08/21/the-daily-caller-has-a-white-nationalist-problem_partner/ 3https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2018/09/a-daily-caller-editor-wrote-for-an-alt-right-website-using-a-pseudonym/569335/ 4https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/dec/05/washington-pizza-child-sex-ring-fake-news-man-charged 5You can watch it here (but once again, I’d recommend not): https://www.youtube.com/watch?


pages: 301 words: 85,126

AIQ: How People and Machines Are Smarter Together by Nick Polson, James Scott

Air France Flight 447, Albert Einstein, Amazon Web Services, Atul Gawande, autonomous vehicles, availability heuristic, basic income, Bayesian statistics, business cycle, Cepheid variable, Checklist Manifesto, cloud computing, combinatorial explosion, computer age, computer vision, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Donald Trump, Douglas Hofstadter, Edward Charles Pickering, Elon Musk, epigenetics, Flash crash, Grace Hopper, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Harvard Computers: women astronomers, index fund, Isaac Newton, John von Neumann, late fees, low earth orbit, Lyft, Magellanic Cloud, mass incarceration, Moneyball by Michael Lewis explains big data, Moravec's paradox, more computing power than Apollo, natural language processing, Netflix Prize, North Sea oil, p-value, pattern recognition, Pierre-Simon Laplace, ransomware, recommendation engine, Ronald Reagan, self-driving car, sentiment analysis, side project, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, speech recognition, statistical model, survivorship bias, the scientific method, Thomas Bayes, Uber for X, uber lyft, universal basic income, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, young professional

Suffice it to say that most hospitals are nowhere near implementing these kinds of algorithms, but the algorithms themselves certainly exist. You can even find them on any new phone that runs iOS or Android—where, for example, they’re used to analyze which autocorrect suggestions you overrule in text messages, while simultaneously keeping the messages themselves encrypted and secure. Then there’s the issue of hacking. Hacking already plagues hospitals: if you recall the big ransomware attacks of 2017 (like WannaCry), you may also recall that hospitals were disproportionately hit. These hospitals probably weren’t doing anything AI-related with their data, but that kind of activity would hardly have entailed a higher security risk than what was already present. Hospitals should obviously plug their existing information-security holes—probably, as many experts suggest, by moving to some kind of cloud-based infrastructure run by a firm who thinks about security full time.

politics prediction rules contraception and deep learning and evaluation of Google Translate and Great Andromeda Nebula and image recognition and massive data and massive models and as models natural language processing and neural networks and overfitting problem training the model trial and error strategy Price, Richard principle of least squares privacy ProPublica Quetelet, Adolphe rage to conclude bias ransomware Reagan, Ronald recommender systems health care and large-scale legacy of Netflix See also suggestion engines Rees, Mina Reinhart, Alex robot cars Bayes’s rule and introspection and extrapolation (dead reckoning) LIDA image of a highway LIDAR (light detection and ranging sensor) SLAM problem (simultaneous localization and mapping) and Waymo robotics Bayes’s rule and in China revolution of SLAM problem (simultaneous localization and mapping) search for USS Scorpion and Stanford Cart Theseus (life-size autonomous mouse) See also robot cars Rose, Pete Royal Mint coin clipping Great Recoinage (1696) Newton, Isaac and Trial of the Pyx Russell, Alexander Wilson S&P 500 Salesforce Sapir, Edward Sarandos, Ted SAT (standardized test) Scherwitzl, Raoul Schlesinger, Karl Schuschnigg, Kurt Schweinfurt-Regensburg mission (World War II) sci-fi AI anxiety and robots self-driving cars.

See USS Scorpion suggestion engines bright side of dark side of as “doppelgänger software” targeted marketing and See also recommender systems super-utilizer survivorship bias 2001: A Space Odyssey (film) Takats, Zoltan Tandem Teller, Edward Tencent Tesla Thrun, Sebastian Tiatros (PTSD-centered social network) toilet paper theft Trial of the Pyx Trump, Donald Tufte, Edward Uber Ulam, Stanislaw UNIVAC USS Scorpion bow section prior beliefs and search for USS Scorpion Varroa mites Vassar College von Neumann, John Wald, Abraham early years and education member of Statistical Research Group (Columbia) sequential sampling survivability recommendations for aircraft in United States Wallis, W. Allen WannaCry (ransomware attack) waterfall diagram Watson (IBM supercomputer) Waymo (autonomous-car company) WeChat word vectors word2vec model (Google) World War I World War II Battle of the Bulge Bayesian search and Hopper, Grace, and Schweinfurt-Regensburg mission (World War II) Statistical Research Group (Columbia) and Wald’s survivability recommendations for aircraft Yormark, Brett YouTube Zillow ABOUT THE AUTHORS NICK POLSON is professor of Econometrics and Statistics at the Chicago Booth School of Business.


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The Bitcoin Guidebook: How to Obtain, Invest, and Spend the World's First Decentralized Cryptocurrency by Ian Demartino

3D printing, AltaVista, altcoin, bitcoin, blockchain, buy low sell high, capital controls, cloud computing, corporate governance, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, distributed ledger, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, fiat currency, Firefox, forensic accounting, global village, GnuPG, Google Earth, Haight Ashbury, Jacob Appelbaum, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, litecoin, M-Pesa, Marc Andreessen, Marshall McLuhan, Oculus Rift, peer-to-peer, peer-to-peer lending, Ponzi scheme, prediction markets, QR code, ransomware, Ross Ulbricht, Satoshi Nakamoto, self-driving car, Skype, smart contracts, Steven Levy, the medium is the message, underbanked, WikiLeaks, Zimmermann PGP

The most common tactics include installing hidden mining software, and encrypting important files and then holding them for ransom. The last example is by far the most frightful. The malware—this particular form is known as “ransomware”—cryptographically encrypts a victim’s files, focusing on things it deems important, such as documents and photographs. It then demands payment in Bitcoin for the key to unlock the files. The software usually includes a timer counting down, with the threat that if it reaches zero, the price to unlock the files will increase. According to security blogs, more often than not, victims who pay the ransom fail to get their files unlocked. There are some sites that use already-discovered passwords to attempt an unlock for free but the ransomware itself remains practically unbreakable. Another scamming tactic is the distributed denial of service (DDOS) attack, where the attacker takes a site offline by sending too many requests for the site to handle.

Multiple mainstream journalism publications have set up Tor hidden service sites, allowing whistleblowers to leak information without revealing their identity. The experience of trawling the Deep Web is somewhat akin to traveling the Internet before Google made it easy. The freedom that comes with true anonymity is powerful and results in both good and bad, and that isn’t going away anytime soon. Bitcoin’s ties to criminal activity aren’t limited to the Deep Web. Bitcoin is playing an increasingly large role in malware, ransomware, and gray-market services. Online gambling was an early and obvious use for Bitcoin and that trend has continued unabated since the first dice sites hit the Internet. Today, nearly any event can be bet on using Bitcoin and nearly every casino game is available. There are even peer-to-peer betting sites that allow you to wager on the outcome of custom events—from the results of a presidential election to the next time a celebrity will be arrested to whether it is going to rain in Las Vegas tomorrow.


pages: 587 words: 117,894

Cybersecurity: What Everyone Needs to Know by P. W. Singer, Allan Friedman

4chan, A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, blood diamonds, borderless world, Brian Krebs, business continuity plan, Chelsea Manning, cloud computing, crowdsourcing, cuban missile crisis, data acquisition, do-ocracy, drone strike, Edward Snowden, energy security, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, fault tolerance, global supply chain, Google Earth, Internet of things, invention of the telegraph, John Markoff, Julian Assange, Khan Academy, M-Pesa, MITM: man-in-the-middle, mutually assured destruction, Network effects, packet switching, Peace of Westphalia, pre–internet, profit motive, RAND corporation, ransomware, RFC: Request For Comment, risk tolerance, rolodex, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart grid, Steve Jobs, Stuxnet, uranium enrichment, We are Anonymous. We are Legion, web application, WikiLeaks, zero day, zero-sum game

Here again, it’s not merely the system going down that makes availability a security concern; software errors and “blue screens of death” happen to our computers all the time. It becomes a security issue when and if someone tries to exploit the lack of availability in some way. An attacker could do this either by depriving users of a system that they depend on (such as how the loss of GPS would hamper military units in a conflict) or by merely threatening the loss of a system, known as a “ransomware” attack. Examples of such ransoms range from small-scale hacks on individual bank accounts all the way to global blackmail attempts against gambling websites before major sporting events like the World Cup and Super Bowl. Beyond this classic CIA triangle of security, we believe it is important to add another property: resilience. Resilience is what allows a system to endure security threats instead of critically failing.

Harm can occur through unscrupulous manufacturing or tainted products, especially when it comes to pharmaceuticals. Most losses, however, are indirect, through missed sales and diluted brand value for the companies that followed the rules. Many cybercrimes target businesses more directly. We explore one particularly widespread type, trade secret and intellectual property theft, later. But companies can also be harmed directly through extortion attacks. This is the category that uses the type of ransomware attacks we read about earlier. The victim has to weigh the potential cost of fighting a well-organized attack versus paying off the potential attacker. Websites with time-dependent business models, such as seasonal sales, are particularly vulnerable. One study reported that, “In 2008, online casinos were threatened with just such an [extortion] attack, timed to disrupt their accepting wagers for the Super Bowl unless the attackers were paid 40,000 dollars.”

phishing: An attempt to fool the user into voluntarily supplying credentials, such as a password or bank account number, often by spoofed e-mails or fake web pages. “Spear phishing” attacks are customized to target specific individuals. protocol: A set of formats and rules that defines how communications can be exchanged. pwn: Hacker term meaning to “own,” or take control of, a rival’s systems and networks. ransomware: A type of malware that restricts access to a target and demands payment to return regular service. red-team: To examine and/or simulate an attack on oneself, in order to identify and close vulnerabilities before an adversary can do so. Often performed by “white hat” hackers. RickRolling: The Internet meme of tricking someone into watching a horribly addictive music video by 1980s singer Rick Astley.


pages: 602 words: 177,874

Thank You for Being Late: An Optimist's Guide to Thriving in the Age of Accelerations by Thomas L. Friedman

3D printing, additive manufacturing, affirmative action, Airbnb, AltaVista, Amazon Web Services, autonomous vehicles, Ayatollah Khomeini, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, bitcoin, blockchain, Bob Noyce, business cycle, business process, call centre, centre right, Chris Wanstrath, Clayton Christensen, clean water, cloud computing, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, David Brooks, demand response, demographic dividend, demographic transition, Deng Xiaoping, Donald Trump, Erik Brynjolfsson, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Ferguson, Missouri, first square of the chessboard / second half of the chessboard, Flash crash, game design, gig economy, global pandemic, global supply chain, illegal immigration, immigration reform, income inequality, indoor plumbing, intangible asset, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Internet of things, invention of the steam engine, inventory management, Irwin Jacobs: Qualcomm, Jeff Bezos, job automation, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Khan Academy, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, land tenure, linear programming, Live Aid, low skilled workers, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, mass immigration, Maui Hawaii, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, mutually assured destruction, Nelson Mandela, pattern recognition, planetary scale, pull request, Ralph Waldo Emerson, ransomware, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Florida, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, South China Sea, Steve Jobs, supercomputer in your pocket, TaskRabbit, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, Thomas L Friedman, transaction costs, Transnistria, uber lyft, undersea cable, urban decay, urban planning, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, WikiLeaks, women in the workforce, Y2K, Yogi Berra, zero-sum game

Earlier this month, cybercriminals attacked a hospital in Los Angeles, then demanded payment in bitcoin to let the hospital regain access to their computers. It’s the most high-profile case yet of cyber-extortion using software known as ransomware. The attack on Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center effectively knocked it offline. As a result, patients had to be diverted to other hospitals, medical records were kept using pen and paper, and staff resorted to communicating by fax. The attackers demanded 9,000 bitcoins—around $3.6 million. After a two-week stand-off, the hospital yesterday paid out $17,000 … “Ransomware has really exploded in the last couple of years,” says Steve Santorelli, a former UK police detective who now works for Team Cymru, a threat intelligence firm based in Florida. One ransomware package, CryptoLocker 3.0, is thought to have earned attackers $325 million in 2015 alone. “These guys are crazy sophisticated,” says Jake Williams, the founder of cybersecurity firm Rendition Infosec … Ross Anderson, a security researcher at the University of Cambridge, says bitcoin has helped cybercriminals to access payments without being caught.

