Tag Archives: Microsoft

Facebook Gives Staff Green Light to Join May 1 Political Protests

From Bloomberg: Facebook Inc. said it won’t punish employees who take time off to join pro-immigrant protests on May 1. And, in a nod to security staff, janitors, shuttle-bus drivers and others who work for Facebook contractors on campus, the company also said it will investigate if any of its vendors illegally crack down on their employees’ protest rights.

“At Facebook, we’re committed to fostering an inclusive workplace where employees feel comfortable expressing their opinions and speaking up,” a spokesman wrote in an emailed statement. “We support our people in recognizing International Workers’ Day and other efforts to raise awareness for safe and equitable employment conditions.”

Facebook notified employees of its policy in a posting on an internal forum April 14. A spokesman said it applies regardless of whether workers notify the company ahead of time. The Menlo Park, California, company also said it would re-evaluate its ties to any vendor if it breaks the law that protects workers’ rights to organize and protect themselves.

“It’s important not just to the engineers and H-1B holders that are traditionally thought of as the immigrants in tech but also to folks who are subcontracted but work side-by-side on those campuses,” said Derecka Mehrens, co-founder of Silicon Valley Rising, a union-backed coalition. “Immigrants play a critical role in the tech sector — both as engineers and coders but also in keeping tech campuses running smoothly.”

Many tech companies have been vocal in their opposition to aspects of Trump’s agenda. Facebook has criticized Trump’s immigration moves. At a rally in January at Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, California, CEO Sundar Pichai and co-founder Sergey Brin spoke against Trump’s executive order that closed U.S. borders to people from several majority-Muslim nations. Both companies, along with Apple Inc., Microsoft Corp. and Intel Corp., are among more than 120 firms that signed a February court filing opposing the travel ban.

Read the rest of the story here.

DCG

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How to prevent Windows 10 from sending Microsoft every keystroke you type

Do you use Windows 10?

If so, you should know that, as reported by Mary-Ann Russon reports for IB Times, March 22, 2017:

Windows has been quietly logging every single keystroke users make on their keyboards from the beginning. Even better, that data is being constantly sent to Microsoft’s servers on a regular basis.

We’re not sure why on earth Microsoft would want users’ keystrokes, as this data is only really useful to cybercriminals seeking to crack passwords to steal sensitive data….

So what can you do about this truly awful security breach?

Here’s IBTimes‘ advice:

(1) If you plan to but haven’t yet installed Windows 10

  • When you install Windows 10, select “custom install”.
  • Read all the options on the installation window carefully, and make sure you always select ‘no’ for all options relating to sending data to Microsoft. It is also safe if you simply choose to just say ‘no’ to all options – it will not affect your usability on Windows 10.

(2) If you already have Windows 10

  • Go to “Start“.
  • Scroll down the “Start” menu.
  • Select “Settings” -> “Privacy” -> “Change Privacy Options“.
  • Turn off the option that reads, “Send Microsoft info about how I write to help us improve typing and writing in the future“.
  • To be safe, restart your computer after selecting this option.
  • Make sure you periodically revisit Start, Settings, Privacy, and the “Send Microsoft info” option because Microsoft can turn on that option during its monthly Patch Tuesday through the automatic Windows Updates function.

IB Times has other suggestions on how to select which Windows Updates you want, and how to disable Windows Update completely, which is not advisable because you could risk missing critical patches from Microsoft. Click here.

~Eowyn

Amazon, Microsoft, other titans team up for transgenders to use restrooms of their choice

Bullies trying to force their choices on the rest of society regardless of accepted standards of privacy. As if I needed another reason to despise Microsoft.

transgender bathroom

Via Seattle Times: A coalition of corporate heavyweights Friday evening planned to announce its opposition to the initiative campaign seeking to restrict access to bathrooms and locker rooms for transgender people.

The endorsement list for Washington Businesses Won’t Discriminate features a host of local, regional and national players, including Alaska Airlines, Amazon, Adobe, Airbnb, Microsoft, Vulcan and Google. A news release says the number of businesses tops 150.

The formal announcement will come Friday night at the Amazon Event Center, with Seattle Mayor Ed Murray and Vicci Martinez, a finalist in the TV show “The Voice,” leading the event. The coalition adds to a number of political and community members opposed to proposed Initiative 1515.

The I-1515 campaign, Just Want Privacy, will need to turn in about 246,000 valid signatures by July 8 to get the initiative on the ballot. Joseph Backholm, one of the campaign’s leaders, acknowledged Friday that his group may not get enough signatures.

