Hashtag Trending Wednesday, 7th February 2024: Mozilla takes the initiative to protect privacy

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Mozilla has entered the privacy protection arena. Meta insists that AI images on Facebook and other platforms be labelled. IBM introduces its Linux mainframe, and a new cancer therapy that is based on Linux. “out of this world.” Literally.

All this and More on the Website “you do know those pictures aren’t real, don’t you”Hashtag Trending, the latest edition. I’m your host Jim Love, CIO of IT World Canada and TechNewsDay in the US.

Mozilla has stepped up its privacy game by launching a new subscription service that aims to tackle the issue of personal information being sold on websites. Mozilla Monitor, a platform from the tech giant, allows users to detect and remove sensitive information automatically from data broker websites. This service, an extension of the previously free Firefox Monitor, is designed to simplify the complex and often opaque process of reclaiming one’s digital footprint.

For a monthly fee, Mozilla Monitor Plus will scour over 190 data broker sites for your personal details—like your phone number, email, and home address—and initiate removal requests on your behalf. This proactive approach will change the game in the fight against data broker companies that profit from selling personal details without the consent of the individuals.

This service is of great importance. In an age when data breaches are a common occurrence, affecting millions of people each year, the ability for users to automatically remove their personal information from potentially harmful websites is a major step towards improving online security and privacy. Mozilla’s commitment to privacy is further underscored by their encryption and privacy policy adherence, ensuring users’ data is handled with the utmost care.

Mozilla Monitor Plus offers users peace of mind, and gives them control over their online identity. In the digital age we live in, these tools are essential to protect our personal data from unauthorized use and sales.

Sources include TechCrunch [https://techcrunch.com/2024/02/06/mozilla-monitors-new-service-removes-your-personal-info-from-data-broker-sites-automatically/](https://techcrunch.com/2024/02/06/mozilla-monitors-new-service-removes-your-personal-info-from-data-broker-sites-automatically/).

Meta is making a big step in the digital authenticity arena by announcing that it will label AI generated images across all of its platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, Threads, and others. This move was made in response to the growing concern about the proliferation of “deepfakes”Other realistically altered media pose a challenge for discerning the truth in the digital era.

The initiative is especially timely, as there will be numerous global elections in the year 2024, and the integrity of the information is of paramount importance. Meta’s approach involves using metadata to identify AI-generated content from major tech entities like Google, OpenAI, and Adobe, among others. This is a stopgap measure until Meta’s technical solution for automatic labeling is operational in the coming months.

Meta’s decision aligns with recommendations from its own Oversight Board, which recently critiqued the company’s manipulated media policy for lacking coherence and justification. The board’s feedback underscores the necessity of policies that address content manipulation transparently, regardless of the technology used to create it.

Meta sets new standards for authenticity in online content by requiring users to disclose if they share photorealistic AI created or digitally manipulated content. This policy is not only meant to increase transparency but also to hold users accountable for what they share. It is a pivotal step in the fight against misinformation.

Sources include Axios

IBM’s LinuxONE 4 Express is a new version of the LinuxONE enterprise-grade Linux software that targets small and medium businesses (SMBs).

These little beauties are priced at a steep $135,000 for the base hardware configuration, but for that amount you do get the robustness of IBM’s mainframe technology, specifically the Telum processor used in the z16 family, to a more compact and accessible format.

LinuxONE 4 Express offers a 99.999999 percent (eight-nine) availability guarantee despite its high entry price. This level is reliability translates to a less than one second downtime per annum, catering to businesses that have critical workloads requiring unparalleld resilience.

IBM’s pitch emphasizes the system’s AI and hybrid cloud capabilities, leveraging on-chip acceleration for AI inferencing to support growing AI use cases within SMBs. LinuxONE 4 Express was designed to scale along with businesses. It offers up to 16 configurable processors and 1 TB memory, making it the smallest LinuxONE yet.

The support from major Linux distributions such as Canonical, Red Hat, and SUSE, coupled with endorsements from entities like University College London, underscores the system’s suitability for high-performance and scalable research computing environments.

IBM also highlights LinuxONE 4 Express’s cost-saving potential, stating that customers switching from x86 servers to Linux workloads could save over 52 percent in total cost over five years. Set to be available from February 20, the LinuxONE 4 Express represents IBM’s commitment to extending enterprise-grade performance and reliability to a broader market.

Sources include The Register

 

Meta’s decision to discontinue third-party access to Facebook Groups has sent shockwaves through the developer and business communities.

Meta announced on January 23 that the Facebook Groups API would be deprecated. This tool is crucial for scheduling Facebook Groups posts. This change is set to go into effect in 90 days and has left many businesses and developers scrambling to adjust.

The Groups API was instrumental in automating and schedulling social media posts. Small businesses and social media marketing rely heavily on this API to manage and engage their communities, and engage their online presence. The closure of this API could disrupt the operations for companies like VipeCloud. VipeCloud serves 5,000 Facebook accounts. Many of these accounts belong to female entrepreneurs. For these businesses, the API’s shutdown not only impacts their ability to communicate within private groups but also poses a significant threat to their revenue and operational model.

The ripple effects extend beyond individual businesses to the broader ecosystem of developers and service providers who have built their offerings around Facebook’s APIs. Companies like PostMyParty that automates and schedules online parties face existential risks, and the loss of thousands of customers and years of work.

As developers and businesses voice their concerns, the situation illustrates the inherent dangers of building services that are dependent on third party platforms. The decision by Meta, to cut off access the Facebook Groups API, serves as a stark example of the volatility of digital platforms. Businesses must remain adaptable to changing technological landscapes.

Sources include TechCrunch

Scientists from California have partnered up with Axiom 3 to pioneer cancer research within the microgravity environment in space. This collaboration has led the discovery of potential “kill switch”For cancer, using the unique conditions in space to accelerate the aging and progression of cancer.

The mission, launched from Kennedy Space Center in January 18th, carried not only four astronauts but also miniature tumor organoids. These organoids, which were derived by researchers from the University of California San Diego from the cancer cells of patients, were exposed to the stress of Microgravity. This stress causes the cells to age faster, giving scientists a better way to observe cancer growth.

Dr. Catriona Jamieson, a leading researcher in the fields of hematology, stem cell research and hematology, observed pre-leukemic mutations in stem cells that were sent into space. This led to the question: Would cancer worsen in the same conditions as before? The answer was a resounding yes, with the ADAR1 gene playing a pivotal role in the cancer’s accelerated growth.

The latest mission tested an experimental drug, rebecsinib, designed to block the activation of ADAR1, thereby inhibiting the cancer’s ability to clone itself. Rebecsinib is a drug that has shown promising results in space. Its preliminary results show that it significantly reduces cancer growth. “kill switch.”

This research not only opens up new avenues for treating cancer, but also shows how innovative space can be used to advance medical science. With plans to bring rebecsinib to clinical trials on Earth by the year’s end, the team is not slowing down, driven by the responsibility to translate their groundbreaking findings into real-world solutions.

Sources include Fortune

Space research has provided a cancer killer switch. Out of this world.

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Thank you for listening. Have a wonderful Wednesday




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Original content by www.itworldcanada.com – “Mozilla steps up the move to protect privacy: Hashtag Trending, Wednesday, February 7th, 2024”

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