Hartman, David Harvard Business Review Harvey, Hal Hautman, Pete Hautman family Hawaii Hazeltine National Golf Club HBO health care HealthPartners Heifetz, Ronald “Hello” (song) help desks Henderson, Simon Henry, Buck Hessel, Andrew Hewitt, Brad Hewlett Packard Enterprise high-frequency trading Hillel, Rabbi HipChat Hiroshima, atomic bombing of history: Eurocentric view of; inflection points in, see inflection points; McNeill’s view of HistoryofInformation.com Hitler, Adolf Hmong people Hoffman, Reid Hoffmann-Ostenhof, Georg Hollande, François Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center, ransomware attack on Holmstrom, Carl Holocaust Holocene epoch; planetary boundaries of Holt, Bill Honduras Hong Kong Horn, Michael hospitality industry, supernova and House of Representatives, U.S., Homeland Security Committee of Huffington Post Hughes Aircraft human adaptability, in age of accelerations human capital; investment in human networks, see intelligent algorithms Human Resources Development Ministry, India Human Rights Campaign humans: godlike powers of; tribalism of humiliation: adaptability and; as geopolitical emotion Humphrey, Hubert H.

planetary boundaries PlayStation 3 Pleistocene epoch pluralism Pluralism Project politics: bipartisanship in; compromise in; disruption in; dogmatism in; money in; polarization in; trust and; see also geopolitics politics, innovation in; adaptability and; diversity and; entrepreneurial mindset in; federal-local balance in; Mother Nature as mentor for; need for organization in; ownership in; “races to the top” in; resilience in; specific reforms in pollution Pol Pot polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) Popular Science population growth; climate change and; political instability and; poverty and; in weak states Population Institute poverty; advances in connectivity and; chickens and; global flows and; population growth and power of flows power of machines power of many; Mother Nature and; supernova and; see also population growth power of one; ethics and; supernova and Prabhu, Krish prairie, as complex ecosystem Present at the Creation (Acheson) Preston-Werner, Tom Prickett, Glenn privacy, big data and Private Photo Vault Production and Operations Management Society Conference (2014) productivity, supernova and Profil Progressive Policy Institute progressivism; economic growth and Prohibition Project Dreamcatcher Project Syndicate public spaces Putin, Vladimir Putnam, Robert Quad Qualcomm; maintenance workers at Qualcomm pdQ 1900 Quednau, Rachel Queen Rania Teacher Academy Quiz Bowl (TV show) QuoteInvestigator.com (QI) racism rain forests Rain Room ransomware Rattray, Ben ReadWrite.com Reagan, Ronald Real Time Talent Reflections on the Revolution in France (Burke) regulation, technological change and Regulatory Improvement Commission (proposed) Reilly Tar & Chemical Corporation Rejoiner.com relationships, human, connectivity and Republican Party, Republicans: climate change denial by; dogmatism of; implosion of; liberal; polycultural heritage of resilience; in Mother Nature; ownership and; political innovation and retailing: big data and; supernova and Reuters ride-sharing Rifai, Salim al- Ringwald, Alexis Rise and Fall of American Growth, The (Gordon) Rise of the West, The (McNeill) “Rising Menace from Disintegrating Yemen, The” (Henderson) Roberts, Keith robotics “Robots Are Coming, The” (Lanchester) Rockström, Johan Rodríguez, Chi Chi rogue states Rosenstein, Wendi Zelkin Royal Ontario Museum Rugby World Cup (1995) Ruh, Bill Russ, Pam Russell, Richard B.


pages: 215 words: 59,188

Seriously Curious: The Facts and Figures That Turn Our World Upside Down by Tom Standage

agricultural Revolution, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, blood diamonds, corporate governance, Deng Xiaoping, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, failed state, financial independence, gender pay gap, gig economy, Gini coefficient, high net worth, income inequality, index fund, industrial robot, Internet of things, invisible hand, job-hopping, Julian Assange, life extension, Lyft, M-Pesa, Mahatma Gandhi, manufacturing employment, mega-rich, megacity, Minecraft, mobile money, natural language processing, Nelson Mandela, plutocrats, Plutocrats, price mechanism, purchasing power parity, ransomware, reshoring, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ronald Coase, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, South China Sea, speech recognition, stem cell, supply-chain management, transaction costs, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, undersea cable, US Airways Flight 1549, WikiLeaks

Phishing e-mails, which try to persuade users to enter sensitive details such as banking passwords into fake (but convincing-looking) websites, can be very profitable, because the data they harvest can allow their controllers to loot bank accounts or go on buying sprees with stolen credit-card information. Malicious attachments can subvert a user’s machine, perhaps recruiting it into a “botnet”, a horde of compromised machines that can be rented out to attackers to knock websites offline. And then there is “ransomware”, in which a malicious program encrypts all the files on the victim’s computer, then displays instructions demanding payment to unscramble them. All this is made possible by giant lists of e-mail addresses that are bought, sold and swapped between spammers. Those, in turn, are generated from leaks, hacks, guesswork and addresses collected from users of shady websites and subsequently sold on.

