Articles by Lisa Vaas

About Lisa Vaas

I've been writing about technology, careers, science and health since 1995. I rose to the lofty heights of Executive Editor for eWEEK, popped out with the 2008 crash, joined the freelancer economy, and am still writing for my beloved peeps at places like Sophos's Naked Security, CIO Mag, ComputerWorld, PC Mag, IT Expert Voice, Software Quality Connection, Time, and the US and British editions of HP's Input/Output. I respond to cash and spicy sites, so don't be shy.

Bank tests heartbeat-encoded wristbands for online authentication

UK bank tests heartbeat-encoded wristbands for online authentication

Halifax is trialing the use of a wristband to store our ECGs, given that our hearts are random number generators unique to every individual.

Privacy group wants to shut down "eavesdropping" Barbie

Privacy group wants to shut down "eavesdropping" Barbie

It's worried about kids' voices being recorded by a corporation that will then target ads at them, but it should be far more worried about security and privacy.

Twitter threatens revenge porn posters with account locking and suspension

Twitter. Image courtesy of 360b/Shutterstock.

Twitter says it will lock accounts of users who post intimate content without subjects' permission, until the offending material's deleted, and might suspend accounts if the intent is harassment.

Facebook to let marketers see what people are talking about

Facebook. Image courtesy of Bloomua / Shutterstock.com

Pick your marketing keyword. Example: "frizz." Facebook's ready to offer (anonymised) data to the anti-frizz marketers about who's saying what.

Wikimedia joins forces with others to sue NSA, DOJ over mass surveillance

Wikimedia sues NSA, DOJ to stop spying

The ACLU has filed a suit on behalf of rights groups against the NSA's spying program - in particular, its large-scale search and seizure of internet communications, commonly referred to as upstream surveillance.

Apartment complex threatens residents with $10k fines for negative online reviews

Bad review. Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Ahhhh, Windermere Cay: the premiere, luxury, 100% smoke-free Florida community that's just minutes from Walt Disney World and miles from letting customers write honest reviews.

Armed robber caught after boasting about planned stick-up on Facebook

Helpful robber boasts about planned stick-up on Facebook

A man was caught trying to rob a Tesco grocery store 15 minutes after posting his plan onto Facebook.

Busted scammer resorts to death threats

Foiled tech support scammer threatens to kill his skeptical target

After the Canadian man told the crook he was a thief and a scammer, the tech support scammer said he had the man's address and would send assassins.

Mandarin Oriental hotel chain confirms credit card breach

Mandarin_Oriental_Munich-250-CC

Thieves planted malware on POS systems on some US and European Mandarin Oriental hotels. Guests, restaurant and gift shop customers: check your statements!

Facebook post criticizing employer lands Florida man in Abu Dhabi prison

Facebook post criticizing employer lands Florida man in Abu Dhabi prison

Used to First Amendment protection, he never would have imagined that berating his employer would land him in an Emirati jail. Now, Ryan Pate faces a potential 5 years in jail and a stiff fine.

Twitter troll fired, another suspended after Curt Schilling names and shames them

Troll. Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Within 1 hour of the online onslaught against his daughter, the former Red Sox pitcher had published tormentors' names and backgrounds. One was suspended, another lost his job, and others were kicked off school athletic teams.

Google quietly drops promised encryption by default for Android Lollipop

Google quietly drops promised encryption by default for Android Lollipop

Google has confirmed reports: that sweet encryption-by-default it promised for Android Lollipop left a sour taste when it came to device performance.

Police may charge data centre in largest ever child abuse images bust

Police may charge data centre in largest-ever child abuse images bust

Police might press charges against the owner of the drives that hold the child abuse image material - most likely, an Ontario data centre that houses the files.

Woman reunited with stolen iPhone thanks to accidental Facebook selfie post

Woman reunited with iPhone thanks to accidental Facebook selfie post

A woman and her iPhone have been happily reunited, thanks to the new owner having accidentally posted a selfie onto her Facebook page that went viral.

Craig Brittain asks Google to remove links relating to his revenge porn antics

Craig Brittain asks Google to remove links relating to his revenge-porn antics

The guy who ignored women's pleas to take down nude images from his IsAnybodyDown site wants to have his own photos and information expunged from Google.

Old-school landline phones to protect elderly from "it's me" scammers

Old-school landline phones protect Japan's elderly from "it's me" scammers

The new phones glow red when a call comes in from an unregistered number, to battle the "ore ore" ("it's me, it's me") fraudsters who prey on Japanese elderly.

Facebook comes up with new ways to reach out to the suicidal

Facebook comes up with new ways to reach out to the suicidal

Where would you turn, and what would you do, if you saw a post that seemed suicidal from a Facebook friend? Facebook has some answers.

Say hello to net neutrality - FCC votes to "protect the open internet"

FCC votes in favor of net neutrality in the US

The FCC has voted in favor of net neutrality. Broadband is now a US public utility, free of blocking, throttling or paid prioritization, and also subject to greater government regulation.

Google turns Pwnium into an all-year, unlimited-rewards bug-hunting contest

Bug. Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Google's new thinking around bug hunting: get it to us ASAP, from wherever you are.