I-1515 would amend state anti-discrimination law so access to “private facilities” could be limited to those who are “biologically” male or female regardless of their gender identity, according to a summary of the ballot measure.

It also calls for restricting state and local regulations regarding gender-identity discrimination and permitting lawsuits against schools that allow access to facilities based on gender identity.

The businesses gathering Friday “are really standing up against discrimination,” said Heather Weiner, spokeswoman for Washington Won’t Discriminate.

Businesses also oppose the initiative because, she said, “they are not able to compete unless they are able to attract the best employees, some of whom are transgender men and women,” Weiner said. (Oh please….at least be honest and just admit you are pushing a progressive policy. Out of 100 people, two might be transgender. And what are the odds that those two people are going to be the best employees that fit their needs in their specific field? Pretty slim, IMO.)

Laws similar to I-1515 in other states, such as North Carolina, have sparked economic boycotts by businesses and entertainers.

I-1515 comes after a state regulation by the Human Rights Commission took effect in December, guaranteeing access to locker rooms, restrooms and similar facilities according to an individual’s gender identity. It affects public and private buildings, including schools, restaurants, stores and most places of employment. The commission has said the rule just clarifies a 2006 state law.

But it ignited a backlash among some conservatives and others who said they worry such access could let sexual predators more easily enter private spaces and potentially harm women or children.

Just Want Privacy has gathered about 25,000 signatures, according to its website. The group hasn’t drawn the large contributions often necessary to organize a statewide ballot campaign. Public records show it has raised about $126,000, with $7,500 spent on paid signature gatherers.

“We have a lot of work to do,” said Backholm, who is also executive director of the Family Policy Institute of Washington.  Backholm said he was unaware of the Friday event by Washington Businesses Won’t Discriminate.

DCG

Just How Bad Is ObamaCare Website? Well Let Me Tell You. It’s Unfixable According To Some Experts.

Why? Because it is a big fat bloated pig with 500 Million Lines of code.

Ok I’m no techno weenie so just how big is 500 million lines of code? Keep reading and you will find out. 

Opp's there goes another one.

Opp’s there goes another one.

(Hey Boss I need to requisition a new laptop. Umm, my dog ate it.)  

OK, the dog did not eat it.

OK, the dog did not eat it.

——————————————————————————————

NEW YORK (CNNMoney    First Published: October 23, 2013: 7:04 AM ET

Experts say the major problems with the Obamacare website can’t reasonably be solved before the end of 2013, and the best fix would be to start over from scratch.

Yeah, what he said. Uh Huh!

Yeah, what he said. Uh Huh!

After assessing the website, Dave Kennedy, the CEO of information-security companyTrusted Sec, estimates that about 20% of Healthcare.gov needs to be rewritten. With a whopping 500 million lines of code, according to a recent New York Times report, Kennedy believes fixing the site would probably take six months to a year.

But would-be Obamacare enrollees only have until Dec. 15 to sign up for coverage starting at the beginning of 2014. Nish Bhalla, CEO of information-security firm Security Compass, said it “does not sound realistic at all” that Healthcare.gov will be fully operational before that point.

“We don’t even know where all of the problems lie, so how can we solve them?” Bhalla said. “It’s like a drive-by shooting: You’re going fast and you might hit it, you might miss it. But you can’t fix what you can’t identify.”

Several computer engineers said it would likely be easier to rebuild Healthcare.gov than to fix the issues in the current system. But it’s unlikely that the government would toss out more than $300 million worth of work.

The sheer size of Healthcare.gov is indicative of a major rush job. Rolling the site out too quickly likely increased the number of errors, and that makes the fixes more difficult to implement.

“Projects that are done rapidly

( May I ask didn’t they have like 3 years to build this?)

usually have a lot of [repetitive] code,” said Arron Kallenberg, a software engineer and tech entrepreneur. “So when you have a problem, instead of debugging something in a single location, you’re tracking it down all through the code base.”

To put 500 million lines of code into perspective, it took just 500,000 lines of code to send the Curiosity rover to Mars. Microsoft’s

(MSFTFortune 500)

 Windows 8 operating system reportedly has about 80 million lines of code.

And an online banking system might feature between 75 million and 100 million lines.

A “more normal range” for a project like Healthcare.gov is about 25 million to 50 million lines of code, Kennedy said.

“The [500 million lines of code] says right off the bat that something is egregiously wrong,” said Kennedy. “I jumped back when I read that figure. It’s just so excessive.”

Applicants might be able to at least register for Obamacare sooner than that, even if the site isn’t 100% perfect. The New York Times report said five million lines of code need to be replaced just so the site can run properly.