For more explainers and charts from The Economist, visit economist.com Index A Africa child marriage 84 democracy 40 gay and lesbian rights 73, 74 Guinea 32 mobile phones 175–6 see also individual countries agriculture 121–2 Aguiar, Mark 169 air pollution 143–4 air travel and drones 187–8 flight delays 38–9 Akitu (festival) 233 alcohol beer consumption 105–6 consumption in Britain 48, 101–2 craft breweries 97–8 drink-driving 179–80 wine glasses 101–2 Alexa (voice assistant) 225 Algeria food subsidies 31 gay and lesbian rights 73 All I Want for Christmas Is You (Carey) 243 alphabet 217–18 Alternative for Germany (AfD) 223, 224 Alzheimer’s disease 140 Amazon (company) 225 America see United States and 227–8 Angola 73, 74 animals blood transfusions 139–40 dog meat 91–2 gene drives 153–4 size and velocity 163–4 and water pollution 149–50 wolves 161–2 Arctic 147–8 Argentina gay and lesbian rights 73 lemons 95–6 lithium 17–18 Ariel, Barak 191 Arizona 85 arms trade 19–20 Asia belt and road initiative 117–18 high-net-worth individuals 53 wheat consumption 109–10 see also individual countries Assange, Julian 81–3 asteroids 185–6 augmented reality (AR) 181–2 August 239–40 Australia avocados 89 forests 145 inheritance tax 119 lithium 17, 18 shark attacks 201–2 autonomous vehicles (AVs) 177–8 Autor, David 79 avocados 89–90 B Babylonians 233 Baltimore 99 Bangladesh 156 bank notes 133–4 Bateman, Tim 48 beer consumption 105–6 craft breweries 97–8 Beijing air pollution 143–4 dogs 92 belt and road initiative 117–18 betting 209–10 Bier, Ethan 153 Bils, Mark 169 birds and aircraft 187 guinea fowl 32–3 birth rates Europe 81–3 United States 79–80 black money 133–4 Black Power 34, 35 Blade Runner 208 blood transfusions 139–40 board games 199–200 body cameras 191–2 Boko Haram 5, 15–16 Bolivia 17–18 Bollettieri, Nick 197 bookmakers 209–10 Borra, Cristina 75 Bosnia 221–2 brain computers 167–8 Brazil beer consumption 105, 106 Christmas music 243, 244 end-of-life care 141–2 gay and lesbian rights 73 murder rate 45, 46 shark attacks 202 breweries 97–8 Brexit, and car colours 49–50 brides bride price 5 diamonds 13–14 Britain alcohol consumption 101–2 car colours 49–50 Christmas music 244 cigarette sales 23–4 craft breweries 98 crime 47–8 Easter 238 gay population 70–72 housing material 8 inheritance tax 119 Irish immigration 235 life expectancy 125 manufacturing jobs 131 national identity 223–4 new-year resolutions 234 police body cameras 191 sexual harassment 67, 68, 69 sperm donation 61 see also Scotland Brookings Institution 21 Browning, Martin 75 bubonic plague 157–8 Bush, George W. 119 C cables, undersea 193–4 California and Argentine lemons 95, 96 avocados 90 cameras 191–2 Canada diamonds 13 drones 188 lithium 17 national identity 223–4 capitalism, and birth rates 81–2 Carey, Mariah 243 Carnegie Endowment for International Peace 21 cars colours 49–50 self-driving 177–8 Caruana, Fabiano 206 Charles, Kerwin 169 cheetahs 163, 164 chess 205–6 Chetty, Raj 113 Chicago 100 children birth rates 79–80, 81–3 child marriage 84–5 in China 56–7 crime 47–8 and gender pay gap 115–16, 135–6 obesity 93–4 Chile gay and lesbian rights 73 lithium 17–18 China air pollution 143–5 arms sales 19–20 avocados 89 beer consumption 105 belt and road initiative 117–18 childhood obesity 93 construction 7 dog meat 91–2 dragon children 56–7 flight delays 38–9 foreign waste 159–60 lithium 17 rice consumption 109–10 Choi, Roy 99 Christian, Cornelius 26 Christianity Easter 237–8 new year 233–4 Christmas 246–7 music 243–5 cigarettes affordability 151–2 black market 23–4 cities, murder rates 44–6 Citizen Kane 207 citrus wars 95–6 civil wars 5 Clarke, Arthur C. 183 Coase, Ronald 127, 128 cocaine 44 cochlear implants 167 Cohen, Jake 203 Colen, Liesbeth 106 colleges, US 113–14 Colombia 45 colours, cars 49–50 commodities 123–4 companies 127–8 computers augmented reality 181–2 brain computers 167–8 emojis 215–16 and languages 225–6 spam e-mail 189–90 Connecticut 85 Connors, Jimmy 197 contracts 127–8 Costa Rica 89 couples career and family perception gap 77–8 housework 75–6 see also marriage cows 149–50 craft breweries 97–8 crime and avocados 89–90 and dog meat 91–2 murder rates 44–6 young Britons 47–8 CRISPR-Cas9 153 Croatia 222 Croato-Serbian 221–2 D Daily-Diamond, Christopher 9–10 Davis, Mark 216 De Beers 13–14 death 141–2 death taxes 119–20 democracy 40–41 Deng Xiaoping 117 Denmark career and family perception gap 78 gender pay gap 135–6 sex reassignment 65 Denver 99 Devon 72 diamonds 13–14, 124 digitally remastering 207–8 Discovery Channel 163–4 diseases 157–8 dog meat 91–2 Dorn, David 79 Dr Strangelove 207 dragon children 56–7 drink see alcohol drink-driving 179–80 driverless cars 177–8 drones and aircraft 187–8 and sharks 201 drugs cocaine trafficking 44 young Britons 48 D’Souza, Kiran 187 E e-mail 189–90 earnings, gender pay gap 115–16, 135–6 Easter 237–8 economy and birth rates 79–80, 81–2 and car colours 49–50 and witch-hunting 25–6 education and American rich 113–14 dragon children 56–7 Egal, Muhammad Haji Ibrahim 40–41 Egypt gay and lesbian rights 73 marriage 5 new-year resolutions 233 El Paso 100 El Salvador 44, 45 emojis 215–16 employment gender pay gap 115–16, 135–6 and gender perception gap 77–8 job tenure 129–30 in manufacturing 131–2 video games and unemployment 169–70 English language letter names 217–18 Papua New Guinea 219 environment air pollution 143–4 Arctic sea ice 147–8 and food packaging 103–4 waste 159–60 water pollution 149–50 Equatorial Guinea 32 Eritrea 40 Ethiopia 40 Europe craft breweries 97–8 summer holidays 239–40 see also individual countries Everson, Michael 216 exorcism 36–7 F Facebook augmented reality 182 undersea cables 193 FANUC 171, 172 Federer, Roger 197 feminism, and birth rates 81–2 fertility rates see birth rates festivals Christmas 246–7 Christmas music 243–5 new-year 233–4 Feuillet, Catherine 108 films 207–8 firms 127–8 5G 173–4 flight delays 38–9 Florida and Argentine lemons 95 child marriage 85 Foley, William 220 food avocados and crime 89–90 dog meat 91–2 lemons 95–6 wheat consumption 109–10 wheat genome 107–8 food packaging 103–4 food trucks 99–100 football clubs 211–12 football transfers 203–4 forests 145–6, 162 Fountains of Paradise, The (Clarke) 183 fracking 79–80 France career and family perception gap 78 Christmas music 244 exorcism 36–7 gender-inclusive language 229–30 job tenure 130 sex reassignment 66 sexual harassment 68–9 witch-hunting 26, 27 wolves 161–2 G gambling 209–10 games, and unemployment 169–70 Gandhi, Mahatma 155 gang members 34–5 Gantz, Valentino 153 gas 124 gay population 70–72 gay rights, attitudes to 73–4 gender sex reassignment 65–6 see also men; women gender equality and birth rates 81–2 in language 229–30 gender pay gap 115–16, 135–6 gene drives 153–4 Genghis Khan 42 genome, wheat 107–8 ger districts 42–3 Germany beer consumption 105 job tenure 130 national identity 223–4 sexual harassment 68, 69 vocational training 132 witch-hunting 26, 27 Ghana 73 gig economy 128, 130 glasses, wine glasses 101–2 Goddard, Ceri 72 Google 193 Graduate, The 207 Greece forests 145 national identity 223–4 sex reassignment 65 smoking ban 152 Gregg, Christine 9–10 grunting 197–8 Guatemala 45 Guinea 32 guinea fowl 32–3 guinea pig 32 Guinea-Bissau 32 Guo Peng 91–2 Guyana 32 H Haiti 5 Hale, Sarah Josepha 242 Hanson, Gordon 79 Hawaii ’Oumuamua 185 porn consumption 63–4 health child obesity 93–4 life expectancy 125–6 plague 157–8 and sanitation 155 high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs) 53 Hiri Motu 219 holidays Easter 237–8 St Patrick’s Day 235–6 summer holidays 239–40 Thanksgiving 241–2 HoloLens 181–2 homicide 44–6 homosexuality attitudes to 73–4 UK 70–72 Honduras 44, 45 Hong Kong 56 housework 75–6, 77–8 Hudson, Valerie 5 Hungary 223–4 Hurst, Erik 169 I ice 147–8 Ikolo, Prince Anthony 199 India bank notes 133–4 inheritance tax 119 languages 219 rice consumption 109 sand mafia 7 sanitation problems 155–6 Indonesia polygamy and civil war 5 rice consumption 109–10 inheritance taxes 119–20 interest rates 51–2 interpunct 229–30 Ireland aitch 218 forests 145 St Patrick’s Day 235–6 same-sex marriage 73 sex reassignment 65 Italy birth rate 82 end of life care 141–2 forests 145 job tenure 130 life expectancy 126 J Jacob, Nitya 156 Jamaica 45 Japan 141–2 Jighere, Wellington 199 job tenure 129–30 jobs see employment Johnson, Bryan 168 junk mail 189 K Kazakhstan 6 Kearney, Melissa 79–80 Kennedy, John F. 12 Kenya democracy 40 mobile-money systems 176 Kiribati 7 Kleven, Henrik 135–6 knots 9–10 Kohler, Timothy 121 Kyrgyzstan 6 L laces 9–10 Lagos 199 Landais, Camille 135–6 languages and computers 225–6 gender-inclusive 229–30 letter names 217–18 and national identity 223–4 Papua New Guinea 219–20 Serbo-Croatian 221–2 Unicode 215 World Bank writing style 227–8 Latimer, Hugh 246 Leeson, Peter 26 leisure board games in Nigeria 199–200 chess 205–6 gambling 209–10 video games and unemployment 169–70 see also festivals; holidays lemons 95–6 letter names 217–18 Libya 31 life expectancy 125–6 Lincoln, Abraham 242 lithium 17–18 London 71, 72 longevity 125–6 Lozère 161–2 Lucas, George 208 M McEnroe, John 197 McGregor, Andrew 204 machine learning 225–6 Macri, Mauricio 95, 96 Macron, Emmanuel 143 Madagascar 158 Madison, James 242 MagicLeap 182 Maine 216 Malaysia 56 Maldives 7 Mali 31 Malta 65 Manchester United 211–12 manufacturing jobs 131–2 robots 171–2 summer holidays 239 Maori 34–5 marriage child marriage 84–5 polygamy 5–6 same-sex relationships 73–4 see also couples Marteau, Theresa 101–2 Marx, Karl 123 Maryland 85 Massachusetts child marriage 85 Christmas 246 Matfess, Hilary 5, 15 meat dog meat 91–2 packaging 103–4 mega-rich 53 men career and family 77–8 housework 75–6 job tenure 129–30 life expectancy 125 polygamy 5–6 sexual harassment by 67–9 video games and unemployment 169 Mexico avocados 89, 90 gay and lesbian rights 73 murder rate 44, 45 microbreweries 97–8 Microsoft HoloLens 181–2 undersea cables 193 migration, and birth rates 81–3 mining diamonds 13–14 sand 7–8 mobile phones Africa 175–6 5G 173–4 Mocan, Naci 56–7 Mongolia 42–3 Mongrel Mob 34 Monopoly (board game) 199, 200 Monty Python and the Holy Grail 25 Moore, Clement Clarke 247 Moretti, Franco 228 Morocco 7 Moscato, Philippe 36 movies 207–8 Mozambique 73 murder rates 44–6 music, Christmas 243–5 Musk, Elon 168 Myanmar 118 N Nadal, Rafael 197 national identity 223–4 natural gas 124 Netherlands gender 66 national identity 223–4 neurostimulators 167 New Jersey 85 New Mexico 157–8 New York (state), child marriage 85 New York City drink-driving 179–80 food trucks 99–100 New Zealand avocados 89 gang members 34–5 gene drives 154 water pollution 149–50 new-year resolutions 233–4 Neymar 203, 204 Nigeria board games 199–200 Boko Haram 5, 15–16 population 54–5 Nissenbaum, Stephen 247 Northern Ireland 218 Norway Christmas music 243 inheritance tax 119 life expectancy 125, 126 sex reassignment 65 Nucci, Alessandra 36 O obesity 93–4 oceans see seas Odimegwu, Festus 54 O’Reilly, Oliver 9–10 Ortiz de Retez, Yñigo 32 Oster, Emily 25–6 ostriches 163, 164 ’Oumuamua 185–6 P packaging 103–4 Pakistan 5 Palombi, Francis 161 Papua New Guinea languages 219–20 name 32 Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) 203 Passover 237 pasta 31 pay, gender pay gap 115–16, 135–6 Peck, Jessica Lynn 179–80 Pennsylvania 85 Peru 90 Pestre, Dominique 228 Pew Research Centre 22 Phelps, Michael 163–4 Philippe, Édouard 230 phishing 189 Phoenix, Arizona 177 Pilgrims 241 plague 157–8 Plastic China 159 police, body cameras 191–2 pollution air pollution 143–4 water pollution 149–50 polygamy 5–6 pornography and Britain’s gay population 70–72 and Hawaii missile alert 63–4 Portugal 145 Puerto Rico 45 punctuation marks 229–30 Q Qatar 19 R ransomware 190 Ravenscroft, George 101 Real Madrid 211 religious observance and birth rates 81–2 and Christmas music 244 remastering 207–8 Reynolds, Andrew 70 Rhodes, Cecil 13 rice 109–10 rich high-net-worth individuals 53 US 113–14 ride-hailing apps and drink-driving 179–80 see also Uber RIWI 73–4 robotaxis 177–8 robots 171–2 Rogers, Dan 240 Romania birth rate 81 life expectancy 125 Romans 233 Romer, Paul 227–8 Ross, Hana 23 Royal United Services Institute 21 Russ, Jacob 26 Russia arms sales 20 beer consumption 105, 106 fertility rate 81 Rwanda 40 S Sahara 31 St Louis 205–6 St Patrick’s Day 235–6 salt, in seas 11–12 same-sex relationships 73–4 San Antonio 100 sand 7–8 sanitation 155–6 Saudi Arabia 19 Scotland, witch-hunting 25–6, 27 Scott, Keith Lamont 191 Scrabble (board game) 199 seas Arctic sea ice 147–8 salty 11–12 undersea cables 193–4 secularism, and birth rates 81–2 Seles, Monica 197 self-driving cars 177–8 Serbia 222 Serbo-Croatian 221–2 Sevilla, Almudena 75 sex reassignment 65–6 sexual harassment 67–9, 230 Sharapova, Maria 197 sharks deterring attacks 201–2 racing humans 163–4 shipping 148 shoelaces 9–10 Silk Road 117–18 Singapore dragon children 56 land reclamation 7, 8 rice consumption 110 single people, housework 75–6 Sinquefeld, Rex 205 smart glasses 181–2 Smith, Adam 127 smoking black market for cigarettes 23–4 efforts to curb 151–2 smuggling 31 Sogaard, Jakob 135–6 Somalia 40 Somaliland 40–41 South Africa childhood obesity 93 diamonds 13 gay and lesbian rights 73 murder rate 45, 46 South Korea arms sales 20 rice consumption 110 South Sudan failed state 40 polygamy 5 space elevators 183–4 spaghetti 31 Spain forests 145 gay and lesbian rights 73 job tenure 130 spam e-mail 189–90 sperm banks 61–2 sport football clubs 211–12 football transfers 203–4 grunting in tennis 197–8 Sri Lanka 118 Star Wars 208 sterilisation 65–6 Strasbourg 26 submarine cables 193–4 Sudan 40 suicide-bombers 15–16 summer holidays 239–40 Sutton Trust 22 Sweden Christmas music 243, 244 gay and lesbian rights 73 homophobia 70 inheritance tax 119 overpayment of taxes 51–2 sex reassignment 65 sexual harassment 67–8 Swinnen, Johan 106 Switzerland sex reassignment 65 witch-hunting 26, 27 T Taiwan dog meat 91 dragon children 56 Tamil Tigers 15 Tanzania 40 taxes death taxes 119–20 Sweden 51–2 taxis robotaxis 177–8 see also ride-hailing apps tennis players, grunting 197–8 terrorism 15–16 Texas 85 Thailand 110 Thanksgiving 241–2 think-tanks 21–2 Tianjin 143–4 toilets 155–6 Tok Pisin 219, 220 transgender people 65–6 Trump, Donald 223 Argentine lemons 95, 96 estate tax 119 and gender pay gap 115 and manufacturing jobs 131, 132 Tsiolkovsky, Konstantin 183 Turkey 151 turkeys 33 Turkmenistan 6 U Uber 128 and drink-driving 179–80 Uganda 40 Ulaanbaatar 42–3 Uljarevic, Daliborka 221 undersea cables 193–4 unemployment 169–70 Unicode 215–16 United Arab Emirates and Somaliland 41 weapons purchases 19 United Kingdom see Britain United States and Argentine lemons 95–6 arms sales 19 beer consumption 105 chess 205–6 child marriage 84–5 Christmas 246–7 Christmas music 243, 244 drink-driving 179–80 drones 187–8 end of life care 141–2 estate tax 119 fertility rates 79–80 food trucks 99–100 forests 145 gay and lesbian rights 73 getting rich 113–14 Hawaiian porn consumption 63–4 job tenure 129–30 letter names 218 lithium 17 manufacturing jobs 131–2 murder rate 45, 46 national identity 223–4 new-year resolutions 234 plague 157–8 police body cameras 191–2 polygamy 6 robotaxis 177 robots 171–2 St Patrick’s Day 235–6 sexual harassment 67, 68 sperm banks 61–2 Thanksgiving 241–2 video games and unemployment 169–70 wealth inequality 121 unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) see drones V video games 169–70 Vietnam weapons purchases 19 wheat consumption 110 Virginia 85 virtual reality (VR) 181, 182 Visit from St Nicholas, A (Moore) 247 W Wang Yi 117 Warner, Jason 15 wars 5 Washington, George 242 Washington DC, food trucks 99 waste 159–60 water pollution 149–50 wealth getting rich in America 113–14 high-net-worth individuals 53 inequality 120, 121–2 weather, and Christmas music 243–5 Weinstein, Harvey 67, 69 Weryk, Rob 185 wheat consumption 109–10 genome 107–8 Wilson, Riley 79–80 wine glasses 101–2 Winslow, Edward 241 wireless technology 173–4 witch-hunting 25–7 wolves 161–2 women birth rates 79–80, 81–3 bride price 5 career and family 77–8 child marriage 84–5 housework 75–6 job tenure 129–30 life expectancy 125 pay gap 115–16 sexual harassment of 67–9 suicide-bombers 15–16 World Bank 227–8 World Health Organisation (WHO) and smoking 151–2 transsexualism 65 X Xi Jinping 117–18 Y young people crime 47–8 job tenure 129–30 video games and unemployment 169–70 Yu, Han 56–7 Yulin 91 yurts 42–3 Z Zubelli, Rita 239


