Woman faces deportation for checking hubby’s cellphone

“My husband’s a creep!”

A woman was fined and ordered to be deported from the United Arab Emirates for breaching her husband’s privacy by checking his cell phone to see if he was cheating on her…

The unnamed Arab expatriate was fined $40,843 by the criminal court in the emirate of Ajman…

Her lawyer said she had accused her husband of having an affair. She admitted she had accessed his phone without his permission and transferred photos to her device, the lawyer added.

The husband lodged a complaint with the court which convicted her on Thursday last week under a cyber crime law which penalizes “the invasion of privacy of another person” using information technology…

Sounds like the kind of protection our elected Congresspunks expect for themselves – without extending reasonable concern to the unprivileged.

In the UAE, generally, the primary dividing line is gender.

Uncle Sugar’s newest transport ships fall apart on the high seas

The U.S. Navy is spending millions of dollars to repair new high-speed transport ships built by Austal Ltd. because their weak bows can’t stand buffeting from high seas, according to the Pentagon’s chief weapons tester.

“The entire ship class requires reinforcing structure” to bridge the twin hulls of the all-aluminum catamarans because of a design change that the Navy adopted at Austal’s recommendation for the $2.1 billion fleet of Expeditionary Fast Transports , Michael Gilmore…said in a report to Congress.

The speedy catamarans are designed to transport 600 short tons of military cargo and as many as 312 troops for 1,200 nautical miles at an average speed of 35 knots. They’ve been deployed to Africa and the Middle East as well as to Singapore as part of the U.S.’s Pacific rebalance and are being considered by military officials for expanded use there by the Marines. The vessels fill a transport gap between larger, slower vessels and cargo aircraft.

The Navy bought 10 of the shallow-draft vessels, at about $217 million each. Five have been delivered and are in operation, while the other five are under construction at Austal’s Mobile, Alabama, shipyard. Senator Richard Shelby, Republican of Alabama, is a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, which added $225 million for an 11th vessel to the fiscal 2016 defense spending bill last month.

So far, the Navy has spent almost $2.4 million strengthening the bow of the first four vessels delivered since late 2012.

Repair costs include $511,000 on the initial vessel, the USNS Spearhead, which was damaged during deployment by waves slamming into the superstructure…

The second, third and fourth vessels cost as much as $1.2 million each to repair and a fifth vessel, the USNS Trenton, awaits its bow reinforcement during its next scheduled shipyard visit…

Obama’s “pivot” is living up to Cold War standard. Our foreign policy remains mired in “might makes right”. Pentagon designs remain tied to politically-important cretins in Congress.

U.S. and British government spies invaded billions of cellphones

drone watching
“Programming drones to zero in on SIM cards was a great idea!”

U.S. and British spies hacked into the world’s biggest maker of phone SIM cards, allowing them to potentially monitor the calls, texts and emails of billions of mobile users around the world…

The alleged hack on Gemalto…would expand the scope of known mass surveillance methods available to U.S. and British spy agencies to include not just email and web traffic, as previously revealed, but also mobile communications…

All the while, claiming they aren’t snooping without warrants on everyone. Liars.

The report by The Intercept site, which cites documents provided by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, could prove an embarrassment for the U.S. and British governments. It opens a fresh front in the dispute between civil liberties campaigners and intelligence services which say their citizens face a grave threat of attack from militant groups like Islamic State…

The Intercept report said the hack was detailed in a secret 2010 GCHQ document and allowed the NSA and GCHQ to monitor a large portion of voice and data mobile communications around the world without permission from governments, telecom companies or users…

The new allegations could boost efforts by major technology firms such as Apple and Google to make strong encryption methods standard in communications devices they sell, moves attacked by some politicians and security officials.

Leaders including U.S. President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron have expressed concern that turning such encryption into a mass-market feature could prevent governments from tracking militants planning attacks.

You can take that whine and stick it where the sun don’t shine!

SCOTUS rules coppers must get a warrant to search cellphones

Coppers snooping cellphones

In an emphatic defense of privacy in the digital age, a unanimous Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that police generally may not search the cellphones of people they arrest without first getting search warrants.

Cellphones are unlike anything else police may find on someone they arrest, Chief Justice John Roberts wrote for the court. They are “not just another technological convenience,” he said, but ubiquitous, increasingly powerful computers that contain vast quantities of personal, sensitive information.

“With all they contain and all they may reveal, they hold for many Americans the privacies of life,” Roberts declared. So the message to police about what they should do before rummaging through a cellphone’s contents following an arrest is simple: “Get a warrant…”

The Obama administration and the state of California, defending cellphone searches, said the phones should have no greater protection from a search than anything else police find. But the defendants in the current cases, backed by civil libertarians, librarians and news media groups, argued that cellphones, especially smartphones, can store troves of sensitive personal information.

“By recognizing that the digital revolution has transformed our expectations of privacy, today’s decision is itself revolutionary and will help to protect the privacy rights of all Americans,” said American Civil Liberties Union legal director Steven Shapiro…

In the cases decided Wednesday, one defendant carried a smartphone, while the other carried an older flip phone. The police looked through both without first getting search warrants…

A ride on horseback and a flight to the moon both “are ways of getting from point A to point B, but little else justifies lumping them together,” Roberts said…

The decision will protect cellphones from warrantless searches going forward, but it may not be of much help to defendants in pending cases, or those whose convictions are final, said lawyer Gerry Morris…He said that courts could allow evidence to be used from police searches of cellphones that were done in “good faith” and relied on the law as it stood when the searches were conducted.

