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James Gill

James Gill

Like many business leaders, Donovan Neale-May routinely seeks out information on business innovation and management trends. He reads reports from market analysis firms, white papers from companies in his field, and articles in online trade magazines. But he rarely bothers with academic business journals.

“Academic research can be helpful, but it tends to be overly complex, hard to digest, and not backed by real quantitative insights from customer populations or engagements,” says Neale-May, executive director of the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Council, a global affinity network of more than 10,000 senior marketing executives based in San Jose, California. “There is often a disconnect between practitioners and academics, who tend to be far removed from operational complexities and market dynamics.”

Donovan Neale-May, executive director of the Chief Marketing Officer Council. “There is often a disconnect between practitioners and academics,” he says. (Source: CMO Council)

Reduce nitrous oxide emissions from agricultural farming.

Harvard Business School’s Michael W. Toffel addresses this issue in an Enhancing the Practical Relevance of Research, forthcoming in Production and Operations Management. “This is my soapbox message to academics: be more relevant,” says Toffel, the Senator John Heinz Professor of Environmental Management and faculty chair of the HBS Business and Environment Initiative.

Toffel’s paper serves as a call to arms for scholars to conduct research that matters to managers and policymakers. “Most [business scholars] would agree that our primary duties include teaching our students and generating new knowledge in our research,” writes Toffel. “But the lack of practical relevance of much of our research might suggest that few of us also have the ambition to improve the decisions of the managers and policymakers whose actions we study.”

The consequence of the lack of relevant research is that the business world—and the rest of the world, for that matter—is losing out on some serious brainpower and analytical reason.

Consider the 2014 New York Times op-ed titled “Professors, We Need You,” in which Nicholas Kristof wrote, “Some of the smartest thinkers on problems at home and around the world are university professors, but most of them just don’t matter in today’s great debates.”

Or the 2015 Chronicle of Higher Educationcommentary, “Isolated Scholars: Making Bricks, Not Shaping Policy,” in which University of Michigan Professor Andrew J. Hoffman wrote, “One of the reasons (among many) that the public discourse on critical scientific issues of our day has become so confused is that too many academics, according to a 2014 study by John Besley in Science and Public Policy, do not see their role ‘as an enabler of direct public participation in decision-making through formats such as deliberative meetings, and do not believe there are personal benefits for investing in these activities.’ And yet if society is to make wise choices, those who create knowledge must move it beyond the ivory tower.”

The Priority Paradox

So why aren’t more scholars at business schools striving to make their work practically relevant? One reason is that for many, working on relevant problems has little impact on faculty members’ academic success. When it comes to making tenure, budding professors are evaluated in part on the number of papers they publish in peer-reviewed journals. Primarily written for and read by other academics, many of those journals tend to reward novelty over applicability.

In academia, “basic” research sets out to increase general knowledge of how the world works, while “applied” research sets out specifically to address a practical problem, with the intent of solving it.

That poses a potential dilemma for scholars who want to influence business practice and achieve the requisite journal publications for a successful academic career. But that balance, while challenging, is achievable.

Take HBS colleague Benjamin G. Edelman, an expert in online markets whose research focuses on consumer protection related to online businesses. “My research is made better by choosing questions that are relevant to practitioners,” says Edelman, an associate professor in the Negotiation, Organizations & Markets (NOM) unit. “My intended audience includes managers at companies as well as policymakers and regulators—seeking to inform and, to be sure, persuade these folks.”

In the course of his research, Edelman has exposed numerous privacy violations by Google, led successful fights against adware and spyware companies, and coauthored multiple studies that revealed racial discrimination among Airbnb hosts and guests. He also has published numerous articles in top academic journals.

That said, he has received his share of rejection letters from journal editors who deemed his work “excessively applied.”

“It’s surely true that many academics hesitate to prepare research that is relevant to, and accessible to, practitioners,” he says. “Junior academics have to consider journal priorities in light of the unavoidable pressure to publish in top journals. Write articles that journals don’t like, then you won’t get published in top journals and be an academic for long!”

Research that targets a specific business problem runs the risk of appearing too narrow in focus to editors of general-purpose disciplinary journals, which, in the field of academia, are considered to be especially important.

“I have had papers rejected because they are ‘of interest to a specialized audience and not to a general audience,’” says Shane Greenstein, the MBA Class of 1957 Professor of Business Administration and co-chair of the HBS Digital Initiative. “The problem faced by much applied work is the forum. It often gets relegated to specialty journals, and those are considered less prestigious in some disciplines.”

That is an issue faced by researchers from many disciplines—including economics, psychology, sociology—when they do applied work, Greenstein says.

The Importance Of Spending Time With Practitioners

However, novelty and relevance need not be mutually exclusive. In “Enhancing the Practical Relevance of Research,” Toffel argues that steering research toward real-world business problems can yield both.

“Engaging with practitioners to develop relevant research not only helps improve the research but also increases the likelihood that practitioners will subsequently read and appreciate a translation of that work,” Toffel writes. “This can yield practitioner inquiries that can, in turn, provide access to new field sites and new datasets, including proprietary data that has never been shared with scholars before and can lead to novel lines of inquiry.”

Toffel, whose own research examines how companies and regulators can improve environmental management and occupational safety, offers several suggestions for how scholars can steer their research toward real-world business problems. It starts with climbing down from the ivory tower and actually spending time with business practitioners: inviting them to meet on campus, attending industry conferences, visiting their companies, interviewing them, developing a practitioner advisory team, and maybe spending some time working as a practitioner. (For his own part, Toffel worked as director of the environment, health, and safety at Jebsen & Jessen, a Singapore-based manufacturing and engineering firm, before pursuing a full-time career in academia.)

That all takes time, of course, but Toffel argues that it’s time well spent. “Given the substantial time we already invest in any research project, a few days of due diligence does not seem too high a price to pay, even in one’s pre-tenure years when the opportunity cost of time seems especially high,” he writes.

Colleague David A. Moss concurs. “The first priority should always be to identify truly important problems to work on,” says Moss, the Paul Whiton Cherington Professor of Business Administration at HBS and founder of the Tobin Project, an independent, interdisciplinary initiative that uses academic research to tackle massive real-world problems like economic inequality, national security, and government regulation. “We’ve found that working with practitioners can be enormously productive in helping to identify critical real-world problems as the basis for new research.”

Interacting with business practitioners is especially helpful in garnering new ideas for behavioral scientists like Francesca Gino, whose research deals with the reality that humans are often irrational—and the fact that the logic of real-world decisions therefore sometimes flies in the face of established economic theory.

