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Will Bitcoin Succeed?
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Will Bitcoin Succeed?

When you work for a security company, sometimes people think you must know everything there is to know about technology. So sometimes I get asked, “Will Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies succeed?” Unfortunately, I’m an engineer, not an economist. I can’t speak to how big central banks like the Federal Reserve in America, the Bundesbank here in Germany, or the Bank of England in Britain will react to it. Maybe they’ll try to regulate it. Maybe they’ll try to ban it. Who knows? Ask an economist or a banker; they might know better. What I do know is that more and more brands are accepting cryptocurrencies as payment. In America, for example, online tech stores like Dell and Newegg have started to accept bitcoins. Not only can you buy your gadgets with bitcoins, but you can also...
Securing the Internet of Everything
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Securing the Internet of...

Whenever I hear about the Internet of Everything, I find myself somewhat conflicted. There’s no doubt that it is the new “mega trend” in technology, but at the same time I wonder how secure it is. Let me explain. When a company creates a smart device, they not only need to create the hardware for the device, they also need to write the software for it. This is not a simple task, particularly for complex items. Take, for example, a modern car. Think of all the features it has: distance assistance, lane assistance, and even notification of emergency services if I crash. It can even compile various statistics about how I drive and compare it to other drivers of that model. All this results in a very large amount of software that needs to be written. A modern car has more than 100...
Privacy and the Right to be Forgotten
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Privacy and the Right to...

Earlier this month there was a very interesting decision out of the European Court of Justice. The decision established what can be called the “right to be forgotten”. People can now ask search engines like Google to remove links from search results about them. So, for example, say you are now a successful businessman. However, the first search results for your name is a slightly embarrassing incident that took place in your youth. Now, you can ask Google to “forget” about that incident so it won’t show up first when someone searches for your name. You can debate whether this is a good idea or not. Europeans like myself tend to think this is a good idea – after all, who else should control but you, right? Americans tend to look at it as a free speech issue. There is a cultural...
Data Gathering Is a Two-Way Street
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Data Gathering Is a Two-...

Today’s technology is becoming better and better at an exponential clip. It was only a few decades ago that we had cellphones the size of bricks and Internet the speed of which is only a fraction of a single percent of today’s connections. Now we carry powerful computers in our pockets as well as wear them for watches, and we can download entire libraries in less than a couple of moments. But with all benefits there are prices to pay for such convenience. One of them is how the companies behind such conveniences use them to collect data from their customers – how they use the service, when and where and who and why. The fact is, these companies never reveal the fact that they do so readily – more often than not, it is discovered by someone who bothers to look, and whenever they do...