But the Obamacare website has bigger problems than simply getting people registered for health care. The code is also riddled with security holes, according to Kennedy, who outlined his cybersecurity concerns on Trusted Sec’s company blog.

“If someone can’t register, that’s obviously bad –– but if the information gets hacked, you’re talking about one of the biggest breaches in American history,” Kennedy said. “I think security is an afterthought at this point.”

( The security and hacking is a story unto itself. It is very bad. I’ll do a follow up tomorrow)

That might not be a major issue now, as people are still having trouble logging onto the site. But once it’s up and running, that code had better be made more secure.

“At this point, the car isn’t even moving,” Bhalla said. “But once we’re speeding down the road, you’re going to want that seatbelt to work.” To top of page

Here is a graph to help you understand how much code is in things. The more code, the more things go wrong. KISS. Keep It Simple Stupid.

1276_lines_of_code5500 million

~Steve~

http://money.cnn.com/2013/10/23/technology/obamacare-website-fix/

President Lucifer’s Microsoft Vote Counting Machines

WND EXCLUSIVE

fraud_machineU.S. TECH GIANT CLICKS WITH FOREIGN VOTE-COUNTER

Just weeks after leftist billionaire buys major stake

author-image AARON KLEIN

Weeks after billionaire activist George Soros purchased a significant stake in Microsoft, the Spanish-based, vote-technology firm Scytl announced a partnership with Microsoft as part of a global governance drive.

microsoftIn January 2012, Scytl acquired 100 percent of SOE Software, the leading software provider of election management solutions in the United States. The sale garnered national attention after it was spotlighted by the popular Drudge Report.

Now, Scytl has announced it is teaming up with Microsoft’s recently launched CityNext initiative, which describes itself as a “global initiative empowering cities, businesses and citizens to re-imagine their futures and cultivate vibrant communities.”

“Joining forces with Scytl as a partner for the CityNext initiative was a logical choice,” stated Joel Cherkis, general manager of worldwide government at Microsoft.

Aaron Klein’s “Impeachable Offenses: The Case to Remove Barack Obama from Office” is available, autographed, at WND’s Superstore

“Scytl provides complimentary technology to support transforming cities with innovative tools that engage citizens and support successful governing organizations,” Cherkis said.

A Scytl press release announced the partnership with Microsoft will “enable active government and citizen participation and influence in decision making processes by leveraging the online communication channels used daily by communities.”

In the financial quarter that ended Sept. 30, Soros Fund Management LLC purchased a $12.6 million share in Microsoft.

WND previously reported some of the ties between Soros and Scytl.

In May, the firm announced the acquisition of the software division of a non-profit election organization tied to Soros’ Open Society Institute.

Scytl purchased the software division of Gov2U, described as a non-profit organization dedicated to developing and promoting the use of technology in the fields of governance and democracy.

A Scytl press release says: “Gov2U created its software division in 2004 and, since then, it has developed a wide array of innovative award-winning eDemocracy solutions that have been implemented in multiple countries across Europe, Africa and America at the local, regional and federal government levels.”

The Spain-based company says the “main purpose of these tools is to engage citizens in participatory processes through the use of online and offline platforms, bringing more transparency and legitimacy to decision-making processes.”

Gov4U is currently partnered with Soros’ Open Society to support and develop a group called the Declaration on Parliamentary Openness.

The group runs a website, OpeningParliament.org, which says it is a forum “intended to help connect the world’s civic organizations engaged in monitoring, supporting and opening up their countries’ parliaments and legislative institutions.”

Gov4U, meanwhile, has eight partners of its own listed on its website, including the Soros-funded and partnered National Democratic Institute, or NDI.

George_SorosAside from receiving financial support for Soros, NDI has co-hosted scores of events along with Soros’ Open Society. The two groups work closely together.

NDI and the Open Society, for example, worked together to push for electoral and legislative reform in Romania.

NDI boasts that with Open Society Institute funds it conducted a political leadership training series for Romanian activists to “bring tangible improvements to their communities.”

NDINDI describes itself as a nonprofit, nonpartisan, nongovernmental organization working to establish and strengthen political and civic organizations, safeguard elections and promote citizen participation, openness and accountability in government.

NDI previously stated it was founded to draw on the traditions of the U.S. Democratic Party.

socialist_posterWND found that NDI is also listed as the only U.S.-associated organization of Socialists International, the world’s largest socialist umbrella group.

