Uber Being Probed by FBI Over ‘Hell’ Software to Interfere With Rivals

Uber Being Probed by FBI Over 'Hell' Software to Interfere With Rivals


  • FBI is looking into Uber’s illegal competition intefering software
  • Uber’s software was being used to track the Lyft drivers
  • The investigation is being led by the FBI’s New York office

The Federal Bureau of Investigation is probing to see if Uber Technologies had used software to illegally interfere with its competitors, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday.

The investigation is focusing on Uber’s program that could track drivers working for rival service Lyft, the WSJ said, citing people familiar with the investigation.

The investigation is being led by the FBI’s New York office and the Manhattan US attorney’s office, the Journal said.

Separately, Uber will cease using diesel cars in London by the end of 2019 and the vast majority of rides will be in electric or hybrid vehicles by then, the taxi app said on Friday.

At the moment the company says around half of all the journey miles completed in the British capital are undertaken with greener vehicles on the firm’s standard low-cost UberX service, which lets customers book journeys on their smartphone.

Several carmakers have announced plans in recent months to electrify a large proportion of their new cars, with Volvo becoming the first major carmaker to set a date for phasing out vehicles powered solely by the internal combustion engine.

Britain will ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars from 2040, replicating plans by France and cities such as Madrid, Mexico City and Athens.

Uber, which has about 40,000 London drivers, will only offer electric or hybrid models on UberX by the turn of the decade and plans to do the same by 2022 nationwide.


Hacking Terrorist’s iPhone become smooth as compared to subsequent FBI Hurdle

Hacking Terrorist's iPhone Was Easy Compared to Next FBI Hurdlefollowing frontier within the warfare between the FBI and technology businesses over encrypted communications can be greater legally complex – and messy – than looking to get into the iPhone of alifeless terrorist.

Messaging tools like facebook‘s WhatsApp and net services that routinely encrypt the content of texts,phone calls and different information even as they are being sent are more and more turning into aproblem for national safety and criminal investigations, according to the Federal Bureau of research.

capturing that records while it’s in transit is crucial, the company says. now not so fast, say privatenessadvocates. no longer even viable, say the businesses.

we’re kind of all anticipating the subsequent big test case,” said Andrew Crocker, a group of workersattorney with the digital Frontier foundation in San Francisco, which is suing the Justice branch overwhether or not the government has ever used secret court orders to pressure era companies to decrypt the non-public communications in their customers.

And whilst legal strategies are plotted in the US, the risk of encrypted applications is not theoretical. Supporters of Islamic nation and al-Qaida inside the Arabian Peninsula have already observed options to US-based totally apps, potentially restricting intelligence accumulating on terrorist plots after a year in which ratings had been killed in attacks in Paris, Brussels and San Bernardino, California.

even though the FBI located workarounds for 2 excessive-profile cases related to information on locked iPhones, regulation enforcement groups confront specific prison challenges to compel corporations toprovide get right of entry to to encrypted communications, which include legal guidelines written extrathan two decades in the past while the internet was simply emerging. And as players inside the debate stake out their positions, the outcomes of new cases are probably to outline the rules for virtual rights forseveral a long time.

this is the new frontier and it’s far a far greater expansive frontier in terms of its impact on regulationenforcement investigations,” stated Edward McAndrew, a former federal prosecutor who’s now a companionwith the law company Ballard Spahr.

while the FBI and other regulation enforcement corporations can are looking for court orders compellingcorporations to conform with wiretap orders, at the least problems make it more difficult fororganizations to get the information they’re in search of in instances which might be possibly to return:

– Investigators say they had been left behind with the aid of rapid advances in technology. which willintercept the content of communications being sent in real-time, investigators ought to use laws thatrestrict their attain, together with the 1994 Communications help for regulation Enforcement Act.

– The potential to protect information with encryption, which scrambles statistics using a mystery code that may be unlocked handiest with a unique key known totally to the person, way agencies might noteven be able to offer law enforcement the statistics sent on their networks or thru their applications.

