Judge Oldham bails out Texas


The big news of the week was a Fifth Circuit ruling upholding Texas law regulating speech suppression on social media. The decision was poorly received by the usual proponents of social media censorship, but I found it both remarkably well written and surprisingly compelling. That doesn’t mean it will survive the almost inevitable Supreme Court review, but Justice Oldham has written an opinion that could serve as a model for a Supreme Court decision upholding the Texas law.

The big hack story of the week was a brutal takedown of Uber, likely by the dreaded Advanced Persistent Teenager. Dave Aitel explains what happened and why no other big business should feel smug or certain that the same thing can’t happen to them. Nick Weaver continues.

Maury Shenk explains a recent European court ruling upholding sanctions against Google for its restriction of Android phone implementations.

Dave points out some of the less publicized aspects of the Twitter whistleblower’s testimony before Congress. We agree on the essentials – that Twitter is utterly incapable of protecting the national security of the United States or even the safety of its users’ messages. If there was any doubt about it, it would be solved by Twitter’s reliance on advertising revenue from the Chinese government.

Maury and Nick are lecturing me on The Merge, which takes Ethereum from “proof of work” to “proof of stake,” massively reducing the cryptocurrency’s climate footprint. They’re both surprisingly optimistic about it.

Maury is also presenting a new European proposal to regulate the Internet of Things – and, I stress, to massively increase the cost of all these things.

China is getting into the attribution game. He released a report accusing the National Security Agency of intruding on the networks of Chinese educational institutions. Dave is not impressed.

The Department of Homeland Security, in breaking news in 2003, stored the contents of phones it seized at the border. Dave predicts that the DHS will still have to reverse its current practices. I am less sure.

Now that China regulates vulnerability disclosures, are Chinese companies reluctant to disclose vulnerabilities outside of China? The Atlantic Council has a report on the subject, but Dave thinks the results are ambiguous at best.

In quick strokes:

Download 422nd episode (mp3)

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