“Most of my research projects are motivated by puzzles or strange patterns of behavior I see in the real world,” says Gino, the Tandon Family Professor of Business Administration at HBS. “I’ve looked at questions like, Why is it that people often end up behaving in ways that are contrary to what they set out to do, despite their good intentions? Why is it that so many people are disengaged at work? What can leaders do to keep them engaged across time? Why is it that even people who care about morality end up behaving unethically? Why is it that people often feel inauthentic at work? What does that imply for their job satisfaction and productivity?”

Gino was motivated to investigate those questions by what she observed in organizations or society more broadly. “It is key for the research to make its way back to organizations and society: I want the answers to these questions to be known to [business] leaders and policymakers since they have the power to make changes for the better based on scientific findings.”

In 2012, Gino and several other colleagues a published an experimental study showing that organizations can encourage honest reporting on financial documents—for example, expense reports or tax forms—simply by moving the signature line to the top of the form so that signers declare they will tell the truth rather than declaring they have told the truth. In 2014, the White House assembled a cross-agency group called the Social and Behavioral Sciences Team, tasked with improving the efficacy of federal programs by leveraging the findings of behavioral science. The aforementioned study was one of the first that the team employed in a pilot test with the General Services Administration (GSA).

Vendors who make sales through the Federal Supply Schedules are required to pay an administrative fee (the Industrial Funding Fee), which is based on a fraction of their self-reported sales. To encourage more accurate self-reporting, the GSA moved the required signature box from the bottom to the top of the online payment form for a random sample of vendors. The result: The government collected an additional $1.59 million in fees within a three-month period. The median self-reported sales amount was $445 higher for those vendors signing at the top of the form.

But research doesn’t have to be explicitly applied research in order to prove practically relevant. In fact, basic research can help to predict—or even to prevent—real-world events years before they happen.

Case in point: In 1996, Max H. Bazerman and several colleagues published “Egocentric Interpretations of Fairness in Asymmetric, Environmental Social Dilemmas: Explaining Harvesting Behavior and the Role of Communication” in the journal Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes. The study looked at how individual self-serving biases can blur the judgment of decision-makers, who underestimate their inability to be objective. The core ideas of that basic research led to a 1997 MIT Sloan Management Review article, The Impossibility of Auditor Independence, which argued that “it is psychologically impossible for auditors to maintain their objectivity” and that “cases of audit failure are inevitable, even with the most honest auditors.”

That article “provided the most central criticism of the auditing institution—before Enron failed [in 2001],” says Bazerman, the Jesse Isidor Straus Professor of Business Administration at HBS, whose research focuses on business ethics.

Let Vendors Know The Research Exists -- In Language, They Can Understand

That leads to an important point: Once a scholar has conducted research that’s germane to practitioners, it’s important to let practitioners know that the research exists.

“Ultimately, I conduct research to try to help people,” says HBS Assistant Professor Alison Wood Brooks, who studies how emotions influence workplace behavior. “I can’t help people if they don’t know about my work.”

Explaining research in person is one way to reach them.

“I make time to talk to practitioners, presenting at industry conferences, at trade association events, and in webinars; testifying to regulators, and even explaining my work one-on-one to the policy staff trying to apply the ideas,” says Ben Edelman. “It’s a big commitment, but it’s worth it.”

Many business professors do occasional consulting work for large companies, which can prove mutually beneficial in terms of identifying and fixing problems. Gino often delivers keynotes about her research at corporate events, routinely attends practitioner-only conferences, and talks about her research when teaching business leaders in the Executive Education program at HBS. In “Enhancing the Practical Relevance of Research,” Toffel notes that when he and his colleagues presented their research on occupational safety to managers at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, “both they and we learned a lot.”

And let’s not forget small companies; some 90% of businesses in the United States have fewer than 20 employees, according to the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council. “I think universities cater to recent alums and big corporations,” says Paul Davis, co-founder and CEO of Intelligent Integration Systems, a small, Boston-based analytic software company, who sought feedback from business researchers when the company was starting up in 2005. “We found it was hard for a small [company] to get much attention at big schools.”

Writing is another way to reach practitioners, which requires using language they will understand. Alas, some academic journals discourage plain communication. So while a layperson would undoubtedly understand words like “helpful,” “rule of thumb,” and “tendency to hang out with similar people,” the editor of an academic research journal might prefer the academic terms “prosocial,” “heuristic,” and “homophily”—a word that runs rampant in social science literature, but which gets the red-squiggle-underline treatment in Microsoft Word.

(Case in point, see above: “Egocentric Interpretations of Fairness in Asymmetric, Environmental Social Dilemmas: Explaining Harvesting Behavior and the Role of Communication” vs. “The Impossibility of Auditor Independence.”)

“[Journal] editors and reviewers have sometimes asked me to reduce the use of informal language and substitute ‘scientific’ language,” says Greenstein. “Sometimes it is annoying because the informal writing covers topics that could be useful to others, but that is just the way it goes.”

Time-crunched practitioners who try to read research papers can find themselves thwarted by the obscurity of scholarly language. Consider Christopher Bell, co-founder and CEO of Zoomergy LLC, a software consultancy in Los Angeles. Bell is unusual among business leaders in that he actually seeks out research papers, but only to a point. “Making the leap from the research results to the actions I should take is not often clear,” he says. “And of course, time is limited so if the research is described in peculiar terms only used in a highly subspecialized academic niche, I’m not likely to even get to the conclusion let alone act on it.”

Thus, to reach business practitioners in writing, the best bet may be to write articles for industry trade magazines, mainstream business journals, or op-eds for newspapers, all of which are hurting for good content these days. Researchers who don’t have time to pitch articles to the popular press can post to a personal blog, or, on a less time-consuming scale, provide brief synopses of their research on Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter.

For the past 20 years Greenstein has written a 1,500-word column for IEEE Micro, a bimonthly magazine published by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, the world’s largest association of technical professionals. “The email responses can be very interesting and educational,” he says.

Gino has written articles for Harvard Business Review, the New York Times, Scientific American, and Huffington Post, among others—“with some pieces being rejected; that’s par for the course,” she says.

Edelman provides straightforward summaries of his research on his a personal website. “I can’t imagine being excited about writing articles read only by other academics,” he says. “I think I could do it. But it wouldn’t get me out of bed in the morning.”

Making Research Easy To Understand Is Not Always Easy

French mathematician Blaise Pascal famously wrote, “Je n’ai fait celle-ci plus longue que parce que je n’ai pas eu le loisir de la faire plus courte.” Loosely translated: “I have written a long letter because I didn’t have time to write a short one.” For sure, journal requirements aside, it can be a lot harder for an academic to explain research in layman’s terms than with academic jargon.