WhatsApp on April five finished giving its users encryption via default as well as entire manipulate over the keys for all its messaging services, including images, cellphone calls and institution chats, saidspokesman Matt Steinfeld. Apple Inc. stated it started out imparting complete give up-to-cease encryption for its iMessage platform and FaceTime video carrier approximately 5 years in the past.

WhatsApp’s encryption arose as an issue in Brazil this month, whilst a choose close down the provider fora day for no longer making facts available to regulation enforcement. facebook leader governmentOfficer Mark Zuckerberg referred to as the flow against WhatsApp, which has greater than 1 billion subscribers global, horrifying.

“The idea that everyone in Brazil can be denied the freedom to speak the manner they want could be very horrifying in a democracy,” Zuckerberg stated in a might also 3 blog publish.

in the u.s.a. the FBI confirmed its willingness to carry a legal case over encryption while it served Apple with a court order in February compelling the company to help get entry to the statistics saved on an iPhone used by Syed Rizwan Farook, who together with his wife achieved a deadly December assault in San Bernardino, California. The bureau in the end sponsored down in March while it offered a hackingdevice to get into the telephone with out Apple’s help.

The government has a weaker legal argument when it comes to requiring a organization to offer get entry to to encrypted “facts in motionbecause it travels over the internet than it does in annoyinginformation at restsaved on a device, said Marc Zwillinger, a former federal cybercrime prosecutor.

The Communications help for regulation Enforcement Act doesn’t cover many net services and expressly states that a telecommunications provider can’t be accountable for decrypting any conversation if itwould not own the statistics important to accomplish that, stated Zwillinger, a managing member of ZwillGen who regularly represents era organizations, along with Apple in the San Bernardino case.

even though the government succeeded in getting a enterprise to interrupt encryption, users shouldflow to any other encrypted messaging provider placed outside the U.S., said Peter Toren, a former federal laptop crimes prosecutor and now a companion with the regulation firm Weisbrod Matteis & Copley.

“The FBI absolutely has no jurisdiction, nor ability, to extract facts from vendors which might be out of doors the usa,” Toren stated. “era is converting the game.”

One such utility is Telegram, which shall we customers build message companies of as many as 2 hundred humans and has been desired with the aid of Islamic kingdom and al-Qaida within the Arabian Peninsula, consistent with a report by way of the middle East Media research Institute. even as Telegram has blocked public message channels utilized by Islamic kingdom, it has stated it might not limit encryptedprivate messages, that could self-destruct on a timer.

occasionally the only manner to gain the content of communications is when it’s in transit becausebusinesses do not retain it on their servers, according to the FBI.

In a limited range of instances, even encrypted information can be useful to the bureau. The enterprisemay discover a way to decrypt it at a later time, or combine it via the usage of other investigativestrategies to pursue a case. however the employer says there is no alternative for having the content of communications.

“As you see WhatsApp, Viber and others moving to what they are calling cease-to-give up encryption for messaging, that every one however guarantees the government, at least thru its crook investigativeauthorities, would now not be able to intercept that content material,” said McAndrew.

If the FBI concludes it needs get entry to to such information, “the court docket device isn’t always going to be the right vicinity to resolve it,” Zwillinger stated.

Toren and McAndrew stated the pleasant solution could be for Congress to update legal guidelinesgoverning wiretaps and get entry to to records.

Amid the deadlock, the issues for law enforcement preserve mounting.

From July to December remaining year, law enforcement groups asked information for five,192 Applemoney owed, in step with the employer‘s contemporary transparency record. The company stated itfurnished a few records in reaction to 82 percentage of presidency requests. The file doesn’t specify how a few of the requests have been wiretap orders.

US officers worry greater agencies will “increase and market easy-to-use, seamless, end-to-endencryption,” the office of the Director of national Intelligence said in a may additionally 5 letter to Sen. Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat.

because of this law enforcement and country wide security personnel are dropping get admission toto the one vicinity that we care approximately the maximum – the content of communications of violent criminals and terrorists,” according to the letter from Deirdre Walsh, the intelligence workplace‘s director of legislative affairs.

businesses which includes the electronic Frontier foundation say they worry, however, that agencieswould possibly try and use the secretive overseas Intelligence Surveillance court docket that oversees spying if you want to compel a organization to decrypt statistics in motion without the public knowing.

