Aadhaar not mandatory for any national entrance exam, for now

The Supreme Court has directed the CBSE to upload the information regarding Aadhaar number on their website. Photo: HT

The Supreme Court has directed the CBSE to upload the information regarding Aadhaar number on their website. Photo: HT

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday said unique identification number Aadhaar cannot be made mandatory for any national entrance examination for now.

The interim order was passed by a bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra in a challenge to making the 12-digit number mandatory for National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) 2018 for admission to medical courses.

The court said other forms of identification such as voter ID, passport or ration card can be used to register for or appear in the coming NEET. The last date to submit applications for NEET conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) is 9 March.

This means even a candidate who has Aadhaar is not required to produce it for appearing in national entrance tests like NEET.

Apart from sparing NEET candidates from mandatorily furnishing Aadhaar, the interim order also prohibits CBSE, Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and the University Grants Commission (UGC) from making the unique number mandatory for examinations like Joint Entrance Exam (JEE-Main) and National Eligibility Test (NET) and the Common Admission Test held by Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs).

The court also directed the centre to inform CBSE to follow the order and upload it on its website so that students are better informed. Currently, CBSE is the test delivery partner for most national entrance tests, including JEE-Main, NEET, UGC-NET and Central Teacher Eligibility Test.

Earlier this year, CBSE had issued notifications making Aadhaar must for appearing in several national entrance tests.

“The use of Aadhaar for applicants of UGC-NET(July) 2018 will result in accuracy of applicants’ details. This will also help ascertain identities of applicants at the examination centres in a convenient and hassle-free manner,” CBSE had said in one of its notifications dated 23 February, justifying the use of Aadhaar.

However, attorney general K.K. Venugopal told the court that the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) has not authorized CBSE to make Aadhaar mandatory for students to enrol for NEET.

A Constitution bench comprising Chief Justice Misra and justices D.Y. Chandrachud, A.K. Sikri, A.M. Khanwilkar and Ashok Bhushan is hearing the case against the Constitutional validity of Aadhaar.

The order was passed on an appeal by one Abidali Yusufbhai Patel, who had specifically challenged Aadhaar being made must for filling up NEET enrolment forms. The matter was mentioned in the morning and was taken up for hearing in the afternoon, along with the main challenge to Aadhaar that is being heard by the Constitution bench.

Patel had challenged a 27 February order passed by the Gujarat high court, which refused to grant interim relief to students seeking exemption from submitting Aadhaar while appearing for JEE(Main), 2018 (JEE) and NEET.

During the course of arguments, a challenge to Aadhaar being passed as a money bill was raised by lawyer and former finance minister P. Chidambaram, who carved out the distinction between a money and financial bill. Chidambaram is one of the lawyers representing the petitioners.

“A money bill cannot be introduced in Rajya Sabha. In this case, Rajya Sabha becomes only a recommending house. They have no legislative power but only recommendative power,” Chidambaram told the court.

A batch of petitions have been tagged by the Supreme Court to be heard by the Constitution bench. They challenge several aspects of Aadhaar, the 12-digit unique identity number that has become a bedrock of government welfare programmes, the tax administration network and online financial transactions, and the use/sharing of personal data collected by the UIDAI.

There are more than 1.2 billion Aadhaar holders in the country.

[“Source-livemint”]

Warning over iPhone apps that can silently turn on cameras at any time

The new iPhone X will feature an advanced front camera that can build up 3D pictures of faces CREDIT:GETTY IMAGES

Apple has been urged to change the way in which iPhone apps are granted access to the phone’s camera after a security researcher demonstrated how apps can secretly record photos and videos without the user knowing.

Felix Krause, an Austrian developer who works for Google, built an app that was able to take pictures of its user every second and upload them, without notifying the user. He called it a “privacy loophole that can be abused by iOS apps”.

When an app wants to access the camera, for example to scan a credit card or take a profile picture during the set-up process, the iPhone user must give the app permission, in the same way that apps must ask to access the camera roll, location and contacts and to send notifications. Once allowed, it has to be turned off via the settings menu.

The system is similar to the permissions required by apps on Android. Google has recently deleted several apps that surreptitiously recorded users and masqueraded as legitimate apps.

But Krause said that once an app has been granted initial access, it can take photos and videos whenever it is opened up. Unlike on Mac computers, which have a small green light next to the camera when it is being used, there is no indication that an app is recording videos or taking photos, or when it sends them elsewhere.

Facebook app permissions
App permissions are indefinite, apply to both the front and back camera, and can be used for photo and video

The iPhone’s camera app permissions do not differentiate between the phone’s front and back camera. Allowing camera permissions can grant extra access in the latest version of iOS, which has a facial recognition engine that could allow apps to detect emotions.

The permissions system is not a bug or a flaw – it works in exactly the way Apple has designed it – but Krause said malicious apps could take advantage of it to surreptitiously record users.

He demonstrated this by building an app that took a photo of the person using it every second, and which also ran a facial recognition program to detect the person using it.

He warned that other apps could monitor users’ emotions as they scroll through a social network news feed, record what they are saying, or live stream video of them in the bathroom as they tap away at a smartphone game.

Krause said Apple should introduce a system of temporary permissions – one that allows apps to take a picture during the set-up process, but revokes it after a period of time – or to introduce a warning light or notification to the iPhone that tells people when they are being recorded.