“For example, one professional statistician talking to another can cut a lot of corners by using specialized language,” says Greenstein. “It is very efficient. But sometimes it can be hard to explain to a non-statistician. It just is. Good statistics is actually quite challenging to do and explain. Econometrics is hard. That is an explanation, not an excuse.”

Fortunately, for academics, there are resources that can help them translate their research into accessible prose. For HBS professors, of course, there’s Working Knowledge, the publication you’re reading right now. But many general-interest publications employ editors who can help guide the process for scholars to write straightforward pieces about complex research.

Another good option for researchers: making business journalists aware of the research, and encouraging them to write about it themselves, in news articles and feature stories. Talking to journalists is an effective way to publicize research, but there are translation risks. For instance, journalists sometimes jump the gun and confuse correlation with causation.

The best way for scholars to mitigate that risk is to avoid jargon when talking to journalists and to keep the conversation focused on the research. “I try to only say things to journalists and practitioners that are backed by sound scientific evidence,” says Brooks. “And if I mention my own thoughts or opinions, I make sure to give a big fat disclaimer such as ‘I don’t have data on this, but…” or ‘This is just my opinion or speculation.’”

A note to researchers who talk to journalists: Before the interview, ask whether they plan to quote you, and if so, can you review the quotes for clarity and accuracy before publication. Many journalists are happy to oblige, time permitting. But don’t ask them if you can review the whole story beforehand; the answer will be no.

And a note to business journalists deciding whether to write about research: don’t ignore new research just because it lacks an obvious tie to current events. New research can provide an opportunity to be prescient about real-world events rather than retrospective. The research itself can be the news hook, although it may not be as obvious as, say, a breakthrough in cancer research.

Remember the aforementioned research by Bazerman et al., which explained the unconscious biases that cause auditors to do a bad job of auditing? Bazerman first pitched a piece on the subject to a practitioner-focused publication in the late 1990s, but the editors weren’t interested. However, they became very interested in the research the following millennium, after auditor Arthur Andersen was convicted of illegally destroying documents related to the US Securities and Exchange investigation of its client, the Enron Corporation.,

“They needed the collapse of Enron,” Bazerman says. “There’s an issue of managerial outlets not being interested in good ideas until they have become obvious.”

Harvard Business School’s Michael I. Norton and Duke University’s Dan Ariely have received a great deal of mainstream media attention on their this YouTube video, which has received more than 19 million views. But, Norton says, it took nearly 10 years for the media to pay attention to the line of research.

“We started that research in 2002,” says Norton, the Harold M. Brierley Professor of Business Administration at HBS. “Then some things happened in the world, and people started being interested in inequality.”

How Academic Institutions Can Change

It’s worth noting that Harvard Business School is unusual in that it stresses the importance of a strong interest in the concerns of practicing managers and in conducting theoretical, experimental, and field-based research that can influence “both academics and practitioners”among the faculty.

Institutional encouragement of practically relevant research is one way to shift the focus of academic studies, but Toffel argues for other fixes in his paper. He suggests academic journals do more to communicate with practitioners, inviting published authors to write companion pieces for practitioner readers, for example. In fact, the Strategic Management Journal now requires that accepted papers include managerial abstracts, and that journal and Academy of Management Perspectives have begun encouraging authors to create brief videos to explain their research to a broad audience.

Toffel also recommends that professional societies do more to promote and share relevant research with their members. Several societies already present awards to honor practically relevant research in their respective industries, he notes.

Finally, he argues that scholars need to learn the value of practical relevance from the start of their academic careers.

“We also need to encourage and train our doctoral students to nurture the desire to conduct relevant research and to acquire the knowledge to do so, including by encouraging them to engage with practitioners,” he writes.

In the end, the trend toward more applicable research will have to start with the researchers.

“My advice is to be true to yourself and your ideas,” says Edelman. “For those who have genuine and significant insights to provide to practitioners, the hope is that good idea will ultimately get the audience and recognition they deserve.”

Harvard Business School Working Knowledge offers an accessible look at the latest research and ideas from the faculty of Harvard Business School.

Source: This article was published forbes.com By Carmen Nobel

Source: This article was published deepwebsiteslinks.com

Illegal Search Engines is what you’re here for, and let me start by saying that they aren’t as bad as they sound.

Here, the concept of “illegal” doesn’t imply that using these search engines is illegal, what it does imply is that these search engines may help you stumble upon websites and link which may be illegal in some countries.

Or, these may be search engines which do not track you or invade your privacy and quite frankly do not care if you use them to get to the other side of the law (although I’ll strictly advise against it).

In simpler terms these are just better Search Engine than Google, better in the sense that they may display better, hidden, or exclusive results such as .onion links or they may grant you the privacy and anonymity that Google strips you off.

11 Best Illegal Search Engines to Browse the DarkNet.

Note that, using these Search Engines isn’t “illegal” by itself, although using the search engine, landing on an illegal deep web marketplace and then buying something or getting involved with anything illegal totally is illegal, even on the deep web!

Let’s teleport you to the land of Illegal Search Engines then?

Note: If you are first-time deep web user and you don’t know how to access the deep web links and how you can make secure you while at the deep web access then check out below-given guide.

First time user must read: How to access the deep web secure and anonymous.

1. Ahmia

Website: http://msydqstlz2kzerdg.onion/

It can in a sense be termed as one of the hidden search engines on the clearnet I suppose, for the reason that it is a search engine for .onion links, which are hidden on the Clearnet and can be browsed only on the Tor network!

Although Ahmia in itself is completely legal, and actually pretty trustworthy, backed by Tor2Web and Global Leaks projects!

The primary reason why I consider it better than Google is because of its display of hidden sites on the Tor network (.onion) which Google completely avoids.

So, if you know not where to start on the Deep web, this can be a pretty good place to do so!

2. The Uncensored Hidden Wiki

Website: http://zqktlwi4fecvo6ri.onion/wiki/index.php/Main_Page

Talking of “Starting points” for the Deep web, this quite literally is the answer. What does a search engine mean?

A place where you can find links to other important websites and places you can visit, something like that isn’t that right?

The Uncensored Hidden Wiki is exactly that, it lists most of the important, most visited and popular sites both legal and illegal (primarily, and mostly illegal) without discrimination for you to visit.

It’s more like an illegal search engines list in itself, or more like illegal websites list or a directory basically “illegal” being the key-word here.

Even though not every link over there works, 60-70% of them do, although you may want to visit our list of 30 Tor most popular Tor websites which has a 100% working link collection to Tor websites! (Illegal ones too, yeah!)

