The Real Cost of Free WiFi

June 17, 2016

As warmer weather approaches, millions of Americans will be traveling on summer getaways. Regardless of where you are heading on your vacation, chances are that you will pack connected mobile devices like smartphones and tablets. Once on vacation, most travelers will connect to Wi-Fi to find local hotspots, navigate new cities and countries, and share photos of their trips with family and friends back home.

Public Wi-Fi networks can now be found almost everywhere and make it easy for anyone to connect to the Internet no matter where they are.

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Pokémon Go: A Law Enforcement Alert

by the National White Collar Crime Center

NW3C PokemonGo

Click here to read or download the full advisory.

What is Pokémon Go?

Pokémon Go is an Augmented Reality (AR) game that lets players attempt to capture small cartoon-style characters (“pocket monsters”, or Pokémon), using the real world as an interactive game board. The game is a result of a partnership between Nintendo,

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Rules of the Road, Car Commandeering in the Age of Autonomous Vehicles

By Anne Stickells

Semi-autonomous vehicles have started to enter the market, and fully autonomous vehicles will likely follow. Elon Musk predicts that Tesla will be producing fully autonomous cars within roughly two years (he acknowledges the regulation and safety approval process might take an additional one to two years). Similarly, Toyota plans to launch its first self-driving vehicle by 2020, and Google plans to start commercializing its self-driving car the same year.

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Emerging Threats: End-to-End Encryption (E2EE)

By Melissa McDonough

Law enforcement officers today are faced with many new applications that that allow users to communicate or store information privately. As consumers become more concerned with privacy and security, the use of these applications continues to rise. And they aren’t just for criminals or spooks – secure messaging apps have gained widespread popularity among the general populace.

The novelty of these apps is that rather than encrypting only part of a conversation,

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Periscope: A Look into the Live Streaming Services of a Social Media App

periscopeby the National White Collar Crime Center

Advancements in digital technology including devices such as smartphones, tablets, personal computers, and gaming devices have given society near constant and instant access online.  With the proliferation of technology has also come the evolution of online content, largely dominated today by social media giants Facebook®, Twitter®, and Instagram®.

In March 2015, Twitter acquired the live video streaming service called Periscope®. Periscope allows anyone with a Twitter account or mobile phone number to easily live stream from their iOS® or Android® devices. 

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New Report on Future Internet Technologies Puts a Spotlight on Information Security

By: John S. Hollywood

In late 2014, the RAND Corporation hosted an expert panel for the National Institute of Justice on how the criminal justice community can take advantage of new Internet technologies such as the Internet of Things, intelligent agents, and semantic tagging. RAND recently released its report on the workshop (, describing the panel’s assessment of the science and technology needed to take advantage of emerging opportunities while mitigating potential threats.

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The Harm in Password Reuse

By: Center for Internet Security

The Center for Internet Security (CIS) recently published their monthly Cyber Tips newsletter, The Harm in Password Reuse.

Below is the content provided in the newsletter published by CIS:

From the Desk of Desk of Thomas F. Duffy, Chair

Every day malicious cyber actors compromise websites and post lists of usernames, email addresses, and passwords online.

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Online Hijacking

It used to be that hijacking was something only done in person, but as we discuss in this blog post, online hijacking—where someone or some service takes over an individual’s online account—is now a growing occurrence. Not all forms of online hijacking are “criminal”; for example, browser hijacking— when your Internet search function is diverted to websites you never intended to visit or when advertisements are misleading and redirect you from the main website—may be a nuisance,

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Identification Through Anonymized Data

Much of the data individuals provide is assumed to be protected because it is anonymized—stripped of any information that identifies who those individuals are. Such anonymized data is everywhere. But how safe is the underlying assumption that individuals can’t be reidentified through such data? Unfortunately, as we discuss in this blog post, there is repeated evidence that this underlying assumption is not holding up—something that raises real concerns that people can be victimized through information they release that can be traced back to them and that makes this an emerging law enforcement issue.

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On Twitter, the “#” sign refers to a hashtag—a way to group conversations together and make topics of discussion easier to discover and search.  Our blog topic of discussion is #Greenbirds—which involves social media influencers on Twitter supporting the Islamic State (also known as ISIS or ISIL).

#Greenbirds: Measuring Importance and Influence in Syrian Foreign Fighter Networks—is a report from London-based researchers at the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence who are studying foreign fighter networks. 

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