NDI was originally created by the federally funded National Endowment for Democracy, or NED, which itself founded joint NDI projects with the Open Society. Another NDI financial backer is the United States Agency for International Development, USAID.

dead-voter
Read this story in its native habitat at WND.com:  http://www.wnd.com/2013/11/u-s-tech-giant-clicks-with-foreign-vote-counter/#VhuOihfu85muZ3OG.99

Beware of cold calls from “Windows Technical Support” – It’s a scam

Yesterday, in the midst of a rather harrowing day and while I was cutting up veggies for dinner, the phone rang.

“Hello, I am calling from Windows support. We have determined your computer has been infected and it is contaminating the whole Windows system. We are here to help you. Are you at your computer? If not, go to your computer now,” said a male voice with a heavy Indian (as in India in Asia) accent.

At once alarmed and wondering at the same time how on earth Windows (1) somehow knew I have Windows7 on my laptop; and (2) also knew that I’ve been having some “issues” with the laptop (who doesn’t have “issues” with their computers?), I quickly wiped my hands on a kitchen towel and dashed to open my laptop.

I asked for the name of male heavily-accented Indian voice. He said his name is “Max Watson,” which is so obviously NOT his name, it was laughable.

Anyway, “Max Watson” said he’ll show me what’s infecting my computer. I followed his instructions and pressed the “Windows” and “R” keys together to get to the Windows Run dialog box. I then typed “eventvwr” in the bar, which then opened the Window’s Event Viewer:

eventcmd

Next, “Max Watson” told me to click “OK,” then “Custom Views,” then “Administrative Events,” which brought me to an alarming sight. Below is a screenshot I took of my laptop’s “Event Viewer,” on which I’ve painted three red circles:

  1. The biggest red circle surrounds “Administrative Events”
  2. The medium-sized red circle surrounds “Number of events”: Yikes! My ‘puter has had  10,608 “events”!!!!
  3. The smallest red circle surrounds the first two of those 10,608 “events” and both carried the ! Error message. Yikes!!!!

Administrative Events

“Max Watson” (MW) said in order for him to remove the malware that some hacker had snuck into my computer, he would have to gain remote access of my laptop. That means he would be able to see everything I have on my computer, including what’s on my desktop and stored in my hard-drive. Everything.

At that, all the alarm bells in my head rang off.

I said to MW: “How can there be 10,608 viruses in my computer when I recently ran virus scans, using TWO software: McAfee and Malwarebytes?” Then I asked MW: “But how do I know you really are from Windows Technical Support?”

MW first prattled on about how he really is from Windows and I must trust him and that he just wanted to help me. Blah, blah, blah.

I was undeterred and repeated my question.

So MW gave me a phone number to call to verify he’s really “Max Watson” from Windows Support: (866) 539-8674. MW even gave me his employee ID number 5065!

I said: “But how do I know the 866 number you give me actually is a Windows number?”

MW gave me the same spiel about needing to trust him, etc. etc.

So I called the 866 number. Another male heavily-accented Indian voice answered, who immediately knew who I was  — that I was the person who had been speaking to “Max Watson”. Curiously, throughout my conversation with “Max Watson,” he never once referred to me by my name.

I asked second male Indian voice for his name. He replied: “David Watson.”

I said, incredulously: “You have the same last name as Max Watson! Are you related?”

“David Watson” (DW) said, sounding irritated: “No, we are not.”

I said: “I find it hard to believe that it just so happens that I’m dealing with two Windows Support technicians whose last names are the same.”

DW, sounding more irritated: “It’s a coincidence.”

I said: “You don’t seem to understand the problem I’m having: I didn’t call Windows; you guys called me. And you’re asking to gain remote access to my computer. How do I know that this 866 phone number is legit? If I go online to look up the phone number for Windows Support, will I get this 866 number?”

DW, sounding even more irritated: “No, you won’t, because we are a special high-level Windows tech support team.”

Then DW became angry and started threatening me — that if I don’t let him help me, those nasty “hackers” who’d already “hacked” into my computer will gain access to everything, including my identity, and will do nasty criminal things by stealing my identity . . . .

I told DW I don’t appreciate him threatening me and asked to speak to DW’s supervisor.

While I was waiting, I scrolled down the 10,608 “events” on my Windows “Event Viewer” and discovered – SURPRISE! — that the 10,608 “events” go all the way back to the first “event” on 9/3/2009 when I first purchased my laptop.

So if those alarming “! Error” events indicate some hacker had recently hacked into my laptop, how come those events date back FOUR YEARS?