3. Parazite

Website: http://kpynyvym6xqi7wz2.onion

This is one of the hidden search engines I visit when I’m feeling bored, yeah it can totally turn your mood around with its “I’m feeling lucky” kind of feature.

Meaning, it can be used to land on random, unknown websites on the Deep web, which quite often turn out to be “not so legal” such as a Bitcoin money launderer maybe, or a porn website.

But, it does have that feeling you get when opening a door and not knowing what lies on the other side of it.

As a Search Engine, it not only brings “links” to you but a collection of hidden files and data caches as well, which include some of the most weird things such as real-life cannibalism documentaries or shocking photos/theories etc.

You should feel free to use Parazite as using it isn’t illegal, neither is landing on almost any page on the Deep web as long as you don’t “use” the page for your personal gains.

4. Tor Links

Website: http://torlinkbgs6aabns.onion/

It again is a link directory, something identical to the Uncensored Hidden Wiki, but obviously, it has its differences.

It has a better user-interface and is slightly graphic rich for starters, the links too differ although its categories section on top helps you narrow things down.

As it’s similar to the Hidden Wiki, it too is a great place for you to start if you just ventured on the Deep web and aren’t sure of your destinations.

Although it terms itself as “a moderated replacement for the Hidden Wiki”, pertaining to the fact that quite a few of the Hidden Wiki links are dead, and I found more of those “working” links here when compared to the Hidden Wiki.

Note that it does list illegal sites, and browsing them isn’t illegal, but try not to order something for yourselves over there.

It’s here on this list of Illegal search engines because it has links, a lot of them which are illegal pure and simple.

5. Torch

Website: http://xmh57jrzrnw6insl.onion/

TOR(CH) stands for TOR+ Search. Well, they also have a clearnet URL but I’m sure you wouldn’t want to use it for obvious reasons.

It’s one of the oldest search engines in the industry and claims to have an index of over a million pages which is plausible.

As for “Onion” pages, the number is 479613 to be exact, just short of half a million which we can live with.

The only aspect I’m not a fan of when it comes to Torch is its massive ad-spamming! There are ads on the homepage, on the search results and everywhere else.

It does totally fit the bill when it comes to illegal search engines because its onion version fearlessly displays not only search results, but even ads which clearly are on the other side of the law.

6. Not Evil

Website: http://hss3uro2hsxfogfq.onion/

Be fooled not by the simplicity that you witness in the above screenshot! Literally almost every website and article on the web about unconventional search engine has mentioned “Not Evil”.

Why? Well, when it has spent the better part of its existence indexing over 28056215 hidden links on the search engine, that’s something it deserves, don’t you agree?

Obviously, the number of hidden links is more, way more when compared to that of Torch.

You can filter if you wish to see only the “Title” of the result, or the complete “URL” hence putting you in the driver’s chair for your searches.

It also lets you chat with humans, or bots, instantly, with a single click without any kind of signup or registration so that’s a nice addition in case you wish to verify the authenticity of the deep web links or just talk about what to have for dinner.

7. Gibiru

Website: http://gibiru.com/

Gibiru markets itself as “Uncensored Anonymous Search”; so even though it doesn’t display .onion links, it still is better search engine than Google for the simple reason that it respects your privacy.

Some of its advanced privacy features include user agent spoofing, a free list of IP addresses to choose from, cookie deletion etc.

So basically, it not only “doesn’t” track you or your searches, but also provides you with some of the best ways to protect you further just in case.

I believe it’s the right fit for this illegal search engines list as it helps you keep your anonymity and privacy airtight just in case you have ulterior motives, or unconsciously land at a site, or do something which you shouldn’t do.

8. Duck Duck Go

Website: http://3g2upl4pq6kufc4m.onion/

Duck Duck Go doesn’t need an introduction, it not only is a popular clearnet search engine but also on the Tor network.

In fact, it’s the default search engine for the Tor browser as well.

It’s not one of those illegal search engines by any definition, and is almost the same thing as Google, with just a lot more privacy and anonymity than what Google offers.

It doesn’t track “any” information about its users (us), not history, nor cookies neither web activities. Because of this, the search results are exactly the same for everyone using the search engine because there’s no personalization.

But well I’ll trade my “personalized results” any day of the week for 100% privacy and “no-tracking” thing which is exactly what the browser offers.

9. HayStack

Website: http://haystakvxad7wbk5.onion/

Haystack has a tagline that reads – The Darknet search engine. I believe the Darknet does qualify as something illegal, or illicit in the least, so obviously yeah the Haystack deserves a seat at this illegal search engines table, don’t you agree?

And not just the tagline, it also has proved itself by indexing over 1.5billion pages! Now that’s a lot! Even though it includes historical onion links which may be dead at the moment, it still counts as an achievement.

They also claim to be the Darknet’s largest search engine although that’s something I haven’t personally verified so wouldn’t vouch for.

There seem to be no ads, none at all which is a good sign, and they do display illegal results directly from deep web marketplaces or individual sellers for drugsguns and everything else so I guess I was right to include this one here, isn’t that so?

10. Candle

Website: http://gjobqjj7wyczbqie.onion/

The candle is another one of those illegal search engines which don’t really care a lot about what you search for and is happy to serve.

For e.g. I searched for “drugs” and it got me quite a few links which redirected to some marketplaces for the same. It also showed “8793” results, which I’d say is a good indexation number for a term such as this, especially on the onion network.

Again, it only “displays” results which may be illegal, using Candle, or clicking on any of those isn’t illegal in most cases.

The logo seems to be a Google knockoff; although unlike Google there are no ads, no sidebars, basically nothing except Green and Blue text over a Black background.

Anyway, it displays onion results so I guess that satisfies what you came here for, search engine which searches and displays illegal search results, that about right?

11. WWW Virtual Library

Website: http://vlib.org

Finally, would you trust a search engine which is free, not regulated by the government, and was created by the same person who created “THE INTERNET”?

If you answered yes, well you just got your wish! WWW Virtual Library was created by Tim Berners Lee, and even though it’s not exactly a secret search engine cause it’s on the clearnet, it still is quite literally a virtual library.

Now, it also is the oldest data achieve on the internet, and even though it’s not as user-friendly or graphic-rich as the Billion dollar Google.com; it’s known to provide much better, research-oriented and data-rich information on just about any topic including Law, Agriculture, Fashion, Drama ah you name it.

It’s run by a group of volunteers across the globe, and they even accept new members if you’re an expert in something or a specific field and would like to contribute; unlike the centralized Google.

