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Security News and Issues

Each day owning a computer and maintaining it online becomes more of a challenge. Security is a major concern to computer users. SaferPC brings you Security News and Issues of interest to security conscious PC users.

     
 Title   Date   Author   Host 

Shocking: Reporting Factory Farm Abuses to be Considered "Act of Terrorism" If New Laws Pass
alternet.org
by Katherine Paul and Ronnie Cummins
January 24, 2013

Three states are the latest states to introduce Ag-Gag laws and lawmakers in 10 other states introduced similar bills in 2011-2012.

How do you keep consumers in the dark about the horrors of factory farms? By making it an "act of terrorism" for anyone to investigate animal cruelty, food safety or environmental violations on the corporate-controlled farms that produce the bulk of our meat, eggs and dairy products. And who better to write the Animal and Ecological Terrorism Act, designed to protect Big Ag and Big Energy, than the lawyers on the Energy, Environment and Agriculture Task Force at the corporate-funded and infamous American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).

How 'Stop and Frisk' Is Too Often a Sexual Assault by Cops on Teenagers in Targeted NYC Neighborhoods
alternet.org
January 21, 2013

Teenagers are harassed and violated in ways you can't imagine.

Imagine you're 17 years old. A man with a gun and a badge has stopped you on the street and jammed his hand inside your pants, touching your penis. The girl you have a crush on is watching from nearby. That's the reality for many young men of color in New York City. Stop-and-frisk is the controversial policing tactic in which street cops looking for weapons stop and pat down young men. Discussions of this policy in the media most often consist of alarming stats, like what percent of men targeted are black and brown (87% in New York) or the breach of constitutional rights the searches entail. But the reality on the ground is far less abstract. The policy amounts to a constant disruption of the lives of hundreds of thousands of young black and brown men. It's a belittling experience that could be better described as sexual assault.

High School Student Arrested for Doodling?
alternet.org
by Natasha Lennard
December 29, 2012

Police were called when a 16-year-old made no threats but drew what may or may not have been weapons in a notebook.

This month in our Orwellian nightmares come true, a 16-year-old high schooler in Egg Harbor City, NJ, was arrested after doodling in his notebook what may have been either weapons or a magic hand with flames coming off it, or perhaps something else. Concerned by the boy's notebook, a Cedar Creek High School staff member called the local police, who searched the school and the teen's home with sniffer dogs.

They Can Do That?! 10 Outrageous Tactics Cops Get Away With
alternet.org
by John Knefel
December 4, 2012

Thanks to the war on drugs, the war on terror and general public apathy about civil liberties, police can stomp all over your rights.

Talk to someone who has never dealt with the cops about police behaving badly, and he or she will inevitably say, "But they can't do that! Can they?" The question of what the cops can or can't do is natural enough for someone who never deals with cops, especially if their inexperience is due to class and/or race privilege. But a public defender would describe that question as naïve. In short, the cops can do almost anything they want, and often the most maddening tactics are actually completely legal. There are many reasons for this, but three historical developments stand out...

Parents of Dead Teen Ask Why Police Shot Their Naked, Unarmed Son
alternet.org
by Alex Kane
October 8, 2012

Friends and family are demanding answers as to why the student, 18-year-old Gil Collar, was shot by police.

A freshman student at the University of Alabama was shot and killed by police early Saturday morning, and friends and family are demanding answers as to why he was killed. The student, 18-year-old Gil Collar was killed after he was naked and banging his head on windows at police headquarters. Collar, a high school wrestler, reportedly "assumed a 'fighting stance' and chased an officer before being shot." Collar was unarmed.

UC Davis Will Pay Damages to Victims of Infamous Pepper Spray Attack
alternet.org
by David Atkins
September 15, 2012

The wheels of justice are turning at UC Davis in the wake of the pepper spray incident. First Lt. Pike was placed on administrative leave. And now the victims will be receiving damages.

The University of California will be paying damages to the UC Davis students and alumni who were pepper-sprayed by campus police during an otherwise peaceful protest 10 months ago, officials said Thursday. The UC regents met in closed session Thursday to discuss and approve a proposed settlement payment to 21 UC Davis students and alumni who have sued the university and contend their civil rights were violated in the incident.

How Your Movements Are Being Tracked, Probably Without Your Knowledge
alternet.org
by Tana Ganeva
August 31, 2012

License plate readers are getting set up at a very brisk pace across the country.

In May, Utah lawmakers were surprised to learn that the US Drug Enforcement Agency had worked out a plan with local sheriffs to pack the state's main interstate highway, I-15, with Automated License Plate Readers (ALPRs) that could track any vehicle passing through. At a hearing of the Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Interim Committee, the ACLU of Utah and committee members aired their concerns, asking such questions as: Why store the travel histories of law-abiding Utah residents in a federal database in Virginia? What about residents who don't want anyone to know they drive to Nevada to gamble? Wouldn't drug traffickers catch on and just start taking a different highway?

Shock and Humiliation: How People Are Being Strip-Searched for Trivial Offenses
alternet.org
August 20, 2012

Our right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures has been undermined by a narrow conservative majority concerned more with protecting public officials than with the rights of ordinary Americans.

The following article first appeared in the Nation. For more great content from the Nation, sign up for their email newsletters here. This past April, the five conservative Supreme Court Justices gave jail officials the right to strip and search every person arrested and jailed, even if the alleged offense is trivial and there is no reason to suspect danger of any kind. The ruling, in Florence v. Board of Chosen Freeholders of County of Burlington , compounds the assault on human dignity committed by the Court in another 5-4 decision eleven years ago, in Atwater v. City of Lago Vista , when it authorized a full custodial arrest for even trivial "fine-only" offenses like a temporarily unbuckled seat belt. Our right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures has once again been undermined by a narrow conservative majority concerned more with protecting public officials than with the rights of ordinary Americans.

How a Corrupt Dietitians' Group Has Taken Over Nutrition Advice in America
alternet.org
August 10, 2012

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is engaged in a turf war over the right to give nutritional advice -- and sell it to the highest bidder.

When Steve Cooksey was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, a registered dietician advised him to eat a low-fat, high-carbohydrate diet. Rather than follow that advice blindly, Cooksey read the available scientific literature and decided to do roughly the opposite of what he'd been advised. He proceeded to lose 78 pounds on a high-fat, low-carb diet that was nearly absent of processed foods. Cooksey's blood-sugar level dropped into the normal range, and he was cleared by his doctor to stop taking insulin. Three years later, Cooksey remains slim and healthy, but now finds himself with a different sort of diet problem, thanks to a letter he received from the North Carolina Board of Dietetics/Nutrition. It accused him of practicing nutrition counseling without a license, and threatened to charge him with crimes that could result in jail time if he refused to make changes to his blog, diabetes-warrior.net.

The 'Monsanto Rider': Are Biotech Companies About to Gain Immunity from Federal Law?
alternet.org
by Alexis Baden-Mayer
July 6, 2012

The Secretary of Agriculture would be required to grant a permit for the planting or cultivation of a genetically engineered crop, regardless of environmental impact.

While many Americans were firing up barbecues and breaking out the sparklers to celebrate Independence Day, biotech industry executives were more likely chilling champagne to celebrate another kind of independence: immunity from federal law. A so-called "Monsanto rider," quietly slipped into the multi-billion dollar FY 2013 Agricultural Appropriations bill, would require - not just allow, but require - the Secretary of Agriculture to grant a temporary permit for the planting or cultivation of a genetically engineered crop, even if a federal court has ordered the planting be halted until an Environmental Impact Statement is completed.

     

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