Rebuild Local News: Rebuild Local News coalition backs Senate bill to preserve community journalism. “The bill — jointly introduced by the chair of the Senate Commerce Committee, Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Sen. Ron. Wyden (D-OR), the chair of the Senate Finance Committee, and Sen. Mark Kelly (D-AZ) — seeks to provide a pathway to financial viability for local news in newspapers, in digital only publications, and on television and radio stations through a series of tax credits. The legislation mirrors a similar bill introduced in the House by Reps. Ann Kirkpatrick (D-AZ) and Dan Newhouse (R-WA), which has strong bipartisan support.”
Local 10: Officials: Hacker stole identities of multiple victims killed in Surfside condo collapse. “Disturbing reports are emerging of a hacker taking advantage of those who were killed in the partial collapse of the Champlain Towers South condominium building in Surfside. Officials said the criminal is seeing the victims’ names in the news and then stealing their identities.”
CNN: TikTok, Biden administration agree to drop litigation over Trump-era app store ban. “TikTok and the US government agreed on Wednesday to drop a lawsuit challenging the Trump administration’s attempt to ban the short-form video app from US app stores. In a filing in the US District Court for the District of Columbia, the two sides said they had mutually agreed the suit should be dismissed.”
Washington Post: Your contact list is spilling over to the Internet. Here’s how to make it stop.. “The names and contact information that used to stay safe in analog address books now float around the data economy, bouncing from smartphones to app-makers to third-party data collectors. That means apps get the names and phone numbers of everyone in your contacts — from your best friend to the stranger who might have rear-ended you at a stoplight. And companies might sell that information, too.”
Gizmodo: 25 States Are Forcing Face Recognition on People Filing for Unemployment. “We acclimatize to dangerous tech creep in a series of f*ck-it moments until the point at which we realize a foreseeably bad network is so pervasive, we reluctantly adopt it and move on. There was a time when social media, Amazon shopping, and home surveillance seemed optional—until they weren’t. Now in many states, you’ll have to surrender a faceprint to a private face recognition program in order to access basic government services like unemployment insurance. We’ve been here before.” Asterisk by me because I like these newsletters having some chance of getting through corporate filters.
AP: Microsoft says it blocked spying on rights activists, others. “Microsoft said [July 15] it has blocked tools developed by an Israeli hacker-for-hire company that were used to spy on more than 100 people around the world, including politicians, human rights activists, journalists, academics and political dissidents.”
WQP: Test Your Well Water Act Introduced. “The Test Your Well Water Act was introduced July 20 by Rep. Mike Gallagher, Reps. Dan Kildee, Antonio Delgado, Elissa Slotkin, and Ron Kind. According to Congressman Mike Gallagher’s website, the bipartisan legislation would create an online tool on the U.S. EPA’s website for Americans with a private well to find resources to test their drinking water and understand the results. The tool aims to promote transparency and modernize access to EPA resources in an effort to educate Americans about their drinking water.”
The Verge: Here’s how to check your phone for Pegasus spyware using Amnesty’s tool. “Amnesty International — part of the group that helped break the news of journalists and heads of state being targeted by NSO’s government-grade spyware, Pegasus — has released a tool to check if your phone has been affected. Alongside the tool is a great set of instructions, which should help you through the somewhat technical checking process. Using the tool involves backing up your phone to a separate computer and running a check on that backup. Read on if you’ve been side-eyeing your phone since the news broke and are looking for guidance on using Amnesty’s tool.” The process is fairly involved; folks without a lot of tech chops will need some help.
Wall Street Journal: U.S. Proposes Raising Penalty for Hospitals That Don’t Publish Prices. “The Biden administration on Monday proposed sharply higher penalties for larger hospitals that don’t make their prices public. The proposal would also clamp down on the use of special coding embedded in hospital webpages that prevents Alphabet Inc.’s Google and other search engines from displaying price pages in search results.”
Reuters: EU court to rule on Google’s $2.8 billion EU antitrust fine on Nov. 10 – sources. “Europe’s second-top court will rule on Alphabet unit Google’s challenge against a 2.4 billion euro ($2.8 billion) EU antitrust fine on Nov. 10, the first of a trio of cases, people familiar with the matter said on Tuesday.”
BNN Bloomberg: Biden to Name Google Foe Jonathan Kanter as DOJ Antitrust Chief. “President Joe Biden plans to nominate Jonathan Kanter as head of the Justice Department’s antitrust division, according to a White House official, the latest sign that the administration is preparing a broad crackdown on large technology companies.”
HuffPost: Female Twitch Streamers Spend Their Lives Online. Predators Are Watching.. “There’s no social media platform where women are safe from sexual harassment. Mobs of misogynist trolls have chased countless women and girls off of Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok and lesser known sites. But when it comes to streaming on Twitch, women are exceptionally vulnerable to this kind of abuse, which has become normalized as an intrinsic part of their experience both on- and off-platform, regardless of the nature of their content.”
Wall Street Journal: China Compromised U.S. Pipelines in Decade-Old Cyberattack, U.S. Says. “Hackers working for the Chinese government compromised more than a dozen U.S. pipeline operators nearly a decade ago, the Biden administration revealed Tuesday while also issuing first-of-its-kind cybersecurity requirements on the pipeline industry.”