Robocalls have become so frequent and unavoidable in recent months that US Federal Communications Commission chairman Ajit Pai this week sent a letter to thirteen major phone carrier CEOs ordering them to have a system in place to handle the issue that affects millions of Americans daily by 2019 at the latest.
According to Reuters, Pai asked for companies to start using a “call authentication system” to stop the usage of spoofed numbers back in May, and six months later, he wants to know how those efforts have been proceeding.
In his letters, Pai specifically cites Sprint, CenturyLink, Charter and others, as companies he is concerned do “not yet have concrete plans to implement a robust call authentication framework.“ That call framework “digitally validates the handoff of phone calls passing through the complex web of networks, allowing the phone company of the consumer receiving the call to verify that a call is from the person supposedly making it.”
YouMail, a company which blocks and tracks robocalls, estimates that 5.1 billion unwanted calls were received in October, up from 3.4 billion in April.
The decision to increase funding for the city’s most needy is a victory for the local nonprofits behind the measure and their tech fairy godfather, Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff — who, together with his company, has poured more than $7 million into the campaign within the month leading up to the election.
The 115 accounts Facebook took down yesterday for inauthentic behavior ahead of the mid-term elections may indeed have been linked to the Russia-based Internet Research Agency, according to a new statement from the company.
Facebook’s head of cyber security policy Nathaniel Gleicher issued this statement to TechCrunch:
“Last night, following a tip off from law enforcement, we blocked over 100 Facebook and Instagram accounts due to concerns that they were linked to the Russia-based Internet Research Agency (IRA) and engaged in coordinated inauthentic behavior, which is banned from our services.
Yesterday, Facebook had published that it would provide an update on whether the removed accounts were connected to Russia, as some were in Russian languages:
The South Korean carmaker last invested in Grab in January as part of a deal that saw both companies agreeing to explore ways to develop and provide innovative services to Southeast Asian customers, including a new mobility service platform that will use Hyundai’s eco-friendly models such as the IONIQ Electric.
Hyundai’s stake in Grab is smaller than that of Japanese carmaker Toyota Motor Co., which invested $1 billion into the company in June.
“Not only Hyundai, but all global auto manufacturers have realized that generating revenue solely from selling vehicles is not a sustainable, viable option,” Hyundai Chief Innovation Officer Chi Young-cho is reported to have said at a media event. “It is better to disrupt than being disrupted,” he added.
Hyundai isn’t well-represented in Southeast Asia and it has been previously speculated that part of its interest in Grab may be related to its intention to build a car plant in the region, possibly in Indonesia or Vietnam.
An independent assessment commissioned by Facebook found that the company needs to be doing more to prevent the incitement of violence in the country.
Some background: The social network became the primary means of online communication in Myanmar around 2013.
The news: Facebook released a report Monday by the nonprofit Business for Social Responsibility on the role it has played in inciting hatred in Myanmar.
—better enforce its community standards in Myanmar —engage with local organizations —share data on what has happened to evaluate human rights violations —develop AI that can improve responsiveness —start planning now for issues that could lead to further violence in the country down the road
The departure of Soltero (pictured) is just the latest in what seems to be an ongoing shakeup within Microsoft’s leadership team, following the exit of 20-year veteran Terry Myerson late last month. Soltero hadn’t been at Microsoft quite so long, having joined the company back in 2014 after the software giant acquired a mobile email startup called Acompli Inc.
Following that deal, Soltero took over the reigns at Microsoft’s Outlook Mobile team, helping design the Outlook mobile app.
The company now seems to be focusing on making Cortana more of a productivity tool for Windows users, specializing in tasks such as integrating email and calendar apps with different Microsoft services.
China is home to the world’s largest network of CCTV cameras — over 170 million — and its police have adopted Google Glass-like ‘smart specs’ to seek out suspects in crowds, but now its surveillance efforts have hit a new level with technology that can apparently identify individuals based on their body shape and the way they walk.
The ‘gait recognition’ technology is already being used by police in Beijing and Shanghai where it can identify individuals even when their face is obscured or their back is turned, according to an AP report.
The positive impact is in finding criminals but there’s a less savory edge. Besides law enforcement, media reports have shown that China has deployed surveillance technology for more sinister purposes that include controlling its people.
The world's most popular bitcoin wallet is giving away $125 million worth of the cryptocurrency Stellar as part of a major initiative to encourage its use as a mainstream form of payment.
Blockchain, which is named after the technology that powers bitcoin, will give $25 of Stellar lumens (XLM) to its 30 million users starting this week, making it the largest cryptocurrency giveaway in history.
The reason for giving away stellar rather than other popular cryptocurrencies like bitcoin or ethereum, Blockchain explained in a blog post, is because its network is well suited to large-scale usage.
1/8 Satoshi Nakamoto creates the first bitcoin block in 2009
Taranis, an ag-tech startup that uses aerial scouting and deep learning to identify potential crop issues, announced today that it has raised a $20 million Series B led by Viola Ventures.
Tel Aviv-based Taranis says its aerial imaging technology, carried on high-speed drones or manned aircraft, is currently used by farms in Argentina, Brazil, Russia, Ukraine, and the United States.
Founded in 2015 by Ofir Schlam, Asaf Horvitz, Eli Bukchin, and Ayal Karmi to increase food production, Taranis’ software targets commodity crops like corn, cotton, wheat, soybean, sugarcane, and potatoes.
In a press statement, Viola Ventures partner Zvika Orron said “After analyzing the digital farming industry, we proudly chose Taranis to be our first investment in this space.
There are a number of ways to capture and analyze what happens in a League of Legends match: Manual human input, pulling data from the game publisher applications programming interface (API), and reading local game files from a player’s computer to name just a few.
“We’ve been working with Riot since before Esports One launched,” said Matthew Gunnin, CEO of Esports One, in an interview with GamesBeat.
Above: Esports One has a variety of ways to make esports more accessible.Image Credit: Esports One
Esports One, whose focus is on real-time analysis, took a more customizable route, utilizing proprietary computer vision technology and machine learning to capture and analyze what is happening in a professional esports match.
The report comes amid concerns over the future of brick-and-mortar retailers, with the likes of Sears and Toys 'R' Us facing bankruptcy — although the latter's lenders recently cancelled a bankruptcy auction and plans to revive the brand.
Not to mention the fact that several retailers are closing hundreds of stores across the country as the threat of increased competition from e-commerce firms like Amazon and eBay continues to put pressure on the industry.
The research said the sector would see a 4.4 percent gain year-on-year in in-store sales, rising to $878.38 billion, and that brick-and-mortar would be a "bright spot" for the retail industry as a whole for the 2018 Christmas holiday period.
"While e-commerce will continue to see strong double-digit gains, brick-and-mortar retail should be a particular bright spot this holiday season," Andrew Lipsman, principal analyst at eMarketer, said in a statement Tuesday.