NSA stole your address book, too -- SALESFORCE dives into identity -- Google Now coming to a wrist near you -- LAVABIT returns, briefly -- APPLE signals retail makeover


October 15, 2013 06:00 PDT | 09:00 EDT | 13:00 UTC

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>> SHARE YOUR CONTACTS: NSA collects millions of e-mail address books globally, by Barton Gellman, Ashkan Soltani: "…harvesting hundreds of millions of contact lists from personal e-mail and instant messaging accounts around the world, many of them belonging to Americans.... The collection program, which has not been disclosed before, intercepts e-mail address books and 'buddy lists' from instant messaging services as they move across global data links.... During a single day last year, the NSA's Special Source Operations branch collected 444,743 e-mail address books from Yahoo, 105,068 from Hotmail, 82,857 from Facebook, 33,697 from Gmail and 22,881 from unspecified other providers, according to an internal NSA PowerPoint presentation. Those figures, described as a typical daily intake in the document, correspond to a rate of more than 250 million a year." WaPo

>>>> NSA collects email contact lists, IM buddy lists from overseas with no oversight. At all. TechDirt

>>>> Yahoo promises encryption as NSA's email and IM contact list collection is exposed GigaOM

>>>> Gov't moves to keep NSA surveillance lawsuit away from Supreme Court Ars Technica

>>>> Who should judge whether Snowden's leaked secrets are too sensitive to report? The Guardian >> IDENTITY WARS: Salesforce Identity rocks the boat for startups like Okta and Ping, by Nancy Gohring: "There's a shakeup looming in the fledgling cloud identity and access management market. Salesforce today is making its identity and access management service, known as Identity, generally available. Microsoft began offering its Azure Active Directory service earlier this year but expects to add more substantial capabilities by the end of the year. Other big names are sure to follow, making life hard for the startups like Okta, OneLogin, and Ping Identity, that trailblazed this segment. Andras Cser, an analyst at Forrester, called the emergence of cloud identity and access services from the likes of Microsoft and Salesforce a 'huge threat' to the startups." CITEWorld

>>>> Salesforce vs. Microsoft: Dueling single sign-ons InfoWorld

>> UPGRADE? HELL NO: Enterprises will snub Microsoft's faster release tempo by sticking with Windows 7, by Gregg Keizer: "Enterprises will standardize on Windows 7 and Office 2010 and will ignore Microsoft's newer operating system and suite for years, research firm Gartner predicted.... Ballmer doesn't get it... Businesses don't want to deal with annual Windows updates." Computerworld

>> IT'S NOT ABOUT TIME: Google Watch is happening soon, heavy into Kit Kat/Google Now functionality, by Seth Weintraub: "Google could put a lot of the functionality of Google Glass in the watch product. Push a button, ask a question, get a response as the watch talks to the Now-enabled smartphone. Also, the 'serendipitous' information that Google Now shows you on your phone could come up in the watch. Time to get home, Calendar alarms, emails, SMSes, etc. all could get pushed to the watch's display." 9to5Google

>>>> Google Glass: Yes, it's that bad InfoWorld

>> WE'RE ALL NIELSONS NOW: Google readying 'Mobile Meter' app that offers rewards for tracking mobile usage, by Matt Brian: "... new mobile apps that compensate users if they allow their mobile behavior to be monitored. We're told that the project, known internally as 'Mobile Meter,' utilizes iOS and Android apps that intelligently monitor app usage and web browsing habits and send the data back to Google." Engadget

>> BEZOS ERUPTIONS: Bezos in action: 10 zesty slices from Brad Stone's new book, by George Anders: "Here are 10 specific insights into Bezos's business revolution from The Everything Store. All of them made me sit up and blink, even though I've written about Amazon, intermittently, since 1998." Forbes

>> STAT DU JOUR: Device and app trends in South Korea, the first saturated device market, by Mary Ellen Gordon: "Worldwide the installed base of connected devices measured by Flurry grew by 81% between August of 2012 and August of 2013, whereas growth for South Korea during the same time period was only 17%... in a worldwide sample of 97,963 iOS and Android devices, only 7% were phablets, but for South Korea that percentage was 41%. The appeal of phablets in South Korea appears to suppress the tablet market there. Worldwide, 19% of the devices in our sample were tablets compared to only 5% in South Korea." The Flurry Blog

