He may soon be the 44th President of the United States, but security concerns and record-keeping laws mean that Barack Obama is unlikely to become the first e-mailing president.
When the President-elect is sworn in 64 days from now, we expect that his advisers will insist that he hand over his favorite little gadget, his BlackBerry. Not only are there serious concerns about e-mail security (if it’s connected to the internet, it can be hacked), he also faces the Presidential Records Act, which means that all correspondence must be put in the official record and is ultimately subject to public review and possible subpoenas. Although he could, theoretically, craft an Executive Order allowing BlackBerry use — or e-mail in general — there are plenty of aides who can deal with electronic communication for him, likely making presidential BlackBerry use unnecessary.
Obama is, however, sending a clear signal that he is venturing into new, uncharted territory; for the first time, the weekly Democratic radio address has been released as a web video on YouTube (up top) — it will also continue to air on the radio and the President-elect plans to publish these weekly updates through the transition and then from the White House. We’re hoping this will encourage more Americans to take an active, well-informed role in the political process — and rumor has it that in those future presidential videos there will be one previously absent device gracing the historic presidential desk: a laptop computer. Only time will tell.
Read More | MSNBC
Although biometric access controls such as retina and fingerprint recognition are nothing new, in the search for ultimate security, the Biovein security control system from French innovator Easydentic Group, verifies your identity through vascular recognition. WHAT??? Here’s how it works: Based on the Hitachi technology known as VeinID, the system scans the finger’s vascular area and authorizes access only after recognizing the image. Even if you had the technology to forge finger vein patterns, you’d have to get your hands on the original – and few bad guys are willing to take things that far…
Read More | Easydentic Group
A recent survey of 3000 participants by the National Cyber Security Alliance found that 20% of online shoppers have either limited or stopped purchasing that way. The report also states that 4 out of 10 Americans will only visit websites that they are familiar with. Three quarters still use it for banking, trading stocks, or accessing medical records.
If you are one of those with online identity theft paranoia when it comes to banking, make sure that the site begins with https://. The “s” denotes a secure connection.
Read More | Tech Radar
Next time you head to Japan, you may just see evidence of Big Brother. NEC has been working on a plasma display screen that houses a camera. It can identify a person’s age and sex for specific ads. You hold up your cellphone to the 50-inch display and a QR code with URL will send you additional product information. Since we think this is a little too much information for us, we would rather do our shopping in the privacy of our own computer. Yeah, like that’s safe.
Read More | Times of India
The MII Flashcam is not only for seeking out baddies in the dark. It has a video camera system with night vision and audio recording. The 17-inch cam, made of aircraft aluminum with a polycarbonate lens, is waterproof and will record up to 2 hours of video with audio. The Flashcam has 1GB storage and a 1.5-inch TFT screen for display, unless you want to save it to check it out on PC at CONTROL headquarters. Discreetly contact Northland Security for pricing details.
Read More | Northland Security
While we all know that burglars usually avoid houses where there appears to be someone in the house, if you don’t have an alarm system or a watch dog, what else can you do to be safe? Opto-Electronic Design claims their FakeTV is the answer. Controlled by computer, the multi-color LED simulates a real 27-inch TV. A built-in light sensor comes on at dusk and turns off automatically when it’s dawn. While we like the idea of saving some energy while keeping our home safe, we are not completely convinced that this is the way to go. We figure if the burglar is looking for a way to get in anyway, he/she is smart enough to notice a phony television set.
Read More | Opto-Electronic Design
If you live in Japan, you can now check in on your home, control your appliances, and even lock your doors while in your car with Panasonic’s Strada F-Class. The device has a touchscreen with icons that say things such as “turn off the light.” Introduced this week, the Strada also works as GPS. Of course, you have to have a webcam and netlinking system. With a $3,400.00 price you could always get a couple of timers to do the same thing. Look for it to hit the market this June.
Read More | Post-Bulletin
Need some help with your finances and find that your old system is outdated or to complicated? Try Mint, the free online finance wizard that can take all your checking, savings, and credit card accounts and keep track of what your are spending, create a budget, and let you know if you are overdrawn or have upcoming bills. It also tells you if your APRs are too high and will help you to find a better card. If you are not sure that Mint is safe to use, check out their security features.
Read More | Mint
We got rather spooked after reading PayPal and Unsafe in the same headline. Having used the service for several years, we always wonder if it is really secure. The company says that those who use Internet Explorer 3 and 4 are the ones at risk because they don’t have enough security features to prevent phishing. If you use one of these you will be warned on the site and expect to be possibly blocked if you try to get in anyway.
The newest version supports EV SSL certificates. The comments were made in a paper written by the site’s Security Officer Michael Barrett and Risk Management Director Dan Levy. Our best advice? Head on over to IE and update to 7.0 or switch to Firefox.
Read More | BBC
Want to keep an eye on your home, office, dog, or grandma? The connectVu-cam links to your UMTS-3G cellie with no extra software needed. It features infrared LED for nights, an internal battery with 250 hours of standby and 4 hours of play, and an alarm input. It also has a mic, will work with up to 5 different cell phone numbers, and can receive SMS for camera settings. At a size of 200 x 80 x 80 mm, contact CCTV Mobile for more info and pricing.
Read More | CCTV Mobile
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