I also conducted a quick Internet search for “Windows7 cold call” and guess what I found! — an NBC News Technology article by Frank Catalano, “‘We’re with Windows’: The anatomy of a cold-calling scam,” which described everything that I had just experienced with “Max Watson” and “David Watson.”

When a third male less-heavily-accented Indian voice came on the line, identifying himself as “Peter,” this is what I told “Peter”:

“I want you to stop calling me. I know all about your scam and will be reporting you to the authorities.”

Then I hung up.

After Catalano’s encounter with the fake Windows Tech Support scammers, he contacted Windows and this is what Windows told him:

“In 2010, Microsoft began receiving reports of scammers making phone calls or sending emails to people,” replied a spokesperson for Microsoft’s Digital Crimes Unit. The goal was often to trick people into buying support services, downloading fake security software or allowing remote access to their PC for likely un-nice purposes. Microsoft has referred the cases to the Federal Trade Commission, which had its own investigation underway and presumably still does.

And yes, it’s no coincidence I’m getting a lot of these calls. A lot of people are. […] we have seen an increase in cybercrimes that use deception and social engineering to exploit people.”

See also what happened to a guy with too much hubris and allowed the fake Windows Support people gain remote access of his computer: “Phone scammers call the wrong guy, get mad and trash PC“.

To find out what those seemingly-alarming “events” on Windows “Event Viewer” are, click here.

To report a scam to the FBI, click here.

Please warn others about this scam: Send this post to everyone on your email list, post a link on Facebook, Twitter, etc.

~Eowyn

Facebook’s Zuckerberg’s wealth soars $3.8 Billion in one day

What would you do with all that money. Me, I don’t think I’d want that much. I mean what would make you happy. You want a Rolls, you buy 10.  See my Point? What would you do?

PS I would go out and get every man toy there is..

—————————————-   ~ Steve  ~  —————————————–

By David De Jong – Jul 25, 2013 6:01 PM ET

Mark Zuckerberg

Mark Zuckerberg

Mark Zuckerberg’s fortune soared $3.8 billion yesterday as shares of Facebook Inc. (FB), the world’s most-popular social-networking service, rallied 30 percent to the highest level since May 2012.

Surging demand for mobile advertising helped profit and revenue top analysts’ estimates in the second quarter Wednesday. The earnings may quell concerns, voiced by analysts and investors since Facebook’s initial public offering last year, that the rising popularity of smartphones and tablets is outpacing its ability to make money selling promotions to mobile users.

Very few people saw the pace at which the entire activity of the planet’s Internet connectivity was going to move toward mobile,” said David Kirkpatrick, author of “The Facebook Effect,” a history of the company, in a telephone interview. “It’s clearly under way now.”

The gain pushed Zuckerberg, Facebook’s 29-year-old co-founder and chief executive officer, ahead of Microsoft Inc. CEO Steve Ballmer and Dell Inc. (DELL) chairman Michael Dellon the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. Zuckerberg is No. 42 on the ranking with a net worth of $16.8 billion. His fortune is up 37 percent year-to-date.

Revenue rose 53 percent to $1.81 billion in the latest quarter, the company said in a statement Wednesday. Profit excluding certain items was 19 cents a share. Analysts had projected profit of 14 cents on sales of $1.62 billion on average, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Boosted Projections

Facebook closed at $34.36 in New York yesterday. The Menlo Park, California-based company traded at 149 times earnings as of today’s close, more expensive than 99 percent of the companies in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Analysts at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. increased their target price to $46 from $40, and at least 10 others also boosted projections, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

“They’ve really done a 180-degree shift toward mobile, even if it was somewhat belatedly,” said Kirkpatrick.

In December, Zuckerberg donated almost $500 million in Facebook stock to the Silicon Valley Community Foundation. The gift to the nonprofit group, which had $2 billion in assets in 2011, is to “lay a foundation for new projects,” Zuckerberg said in a statement posted on his Facebook page.

The billionaire and his wife, Priscilla, have committed the majority of their wealth to charity.

Gates, Slim

Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) co-founder Bill Gates, 57, remains the richest person in the world with a net worth of $72.2 billion.

Mexico’s Carlos Slim, 73, is $5.5 billion behind Gates. The telecommunications tycoon’s fortune has plunged $8.5 billion this year as his main holding, a 44 percent stake in America Movil SAB, the largest mobile-phone operator in the Americas, has fallen 11 percent.

No. 3 on the Bloomberg ranking is Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK/A) Chairman Warren Buffett. Shares of the Omaha, Nebraska-based company are up 31 percent this year, elevating the 82-year-old’s fortune to $59.8 billion.