Blogs

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Apple Pay: Is It Worth the Risk of Giving up Your Wallet?

Even before Apple’s September 9, 2014, event, which introduced the world to the iPhone 6 and the new “smartwatch,” there were signs that Apple would be making a play to replace your cash and credit cards. Apple’s patent dubbed “Method To Send Payment Through Various Air Interfaces Without Compromising User Data” was filed in September

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FBI Facial Recognition Software

On Monday, the FBI announced the full operational capacity of new facial recognition software, the Next Generation Identification System (NGI). The FBI press release indicates the system was developed “to expand the Bureau’s biometric identification capabilities, ultimately replacing the FBI’s Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identification System (IAFIS) in addition to adding new services and capabilities.” The

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California Law Stops the Sale of Student Information, But Does It Protect Their Privacy?

  SB 1177 or SOPIPA is a bill that was introduced by Senator Steinberg (D-Sacramento) on February 20, 2014 to the 2013-2014 session of the California Legislature that prohibits website operators from selling K-12 student data profiles, or using this information to generate advertisements targeting these minors. The impetus for the bill as described by

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Yahoo’s New Look into Secret Courts

  Ever since Edward Snowden’s shook the earth with his NSA document release in May 2013, the public has turned a much sharper eye to the data privacy debate. The release no doubt turned the volume up on the issue for many Americans, but it also had our officials changing their tune too. Last Friday

DeepFace: Facial Recognition Software & Privacy

Facebook recently published a paper on a new technology that it is developing called DeepFace.  DeepFace is a system that determines whether two faces in different photographs are of the same person by building a three-dimensional model of the face and rotating it to match it with the face at different angles.  The technology has

Cryptocontracts: Automating Payment for Digital Consumption

The proliferation of digital currencies, following the lead of Bitcoin, has been outpaced only by the companies forming to bet their futures on widespread acceptance of the new technology. A few companies are focusing on self-enforcing contracts, dubbed Smart Contracts or Cryptocontracts. Digital currencies are an enabling technology here in that they allow the contract

How Should Bitcoin Be Taxed? IRS Provides Short Answer

With “Tax Day” looming for many Americans, it seems the perfect time to talk about the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”). Bitcoin is a relatively novel form of currency that was first introduced in 2009. Unlike traditional currencies, Bitcoin operates “without central authority” and utilizes “peer-to-peer technology”  and functions as a open source of payment around

Stop Being a Jerk: FTC Charges Jerk.com with Deceiving Consumers

On Monday, April 7, 2014, the FTC alleged that Jerk broke federal laws and deceived consumers. The Massachusetts-based company created the social media site, Jerk.com which was active from 2009 until 2013. It also operated under jerk.be and jerk.org. The current jerk.com seems to have nothing to do with the original site. Also included, as

Flash Boys, Fraud, and the Need for New Rules

From Gordon Gecko to Lloyd Blankfein, titans of finance both very real and very emblematic leave Americans with an indelible suspicion that clever Wall Street insiders contort the rules of the game on the backs of honest Main Street investors. Michael Lewis’s book “Flash Boys” certainly does not help. Lewis contends that high-frequency trading (“HFT”)

Google Hoping to Escape Street View Lawsuit

Everyone’s used it before—the inconspicuous option on Google Maps that allows you to see, well, almost anywhere.  Google Street View, which now spans all seven continents and more than fifty countries, allows its users to “explore world landmarks, discover natural wonders and step inside locations such as museums, arenas, restaurants and small businesses with 360-degree