Bottomline, you may stumble upon some golden nuggets over here which Google or other clearnet search engines might be devoid of.

Conclusion

So, that’s a wrap folk as far as this piece on Illegal search engines goes. Now, considering you came here for these, here’s some friendly advise.

Never use any of these illegal search engines without Tor or a good VPN! Why? I said these weren’t illegal, right?

Well, yeah using these sites simply to “browse” isn’t illegal, but what if you land on a website showcasing child porn? Or get caught in something else which actually is illegal? You never know what lies on the other end of a .onion link.

So, it’s a good precaution to be cautious, using Tor along with a VPN will grant you the extra privacy and security you need to keep yourselves out of trouble even if something does happen, either intentionally or unintentionally.

Anyway, do let me know what you think of these illegal search engines, and what you think of this post as well. How? Just connect to us on our Facebook page!

Wednesday, 04 April 2018 15:36

Use Directories to Search the Invisible Web

If you're looking for simple ways to find what is available on the Invisible Web, curated directories like the ones listed in this article can be extremely useful tools to use. You can use any of these resources to find what is available on the Web that is not as easily searchable from a general search engine query. 

The Invisible Web is easily accessible..that is, if you know where to look. Many individuals and institutions have put together invisible Web directories, which you can use as a jumping off point to surf the Invisible Web.

Here are just a few:

  • The University of Michigan has put together OAIster, (pronounced "oyster") and encourages you to "find the pearls" on the Invisible Web. They have millions of records from more than 405 institutions as diverse as African Journals Online and the Library Network of Western Switzerland.
  • LookSmart's Find Articles.com lets you search print publications for articles; anything from popular magazines to scholarly journals. Be sure to check out their Furl tool to organize your Invisible Web search snippets.
  • The Library Spot is a collection of databases, online libraries, references, and other good info from the Invisible Web. Be sure to check out their "You Asked For It" section, where popular readers' questions are featured.
  • The US Government's official web portal is FirstGov.gov, an extremely deep (as in lots of content) site. You could spend hours here. It's interesting to note how much stuff you can get done online here as well, such as renew your driver's license, shop government auctions, and contact elected officials.
  • Search the vast holding of the UCLA Library online, including their special collections only found on the Invisible Web.
  • Check out Infoplease.com and its searchable Invisible Web databases. Results come from encyclopedias, almanacs, dictionaries, and other online resources only found on the Invisible Web.
  • The Central Intelligence Agency has the World Factbook, a searchable directory of flags of the world, reference maps, country profiles, and much, much more. Great for geography buffs or anyone who wants to learn more about their world.
  • The University of Idaho has created this Repository of Primary Sources, which contains links to manuscripts, archives, rare books, and much more. Covers not only the United States but countries all over the world.
  • Lund University Libraries maintains the Directory of Open Access Journals, a collection of searchable scientific and scholarly journals on the Invisible Web.
  • Looking for scientific information on the Invisible Web? Go to Scirus.com first. You can search either scholarly sources or Web sources or both.
  • Canada, ay? Then check out the Archival Records of Alberta. This is a web gateway to photographs, census records, and other archival records.
  • Want to find a plant that will survive overwatering, lack of sunlight, and general forgetfulness? You can probably find something in the USDA's Plants Database on the Invisible Web.
  • The Human Genome Database contains anything you would ever want to know..well, about the human genome on the Invisible Web, at least.
  • If you've got a medical question, check out The Combined Health Information Database, or CHID online. Its searchable subject directory is very user-friendly, and you can find information on pretty much anything to do with human health here.
  • Nonprofit organizations need searching tools too. The National Database of Nonprofit Organizations is an extensive site on the Invisible Web that not only provides locations and contact information for nonprofits but also gives detailed fiscal reports.
  • EEVL Xtra, a service put together by Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, Scotland. This excellent service has the ability to cross-search 20 engineering, mathematics and computing databases, including content from 50 publishers. Find articles, websites, and more on the Invisible Web.

Source: This article was published lifewire.com By Jerri Collins

After hours spent scrolling through Google and pulling up endless clickbait results, you’re frustrated with the internet. You have a paper to write, homework to do and things to learn. You know you won’t get away with citing Wikipedia or Buzzfeed in your research paper. Even the big news engines aren’t scholarly enough. You need reputable sources for your homework, and you need them now.

With so many resources online, it’s hard to narrow it down and find ones that are not only reliable and useful, but also free for students. We’ve saved you the time and picked out our 15 best free search engines for research.

15 scholarly search engines every student should bookmark

1. Google Scholar

Google Scholar was created as a tool to congregate scholarly literature on the web. From one place, students have the ability to hunt for peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, abstracts and articles from academic publishers, professional societies, preprint repositories, universities and other scholarly organizations.

2. Google Books

Google Books allows web users to browse an index of thousands of books, from popular titles to old, to find pages that include your search terms. Once you find the book you are looking for, you can look through pages, find online reviews and learn where you can get a hard copy.

3. Microsoft Academic

Operated by the company that brings you Word, PowerPoint and Excel, Microsoft Academic is a reliable, comprehensive research tool. The search engine pulls content from over 120 million publications, including scientific papers, conferences and journals. You can search directly by topic, or you can search by an extensive list of fields of study. For example, if you’re interested in computer science, you can filter through topics such as artificial intelligence, computer security, data science, programming languages and more.

4. WorldWideScience

WorldWideScience, which refers to itself as “The Global Science Gateway,” is operated by the Office of Scientific and Technical Information—a branch of the Office of Science within the U.S. Department of Energy. The site utilizes databases from over 70 countries. When users type a query, it hits databases from all over the world and will display both English and translated results from related journals and academic resources.

5. Science.gov

Science.gov is operated and maintained by the Office of Science and Technical Information, the same department that collaborates on WorldWideScience.org. This search engine pulls from over 60 databases, over 2,200 websites and 200 million pages of journals, documents and scientific data. Search results can be filtered by author, date, topic and format (text or multimedia).

6. Wolfram Alpha

A self-described “computational knowledge engine,” Wolfram Alpha does not so much provide search results as it does search answers. Simply type in a topic or question you may be interested in, such as, “What is the function of the pancreas?” and the answer will show up without making you scroll through pages of results. This is especially handy for those in need of math help.

7. Refseek

With its minimalist design, Refseek doesn’t look like much. However, the engine pulls from over one billion web pages, encyclopedias, journals and books. It is similar to Google in its functionality, except that it focuses more on scientific and academic results—meaning more results will come from .edu or .org sites, as well as online encyclopedias. It also has an option to search documents directly—providing easy access to PDFs of academic papers.

