Monday, March 22, 2010

Hackers Use Social Networking Sites To Steal Data

Hackers have made a profession out of stealing data from computers. The more society depends on computers to archive and hold personal/non-personal data, the more vulnerable peoples' information becomes to theives.

Computer hackers' current target to steal information is social networking sites. Hackers' hit list includes sites such as, Facebook and Twitter, according to USA Today article titled An invitation to crime. It is problematic when account users log on to these sites at work. Unsuspecting users at work can imperil company data.

"Cybercriminals are moving aggressively to take advantage of an unanticipated chink in corporate defenses: the use of social networks in workplace settings. They are taking tricks honed in the spamming world and adapting them to what's driving growth of social networks: speed and openness of individuals communicating on the Internet," the article reported.

It is difficult to feel safe using the internet these days. I am even paranoid about disclosing particular information on the internet because nothing is 100% safe once its online. Hackers are finding creative ways to take information that is why it is essential for users to be aware of suspicious links or sites. More importantly, no one should log on to these sites in the work place.

I'm a firm believer in maintaining professionalism and a good work ethic. Checking your a Facebook page or other social network sites should not be an option for any employee at work unless it is work related. It is unprofessional to use company time to check out a page even if it is for 10 minutes or 2 minutes.

I was taught that there is a time and place for certain things. The fact that companies data are threatened by hackers because employees view the sites is unfortunate, but maybe it would be best for companies to block unwanted sites.

Network News Cutback

Network news much like the newspaper industry is plagued with downsizing. Decreasing revenue is the blame for networks shaving down their staff size, the New York Times reported. So what does this mean for aspiring journalists like myself? It means that the competition is as stiff as an ironing board.

If entering the industry seemed challenging before, now its downright difficult. Since the networks can not fund for staff that specialize in specific areas such as a camera operator or sound engineers, it is up to reporters to pick up the slack. Needless to say journalists job description and requirements is progressively extending. Ultimately, journalist have no room to compromise the quality of work even if they are taking on more tasks.

Upon reading the March 1st, New York Times article, I was anxious about the development in network news because I have a personal interest in broadcast journalism. It makes me wonder about the difficulty of entering, excelling, and maintaining a position in network news (broadcast journalism).

It seems that job security is a thing of the past. With the economy in poor health, the concept of job security is becoming extinct and anyone can be a causality of layoffs. However, there is a positive side to this grim situation. The rapid changes in the industry will allow for colleges and universities to upgrade their curriculum to coincide with the skills and demands required to succeed as a journalist. The more journalist know, the better.

(Photo courtsey of Google)

HIV rates in D.C. Rise

The heart of the United States is nestled on a small slab of land off the tip of Maryland. This small yet significant piece of land is called the District of Columbia. It harbors the U.S. government and a large part of American history, and it is still making history but not in a positive way.

HIV continues to affect D.C Residents. The HIV rate increases from 3 percent to 3.2 percent as more residents get tested, the Washington Examiner reported.

"Overall, 3.2 percent of the total population has been diagnosed with HIV, and that number will continue to rise as more people are tested, enter medical treatment and receive the care they need to stay alive," the article reported.

There is no cure for the disease,however,the more research and information uncovered helps educate people on prevention. Public schools, free clinics, and the public libraries offer information about the disease, so its appalling that the nation's capital has an alarmingly high HIV rate.

More importantly,diagnosed individuals can have long and meaningful lives due to the advancement in medicine. This is why it is essential for people to be aware and get tested.The earlier it is detected the greater chance of survival.

I find that this problem continues to spread like wild fire; it appears that little progress has been made to address the HIV diagnosis among residents. I hope that the passing of the health care bill will encourage more individuals to get tested.

(Photo courtesy of Google)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Violence Meets Hempstead High Again

Teaching and learning are not the only things happening at Hempstead High School, violence too. Racial tensions appears to be the cause of the latest altercation at the public school. March 9th, Newsday reported the story that ended with eight students being injured in the fight.

The specifics of how and where the affray started is still unclear, however, it seems that those questions are irrelevant. The more pertinent questions are why and what can be done to resolve the apparent issues.

After reading the article, I want to know what the school will do to deal with and resolve the racial divide between the African-American and Hispanic (Latino) communities. It is a ongoing issue that dates back to 2008. So where are the guidance counselors? Are the issues being addressed by the parents and faculty? What plans does the principal have to unite the school? Questions that I would be interested in knowing and hoping to follow in the papers if they make the news again.

I personally do not know why students succumb to violence like its the last resort. It never solves the deep rooted problems that exist among the students. Now I have witnessed a school fight or two, but they never lead to an emergency school closing to prevent jeopardizing the safety of the remaining student body.