Still a two-fold victory. We’ve acquired the sort of protection many folks – from geeks to civil libertarians – agree we need in a digital age. Now, the task remains to take the modernized version of privacy and stick in the eye of paranoids ranging from the White House and Congress to the NSA.

HypeWatch asks: Does Wi-Fi really disturb fetal brains?

Even without much evidence to support concerns that prenatal exposure to wireless radiation leads to attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children, the BabySafe Project is still promoting a “better safe than sorry” campaign to pregnant women.

Perhaps setting an iPad streaming television atop the baby bump does carry some level of some type of fetal health risk. Who knows? If so, what could possibly be wrong with a simple recommendation to tell pregnant moms to put a little distance between the device and the belly?

But a scare campaign targeting pregnant women, who already face a barrage of no-nos the second they learn they’re with child, also has its risks.

Without definitive science to back it up, words and phrases like “damage,” “behavioral disorders,” “may lead to long-term health consequences,” are pretty hefty terms to be throwing around…

Based on research from two Turkish universities, Devra Davis now believes irregular, erratic signals from wireless radiation interfere with the rapid neurological growth unique to prenatal cellular development.

Hugh Taylor, MD, chair of the department of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive sciences at Yale-New Haven Hospital, presented his evidence of the effects of cell phone radiation on 33 pregnant mice, published in Scientific Reports in 2012.

Taylor’s study showed that prenatal exposure to cell phones — kept on continuous active calls for the entire gestational period, up to 17 days — had a dose-response relationship with decreased memory and increased hyperactivity in exposed mice compared with unexposed controls (n=42).

That’s right, she considers cellphones as dangerous or more than devices using wi-fi. Taylor’s study had cellphone exposure full-bore 24/7 – unlikely behavior if voluntary.

Taylor suggested that the animal study eliminated possible confounders, such as mothers simply ignoring their children as they talk on their cell phone, as causation for behavioral problems rather than the wireless radiation.

But none of the references the BabySafe project gives are quite solid enough for a definitive clinical recommendation. Of the 20 scientific references presented by BabySafe, the majority were animal trials, and only one, a Danish study, involved humans. Their recollections of “using their cellphone a lot while pregnant”…

There is no doubt further research is warranted based on preliminary rodent studies that suggest potential harms. But likening cell phone use to asbestos and tobacco might be taking it a bit far for now.

There’s a reason this regular report is called HypeWatch. Whether the source of social and political activity advocated comes from within or without a legitimate medical community it generally concerns clinically unproven advice – disseminated as a special danger — so, we needn’t wait for proof!

A Faraday cage for your nether regions

Although there is yet to be conclusive evidence that radiation emitted by mobile phones and other wireless devices is damaging to male fertility, some studies have shown at least a potential link. This is why the makers of Wireless Armour have stepped in to try and provide some protection with nothing less than underwear that encases your nether regions in a Faraday cage.

Some studies have shown several effects of electromagnetic radiation on male fertility, including lower sperm counts, lower sperm motility, and changes to viability and morphology. Joseph Perkins’ solution is for men to don underwear made from a cotton weave material that has pure silver fibers incorporated into it. Perkins says these silver fibers form a Faraday cage that blocks the electromagnetic radiation emitted by wireless devices…

If you’re a.) convinced radiation from your phone has the potential to affect your fertility and b.) convinced a Faraday cage in the form of underwear is the solution, then Wireless Armour may be for you. If so, a pledge on Indiegogo of $24 is enough to reward you with a pair of Wireless Armour underwear if and when it gets turned into a full product. This means Perkins and co. will have to sell a lot of underwear to hit their funding goal of $50,000.

For those not convinced by the ability of Wireless Armour to fend off radiation, the silver mesh reportedly also increases the lifespan of the product and affords it antimicrobial properties. However, its makers are not claiming it will filter your farts in the same way as Shreddies are claimed to do.

Or you can cheap out and be satisfied with stuffing your tidy whities with strips of lead foil. I hear it works better than tinfoil. 🙂

Latest revelations on NSA tracking your mobile calls

Not a month goes by without former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, unleashing new government surveillance allegations, but on Wednesday, the Washington Post dropped a bombshell: The NSA is tracking cellphones around the world at a rate of almost five billion records per day. This revelation is particularly shocking because it affirms fears that the government is keeping tabs on the physical location of Americans.

1. The NSA can find you in a hotel and can probably tell if you’re having an affair…

2. Americans are definitely being tracked, but providing the exact number is “awkward”…

3. All the collected location data wouldn’t fit in the Library of Congress…

4. Don’t bother trying to hide. The NSA knows if you’re trying to avoid them…

5. And you don’t need to be a suspect to be targeted…

The Feds say that this kind of data collection is not protected by the Fourth Amendment; so, as far as Uncle Sugar is concerned, we’re all legitimate targets.

Read the full report over here.