8. Educational Resources Information Center

Populated by the U.S. Department of Education, the Educational Resources Information Center (ERIC) is a great tool for academic research with more than 1.3 million bibliographic records of articles and online materials. ERIC provides access to an extensive body of education-related literature including journal articles, books, research syntheses, conference papers, technical reports, policy papers and more. With more than eight million searches each month, it’s no wonder why this search engine is a great web source for education.

9. Virtual Learning Resources Center

The Virtual Learning Resources Center (VLRC) is an online index hosting thousands of scholarly websites, all of which are selected by teachers and librarians from around the globe. The site provides students and teachers with current, valid information for school and university academic projects using an index gathered from research portals, universities and library internet subject guides recommended by teachers and librarians.

10. iSeek

iSeek is a great search engine for students, teachers and administrators alike. Simply ask a question or enter search topics or tools, and iSeek will pull from scholastic sources to find exactly what you are looking for. The search engine is safe, intelligent and timesaving—and it draws from trusted resources from universities, government and established non-commercial sites.

11. ResearchGate

ResearchGate is a unique social networking site for scientists and researchers. Over 11 million researchers submit their work, which totals more than 100 million publications, on the site for anyone to access. You can search by publication, data and author, or you can even ask the researchers questions. Though it’s not a search engine that pulls from external sources, ResearchGate’s own collection of publications provides a hearty selection for any inquisitive scholar.

12. BASE

The Bielefeld Academic Search Engine (BASE) prides itself as being “one of the world’s most voluminous search engines especially for academic web resources.” Utilizing 4,000 sources, the site contains results from over 100 million documents. The advanced search option allows users to narrow their research—so whether you’re looking for a book, review, lecture, video or thesis, BASE can provide the specific format you need.

13. Infotopia

Infotopia describes itself as a “Google-alternative safe search engine.” The academic search engine pulls from results that have been curated by librarians, teachers and other educational workers. A unique search feature allows users to select a category, which ranges from art to health to science and technology, and then see a list of internal and external resources pertaining to the topic. So if you don’t find what you’re looking for within the pages of Infotopia, you will probably find it in one of its many suggested sites.

14. PubMed Central

This site is perfect for those studying anything related to healthcare or science. PubMed Central is operated by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, a division of the U.S. National Library of Medicine. The database contains more than 3 million full-text journal articles. It’s similar to PubMed Health, which is specifically for health-related research and studies, and includes citations and abstracts to more than 26 million articles.

15. Lexis Web

Researching legal topics? Lexis Web is your go-to for any law-related inquiries you may have. The results are drawn from legal sites, which can be filtered by criteria such as news, blog, government and commercial. Users can also filter results by jurisdiction, practice area, source and file format.

Start searching

Pulling up an Internet search might be second nature to you by now. But a little forethought into where you begin your hunt can make your life much easier. Save yourself the time wading through basic Google search results and utilize some of these tools to ensure your results will be up to par with academic standards.

Do you know of any useful educational search engines that aren’t on this list? Let us know in the comments below!

Source: This article was published rasmussen.edu By Anna Heinrich

Friday, 09 March 2018 12:36

What Phishing and Email Scams Look Like

Internet Phishing Scam, Example 1

Here they are, revealed: the phishingcon games of the Internet. They prey on ignorance, tug your heart strings, and promise professional services while secretly taking your account numbers and passwords. Don't get suckered by these convincing phish emails and web pages! Take ten minutes and see what internet phishing and email scams really look like.

Probably the most damaging kind of email spoof is the "phishing" email. With this type of attack, a clever con artist is trying to lure you not to buy something, but to enter your account and password information, which can then be used for financial gain. Although eBay and PayPal are common targets, any company is fair game. This example above only shows one of many ways phishermen will attempt to con you into divulging your private information.

Be skeptical about any email that asks you to login through a link in the email. No legitimate online financial service will ever ask you to login this way.

Internet Investment Scam, example 2: Pump and Dump Investment

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to deceive you somehow. In this case, by artifically generating excitement around a stock, the con men can lure hundreds of people to purchase a particular stock. This purchasing excitement artificially inflates and "pumps up" the value of the stock, whereupon the con men will "dump" sell their own shares to reap the dishonest profits. This "pump and dump" spamming is a form of "phantom trading", which is illegal.

Be skeptical about any random unsolicited email that promises stock tips. If these were legitimate investment planners with legitimate stock advice, they would be dealing with their own existing clients, not recruiting via random email. As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet Lottery Scam, example 1

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.

Be skeptical about any email that claims you have won a prize. A legitimate lottery would not contact you via email; they would be calling you via telephone. And keep in mind: if you never entered the contest, how did you win? As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet Job Offer Scam, example 1

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.\

Be skeptical about any email that promises high profits for minimal investment. If it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet 419 Scam, Example 1

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.

Be skeptical about any email that asks you to move money, especially large sums. A legitimate financier would use legitimate means to move that kind of money. Even if they were only semi-legitimate: why would they find random people through random email to move millions of dollars? As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet Phishing Scam, example 2

Like all "phishing" emails and web pages, a clever con artist is trying to lure you into entering your account and password information. While eBay and PayPal users are the people most targeted by phishermen, anyone is fair game for them. This example above only shows one of many ways they will attempt to con you into divulging your private login information.

Be skeptical about any email that asks you to login through a link in the email. No legitimate online financial service will ever ask you to login this way.

Internet Phishing Scam, example 3

Like all "phishing" emails and web pages, a clever con artist is trying to lure you into entering your account and password information. While eBay and PayPal users are the people most targeted by phishermen, anyone is fair game for them. This example above only shows one of many ways they will attempt to con you into divulging your private login information.



Be skeptical about any email that asks you to login through a link in the email. No legitimate online financial service will ever ask you to login this way.

Internet Lottery Scam, example 2

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.

Be skeptical about any email that claims you have won a prize. A legitimate lottery would not contact you via email; they would be calling you via telephone. And keep in mind: if you never entered the contest, how did you win? As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet Phishing Scam, example 4

Like all "phishing" emails and web pages, a clever con artist is trying to lure you into entering your account and password information. While eBay and PayPal users are the people most targeted by phishermen, anyone is fair game for them. This example above only shows one of many ways they will attempt to con you into divulging your private login information.

Be skeptical about any email that asks you to login through a link in the email. No legitimate online financial service will ever ask you to login this way.

The 419 Internet Scam, Example 2:

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.



Be skeptical about any email that asks you to move money, especially large sums. A legitimate financier would use legitimate means to move that kind of money. Even if they were only semi-legitimate: why would they find random people through random email to move millions of dollars? As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet 419 Scam, example 3

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.

