Police use smart speaker data for evidence

Police increasingly turning to smart speaker data in murder investigations

Amazon reported that it has received 3000 police requests for smart speaker data in the first half of this year, and that it has complied 2000 times. Wired

dis-rup-shun: Smartphones know everywhere you have been. Smart speakers know if you were home and capture some of what you said. Between these two devices, there is a wealth of data that could be used to defend or convict you. Bottom line — if you are going to do something you shouldn’t, leave your phone behind and unplug your smart speaker. Given our increasing use of technology in everyday life, including cameras in our homes, cars and offices, hiding from the law will be increasingly difficult.

Botnet FritzFrog is infecting hundreds of servers

COVID-19 is apparently not the only virus in growth mode. Security firm Guardicore Labs announced the discovery of a botnet — programs that connect many computers together to form a network with no one common control server, making detection and management difficult. The origin of the FritzFrog botnet is unknown, but it has targeted government, university and transportation companies. Wired

dis-rup-shun: Cyber warfare is extremely advanced, and the thought of a government or organization quietly aligning tens of thousands of computing assets for the purpose of shutting them down, stealing information or holding them ransom is very concerning. That person you know who refuses to participate in online banking may not be so crazy, after all. As technology advances, so do the skills of hackers, meaning off-network redundancies are important.

Zoom outage hits back to schoolers

Just when you were counting on Zoom to keep the kids engaged and safely back to school, the service appears to have experience outages in various cities, especially along the East Coast. Gizmodo

dis-rup-shun: As if remote schooling is not difficult enough on parents, an outage of a utility that we have all taken for granted as the glue that holds together our virtual lives is sputtering. The outage, combined with the story above on the FritzFrog, reminds us that our online lives that we depend on, are more vulnerable than expected. A disruption of our online services will literally leave us cut off for as long as our network is down. No man is an island unless his internet service is out.

SugarCRM acquires Node to add AI to CRM

SugarCRM is a free (at first) customer database management application that has been around almost twenty years and is used by many small businesses not yet ready to invest in customer relationship management assets. By combining Node’s AI to customer databases, SugarCRM will tell you (for a fee) which customers are most likely to churn, and which are the richest targets. ZDNet

dis-rup-shun: AI or machine learning — call it what you like — will continue to find its way into most all applications, so that our software applications will begin to “intuit” our end goals and call our attention to things our software think are most important. This is the natural evolution of computing, wherein decision making will increasingly be performed by our computing assets and our job, as managers and humans, will be to decide when to trust AI-based decisions or override them based on our intuition, experience and knowledge.