pages: 571 words: 106,255

The Bitcoin Standard: The Decentralized Alternative to Central Banking by Saifedean Ammous

Airbnb, altcoin, bank run, banks create money, bitcoin, Black Swan, blockchain, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business cycle, capital controls, central bank independence, conceptual framework, creative destruction, cryptocurrency, currency manipulation / currency intervention, currency peg, delayed gratification, disintermediation, distributed ledger, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, fiat currency, fixed income, floating exchange rates, Fractional reserve banking, full employment, George Gilder, global reserve currency, high net worth, invention of the telegraph, Isaac Newton, iterative process, jimmy wales, Joseph Schumpeter, market bubble, market clearing, means of production, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, moral hazard, Network effects, Paul Samuelson, peer-to-peer, Peter Thiel, price mechanism, price stability, profit motive, QR code, ransomware, reserve currency, Richard Feynman, risk tolerance, Satoshi Nakamoto, secular stagnation, smart contracts, special drawing rights, Stanford marshmallow experiment, The Nature of the Firm, the payments system, too big to fail, transaction costs, Walter Mischel, zero-sum game

In other words, Bitcoin will likely increase individuals' freedom while not necessarily making it easier for them to commit crimes. It is not a tool to be feared, but one to be embraced as an integral part of a peaceful and prosperous future. One high‐profile type of crime that has indeed utilized Bitcoin heavily is ransomware: a method of unauthorized access to computers that encrypts the victims' files and only releases them if the victim makes a payment to the recipient, usually in Bitcoin. While such forms of crime were around before Bitcoin, they have become more convenient to carry out since Bitcoin's invention. This is arguably the best example of Bitcoin facilitating crime. Yet one can simply understand that these ransomware crimes are being built around taking advantage of lax computer security. A company that can have its entire computer system locked up by anonymous hackers demanding a few thousand dollars in Bitcoin has far bigger problems than these hackers.

A company that can have its entire computer system locked up by anonymous hackers demanding a few thousand dollars in Bitcoin has far bigger problems than these hackers. The incentive for the hackers may be in the thousands of dollars, but the incentive for the firm's competitors, clients, and suppliers for gaining access to this data can be much higher. In effect, what Bitcoin ransomware has allowed is the detection and exposition of computer security flaws. This process is leading firms to take better security precautions, and causing computer security to grow as an industry. In other words, Bitcoin allows for the monetizing of the computer security market. While hackers can initially benefit from this, in the long run, productive businesses will command the best security resources. How to Kill Bitcoin: A Beginners' Guide Many Bitcoiners have developed quasi‐religious beliefs in the ability of Bitcoin to survive come what may.


pages: 515 words: 126,820

Blockchain Revolution: How the Technology Behind Bitcoin Is Changing Money, Business, and the World by Don Tapscott, Alex Tapscott

Airbnb, altcoin, asset-backed security, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, bitcoin, blockchain, Blythe Masters, Bretton Woods, business process, buy and hold, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carbon footprint, clean water, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, commoditize, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, disintermediation, disruptive innovation, distributed ledger, Donald Trump, double entry bookkeeping, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, failed state, fiat currency, financial innovation, Firefox, first square of the chessboard, first square of the chessboard / second half of the chessboard, future of work, Galaxy Zoo, George Gilder, glass ceiling, Google bus, Hernando de Soto, income inequality, informal economy, information asymmetry, intangible asset, interest rate swap, Internet of things, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, Kodak vs Instagram, Lean Startup, litecoin, Lyft, M-Pesa, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, means of production, microcredit, mobile money, money market fund, Network effects, new economy, Oculus Rift, off grid, pattern recognition, peer-to-peer, peer-to-peer lending, peer-to-peer model, performance metric, Peter Thiel, planetary scale, Ponzi scheme, prediction markets, price mechanism, Productivity paradox, QR code, quantitative easing, ransomware, Ray Kurzweil, renewable energy credits, rent-seeking, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, Satoshi Nakamoto, Second Machine Age, seigniorage, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart contracts, smart grid, social graph, social intelligence, social software, standardized shipping container, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stewart Brand, supply-chain management, TaskRabbit, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, The Nature of the Firm, The Wisdom of Crowds, transaction costs, Turing complete, Turing test, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, unbanked and underbanked, underbanked, unorthodox policies, wealth creators, X Prize, Y2K, Zipcar

It enables humans to value and to violate one another’s rights in profound new ways. The explosion in online communication and commerce is creating more opportunities for cybercrime. Moore’s law of the annual doubling of processing power doubles the power of fraudsters and thieves—“Moore’s Outlaws”1—not to mention spammers, identity thieves, phishers, spies, zombie farmers, hackers, cyberbullies, and datanappers—criminals who unleash ransomware to hold data hostage—the list goes on. IN SEARCH OF THE TRUST PROTOCOL As early as 1981, inventors were attempting to solve the Internet’s problems of privacy, security, and inclusion with cryptography. No matter how they reengineered the process, there were always leaks because third parties were involved. Paying with credit cards over the Internet was insecure because users had to divulge too much personal data, and the transaction fees were too high for small payments.

He was inspired by cryptographer Adam Back’s solution, Hashcash, to mitigate spam and denial-of-service attacks. Back’s method required e-mailers to provide proof of work when sending the message. It in effect stamped “special delivery” on an e-mail to signal the message’s importance to its sender. “This message is so critical that I’ve spent all this energy in sending it to you.” It increases the costs of sending spam, malware, and ransomware. Anyone can download the bitcoin protocol for free and maintain a copy of the blockchain. It leverages bootstrapping, a technique for uploading the program onto a volunteer’s computer or mobile device through a few simple instructions that set the rest of the program in motion. It’s fully distributed across a volunteer network like BitTorrent, a shared database of intellectual property that resides on tens of thousands of computers worldwide.

