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A chilling Alexa tale that is just the tip of the iceberg

This Woman’s Amazon Alexa Experience Is Jaw-Dropping.

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I’m willing to bet that, at some point this week, many of you have clicked a box indicating that you’ve “read and agreed to the terms and conditions” of something.  Of Anything.

I’m also willing to bet that only a handful of you carefully read over that document before getting on with whatever newfangled service or app you’re working with, even after hearing the horror stories coming out of Silicon Valley in regard to Cambridge Analytica, Facebook, and more.  In fact, a great many of us have been receiving an extraordinary amount of emails from our app providers telling us that they’ve updated their “privacy policies” as well…which is certainly related to the continued fallout from that very scandal.

But still, we simply click away a lot of our rights, and our value.

You see, you are giving away something for free that Facebook, Amazon, and Google all pay a whole lot of money for:  Your browsing data.

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The internet has provided advertisers with an unfettered opportunity to monitor the way you interact with the world around you, especially now that the world around you is covered by the internet. Every keystroke, search term, vacation booking, or car review you read creates a profile of you and your consumer habits.  This is like finding a treasure map for the predatory vendors of our nation, and folks such as Facebook and Amazon who harvest this info are selling it for top dollar.

They are selling your personality to advertisers, and you’re letting them through the terms and conditions.

What’s worse?  They’re putting wiretaps in our homes now, disguised as ambiguously female personal assistants.

Take the latest story out of Portland, Oregon in which a family has found conclusive evidence that their Amazon Alexa was spying on them.

“My husband and I would joke and say I’d bet these devices are listening to what we’re saying,” said Danielle, who did not want us to use her last name.

Every room in her family home was wired with the Amazon devices to control her home’s heat, lights and security system.

But Danielle said two weeks ago their love for Alexa changed with an alarming phone call. “The person on the other line said, ‘unplug your Alexa devices right now,'” she said. “‘You’re being hacked.'”

That person was one of her husband’s employees, calling from Seattle.

“We unplugged all of them and he proceeded to tell us that he had received audio files of recordings from inside our house,” she said. “At first, my husband was, like, ‘no you didn’t!’ And the (recipient of the message) said ‘You sat there talking about hardwood floors.’ And we said, ‘oh gosh, you really did hear us.'”

Danielle listened to the conversation when it was sent back to her, and she couldn’t believe someone 176 miles away heard it too.

This chilling tale is just the tip of the iceberg as well, considering that the most powerful technology companies in the world are all competing for efficacy in the realm of data collection.  Soon, the Google/Facebook/Amazon user data war will begin in earnest, and we will be nothing more than fuel for their corporate machines.

 

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Americans, Still Trapped in Afghanistan, Plead with Biden Administration

The trouble in Kabul continues…

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Just because the news cycle is short and forgetful doesn’t mean that conditions are improving in stories that have fallen to the wayside.  This is just the new human attention span, and the marketing industry’s ability to hone in on the speed needed to stay ahead of your own thoughts.

And so, despite the unwillingness of the mainstream media to speak on the subject, there are still American citizens trapped under Taliban rule in Afghanistan, begging to be brought home.

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) on Thursday released a letter to President Joe Biden penned by an American citizen from San Diego, California, who is still trapped in Afghanistan alongside his wife.

“I am pleading with you again as a fellow proud American and as a husband to help my wife and I get home from Afghanistan,” the American citizen wrote in the October 15 letter to President Biden, weeks after the Biden administration’s botched withdrawal from the Taliban-controlled country.

Their tale is harrowing.

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The American explained that he and his wife risked their lives to get through Taliban checkpoints, only to discover that the October 4 flight was canceled “because passengers did not have visas for UAE, where the flight was to land.” Another flight left on October 11, but the American said they never received a call to go to the airport.

“The third scheduled for 13 October was apparently cancelled. We learned details of the latter flights from our Congressman, the Hon. Darrell Issa, who flew to Doha to meet us, and not from the DOS,” he continued, explaining these were not their only attempts made since August.

President Biden promised that US forces would remain in-country until each and every American can get home safely, but then abided by a Taliban deadline to evacuate, abandoning a great many Americans and our allied partners.

