European Commission Facial Recognition White Paper

January 20, 2020

The EC is trying to herd ducks. The facial recognition issue may become less of a backburner issue and more of a mass of congealed spaghetti. A white paper, allegedly the real deal, of course, has surfaced. You can download the document from this link: https://www.euractiv.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2020/01/AI-white-paper-EURACTIV.pdf. If it is not available, DarkCyber doesn’t have any bright ideas. The document has no title and is dated “12/12”. As you know, none of the Web search engines are very good when it comes to traditional bibliographic metadata.

Stephen E Arnold, January 19, 2020

Amazon and New, Quite Real Twitch Opportunity

January 14, 2020

In my lectures, I discuss Twitch. I won’t go into the examples of Twitch content in this blog. You can look for me at one of my law enforcement lectures this year.

I do want to call attention to “Twitch’s Non Gamers Are Finally Having Their Moment.” The write up includes an interesting factoid, which – like most Wired information – is super credible. Here’s the statement:

A new report from stream management site StreamElements indicates that in December, Twitch viewers watched 81 million hours of “Just Chatting,” Twitch’s category for streamers who do exactly that, plus any number of other grab-bag activities. That was a solid 7 million hours more than the first game listed, League of Legends, and 23 million more than the second, Fortnite. The popularity of “Just Chatting” is bleeding into January, too, and according to StreamElements, nongaming may be Twitch’s number two category in 2020.

Several observations:

  1. Microsoft and the GOOG are working hard to poach gamers from Twitch. This seems like a contentious issue for Amazon, and it will be interesting to see how the Bezos legal eagles respond to the talent drain. Maybe terminate their Prime accounts?
  2. The surge in Just Chatting viewing points to Twitch becoming the go to source for in real life streaming programs. Most programs are experimental, but a few of them – for example, BadBunny and the Raj thing – are starting to develop into a shotgun marriage of radio talk, live listener feedback, and visual content.
  3. Traditional content producers like the people who create TV game shows and wanna bes like Apple and Netflix, look a bit old fashioned when compared to content generated by Awkwards_Travel, who may be the future of travel information.

There are downsides. If you are interested in our Amazon briefing which expands on the Twitch innovations and their downside, write darkcyber333 at yandex dot com.

Net net: Twitch started with egames, but it is now on a path to create something which complements games and creates a fresh approach to video.

Stephen E Arnold, January 14, 2020

DarkCyber for January 14, 2020, Now Available

January 14, 2020

The DarkCyber for January 14, 2020, is now available. The program includes stories about ToTok, cyber trends in 2020, and information about the new Amazon Blockchain Policeware report. You can view the video on Vimeo at this link: https://vimeo.com/384343454.

We want to thank the people who commented on our interview with Robert David Steele. We posted this video on December 31, 2019. If you missed that program, you can view it at this link: https://vimeo.com/382165736.

Kenny Toth, January 14, 2020

DarkCyber for December 17, 2019, Now Available

December 17, 2019

Robert David Steele, a former CIA professional, learned about Stephen E Arnold’s blockchain research. Steele interviewed Stephen. This week’s DarkCyber is an extract of the original interview. You can access the video on Vimeo.

Kenny Toth, December 17, 2019

Arnold Interviewed about Amazon Blockchain Inventions

December 5, 2019

Robert David Steele, former CIA professional and open source intelligence expert, interviewed Stephen E Arnold about Amazon’s blockchain inventions. Arnold recently completed a chapter for a forthcoming academic press book about blockchain. That chapter and its information prompted journalists from the US and France to interview Arnold about his findings. Arnold’s information was included in news stories appearing in the New York Times, MIT Technology Review, and Le Monde.

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Steele obtained an exclusive video interview with Arnold about his Amazon blockchain research. Among the topics discussed in the 30 minute program are:

  • The “trigger” for the research
  • Sources of data and research methods
  • The major findings from the 18 month research project
  • The likely trajectory of Amazon’s products and services incorporating the company’s more than 12 blockchain inventions.
  • How to obtain a summary of Arnold’s research findings.

You can view the video at this link. Steele has compiled links to other Amazon information obtained from Arnold at this link.

Kenny Toth, December 5, 2019

DarkCyber for December 3, 2019, Now Available

December 3, 2019

DarkCyber for December 3, 2019, is now available at on Vimeo, YouTube, and on the DarkCyber blog.

The program is a production of Stephen E Arnold. It is the only weekly video news shows focusing on the Dark Web, cybercrime, and lesser known Internet services.

This week’s program features an interview with Trent Livingston, founder and chief executive officer of ESI Analyst. Livingston highlights the principal features of ESI Analyst. The cloud-centric software generated positive discussion at a recent law enforcement and digital security conference.