Security Principle: Safety measures are embedded in the network with no single point of failure, and they provide not only confidentiality, but also authenticity and nonrepudiation to all activity. Anyone who wants to participate must use cryptography—opting out is not an option—and the consequences of reckless behavior are isolated to the person who behaved recklessly. Problem to Be Solved: Hacking, identity theft, fraud, cyberbullying, phishing, spam, malware, ransomware—all of these undermine the security of the individual in society. The first era of the Internet, rather than bringing transparency and impairing violations, seems to have done little to increase security of persons, institutions, and economic activity. The average Internet user often has to rely on flimsy passwords to protect e-mail and online accounts because service providers or employers insist on nothing stronger.


pages: 330 words: 83,319

The New Rules of War: Victory in the Age of Durable Disorder by Sean McFate

active measures, anti-communist, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, blood diamonds, cognitive dissonance, commoditize, computer vision, corporate governance, corporate raider, cuban missile crisis, Donald Trump, double helix, drone strike, European colonialism, failed state, hive mind, index fund, invisible hand, John Markoff, joint-stock company, moral hazard, mutually assured destruction, Nash equilibrium, offshore financial centre, pattern recognition, Peace of Westphalia, plutocrats, Plutocrats, private military company, profit motive, RAND corporation, ransomware, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, Stuxnet, technoutopianism, Washington Consensus, Westphalian system, yellow journalism, Yom Kippur War, zero day, zero-sum game

If hackers are choosing targets, and they know that one company has a hack back company behind it and another does not, they select the softer target. Also known as active defense, this practice is currently illegal in many countries, including the United States, but some are questioning this wisdom, since the National Security Agency offers scant protection for nongovernment entities. For example, the WannaCry ransomware attack in 2017 infected more than 230,000 computers in over 150 countries. Victims included the United Kingdom’s National Health Service, Spain’s Telefónica, Germany’s Deutsche Bahn, and US companies like Federal Express. If countries cannot protect their people and organizations from cyberattacks, then why not allow them to protect themselves? Private force is manifesting itself everywhere.

., 41–42 Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, 220–21 Trinquier, Roger, 95 Triple Canopy, 131, 136 “Troll Factory,” 201–3 Trolls, 111, 214 Truman, Harry, 2, 79 Trump, Donald, 46, 70, 130, 158, 159, 167, 168, 202 Turkey, 162–63 Turkistan Islamic Party, 135–36 Twelfth Legion, 84–86 Ukraine, Orange Revolution, 112–13, 215 Ukrainian conflict, 64, 134–35, 195–98, 199–200, 203, 245 UkrTransNafta, 135 Unconventional wars, 28 number of, 35–36, 36 redefining war, 179–85 use of term, 29 Uniform Code of Military Justice, 101–2 United Arab Emirates, 134, 140 United Fruit Company, 208–9, 211 United Nations (UN), 3, 9, 32, 81, 139 Law of the Sea, 68 outsourcing peacekeeping, 280–81n peacekeeping missions, 2, 8, 32, 136, 146, 148, 153 Unrestricted Warfare (Qiao and Wang), 65 US Agency for International Development (USAID), 41–42 “Utility of force,” 106–8 Utopia (More), 127 Uzbekistan, 135, 153 “Vanishing point of law,” 139 Varangian Guard, 127 Velvet regime change, 112–13 Vercingetorix, 126 Vespasian, 86 Victory, 219–40 choosing weapon of war, 229–31 developing war artists, 237–40 February Revolution, 219–21 myth of bifurcated, 232–33, 235 secret to winning, 221–23 “tactization” of strategy, 233–37 use of term, 221–22 Vietnam War and, 223–29 Vietnam War, 1, 96, 122, 211, 223–29, 232–33 Wagner Group, 132, 133, 134 Wall Street, 165–66 WannaCry ransomware attack, 137–38 War algorithm, 50–51 War and peace, 59–82 exploding heads, 70–74 grand strategy, 74–82 nonwar wars, 64–70 South China Sea incident of 2017, 59–63 War artists, 237–40, 247 War colleges, 235–40 War dogs, 121–25 Warfare, 4, 6 war vs., 27–28 War futurists, 11–17 Billy Mitchell, 17–19, 20 Cassandra’s Curse, 20 false prophets, 12–17 identifying, 20–22 Warlords, 147–48, 149, 156–57, 182, 193 War of Eight Saints, 26–27 War on Drugs, 175, 176 Warrior-diplomats, 41 “War termination,” 246 War without states.


pages: 533

Future Politics: Living Together in a World Transformed by Tech by Jamie Susskind

3D printing, additive manufacturing, affirmative action, agricultural Revolution, Airbnb, airport security, Andrew Keen, artificial general intelligence, augmented reality, automated trading system, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, bitcoin, blockchain, brain emulation, British Empire, business process, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, cashless society, Cass Sunstein, cellular automata, cloud computing, computer age, computer vision, continuation of politics by other means, correlation does not imply causation, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, digital map, distributed ledger, Donald Trump, easy for humans, difficult for computers, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, Filter Bubble, future of work, Google bus, Google X / Alphabet X, Googley, industrial robot, informal economy, intangible asset, Internet of things, invention of the printing press, invention of writing, Isaac Newton, Jaron Lanier, John Markoff, Joseph Schumpeter, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, lifelogging, Metcalfe’s law, mittelstand, more computing power than Apollo, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, night-watchman state, Oculus Rift, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, pattern recognition, payday loans, price discrimination, price mechanism, RAND corporation, ransomware, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Stallman, ride hailing / ride sharing, road to serfdom, Robert Mercer, Satoshi Nakamoto, Second Machine Age, selection bias, self-driving car, sexual politics, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, smart cities, Smart Cities: Big Data, Civic Hackers, and the Quest for a New Utopia, smart contracts, Snapchat, speech recognition, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, technological singularity, the built environment, The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas L Friedman, universal basic income, urban planning, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, working-age population

In fact, encryption is the most important defence against malevolent hacking, where a person gains unauthorized access to a digital system for reasons that are not in the public interest. Some of the hacks we hear about today are reasonably funny, like when a ‘smart’ toilet was reprogrammed to fire jets of water onto the backside of its unfortunate user.56 Others, however, are more sinister, like the ‘smart’ doll that could be reprogrammed to listen and speak to the toddler playing with it.57 Still others are deeply troubling: in 2016, ‘ransomware’ held hostage people’s medical records until insurance companies paid $20 million.58 The scale of the problem is serious. A study of ‘critical infrastructure companies’ in 2014 revealed that in the previous year nearly 70 per cent of them had suffered at least one security breach leading to the loss of confidential information OUP CORRECTED PROOF – FINAL, 30/05/18, SPi РЕЛИЗ ПОДГОТОВИЛА ГРУППА "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS Freedom and the Supercharged State 183 or disruption of operations.

32 OUP CORRECTED PROOF – FINAL, 28/05/18, SPi РЕЛИЗ ПОДГОТОВИЛА ГРУППА "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS Index Jie, Ke 32 job applicants 266–7, 268 Jobs, Steve 314 Johnson, Bobby 399 Johnson, Steve 427 Jones, Steve 388 Jøsang, Audun 423 Jouppi, Norm 375 judicial system 102 Jury Theorem 224 justice algorithmic injustice 279–94 civil 259 concept 74–5, 76 conceptual analysis 81 criminal 259 as desert 260–1 as dessert 261, 262 distributive 257–70, 274, 278 and equality, difference between 259 fairness principle 353 property 313–41 in recognition 260, 271–8 social see social justice technological unemployment 295–312 Justinian, Emperor 202 Kahane, Guy 434 Kant, Immanuel 186, 272, 406 Karrahalios, Karrie 433 Kasparov, Garry 31, 36, 373 Kassarnig,Valentin 372 Keen, Andrew 376 Kelion, Leo 413 Kellmereit, Daniel 380 Kelly, Kevin 20, 21, 370, 373, 374, 375, 430 Kelly, Rick 384, 385 Kelly III, John E. 386, 388 Kelsen, Hans 103, 392 Kennedy, John F. 164, 188, 347 Kennedy, Robert F. 256 Keurig 116 Khatchadourian, Raffi 52, 382 503 Khomami, Nadia 397 Al-Khw­ār izmī, Abd’Abdallah Muhammad ibn Mūsā 94 Kim, Mark 376 King, Martin Luther 6, 180, 257, 360, 404 Kirchner, Lauren 403 Kirobo Mini 55 Kitchin, Rob 376, 377, 380, 381, 387, 388, 391, 404 Klaas, Brian 408 Kleinman, Zoe 383 Knockel, Jeffrey 399 Koch brothers 230 Kolhatkar, Sheelah 367, 423 Kollanyi, Bence 413 Korea 20 Kotler, Steven 374, 435 Krasodomski-Jones, Alex 412 Kurzweil, Ray 38, 366, 374, 436 Kymlicka, Will 418 labour market 303 Lai, Richard 386 Lampos,Vasileios 393 Landemore, Hélène 408, 411, 416 Laney, Doug 431 Langbort, Cedric 433 language importance to politics 16–17, 19 limits of 10–11 political concepts 76–80 public and private power 157 Lanier, Jaron 367, 374, 384, 400, 416, 419, 428, 431, 435 Data Deal 338 human enhancement 363 network effect 321 Silicon Valley startups 6–7 Wiki Democracy 246 Lant, Karla 376 Laouris,Yiannis 435 Large Hadron Collider 65 Larkin,Yelena 427 Larson, Jeff 403, 422 Larson, Selena 370, 421 OUP CORRECTED PROOF – FINAL, 28/05/18, SPi РЕЛИЗ ПОДГОТОВИЛА ГРУППА "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS 504 Index law adaptive 107–10 AI Democracy 253 AI systems 31 code-ified 110–12, 245 digital 100–14 dissent 179–80 enforcement 101–7 intellectual property 332 justice in recognition 274–5 oral cultures 111–12 rule of 115 self-enforcing 101–3 supercharged state 171–2 wise restraints 185–6 written 111, 112 Lawrence, Neil 374, 388, 427 Leftwich, Adrian 389 Lenin,Vladimir Ilyich 21, 153, 370 Leonardo Da Vinci 28 Lessig, Lawrence 391, 392, 394, 420, 433 code as law 96 cyberspace as a place 97 free software 359 law enforcement through force 104, 105 privatization of force 100, 117 Leta Jones, Meg 138, 397, 432 Levellers 215–16 Levy, Steven 404 Lewis, Michael 428 liberal democracy 216–17, 246, 254 liberal-democratic principle of legitimacy 350 liberalism 77, 350 liberty 3, 10, 23, 346 concept 74–5, 76 conceptual analysis 81 contextual analysis 84 Deliberative Democracy 234 and democracy 207–8, 222, 225, 249 digital 205–7 digital dissent 179–84 digital liberation 168–71 harm principle 195–205 human enhancement 363 nature of politics 74 price mechanism 270 and private power 189–94 supercharged state 171–9 and the tech firm 188–208 transparency regulation 355 types 164–8 wise restraints 184–6 see also freedom Library of Congress 56 life-logs 63 Lincoln, Abraham 89, 210, 231, 323 Linn, Allison 398 Linux 243–4, 245, 333 Lipińska,Veronika 435 lip-reading 30 liquid democracy 242 Lively, J. 409 Livingston, James 425 Livy 216 loans, and distributive justice 267, 268 Locke, John 216, 246, 301, 323, 429 loomio.org 234 Lopatto, Elizabeth 434 lottery, work distribution via 304 Loveluck, Benjamin 378 Luca, Michael 423 luck egalitarianism 262, 307 Luddites 13 Lukes, Steven 390–1, 395, 398 Luxemburg, Rosa 348, 432 Lynch, Jack 384 Machiavelli, Niccolò 188, 217, 406, 409 machine learning 34–7, 266 algorithmic injustice 293 commons 332 data-based injustice 282 Data Democracy 248 data’s economic importance 317 distributive justice 267 future of code 98 group membership fallacy 284 OUP CORRECTED PROOF – FINAL, 28/05/18, SPi РЕЛИЗ ПОДГОТОВИЛА ГРУППА "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS Index increasingly quantified society 61 liberty and private power 191 political campaigning 220 predictions 139, 173, 175 productive technologies 316 rule-based injustice 284 MacKinnon, Rebecca 396 Madison, James 216, 241, 369, 415 MagicLeap 59 Maistre, Joseph de 101 make-work 304 manipulation 93, 122 code 96, 97 digital liberation 170–1 harm principle 200 Mannheim, Karl 78, 390 Manyika, James 424 Mao, Huina 416 Marconi, Guglielmo 21 marginalization 273 Margretts, Helen 410 market system, and distributive justice 264–5 Markoff, John 400, 413 Martinez, Peter 413 Marx, Karl 367, 390, 398, 415, 417, 424, 425, 429, 434, 436 Communist Manifesto 326–7, 362 Direct Democracy 240–1 future of political ideas 86 justice 258 perception-control 144 on philosophers 7 political concepts 78 property 324, 326–7 sorcerer 366 workers 295, 298, 301, 307 Mason, Paul 374 Massachusetts Institute of Technology see MIT Mattu, Surya 403 Maxim, Hiram 20 Mayer-Schönberger,Viktor 387, 388, 395, 397, 427, 433 data 62, 65 forgetting versus remembering 137 505 Mayr, Otto 14, 368 McAfee, Andrew 374, 382, 390, 393, 427, 431 capital 315, 316, 334 McChesney, Robert W. 400, 427 McDermott, Daniel 390 McGinnis, John O. 416 McKinsey 295, 299 Mearian, Lucas 386 MedEthEx 108 medicine 3D printing 56–7 AI systems 31, 32, 108–9, 113 digital law 112–13 increasingly integrated technology 51, 54, 56–7 ransomware 182 robotics 54 technological unemployment 300 Medium 183 memory 136–8 Merchant, Brian 430 merit, and distributive justice 261 Mesthene, Emmanuel G. 368 metadata 63 Metcalfe’s Law 320 Metz, Cade 372, 373, 374, 375, 380 Metz, Rachel 407 Michaely, Roni 427 Microsoft acquisitions 318 chips 40 commons 332 concentration of tech industry 318, 320 Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism 191 HoloLens 59 patents 315 speech-recognition AI system 30 Tay 37, 346 might is right 349 military AI systems 31 brain–computer interfaces 48 sensors 50 OUP CORRECTED PROOF – FINAL, 28/05/18, SPi РЕЛИЗ ПОДГОТОВИЛА ГРУППА "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS 506 Index Mill, James 195 Mill, John Stuart 367, 403, 406–7, 411, 414, 415 change, need for 3 Deliberative Democracy 234 democracy 223 freedom of speech, constraints on 237 harm principle 196, 198, 199, 203 liberty 195–6, 201, 203 liquid democracy 242 normative analysis 83 predictions 173 upbringing 195 Miller, David 435 Mills, Laurence 418 Milton, John 124, 167, 395 minstrel accounts 232 Mirani, Leo 396 Miremadi, Mehdi 424 Misra, Tanvi 377 MIT affective computing 53 bomb-detecting spinach 50–1 Senseable City Lab 50 Technology Review Custom 427 temporary tattoos for smartphone control 51 Mitchell, Margaret 403 Mitchell, William J. 183, 376, 405 Mizokami, Kyle 379 Moley 407 Momentum Machines 299 Montesquieu, Charles de Secondat, Baron de 358, 433 Moore, Gordon 39, 374 Moore’s Law 39–40, 41 morality AI Democracy 253 automation of 176–7 Data Democracy 249–50 Direct Democracy 240 fragmented 204, 231 harm principle 200–5 justice in distribution 261 see also ethics Moravec’s paradox 54, 382 More, Max 402, 434 Morgan, J.