Just because the news cycle is short and forgetful doesn’t mean that conditions are improving in stories that have fallen to the wayside.  This is just the new human attention span, and the marketing industry’s ability to hone in on the speed needed to stay ahead of your own thoughts. And so, despite the unwillingness of the mainstream media to speak on the subject, there are still American citizens trapped under Taliban rule in Afghanistan, begging to be brought home. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) on Thursday released a letter to President Joe Biden penned by an American citizen from San Diego, California, who is still trapped in Afghanistan alongside his wife. “I am pleading with you again as a fellow proud American and as a husband to help my wife and I get home from Afghanistan,” the American citizen wrote in the October 15 letter to President Biden, weeks after the Biden administration’s botched withdrawal from the Taliban-controlled country. Their tale is harrowing. The American explained that he and his wife risked their lives to get through Taliban checkpoints, only to discover that the October 4 flight was canceled “because passengers did not have visas for UAE, where the flight was to land.” Another flight left on October 11, but the American said they never received a call to go to the airport. “The third scheduled for 13 October was apparently cancelled. We learned details of the latter flights from our Congressman, the Hon. Darrell Issa, who flew to Doha to meet us, and not from the DOS,” he continued, explaining these were not their only attempts made since August. President Biden promised that US forces would remain in-country until each and every American can get home safely, but then abided by a Taliban deadline to evacuate, abandoning a great…

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Authorities Confirm Identity of Remains Found in Search for Brian Laundrie

But are there more questions than answers still?

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Life is no fairy tale, that is for sure, and it certainly isn’t fair.

That seems to be the prevailing mood among those seeking justice for Gabby Petito after authorities in Florida made a stunning announcement on Thursday. 

The FBI confirmed Thursday that it had found the remains of Brian Laundrie, the 23-year-old fiancé of Gabby Petito and the only person of interest in her death.

In a statement, the FBI’s Denver field office, which has been leading the investigation, said a comparison of dental records confirmed that the human remains found in Carlton Reserve and the Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park in Sarasota County, Fla., on Wednesday were those of Laundrie.

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Oddly, Brian’s parents were involved in the discovery of the items belonging to their son.

Steven Bertolino, an attorney for Laundrie’s parents, said police came to their North Port, Fla., home late Thursday afternoon to notify them.

On Wednesday, partial human remains, as well as a backpack and notebook belonging to Laundrie, were found along a trail in the Myakkahatchee park, which is adjacent to the 24,565-acre Carlton Reserve, where Laundrie’s parents told police they believed he was headed when they reported him missing last month.

Bertolino said on Wednesday that Laundrie’s parents had gone to the park to search for their son that morning and met with North Port police and the FBI.

“Chris and Roberta Laundrie went to the Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park this morning to search for Brian,” Bertolino said in a statement. “After a brief search of a trail that Brian frequented, some articles belonging to Brian were found.”

The news will come as a disappointment to those who hoped Laundrie would be captured and questioned regarding the death of his fiancée, but the mention of a “notebook” found near the body does offer some hope that some explanation could be forthcoming.

Life is no fairy tale, that is for sure, and it certainly isn’t fair. That seems to be the prevailing mood among those seeking justice for Gabby Petito after authorities in Florida made a stunning announcement on Thursday.  The FBI confirmed Thursday that it had found the remains of Brian Laundrie, the 23-year-old fiancé of Gabby Petito and the only person of interest in her death. In a statement, the FBI’s Denver field office, which has been leading the investigation, said a comparison of dental records confirmed that the human remains found in Carlton Reserve and the Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park in Sarasota County, Fla., on Wednesday were those of Laundrie. Oddly, Brian’s parents were involved in the discovery of the items belonging to their son. Steven Bertolino, an attorney for Laundrie’s parents, said police came to their North Port, Fla., home late Thursday afternoon to notify them. On Wednesday, partial human remains, as well as a backpack and notebook belonging to Laundrie, were found along a trail in the Myakkahatchee park, which is adjacent to the 24,565-acre Carlton Reserve, where Laundrie’s parents told police they believed he was headed when they reported him missing last month. Bertolino said on Wednesday that Laundrie’s parents had gone to the park to search for their son that morning and met with North Port police and the FBI. “Chris and Roberta Laundrie went to the Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park this morning to search for Brian,” Bertolino said in a statement. “After a brief search of a trail that Brian frequented, some articles belonging to Brian were found.” The news will come as a disappointment to those who hoped Laundrie would be captured and questioned regarding the death of his fiancée, but the mention of a “notebook” found near the body does offer some…

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