“The actual fear from the privateness and advocacy network is that it would be occurring at the back ofclosed doors, beneath seal and in secret,” Crocker said. “it truly is not going to set an amazing felonyprecedent.”

© 2016 Bloomberg L.P.

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Tags: Apple, Apps, Brazil, Encryption, stop to quit Encryption, facebook, FBI, internet, iPhones, Mark Zuckerberg, NSA, US, Viber, WhatsApp, WhatsApp Brazil


Virtru Will defend Emails From Hackers and the FBI, however not from your Boss

Virtru Will Shield Emails From Hackers and the FBI, but Not From Your Boss

free NSA-quality encryption and a fiveyearold could use it.

John and will Ackerly each had stints inside the authorities for the duration of the surveillance build-up of the past a long time – John as a Bush management technology adviser and could as an engineer at thenational security employer.

nowadays the two brothers from the District of Columbia play very distinctive roles: supportingindividuals and corporations evade snooping of all sorts thru an encrypted communications app calledVirtru.

“Our awareness is on the ninety nine.99 percentage of folks who recognize they have got tocomfortable their content, however it’s constantly been too difficult and complex earlier than,” saidCEO John Ackerly.

For the layperson, it is tough to tell whether Virtru’s system is any higher than its opposition.

but on ease of use, the app unambiguously supplies. i was sending encrypted emails from one account toanother within 30 seconds of downloading the organization‘s app for Android.

And when I switched to my horribly slow, virus-ridden computer to test Virtru’s browser plug-in, i discoveredit lightning-speedy and glitch-unfastened despite a crummy net connection.

however the actual amusing comes with the extra functions within the app. Virtru helps you to delete or revoke get admission to to emails you have despatched. It has an “expiration” feature so that you can set emails to erase themselves after a sure quantity of time.

every other beneficial function forbids the sender from forwarding. a person may want to evade that limitby copying and pasting into another browser, but even that would trade quickly: A employer spokespersonstated tracking whether e mail content has been Ctrl-C’d is “an problem and function we are operatingon.”

Virtru’s internet site advertises “stop-to-give up encryption,” a time period normally reserved for communications that may be accessed only by way of sender and recipient. in keeping with theorganization, it’s the case for the individual users who download the free app.

however if you‘re signed up through your enterprise, you need to understand that an administratorsomeplace in your agency is probably analyzing your emails. For the agencies and authoritiescorporations it sells to, Virtru builds in functions that may intently reveal personnelverbal exchange.

At $60 (more or less Rs. 4,000) consistent with consumer, these corporate accounts carry in quite a few cash for Virtru. Staffers at HBO use it to send movie scripts and limit whom they get forwarded to,perhaps seeking to save you leaks like the one that brought us ultimate 12 months‘s first fourrecreation of Thrones” episodes beforehand of time. A agreement with nation government in Marylandmanner a few 10,000 police officers and law enforcement staffers use the app to encrypt their communications.

take into account that even corporate emails set to “expire” can be retroactively accessed if a corporateclient so chooses. For personal corporations, meaning a technology administrator may want to pull up even your personal encrypted emails in the event of an audit. For authorities officials using the app in Maryland, that could suggest a Freedom of information Act request from a journalist, in line with Ackerly.

And it’s no longer simply big companies and government corporations passing touchy records thruVirtru’s servers. The Pentagon will pay Juncture Consulting, a tenindividual organisation based in Woodbridge, Virginia, to assess retiring soldiersfitness to determine how a whole lot disabilityreimbursement they may get.

chief working officer Michelle de Stefano says the physicians she hires handle that paintings ongovernment computer systems. however handling those employeessensitive facts is a distinctivestory, she says, so she commenced paying approximately $120 a year for a primary model of Virtru’ssoftware program.

“I don’t want to be liable for screwing up anyone‘s identification information and having something badoccur to it,” said de Stefano. “I don’t need to be that weak link.”