Be skeptical about any email that asks you to move money, especially large sums. A legitimate financier would use legitimate means to move that kind of money. Even if they were only semi-legitimate: why would they find random people through random email to move millions of dollars? As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet Scam: 419, example 4

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.

Be skeptical about any email that asks you to move money, especially large sums. A legitimate financier would use legitimate means to move that kind of money. Even if they were only semi-legitimate: why would they find random people through random email to move millions of dollars? As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet 419 Scam, example 5

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.

Be skeptical about any email that asks you to move money, especially large sums. A legitimate financier would use legitimate means to move that kind of money. Even if they were only semi-legitimate: why would they find random people through random email to move millions of dollars? As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet 419 Scam, example 6

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.



Be skeptical about any email that asks you to move money, especially large sums. A legitimate financier would use legitimate means to move that kind of money. Even if they were only semi-legitimate: why would they find random people through random email to move millions of dollars? As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet 419 Scam, example 7

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.

Be skeptical about any email that asks you to move money, especially large sums. A legitimate financier would use legitimate means to move that kind of money. Even if they were only semi-legitimate: why would they find random people through random email to move millions of dollars? As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet 419 Scam, example 8

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.

Be skeptical about any email that asks you to move money, especially large sums. A legitimate financier would use legitimate means to move that kind of money. Even if they were only semi-legitimate: why would they find random people through random email to move millions of dollars? As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet 419 Scam, example 9

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.

Be skeptical about any email that asks you to move money, especially large sums. A legitimate financier would use legitimate means to move that kind of money. Even if they were only semi-legitimate: why would they find random people through random email to move millions of dollars? As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet Lottery Scam, example 3

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.



Be skeptical about any email that claims you have won a prize. A legitimate lottery would not contact you via email; they would be calling you via telephone. And keep in mind: if you never entered the contest, how did you win? As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet Investment Scam, example 3: Pump and Dump Scamming

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to deceive you somehow. In this case, by artificially generating excitement around a stock, the con men can lure hundreds of people to purchase a particular stock. This purchasing excitement artificially inflates and "pumps up" the value of the stock, whereupon the con men will "dump" sell their own shares to reap the dishonest profits. This "pump and dump" spamming is a form of "phantom trading", which is illegal.

Be skeptical about any random unsolicited email that promises stock tips. If these were legitimate investment planners with legitimate stock advice, they would be dealing with their own existing clients, not recruiting via random email. As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet Lottery Scam, example 4

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.

Be skeptical about any email that claims you have won a prize. A legitimate lottery would not contact you via email; they would be calling you via telephone. And keep in mind: if you never entered the contest, how did you win? As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet Investment Scam, example 4

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.

Be skeptical about any random unsolicited email that promises stock tips. If these were legitimate investment planners with legitimate stock advice, they would be dealing with their own existing clients, not recruiting via random email. As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Internet Investment Scam, example 5

Like all con games, be they online or in person, the con man is trying to get you to entrust him with your cash or access to your cash.

Be skeptical about any random unsolicited email that promises stock tips. If these were legitimate investment planners with legitimate stock advice, they would be dealing with their own existing clients, not recruiting via random email. As with any smart skepticism: if it's too good to be true, it probably is a scam.

Source: This article was published lifewire.com By Paul Gil

The fake news problem is anything but fake. It has flooded all social media platforms and remains an issue that many still believe shaped the results of the 2016 American election. Well, turns out that Microsoft’s Bing also had a fake news problem. One YouTube channel gamed the Microsoft Search engine and flooded it with hoaxes and fake news videos (via The Verge.)

The problem at heart in the situation happened to be with the Bing autofill feature. For example, when a user clicks on the News section of Bing, the search bar can be auto-filled with a “Top Stories” suggestion. After clicking through, the same “top stories” query will then follow the user and autofill through other sections of the search engine, including Maps, Images, and more importantly, videos.

It is the videos section where “Top Stories” goes a bit rogue and linked users to fake news videos from the “Top Stories Today” YouTube channel. According to The Verge, examples of fake videos from the channel included “Breaking: Germany demands immediate prosecution of Obama” and “Russian is about to take out Obama permanently.” These videos reportedly racked up 83.6 million views, and are obviously aimed to promote Donald Trump and criticize Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

The fake news videos in Bing (Image via The Verge)

Microsoft has since removed this YouTube channel from the search results, and at the time of writing, we were unable to find these videos via a “Top Stories” query in Bing Videos. Instead, we were linked to videos to the USA Today YouTube channel, a much more reliable source.  Searches for “Top News today,” though, still linked us to fake news videos. Microsoft provided the following statement about this issue:

“As soon as we become aware of this type of content, we take action to remove it from news search results, which we are doing in this case.”

Bing previously received a Fact Check label feature to help users identify fake news, but the label only applied to web searches and not videos. Safe to say that Microsoft may have learned a lesson in this instance. Do you think that Bing needs more fact checking features? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

 Source: This article was published onmsft.com By ARIF BACCHUS

LONDON - Smartphones rule our lives. Having information at our fingertips is the height of convenience. They tell us all sorts of things, but the information we see and receive on our smartphones is just a fraction of the data they generate. By tracking and monitoring our behavior and activities, smartphones build a digital profile of shockingly intimate information about our personal lives.

These records aren’t just a log of our activities. The digital profiles they create are traded between companies and used to make inferences and decisions that affect the opportunities open to us and our lives. What’s more, this typically happens without our knowledge, consent or control.

New and sophisticated methods built into smartphones make it easy to track and monitor our behavior. A vast amount of information can be collected from our smartphones, both when being actively used and while running in the background. This information can include our location, internet search history, communications, social media activity, finances and biometric data such as fingerprints or facial features. It can also include metadata – information about the data – such as the time and recipient of a text message.

Your emails can reveal your social network. David Glance

Each type of data can reveal something about our interests and preferences, views, hobbies and social interactions. For example, a study conducted by MIT demonstrated how email metadata can be used to map our lives, showing the changing dynamics of our professional and personal networks. This data can be used to infer personal information including a person’s background, religion or beliefs, political views, sexual orientation and gender identity, social connections, or health. For example, it is possible to deduce our specific health conditions simply by connecting the dots between a series of phone calls.

Different types of data can be consolidated and linked to build a comprehensive profile of us. Companies that buy and sell data – data brokers – already do this. They collect and combine billions of data elements about people to make inferences about them. These inferences may seem innocuous but can reveal sensitive information such as ethnicity, income levels, educational attainment, marital status, and family composition.

