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A Twitter employee groomed by the Saudi government prompted 2015 state-sponsored hacking warning

Stop making data breaches about Google and Facebook — people are in real trouble

Our second and final class of the October 2018 series at Anaheim Haskett Library! Students learned how to create their own Android applications. Special shoutout to Sahana for doing an amazing job in her first time as a class leader. •

Did you know that Sabio is one of the top rated bootcamps in the country of 2018? Don't take our word for it, check out some of our reviews!

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The Dyson Airwrap hair styler hands-on


Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL - New Features and Shortcuts


The Dyson Airwrap hair styler hands-on

US driverless cars unsafe as they can’t spot iconic British vehicles like the Routemaster bus and Hackney cab, experts warn

US driverless cars pose a safety risk on the UK’s streets as they can’t spot iconic British vehicles, such as London’s red buses and black cabs, as their artificial intelligence has not been taught to notice them on the roads, experts claim.

Engineers have noticed that the autonomous cars made in Silicon Valley are currently using cameras and software that have only been trained on pictures and videos of US vehicles, meaning they won’t detect unique vehicles with more district styles, such as the Routemaster bus and Hackney taxi. 

This has led UK scientists and politicians to raise questions over companies like Google and Uber, who have been developing their own autonomous technology, being able to test driverless cars in Britain. 

Michael Pound, a professor of AI and neural networks at The University of Nottingham, said: “This is a definite safety concern, in another setting a failure of AI not noticing unseen data might hardly be life threatening, but what about when the network is controlling a 3 tonne vehicle travelling at 60mph?”

MPs have said it is the “Silicon Valley approach” of its products having little regard for the culture and customs of other countries, and only catering for the US.

Julian Knight MP, who sits on the Commons’ Digital, Culture, Media and Sport select committee, said: “This is an example here of how these new social media companies and big tech companies are so US focused. It means the rest of the world, which makes up 97 per cent of the population, are not tailored to and ignored.

“It is similar to their attitude on fake news, they only seemed to care whether the US news they were showing Americans was correct, and followed their rules. However, I am afraid they are going to have to change that approach.”

Some MPs have called for the issue to be addressed before any US cars get anywhere close to roads in the UK, because in March this year a women in the Arizona was killed by an autonomous Uber car that did not see her.

Adam Holloway MP said: “These machines will eventually make our lives and environment better, but in the meantime no one else must be killed or injured.” 

Engineers have said the only way to solve the issue is to make sure that US driverless cars know what British vehicles look like in every type of environmental condition. 

Chris Posch, who is the director of automotive engineering at FLIR, told The Sunday Telegraph: “You would have to show it thousands of images of London red buses, not just in good weather in the day, but images of them at night, in the rain and in fog.”

“This cannot be considered a mature technology if it cannot recognise a red bus but it can spot a Chevrolet,” said Tom Brake MP. 

Uber and Google have been contacted for comment.


I almost cried…

Saudi Arabia reportedly asked Twitter employee to spy on dissidents

Saudi Arabia may have done more than use large-scale social media campaigns to stifle political opposition. New York Timessources claim the country was “grooming” a Twitter engineer, Ali Alzabarah, to snoop on the accounts of dissidents and other targets. Western officials reportedly warned Twitter in late 2015 that Alzabarah had not only grown close to Saudi intelligence agents, but had agreed to spy on multiple user accounts. The social network suspended him and conducted an investigation that turned up no evidence of handing data to the Saudis, but they fired him all the same in December the same year.

Twitter sent safety alerts to dozens of the accounts Alzabarah had checked, some of which either fostered activism or might have been critical of the Saudi regime. The mix included policy academics, journalists and experts on security and surveillance, including people involved in the Tor Project and its activist-friendly anonymizing network.

Don’t expect confirmations. Twitter has declined to comment, while neither Alzabarah (who now works for the Saudi government) nor the kingdom had responded as of October 20th.

If accurate, the scoop suggests not only that Saudi Arabia has been determined to control its online political discourse at all costs, but that Twitter didn’t have checks to make sure that employees were accessing accounts for the right reasons. Not that this is a unique issue if so – Facebook recently fired a worker who allegedly abused his position to stalk women. Unless there are tight controls on data, there’s a chance (however slim) that employees will misuse their power.

New York Times