In the 10 minute interview, Livingston explains what makes ESI Analyst different from other investigative and eDiscovery systems. He said, “The system’s principal differentiators are its ease of use and affordability.” Livingston explained that licenses pay for blocks of data processed for an investigation or a legal discovery process. There are no per-user fees or annual fees. Cost savings range from 30 to 70 percent in typical use cases.

Other features of ESI Analyst include one-click analytics, options to display data on a map, and link analysis. Plus the system does not require classroom instruction. He noted, “Some users are up and running in as little as 30 minutes.”

In the next release of the software, Livingston’s team will be adding connectors and new report formats. Users will be able to output chat streams and maps in a form suitable for use in a legal matter. Livingston also revealed support for Amazon Web Services and Elasticsearch to add additional information access flexibility to ESI Analyst.

Stephen E Arnold, author of CyberOSINT: Next Generation Information Access, said, “ESI Analyst advances beyond the challenging interfaces and rigid pricing models for IBM Analysts Notebook- and Palantir Technologies Gotham-type systems. More predictable pricing and eliminating tedious classroom instruction reduces costs and improves efficiency. ESI Analyst makes clear the value of innovation for policeware.”

DarkCyber is a weekly production of Stephen E Arnold. The currency series of videos ends with the August 27, 2019, program. The new series of DarkCyber videos begins on November 5, 2019. The new series will focus on policeware with an emphasis on Amazon’s products and services for law enforcement, intelligence professionals, and regulatory authorities in the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom.

DarkCyber programs are published twice each month without a charge, advertising, or commercial endorsements.

Stephen E Arnold will be speaking on December 11, 2019, at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, DC. The event is sponsored by DG Vision. Media interested in speaking with Stephen can write darkcyber333 at yandex dot com to arrange a time to discuss the Dark Web and its impact on corporate governance.

Kenny Toth, December 3, 2019

YouTube: Will It Continue to Fancy Dance to the Editorial Control Be Bop?

September 20, 2019

Kids these days have ambitions of being astronauts, writers, scientists, and YouTubers. YouTubers are social media influences with mass followings that make decent livings through YouTube, mostly through ad revenue. YouTubers love and hate their platform of choice and it does not come as a surprise due to how controversial YouTube has become. The Guardian runs down YouTube’s recent headlines and spoke with YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki in the article, “YouTube’s Susan Wojcicki: ‘Where’s The Line Of Free Speech-Are You Removing Voices That Should Be Heard?’”

 

YouTube faces frequent scandals, involving its creators posting questionable content like hate speech, Holocaust deniers, etc. And there are those pedophiles who communicate in the comments of children’s videos or engage in code speak related to videos posted by a doting parent for digitally aware Silver Surfer.

YouTube made some progress with anti-hate speech policies to curb hate mongering videos and periodic takedowns. YouTube allegedly has a 10,000 alert, morally upright, dedicated human moderators working with smart software and systems able to the alleged five hundred hours of video posted every minute. Wojcicki seems to say her Googley unit cannot catch every instance of hate speech and questionable video, but they are trying and making a good effort at it.

The video streaming platform is one of the most popular ways Americans entertain themselves and generate money for the online ad giant. The problem is these scandals and bad actor videos that stain YouTube’s reputation, but does removing/banning them violate free speech:

“But hasn’t it been dangerously influential? [Wojcicki] pauses. ‘Look, [these question videos are] a very small percentage of our views, and the way that we think about it is: ‘Is this content violating one of our policies? Has it violated anything in terms of hate, harassment?’ If it has, we remove that content. We keep tightening and tightening the policies. We also get criticism, just to be clear, [about] where do you draw the lines of free speech and, if you draw it too tightly, are you removing voices of society that should be heard? We’re trying to strike a balance of enabling a broad set of voices, but also making sure that those voices play by a set of rules that are healthy conversations for society.’”

This particular write up adds a human dimension to the problem of hate speech and child abuse. Wojcicki’s life includes hobbies. (Imagine. A hard working Type A Googler having a hobby.) She is determined to leave a strong legacy and wants to influence more women to work in the technology industry. A good attitude is a plus when working for a company whose top lawyer makes headlines about personal behavior and the video content contains some darned awful data.

YouTube would have made a great MBA case study had not the market for MBAs imploded and free online classes demonstrated that MBA students go to school for contacts, not learning.

Nevertheless, a great case study awaits.

Whitney Grace, September 20, 2019

YouTube May Be Too Big to Monitor or Fail

September 17, 2019

A friend if mine who shall remain nameless, but who is a Baby Boomer and not technology illiterate once said that the United States government should just shut down the entire Dark Web. I burst out laughing at this statement and incredulously he asked why I guffawed. After explaining how wide spread the Dark Web is, the number of countries involved, and using the “herding cats” metaphor my point was made. Google is facing the same problem as it tries to sanitize YouTube, you can read the story from IT Wire.