>>>> Flurry to provide analytics to 37K South Korean developers in deal with SK Planet VentureBeat

>> POP-UP SITE: Lavabit to briefly reinstate services for data recovery: "Beginning today, Ladar Levison, founder of Lavabit LLC, will begin the process that will allow former users of Lavabit to briefly access their account and recover data lost from the initial shutdown. To begin this process, the user will first be allowed to change their password during a 72 hour period, beginning tonight at 7:00 PM Central.... If users are indeed concerned that their account information has been compromised, this will allow them to change their account password on a website with a newly secured SSL key. Following the 72 hour period, Thursday, October 17th, the website will then allow users to access email archives and their personal account data so that it may be preserved by the user." PR Newswire

>>>> Let's rally for Lavabit to fight for the privacy rights of the American people Rally.org

>> NEEDS TREATMENT: Confessions of a Windows Phone User, by Ashlee Vance: "Hello. My name is Ashlee Vance, and I have a Windows phone.... To own a Windows smartphone in Silicon Valley is to invite ridicule and pity. Every day I pull out the bright yellow Nokia (NOK) Lumia 920, and every day iPhone and Android types look at me with dismay. Why, they wonder, would I subject myself to an app wasteland? Why would anyone take the risk of a Blue Screen of Death interrupting their phone call? Why would anybody opt for the platonic ideal of unhip?" Bloomberg Businessweek

>> PICKS AND AXES: Bitcoin mining rush means real cash for hardware makers, by Olga Kharif: "The currency, used to buy and sell everything from electronics to illegal drugs on the Web, has surged to about $135, more than 10 times its value a year ago.... The rally has created a cottage industry of speculators eager to get their hands on Bitcoins, which can only be created digitally by using powerful computers to solve complex software problems. That has in turn boosted a market for high-powered machines, some costing more than $20,000 apiece, which are custom-made to unlock new Bitcoins in a process called mining, a nod to the excavation of minerals and metal ore." Bloomberg

>> MEA CULPA: A clarification and an apology, by Scott Wiess of A16Z: "The entrepreneur is usually in the middle of A/B testing to try to get one or more important end user statistics working such as downloads, daily active users (DAU), monthly active users (MAU), and a compelling cohort analysis of usage over time. This messy, but necessary, experimentation process where theories are rapidly tested and retested was the stage that I referred to as 'Fruit fly experiments.' Although it was not my intention, I see how this analogy could be offensive to entrepreneurs that are in the thick of this problem -- I don't mean to make light of their struggle. Having been in the thick of it myself multiple times, I have a deep appreciation for how hard and emotionally draining the product/market fit process is and apologize for the careless analogy." A16Z

>> FUNNY MONEY: Gaming juggernaut Supercell (Clash of Clans, Hay Day) sells a 51% stake for $ 1.53B to SoftBank and GungHo online TechCrunch

>> SkyGiraffe gets strategic investment from Microsoft to mobilize enterprises. "Terms were not disclosed but we understand from sources that the investment is more about strategy than injecting large amounts of cash. Because SkyGiraffe has key integrations with Microsoft technologies, this will give it significant distribution, and presumably, way more traction than if it was out there on its own." TechCrunch

>> VMware acquires Desktone, makes network virtualization generally available InfoWorld

>> Silicon Valley stays quiet as Washington implodes Computerworld

>> Trolls defeat Scientific American, Popular Science Ars Technica

>> Strengths and weaknesses of MS SmartScreen filter HelpNet Security

>> Zettaset claims Intel lied, cheated and stole its Hadoop software GigaOM

>> D-Link's backdoor: What else is in there? InfoWorld

>> Thousands of sites hacked via vBulletin hole Krebs on Security

>> Five tips to make your code better Vic Cherubini

>> Researchers achieve 100 Gbps over sub-terahertz wireless, set world record Engadget

>> Apple ups its fashion cred, names Burberry CEO Angela Ahrendts as SVP of retail and online stores TechCrunch

>> TWEET O' THE DAY: "New Google search results in Chrome for Android are disgusting and confusing. Ease back on the ads dudes." @joshuatopolsky

FEED ME, SEYMOUR: Comments? Questions? Tips? Shoot mail to Trent or Woody. Follow @gegax or @woodyleonhard.

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