A. 389 Pokémon Go 58 political campaigning 219–20 political concepts 74–80 political hacking 180–2 political speeches 31, 360–1 political theory 80–5 conceptual analysis 81–3, 84–5 contextual analysis 84–5 future of 84–5 normative analysis 83–5 promise of 9–11 politicians Direct Democracy 240–1, 243 technocratic 251 politics definition 74 nature of 70–4 of politics 72 post-truth 230–1, 237 of prediction 172–6 task of 346 of tech firms 156–9 Popper, Ben 381 Portugal 50 post-politics 362–6 post-truth politics 230–1, 237 Potts, Amanda 422 power 3, 10, 22–3, 89, 345–6 code as 95–7, 154–5 concept 75, 76 conceptual analysis 81 definition 92 digital technology 94–8 faces of 92–3 force 100–21 and liberty 189–94 nature of 90–2 nature of politics 74 perception-control 142–52 private 153–60, 189–94 public 153–60 range of 91–2, 158 scrutiny 122–41 separation of powers 358–9 and significance 92, 158 stability of 92, 158 structural regulation 356, 357–9 supercharged state 347–8 tech firms 348–54 pragmatism 349 predictability of behaviour 127, 138–9 prediction Data Democracy 250 politics of 172–6 totalitarianism 177 predictive policing 174, 176 predictive sentencing 174, 176 preliterate societies 111–12 Preotiuc, Daniel 393 pricing mechanism 269–70, 286 Prince, Matthew 414 Princeton Review 286 printing technology 3D printing 56–7, 178, 329 4D printing 57 Gutenberg’s press 20, 62–3 prioritarians 260 Pritchard, Tom 405 Private Property Paradigm 323–7, 336 privatization of force 100, 114–19 OUP CORRECTED PROOF – FINAL, 28/05/18, SPi РЕЛИЗ ПОДГОТОВИЛА ГРУППА "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS Index productive technologies 316–17 state ownership 329 taxation 328 profit, rights of 330–1 Promobot 55–6 property 313–41 capital 314–17 concentration of 318–22 concept 77, 78 conceptual analysis 82–3 future 327 new paradigm 327–40 Private Property Paradigm 323–7 types of 324 Wealth Cyclone 322–3 ProPublica 174 Proteus Biomedical 51 Protocols of the Elders of Zion 232 proxy votes 242 public utilities, similarity of tech firms to 157–8 Qin dynasty 131 quantum computers 40 Quantum Dot Cellular Automata (QDCA) technology 41 race/racism data-based injustice 282 neutrality fallacy 288, 289, 290 recidivism prediction 174 rule-based injustice 283, 285 Radicati Group Inc. 387 Ralph Lauren 44 ranking, digital 276–8 algorithmic injustice 289–90 ransomware 182 rateability of life 139–40, 277 rational ignorance, problem of 241 Ratner, Paul 383 Rawls, John 389, 404, 417, 419, 432 justice 257, 258, 262–3 political hacking 181 political theory 9 reality, fragmented 229–31, 237 real property 324 509 recognition, algorithms of 260, 275–8 Reddit 77 regulation of tech firms 350–1, 354–9 reinforcement learning (AI) 35 Remnick, David 367, 412 representative democracy 218, 240, 248 republican freedom 167–8, 184 and democracy 222 and private power 191 wise restraints 185 Republican Party (US) 229 reputation.com 290 reputation systems 289–90 resources, limited 365 responsibility, individual 346–7 Reuters 405 revolution concept 77, 78 Richards, Thomas 369 Rieff, David 397 right to explanation 354 usufructuary 330–1 to work 304–5, 307 Riley v.


pages: 151 words: 39,757

Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now by Jaron Lanier

4chan, basic income, cloud computing, corporate governance, Donald Trump, en.wikipedia.org, Filter Bubble, gig economy, Internet of things, Jaron Lanier, life extension, Mark Zuckerberg, market bubble, Milgram experiment, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Network effects, ransomware, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, Stanford prison experiment, stem cell, Steve Jobs, Ted Nelson, theory of mind, WikiLeaks, zero-sum game

An interesting detail that came out a year after the election is that Facebook had offered both the Clinton and Trump campaigns onsite teams to help them maximize their use of the platform, but only Trump’s campaign accepted the offer.18 Maybe if Clinton had agreed to have Facebook employees in her office, she would have won. The election was so close that any little thing that moved the needle in her direction could have tipped the result. Facebook and other BUMMER companies are becoming the ransomware of human attention. They have such a hold on so much of so many people’s attention for so much of each day that they are gatekeepers to brains. The situation reminds me of the medieval practice of indulgences, in which the Catholic Church of the time would sometimes demand money for a soul to enter heaven. Indulgences were one of the main complaints that motivated Protestants to split off. It’s as if Facebook is saying, “Pay us or you don’t exist.”


pages: 200 words: 47,378

The Internet of Money by Andreas M. Antonopoulos

AltaVista, altcoin, bitcoin, blockchain, clean water, cognitive dissonance, cryptocurrency, disruptive innovation, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, financial exclusion, global reserve currency, litecoin, London Interbank Offered Rate, Marc Andreessen, Oculus Rift, packet switching, peer-to-peer lending, Ponzi scheme, QR code, ransomware, reserve currency, Satoshi Nakamoto, self-driving car, Skype, smart contracts, the medium is the message, trade route, underbanked, WikiLeaks, zero-sum game

This has never happened before, and that’s just the beginning. Audience member gasps: "Oh shit!" "Let’s take three radically disruptive technologies and mash them together. Bitcoin. Uber. Self-driving cars. What happens when you mash the three together? The self-owning car." I can guarantee you that one of the first distributed autonomous corporations is going to be a fully autonomous, artificial-intelligence-based ransomware virus that will go out and rob people online of their bitcoin, and use that money to evolve itself to pay for better programming, to buy hosting, and to spread. That’s one vision of the future. Another vision of the future is a digital autonomous charity. Imagine a system that takes donations from people, and using those donations it monitors social media like Twitter and Facebook. When a certain threshold is reached and it sees 100,000 people talking about a natural disaster, like a typhoon in the Philippines, it can marshal the donations and automatically fund aid in that area, without a board of directors, without shareholders.


pages: 579 words: 160,351

Breaking News: The Remaking of Journalism and Why It Matters Now by Alan Rusbridger

accounting loophole / creative accounting, Airbnb, banking crisis, Bernie Sanders, Boris Johnson, centre right, Chelsea Manning, citizen journalism, cross-subsidies, crowdsourcing, David Attenborough, David Brooks, death of newspapers, Donald Trump, Doomsday Book, Double Irish / Dutch Sandwich, Downton Abbey, Edward Snowden, Etonian, Filter Bubble, forensic accounting, Frank Gehry, future of journalism, G4S, high net worth, invention of movable type, invention of the printing press, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, Julian Assange, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, natural language processing, New Journalism, offshore financial centre, oil shale / tar sands, open borders, packet switching, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, pre–internet, ransomware, recommendation engine, Ruby on Rails, sexual politics, Silicon Valley, Skype, Snapchat, social web, Socratic dialogue, sovereign wealth fund, speech recognition, Steve Jobs, The Wisdom of Crowds, Tim Cook: Apple, traveling salesman, upwardly mobile, WikiLeaks

Politics: Between the Extremes; see Bibliography 15. ‘NSA and GCHQ Target Tor Network That Protects Anonymity of Web Users’, Guardian, 4 October 2013 16. ‘Why the NSA’s Attacks on the Internet Must Be Made Public’, Guardian, 4 October 2013 17. In May 2017 it was reported that one leaked NSA tool, an exploit of Microsoft Windows called EternalBlue, had been used to rapidly spread a ransomware variant called WannaCry across the world. The ransomware hit UK hospitals hard, with multiple sources reporting closures of entire wards. (Forbes, 12 May 2017; Thomas Fox-Brewster) 18. The respective homes of MI6, MI5 and GCHQ. 19. ‘The Detention of David Miranda Was an Unlawful Use of the Terrorism Act’, Guardian, 21 August 2013 20. Editor 2011–13; he now works in PR. 21. Independent, 13 October 2013 22. Daily Mail, 10 January 2015, 23.