YouTube is a big Web site and its expanse does not know an end. Google’s CEO Sundar Puchai stated to CNN that it was too difficult to clean up the entire video platform. YouTube tends to obey the US’s First Amendment Right to Freedom of Speech, but there is a mega backlash when it comes to YouTube hosting harmful content.

The definition of “harmful and malicious” content varies. The general consensus is videos related to neo-Nazism, white supremacy, racist, nudity, promoting terrorism, sexism, hate speech, and anything that specifically targets ethnic or social groups in a negative fashion fits the harmful definition.

Pichai said that using a combination humans and machines Google has gotten 99% of YouTube sanitation right, but videos still sneak between the upload cracks. This reminds me of Web filters “supposed’ to protect children from harmful Internet content, but they always took things to the extreme. Pichai admitted that while he wants the harmful content on YouTube to be well below 1%, he admitted that any large scale system will have a trace amount of fraud, take credit cards for example. Pichai remained silent when confronted with a conspiracy question:

“Asked why YouTube had taken nearly seven years to remove videos claiming that the massacre of children at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut in 2012 never took place, Pichai did not give a straight answer, but danced around, saying he wished that the company had gotten to the task of removing such videos much earlier. The Google chief was not asked about the fact that numerous alternative media sites have now been demonetized as a result of the purge of content which Google says is unsuitable for YouTube.”

Yep, impossible.

Whitney Grace, September 17, 2019

DarkCyber for August 27, 2019, Now Available

August 27, 2019

DarkCyber for August 20, 2019, is now available at www.arnoldit.com/wordpress and on Vimeo at https://www.vimeo.com/.

The program is a production of Stephen E Arnold. It is the only weekly video news shows focusing on the Dark Web, cybercrime, and lesser known Internet services.

This week’s story line up includes: Amazon AWS as an attack launch pad for bad actors; obtaining fake paper and passports; cyber warriors have side gigs; adversarial fashions are for sale; and information about the new DarkCyber series about policeware starting in November 2019.

The feature story this week is reports that some bad actors are integrating Amazon Web Services into their phishing and malware activities. The reason is that the platform is widely available, easy to use, and has an excellent reputation. Many phishing attacks use multiples services, and AWS is becoming a resource that is gaining acceptance among bad actors.

Other stories in this week’s program are:

Jeffrey Epstein, accused of human trafficking activity, had several passports in his home at the time of his arrest. Passports and other documents like a driver’s license can be purchased on the Dark Web and via other channels. Valid passports are available from a number of countries, including Greece. The valid passport from St. Kitts and Nevis cost between $150,000 and $400,000 and up. The lower charge is for a donation to the country’s sustainable growth fund. The $400,000 is the minimum required for a real estate purchase on the island. Crossing a border with fake paper or multiple passports can invite the question, “Why do you have these documents?” Unsatisfactory answers can result in denied entry, fines, or incarceration.

DarkCyber reports that Chinese cyber warriors have discovered how to operate side gigs. The idea is that these individuals use their hacking skills to compromise financial accounts. Another approach is to obtain digital products which can be sold to online game enthusiasts. Gamers will pay for game cheats and special powers to obtain an in game advantage.

For individuals who are concerned about facial recognition, a new fashion trend may be building up steam. Adversarial Fashion has developed clothing which uses designs and colors that can confuse facial recognition systems and license plate optical character recognition readers. DarkCyber provides information about where to order these T shirts, jackets, and other items. Plus, DarkCyber gives the viewer instructions for downloading a report about the technological weaknesses in surveillance systems.

DarkCyber is a weekly production of Stephen E Arnold. The currency series of videos ends with the August 27, 2019, program. The new series of DarkCyber videos begins on November 5, 2019. The new series will focus on policeware with an emphasis on Amazon’s products and services for law enforcement, intelligence professionals, and regulatory authorities in the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom.

DarkCyber programs are available on Vimeo.com and YouTube.com.

Kenny Toth, August 27, 2019

Hong Kong Live Video

August 25, 2019

DarkCyber did a quick check of Amazon Twitch and Google YouTube at 0700 am US Eastern time. There were no live streams of Hong Kong protests. DLive  and Mixer were without Hong Kong streams.

But we did spot what looked like a live stream of the Hong Kong protests on Periscope at this link. Remember live streams go dead often without warning, so DarkCyber cannot provide an updated link.

Questions:

  1. Why is there no live coverage from Google YouTube?
  2. Why has Amazon Twitch dropped Hong Kong protest streams? (Note: a Hong Kong protest stream was available at 0734 am US Eastern at this link.)
  3. Is DLive unable or unwilling to stream the protest content?

Stephen E Arnold, August 25, 2019

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