There are few examples of apps being found to secretly record users – apart from those specifically designed for this such as Stealth Cam. The practice is banned by Apple’s App Store guidelines, which state that a “reasonably conspicuous audio, visual or other indicator must be displayed to the user as part of the Application to indicate that a Recording is taking place”.

Krause claimed it would be easy to hide the behaviour, allowing it to make it through Apple’s approval process.

Facebook users have often claimed that the social network is secretly listening to their conversations in an attempt to better target adverts, something that Facebook itself has denied.

Some privacy conscious users have taken to covering up the cameras on their computers in an attempt to prevent being spied on, including Facebook’s founder Mark Zuckerberg.

Krause recently demonstrated how malicious apps could steal a user’s iCloud password by appearing to be an official command. The developer works at Google but says his work on security is a hobby, in no way affiliated with his employer.

Apple did not comment.

[“Source-telegraph”]

Education is a must for any sportsperson, says Bedi

Emphasises need for planning a career after sport

Former India left-arm spinner Bishan Singh Bedi was at his best during a talk ‘The Spirit of the Game — Life Lessons From Sports’ as part of Educational Outreach Program by Ratnasagar Pvt Ltd, being bang on the target on the need for the educationists to make the youth think and act properly.

“Education is a must for any athlete even though there are some exceptions like the great Sachin Tendulkar who is blessed in many ways,” Bedi said.

“I was the least educated compared to my great fellow players Prasanna, Chandra, Venkatraghavan. But, was fortunate to play along with them and learn so many things especially from Pras,” he recalled.

Exceptional cases

“It is important for any budding sportsperson to think of life after a career in sports. If you look at most of the success stories in cricket say with the exception of someone like ‘Tiger’ Pataudi, Sourav Ganguly and M. L. Jaisimha who were born with a silver spoon, the others have all come from middle-class families,” he said.

“Cricket is one game which teaches you many lessons in life. And, that is why there is a famous saying — this is not Cricket — when something goes wrong not just on the cricket field but in many aspects of life too. It is a sport which is associated with integrity and honesty,” Bedi said.

High commitment

“I have seen young talent who train at my small academy in Delhi and who score high percentage of marks struggle to express their thoughts in writing,” he said. “Marks marks for sports is good and not harmful but the youngsters can’t take it for granted.”

“For any student or any budding talent in any field, focus and concentration are essential ingredients to succeed. Look at the great example of Gopi (chief national badminton coach) and his wards Sindhu and Srikanth. Their commitment levels and obsession with what they love (the sport) is something totally different and a role model for all youngsters in the country,” Bedi said.

“Let children get involved in sports and enjoy, but ensure there is the desired detachment from it too to spare equal time for studies too. You put in your efforts, results are not in our hands,” he felt.

[“Source-thehindu”]

Logitech’s ZeroTouch Brings Amazon Alexa to Any Car

Logitech's ZeroTouch Brings Amazon Alexa to Any Car

Logitech’s ZeroTouch Brings Amazon Alexa to Any Car
HIGHLIGHTS
ZeroTouch available for Android only
It is priced at a starting price of $60
Logitech also unveiled Brio 4K Pro Webcam
Amazon’s virtual digital assistant Alexa is no longer limited to living rooms as the company integrated the assistant in LG’s smart appliances showcased at the CES 2017. The company also expanded Alexa into automobiles with a partnership with Ford, Hyundai, and Volkswagen, and other automakers that allowed it to be integrated into cars. Now, Logitech’s new ZeroTouch is bringing a cheaper solution for Android users to use Amazon’s Alexa without upgrading to a new car. Additionally, Logitech has also launched its new Brio 4K Pro Webcam which it claims to be the top-of-the-line webcam targeted for business and home-office users.

The device is a smartphone mount for your car, and also comes with a companion app that enables you to use Alexa via smartphone. Potential uses include switching the lights on before you get home or listening to a book on Kindle via Alexa on the smartphone mounted in the car. It’s automatically activated on your phone when it’s placed on the magnetic mount. The new Logitech ZeroTouch can enable you to make calls on smartphones without touching the phone, and also reply to incoming messages on WhatsApp, and other apps via voice commands while you are on road.

Logitech’s ZeroTouch is a car mount with voice control currently for Android only. It is available for a starting price of $60 (roughly Rs. 4,000) for basic version while $80 (roughly Rs. 5,500) model offers windshield or dash mount option. Users will have to download a companion app from Google Play.
Separately, Logitech’s new Brio 4K Pro Webcam will be going on sale in Europe priced at EUR 239 (roughly Rs. 17,000) and in the US priced at $199 (roughly Rs. 13,500). Users can grab the new webcam from Amazon and Logitech’s online store.

logitech brio webcam logitech

Logitech’s Brio 4K Pro Webcam works with all popular business apps like Skype for Business, and others. The company is targeting YouTubers and vloggers with its latest webcam. The Brio packs RightLight 3 with support for HDR, 4K ultra HD video quality, and 5X zoom. It also supports apps like Windows Hello and other secure infrared-based facial recognition applications.

Tags: Logitech, Logitech ZeroTouch, Amazon, Logitech Brio 4K Pro Webcam Price, Logitech ZeroTouch Price, Alexa, Amazon Alexa

[“Source-Gadgets”]