Digital Transformation at Scale: Why the Strategy Is Delivery by Andrew Greenway,Ben Terrett,Mike Bracken,Tom Loosemore

Airbnb, bitcoin, blockchain, butterfly effect, call centre, chief data officer, choice architecture, cognitive dissonance, cryptocurrency, Diane Coyle, en.wikipedia.org, G4S, Internet of things, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, loose coupling, M-Pesa, minimum viable product, nudge unit, performance metric, ransomware, Silicon Valley, social web, the market place, The Wisdom of Crowds

Maybe your IT has not been able to pay your employees on time, as happened in Canada, where 80,000 officials were paid the incorrect amount thanks to an IBM system failure.20 Maybe the world has realised you’ve spent many millions on a new IT system that doesn’t appear to work, like the Centrelink debt recovery system in Australia, referred to the government ombudsman after creating what a senior politician described as ‘summer from hell for thousands of people who have done absolutely nothing wrong’.21 Maybe your flagship policy has hit the rocks, as the UK’s Universal Credit did in 2013, forcing the department to write off at least £130 million of IT.22 Maybe you’ve been hit by ransomware, as 40 NHS trusts were by the Wannacry attack in May 2017, and been forced to cancel 6,900 appointments.23 Maybe your biggest new website crashed, like healthcare.gov in the US, forcing the president to attend a White House Rose Garden press conference to apologise. Maybe people are angry, as they were with British Airways when a new IT system crashed worldwide for the sixth time in a year, causing more than 1,000 flights to be delayed or cancelled.24 Maybe people are disadvantaged, disenchanted or at personal risk as a result of your organisation’s failure, as happened to almost the entire population of Sweden in July 2017 when it emerged that an outsourcing deal between the Swedish Transport Agency and IBM Sweden had led to a data leak affecting almost every citizen, including security and military personnel.25 You may be thinking that the tried and tested response to this crisis is inadequate.


Demystifying Smart Cities by Anders Lisdorf

3D printing, artificial general intelligence, autonomous vehicles, bitcoin, business intelligence, business process, chief data officer, clean water, cloud computing, computer vision, continuous integration, crowdsourcing, data is the new oil, digital twin, distributed ledger, don't be evil, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, facts on the ground, Google Glasses, income inequality, Infrastructure as a Service, Internet of things, Masdar, microservices, Minecraft, platform as a service, ransomware, RFID, ride hailing / ride sharing, risk tolerance, self-driving car, smart cities, smart meter, software as a service, speech recognition, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stuxnet, Thomas Bayes, Turing test, urban sprawl, zero-sum game

By compromising the integrity of the data from sensors the centrifuges malfunctioned. Availability refers to the extent to which data can be accessed and not just suddenly disappear. It is defined as “Ensuring timely and reliable access to and use of information...” (FISMA). A loss of availability is the disruption of access to or use of information or an information system. This was what happened with the WannaCry ransomware attacks. In this case, the virus infects the affected computers and encrypts the file drives. Entire networks had all their files encrypted, rendering them unavailable until a ransom was paid to the perpetrator who would then make the files available again. Mitigation tactics These are different types of security risks that smart city solutions face. The following are typical topics that need to be addressed in IoT security standards to that end:Identity and access management – Just like regular information systems, access to devices needs to be managed.


pages: 352 words: 80,030

The New Silk Roads: The Present and Future of the World by Peter Frankopan

active measures, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, blockchain, Boris Johnson, cashless society, clean water, cryptocurrency, Deng Xiaoping, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, F. W. de Klerk, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, global supply chain, illegal immigration, income inequality, invisible hand, land reform, Mark Zuckerberg, mass incarceration, Nelson Mandela, purchasing power parity, ransomware, Rubik’s Cube, smart cities, South China Sea, sovereign wealth fund, trade route, trickle-down economics, UNCLOS, urban planning, WikiLeaks, zero-sum game

At confirmation hearings to the position of Commander, US Cyber Command and Director of the National Security Agency, Lt General Paul Nakasone noted that Kremlin is the ‘most technically advanced potential adversary’ that the US faces, capable of using sophisticated tactics, techniques and procedures against ‘US and foreign military, diplomatic and commercial targets’.65 As well as developing tools to use against foreign and domestic targets, Russia has also been working on improving its own defences to protect from attacks from outside.66 That might seem ironic given Russia’s own use of cyber technology in everything from presidential elections, to the Brexit campaign in the UK, to ransoming businesses and the theft of intellectual property. Indeed, in April 2018, the US Department of Homeland Security, the FBI and the United Kingdom’s National Cyber Security Centre issued a formal alert about Russian state-sponsored attempts to target hardware that controls internet traffic.67 Nevertheless, like other countries, Russia has experience of having to deal with ransomware and with hacks on its banking system, mobile telephony and government agencies, which it is keen to avoid or prevent in the future.68 In the west, one of the most important contemporary questions concerns the monetisation of data – and about the legality and ethics of corporations like Facebook gathering and deploying information about users and even about users’ friends and contacts who are not on social networks.


pages: 296 words: 78,631

Hello World: Being Human in the Age of Algorithms by Hannah Fry

23andMe, 3D printing, Air France Flight 447, Airbnb, airport security, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, Brixton riot, chief data officer, computer vision, crowdsourcing, DARPA: Urban Challenge, Douglas Hofstadter, Elon Musk, Firefox, Google Chrome, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, John Markoff, Mark Zuckerberg, meta analysis, meta-analysis, pattern recognition, Peter Thiel, RAND corporation, ransomware, recommendation engine, ride hailing / ride sharing, selection bias, self-driving car, Shai Danziger, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Snapchat, speech recognition, Stanislav Petrov, statistical model, Stephen Hawking, Steven Levy, Tesla Model S, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Bayes, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, web of trust, William Langewiesche

And worst of all? The patients themselves were never asked for their consent, never given an opt-out, never even told they were to be part of the study.47 It’s worth adding that Google was forbidden to use the information in any other part of its business. And – in fairness – it does have a much better track record on data security than the NHS, whose hospitals were brought to a standstill by a North Korean ransomware computer virus in 2017.48 But even so, there is something rather troubling about an already incredibly powerful, world-leading technology company having access to that kind of information about you as an individual. Problems with privacy Let’s be honest, Google isn’t exactly short of private, even intimate information on each of us. But something feels instinctively different – especially confidential – about our medical records.


pages: 303 words: 81,071

Infinite Detail by Tim Maughan

3D printing, augmented reality, bitcoin, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, cognitive dissonance, friendly fire, global supply chain, Internet of things, Mason jar, off grid, Panamax, post-Panamax, ransomware, RFID, security theater, self-driving car, Skype, smart cities, South China Sea, the built environment, urban decay, urban planning

But a few days trawling dark web message boards and code depositories when he’d got back to Bristol and he’d pieced together some clues, some snippets of code alongside the hysterical conspiracy theories and excited exclamations. The consensus seemed to be it was of military or intelligence agency origin, and regardless of where it had come from there was no doubting it was meant to be a weapon. Rush had seen countless ransomware tools come and go over the decades, viruses designed to seize and infect systems, to paralyze them until their desperate, money-hemorrhaging users coughed up the requested bitcoins to get their data and businesses back. But this was different. There wasn’t even any pretense of making money here, no attempt to inform or give warning to users. This just broke stuff. It just stopped shit working.


pages: 304 words: 80,143

The Autonomous Revolution: Reclaiming the Future We’ve Sold to Machines by William Davidow, Michael Malone

2013 Report for America's Infrastructure - American Society of Civil Engineers - 19 March 2013, agricultural Revolution, Airbnb, American Society of Civil Engineers: Report Card, Automated Insights, autonomous vehicles, basic income, bitcoin, blockchain, blue-collar work, Bob Noyce, business process, call centre, cashless society, citizen journalism, Clayton Christensen, collaborative consumption, collaborative economy, collective bargaining, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, disintermediation, disruptive innovation, distributed ledger, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, Filter Bubble, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, gig economy, Gini coefficient, Hyperloop, income inequality, industrial robot, Internet of things, invention of agriculture, invention of movable type, invention of the printing press, invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Joseph Schumpeter, license plate recognition, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, mass immigration, Network effects, new economy, peer-to-peer lending, QWERTY keyboard, ransomware, Richard Florida, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, sharing economy, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, Snapchat, speech recognition, Stuxnet, TaskRabbit, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, the scientific method, trade route, Turing test, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, universal basic income, uranium enrichment, urban planning, zero day, zero-sum game, Zipcar

Criminals, terrorists, and hostile governments misdirect users to fake websites that install Trojan horse software on their systems and turn them into zombies. Bots can be used to recruit thousands of online devices to flood targeted websites with so many messages that they are overwhelmed and can no longer service customers. Companies from Airbnb and Amazon to Starbucks, Twitter, Visa, and Zillow have been victims of these “denial of service” attacks. Then there are ransomware attacks, in which viruses seize control of computers and encrypt user files unless the user is willing to pay a ransom in a cryptocurrency. In some cases, malware can direct the system to shut down and erase itself, or, as in the case of Stuxnet, speed up until it destroys itself. Cyber weapons can disrupt or shut down power grids and communication, transportation, and financial networks, and bring commercial operations to a standstill.