© 2016 The Washington post

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Tags: Android, Apple, Apps, Encryption, stop to cease Encryption, net, iOS, NSA, Virtru

FBI move against Apple set an alarming precedent

Apple says to weaken the software for one case would cripple the software’s inbuilt encryption and privacy protection for all usersApple says to weaken the software for one case would cripple the software’s inbuilt encryption and privacy protection for all users

The end to the months-long, closely watched Apple v FBI standoff over a locked iPhone came with a whimper rather than a bang.

The now infamous phone belonged to Syed Farook, the gunman shot dead by authorities in San Bernardino, California last December during an attack in which Farook and his wife killed 14 people.

The FBI had wanted Apple to create a weakened version of its iPhone software to aid its attempts to unlock the phone. Apple, backed by both industry friends and rivals, had refused, stating that to weaken the software for one case would cripple the software’s inbuilt encryption and privacy protection for all users.

On Monday, the US government officially stood down the court case. Rumours had been floating about that some entity – believed to be a non-US company – had come forward with a method that would help the FBI crack the phone.

That seems to have been the case. The FBI said this week that it had accessed the data on the phone. And it withdrew from the case. The end.

Well, no. This case only ever represented an initial skirmish in a new, global battle over encryption. That is why this case was so important for Apple to defend.

Terrorist attack

That is also why the US justice department tried to represent it as less important than it really was.

“The San Bernardino case was not about trying to send a message or set a precedent; it was and is about fully investigating a terrorist attack,” FBI director James Comey wrote last week.

Utter nonsense.

The FBI chose to investigate that attack with demands on a company that would have set an alarming precedent and sent a firm message to businesses and citizens that no communication was guaranteed to be private and that businesses and citizens had no fundamental entitlement to privacy.

Why? Because – as the FBI knows full well – you just cannot have secret, limited-access backdoors by which some parties can gain access to communications and others are locked out.

Security does not work that way. Backdoors create fatal weaknesses because they rely on two impossible suppositions: that everyone with a key to the door is trustworthy and that the bad guys cannot s get hold of those digital skeleton keys that would unlock a jackpot of data.

Apple was criticised by some for standing up to the FBI because this was “the wrong case”, one which had all the elements to make public opinion side with the FBI: terrorists, shootings, deaths, horror.

However, those critics are wrong. For all those reasons, this was exactly the case on which Apple had to take a strong stand. The core issues – the right to use encryption, the difficult balance between privacy and security, the very definition here of “security” and understanding of whose “security” is at stake – are bedrock tensions in a societal debate. We cannot talk about security as if it is a separate issue from privacy.

That is why Apple was broadly supported by civil society groups internationally as well as the businesses that understand security in a digital world relies on unbroken strong encryption.

That governments and national leaders – particularly the US and UK – miss this point is not frustrating. It is shocking.

Encryption, which underlies virtually every business-to-business, business-to- government and business -to-citizen transaction and much of what any individual does online, is just too big to fail. And therefore too big to weaken.

If governments force the companies that offer encrypted products and services – products and services on which civil society as well as whole economies run – to weaken encryption, we move into a potentially more dangerous and dystopian place.

Strong encryption

Some wiser and better informed officials have tried to sound warnings about how much is at stake.

Two former US secretaries of Homeland Security (Michael Chertoff and William Lynn) and a former secretary of intelligence and navy admiral (Mike McConnell) wrote an opinion piece for the Washington Post arguing that strong encryption, without backdoors, was crucial to security, for society and for the economy.

Weakening publicly available encryption would encourage black market, dark web products for criminals and terrorists and “could lead to a perverse outcome in which law-abiding organisations and individuals lack protected communications but malicious actors have them”, they wrote.

But I think it’s worse. Corporates may be pushed to operate more and more like nomadic nation states, moving to where they can offer the encrypted products and services businesses, other governments and individuals want.

Corporates themselves will move further beyond needed scrutiny in a world where some argue that they control so much of our data that they are already a form of virtual nation state.

A concerted battle over encryption – a resource needed by the many – will only strengthen their position.

Governments play a critical role in maintaining checks and balances on the power of corporates – and vice-versa – in an open, regulated and more dually scrutinised landscape. This should not be sacrificed in a misguided battle over encryption.