pages: 309 words: 79,414

Going Dark: The Secret Social Lives of Extremists by Julia Ebner

23andMe, 4chan, Airbnb, anti-communist, anti-globalists, augmented reality, Ayatollah Khomeini, bitcoin, blockchain, Boris Johnson, citizen journalism, cognitive dissonance, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, feminist movement, game design, glass ceiling, Google Earth, job satisfaction, Mark Zuckerberg, mass immigration, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, Network effects, off grid, pattern recognition, pre–internet, QAnon, RAND corporation, ransomware, rising living standards, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Skype, Snapchat, social intelligence, Steve Jobs, Transnistria, WikiLeaks, zero day

Available at https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-36284447. 33Raphael Satter, ‘Inside Story: How Russians Hacked the Democrats’ Emails’, Associated Press, 4 November 2017. Available at https://www.apnews.com/dea73efc01594839957c3c9a6c962b8a. 34Megha Mohan, ‘Macron Leaks: anatomy of a hack’, BBC Trending, 9 May 2017. Available at https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/blogs-trending-39845105. 35‘NHS “could have prevented” Wannacry ransomware attack’, BBC, 27 October 2017. Available at https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-41753022. 36Chris Ratcliffe, ‘Hacker who stopped WannaCry charged with writing banking malware’, Wired, 3 August 2017. Available at https://www.wired.com/story/wannacry-malwaretech-arrest. 37Greg Otto, ‘Marcus Hutchins pleads guilty to two counts related to Kronos banking malware’, Cyber-scoop, 19 April 2010. Available at https://www.cyberscoop.com/marcus-hutchins-malwaretech-guilty-plea-kronos/ 38Valeria C.


pages: 302 words: 85,877

Cult of the Dead Cow: How the Original Hacking Supergroup Might Just Save the World by Joseph Menn

4chan, A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Apple II, autonomous vehicles, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, bitcoin, Chelsea Manning, commoditize, corporate governance, Donald Trump, dumpster diving, Edward Snowden, Firefox, Google Chrome, Haight Ashbury, Internet of things, Jacob Appelbaum, Jason Scott: textfiles.com, John Markoff, Julian Assange, Mark Zuckerberg, Mitch Kapor, Naomi Klein, Peter Thiel, pirate software, pre–internet, Ralph Nader, ransomware, Richard Stallman, Robert Mercer, self-driving car, side project, Silicon Valley, Skype, slashdot, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, Stuxnet, Whole Earth Catalog, WikiLeaks, zero day

In August 2016, just weeks after Phineas stopped bragging, a group calling itself the Shadow Brokers appeared on Twitter and began dropping not only vulnerabilities in Microsoft’s Windows, Cisco routers, and other programs but also working exploits, all of which had been held by the NSA. Most of the information came from late 2013, after Edward Snowden had left the agency, meaning that there was another mole, or a hack of agency hardware, or a careless employee who had been hacked. Shadow Brokers kept going for months. Some of the tricks it disclosed were then used by others, including the presumed North Korean distributors of badly crafted ransomware called WannaCry, which shuttered hospitals and other facilities around the planet in 2017. Eventually, two NSA employees were charged with bringing classified files home. At least one of them had been running Kaspersky antivirus on his personal computer. That was cause for special concern, because the Israelis had broken into Kaspersky’s networks in 2015. Inside, they had seen that the software was used to search for classified US documents, and they had warned the Americans.


pages: 329 words: 95,309

Digital Bank: Strategies for Launching or Becoming a Digital Bank by Chris Skinner

algorithmic trading, AltaVista, Amazon Web Services, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, augmented reality, bank run, Basel III, bitcoin, business cycle, business intelligence, business process, business process outsourcing, buy and hold, call centre, cashless society, clean water, cloud computing, corporate social responsibility, credit crunch, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, demand response, disintermediation, don't be evil, en.wikipedia.org, fault tolerance, fiat currency, financial innovation, Google Glasses, high net worth, informal economy, Infrastructure as a Service, Internet of things, Jeff Bezos, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, M-Pesa, margin call, mass affluent, MITM: man-in-the-middle, mobile money, Mohammed Bouazizi, new economy, Northern Rock, Occupy movement, Pingit, platform as a service, Ponzi scheme, prediction markets, pre–internet, QR code, quantitative easing, ransomware, reserve currency, RFID, Satoshi Nakamoto, Silicon Valley, smart cities, social intelligence, software as a service, Steve Jobs, strong AI, Stuxnet, trade route, unbanked and underbanked, underbanked, upwardly mobile, We are the 99%, web application, WikiLeaks, Y2K

McAfee Labs researchers recently debated the leading threats for the coming year and show that it’s only going to get worse: “Hacking as a Service”: Anonymous sellers and buyers in underground forums exchange malware kits and development services for money The decline of online hacktivists Anonymous, to be replaced by more politically committed or extremist groups Nation states and armies will be more frequent sources and victims of cyberthreats Large-scale attacks like Stuxnet, an attack on Iranian nuclear plants, will increasingly attempt to destroy infrastructure, rather than make money Mobile worms on victims’ machines that buy malicious apps and steal via tap-and-pay NFC Malware that blocks security updates to mobile phones Mobile phone ransomware “kits” that allow criminals without programming skills to extort payments Covert and persistent attacks deep within and beneath Windows Rapid development of ways to attack Windows 8 and HTML5 A further narrowing of Zeus-like targeted attacks using the Citadel Trojan, making it very difficult for security products to counter Malware that renews a connection even after a botnet has been taken down, allowing infections to grow again The “snowshoe” spamming of legitimate products from many IP addresses, spreading out the sources and keeping the unwelcome messages flowing SMS spam from infected phones.


When Computers Can Think: The Artificial Intelligence Singularity by Anthony Berglas, William Black, Samantha Thalind, Max Scratchmann, Michelle Estes

3D printing, AI winter, anthropic principle, artificial general intelligence, Asilomar, augmented reality, Automated Insights, autonomous vehicles, availability heuristic, blue-collar work, brain emulation, call centre, cognitive bias, combinatorial explosion, computer vision, create, read, update, delete, cuban missile crisis, David Attenborough, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, epigenetics, Ernest Rutherford, factory automation, feminist movement, finite state, Flynn Effect, friendly AI, general-purpose programming language, Google Glasses, Google X / Alphabet X, Gödel, Escher, Bach, industrial robot, Isaac Newton, job automation, John von Neumann, Law of Accelerating Returns, license plate recognition, Mahatma Gandhi, mandelbrot fractal, natural language processing, Parkinson's law, patent troll, patient HM, pattern recognition, phenotype, ransomware, Ray Kurzweil, self-driving car, semantic web, Silicon Valley, Singularitarianism, Skype, sorting algorithm, speech recognition, statistical model, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Stuxnet, superintelligent machines, technological singularity, Thomas Malthus, Turing machine, Turing test, uranium enrichment, Von Neumann architecture, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, wikimedia commons, zero day

That an AGI would be a machine, and so like other machines its natural place in the order of things is to help man achieve his goals. However, we have never dealt with an intelligent machine before. An AGI may or may not be friendly to humans. We have dealt with intelligent animals though. Some, like dogs, treat us like their lords and masters. Others, like crocodiles, treat us like food. How humanity might be threatened Corporate http://www.spywareremove.com/how-to-protect-computer-against-ransomware-scams.html How could software running on passive computers possibly pose any real threat to humanity? All a computer can do is process and communicate information. If a computer becomes too annoying then surely it could simply be turned off. Computers already control our lives to an incredible extent. When you apply for a bank loan, the application is assessed not by a clerk but by a rule based expert system.


pages: 562 words: 153,825

Dark Mirror: Edward Snowden and the Surveillance State by Barton Gellman

4chan, A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, active measures, Anton Chekhov, bitcoin, Cass Sunstein, cloud computing, corporate governance, crowdsourcing, data acquisition, Debian, desegregation, Donald Trump, Edward Snowden, financial independence, Firefox, GnuPG, Google Hangouts, informal economy, Jacob Appelbaum, job automation, Julian Assange, MITM: man-in-the-middle, national security letter, planetary scale, private military company, ransomware, Robert Gordon, Robert Hanssen: Double agent, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, Saturday Night Live, Silicon Valley, Skype, social graph, standardized shipping container, Steven Levy, telepresence, undersea cable, web of trust, WikiLeaks, zero day, Zimmermann PGP

SecureDrop, which requires no technical knowledge to use, had been introduced the previous year as a newsroom tool by the Freedom of the Press Foundation, based on code written by Aaron Swartz, Kevin Poulsen, and James Dolan. Having advertised a way to get in touch anonymously, I expected to receive malware as well as submissions from internet trolls and conspiracy theorists. I got my share of all of those, alongside valuable reporting tips. Most of the malware was run of the mill. Someone would send a standard phishing link, hoping to steal my online credentials, or a ransomware package that, if I clicked the wrong thing, would lock up my files and demand payment to unlock them. I do not, ever, run executable files or scripts that arrive by email, so these were not a big concern. One day, however, a more interesting exploit showed up. The sender tried to make it attractive, disguising the file as a leaked presentation on surveillance. I asked Morgan Marquis-Boire, a security researcher then affiliated with the Toronto-based Citizen Lab, if he would care to have a look.


pages: 1,318 words: 403,894

Reamde by Neal Stephenson

air freight, airport security, crowdsourcing, digital map, drone strike, Google Earth, industrial robot, informal economy, Jones Act, large denomination, megacity, MITM: man-in-the-middle, new economy, pattern recognition, Ponzi scheme, pre–internet, ransomware, side project, Skype, slashdot, South China Sea, the built environment, the scientific method, young professional

Corporation 9592’s security hackers had been toiling at it all weekend. “How is this possible?” Wallace demanded. Upstairs, Zula was already reading about how it was possible. “It’s not just possible, it’s actually pretty easy, once your system has been rooted by a trojan,” Peter said. “This isn’t the first. People have been making malware that does this for a few years now. There’s a word for it: ‘ransomware.’” “I’ve never heard of it.” “It is hard to turn this kind of virus into a profitable operation,” Peter said, “because there has to be a financial transaction: the payment of the ransom. And that can be traced.” “I see,” Wallace said. “So if you’re in the malware business, there are easier ways to make money.” “By running botnets or whatever,” Peter agreed. “The new wrinkle here, apparently, is that the ransom is to be paid in the form of virtual gold pieces in T’Rain.”

Ivanov,” Zula said, “Wallace is innocent.” “You are beautiful girl, smart, I guess you know of computers. Convince me of this,” Ivanov pleaded. “Make me believe.” ZULA TALKED FOR an hour. She explained the nature and history of computer viruses. Talked about the particular subclass of viruses that encrypted hard drives and held their contents for ransom. About the difficulties of making money from ransomware. Explained the innovation that the unknown, anonymous creators of the REAMDE virus had apparently come up with. Ivanov had never heard of massively multiplayer online role-playing games, or MMORPGs, so she told him all about their history, their technology, their sociology, their growth as a major sector of the entertainment industry. Ivanov listened raptly, breaking in from time to time. Half of the time this was to compliment her, since he seemed convinced that any female who did not receive a compliment every five minutes would stab him with an ice pick in his sleep.