A recent study found that seven in ten smartphone apps share data with third-party tracking companies like Google Analytics. Data from numerous apps can be linked within a smartphone to build this more detailed picture of us, even if permissions for individual apps are granted separately. Effectively, smartphones can be converted into surveillance devices.

The result is the creation and amalgamation of digital footprints that provide in-depth knowledge about your life. The most obvious reason for companies collecting information about individuals is for profit, to deliver targeted advertising and personalized services. Some targeted ads, while perhaps creepy, aren’t necessarily a problem, such as an ad for the new trainers you have been eyeing up.

Payday load ads. UpturnCC BY

But targeted advertising based on our smartphone data can have real impacts on livelihoods and well-being, beyond influencing purchasing habits. For example, people in financial difficulty might be targeted for ads for payday loans. They might use these loans to pay for unexpected expenses, such as medical bills, car maintenance or court fees, but could also rely on them for recurring living costs such as rent and utility bills. People in financially vulnerable situations can then become trapped in spiraling debt as they struggle to repay loans due to the high cost of credit.

Targeted advertising can also enable companies to discriminate against people and deny them an equal chance of accessing basic human rights, such as housing and employment. Race is not explicitly included in Facebook’s basic profile information, but a user’s “ethnic affinity” can be worked out based on pages they have liked or engaged with. Investigative journalists from ProPublica found that it is possible to exclude those who match certain ethnic affinities from housing ads, and certain age groups from job ads.

This is different to traditional advertising in print and broadcast media, which although targeted is not exclusive. Anyone can still buy a copy of a newspaper, even if they are not the typical reader. Targeted online advertising can completely exclude some people from information without them ever knowing. This is a particular problem because the internet, and social media especially, is now such a common source of information.

Social media data can also be used to calculate creditworthiness, despite its dubious relevance. Indicators such as the level of sophistication in a user’s language on social media and their friends’ loan repayment histories can now be used for credit checks. This can have a direct impact on the fees and interest rates charged on loans, the ability to buy a house, and even employment prospects.

There’s a similar risk with payment and shopping apps. In China, the government has announced plans to combine data about personal expenditure with official records, such as tax returns and driving offenses. This initiative, which is being led by both the government and companies, is currently in the pilot stage. When fully operational, it will produce a social credit score that rates an individual citizen’s trustworthiness. These ratings can then be used to issue rewards or penalties, such as privileges in loan applications or limits on career progression.

These possibilities are not distant or hypothetical – they exist now. Smartphones are effectively surveillance devices, and everyone who uses them is exposed to these risks. What’s more, it is impossible to anticipate and detect the full range of ways smartphone data is collected and used and to demonstrate the full scale of its impact. What we know could be just the beginning.

Source: This article was published enca.com

Deepfakes use facial recognition technology to superimpose faces on to porn stars.

An online community is using new technology to take photos of friends, ex-partners, and acquaintances from social media and superimpose them on to the faces of porn film actors.

Know as "deepfakes" after a Reddit user who pioneered the technique, artificial intelligence, and facial recognition technology is harnessed to replace the faces of actors in porn movies. Celebrities such as Star Wars actress Daisy Ridley and singer Taylor Swift are among high-profile figures to be targeted.

It has emerged that users are creating deepfakes using images of people they know without their permission. One person wrote on a deepfake chat room that they had used easily downloadable software to scrape hundreds of images from a classmate's Instagram and Facebook pages.

Such data can then be used to create a deepfake using software such as the FakeApp application, Motherboard reported.

"Hi, I want to make a pron video with my ex-girlfriend. But I don't have high-quality videos wither, but I have a lot of good photos," wrote one user on a Reddit forum.

The technology is in its early stages and it is difficult to create seamless footage without the dimensions of the faces matching up. One user wrote on the chat room Discord: "It really only works well for simple vids without too much head movement"

Deepfakes are a subset of a genre of porn that has long existed online, where community members find lookalike actors who resemble friends, former partners and celebrities or swap faces in pornographic photographs. Experts fear, however, that programs which seamlessly superimpose faces on to porn stars will usher in a new era of hyper-realistic doppleganger porn that could be used for blackmail.

"The influx of fast-paced developments in technology is making it very difficult for the law to keep pace and adequately support victims," Luke Patel, a solicitor partner at Blacks Solicitors in Leeds, told IBTimes UK.

He explained that if a person could prove that the use of their image had caused serious harm to their reputation they could launch a libel case. That could be costly. Data protection laws could also be used.

However, he added: "Unfortunately, the long arm of the law is just simply not long enough or equipped to deal quickly with such fast changes in the digital world.

"The pressure and responsibility to curb such activity can only lie with the internet platforms and more needs to be done to clamp down on them and for them to ensure tighter controls are in place to ensure that their platforms are not used for such elicit activities."

The actions of deepfake creators are not going entirely unchecked. Discord recently closed down a room dedicated to the practice.

It told Business Insider: "Non-consensual pornography warrants an instant shutdown on the servers whenever we identify it, as well as a permanent ban on the users. We have investigated these servers and shut them down immediately."

A moderator on Reddit's "doppelbanger" forum dedicated to lookalike porn urged users: "Please be aware of how someone might feel about finding their picture here."

Source: This article was published ibtimes.co.uk By Kashmira Gander

Each day, Benzinga takes a look back at a notable market-related moment that occurred on this date.

What Happened?

On this day 22 years ago, Open Text Corp (USA) OTEX 0.89%became the first internet search engine company to go public.

Where Was The Market?

The S&P 500 was trading at 635.84 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average was at 5373.99.

What Else Was Going On In The World?

In 1996, a Mad Cow Disease epidemic in the U.K. resulted in the mass slaughter of entire herds of cows. The number of global internet users reached 10 million. The minimum hourly wage in the U.S. was raised to $5.15 per hour.

The Beginning Of Something Big

Investors today know Alphabet Inc GOOG 2.35%GOOGL 2.07% and its Google search engine as the dominant force in internet search and advertising. However, more than eight years before Google went public in 2004, there wasn’t a single internet search company trading on a major U.S. exchange.

Open Text changed that story when it held its IPO in February 1996. Open Text led the charge of search engine IPOs and was followed by Lycos, Excite and Yahoo within four months time.

Compared to the other search engine stocks of the Dot Com Bubble, (notably Yahoo) Open Text’s run-up was relatively modest. The company’s market cap peaked at just around $1.3 billion in early 2000 before crashing back down to around $400 million later in the year.

Open Text still trades on the Nasdaq to this day. The company now develops and sells enterprise information management software.

 Source: This article was published benzinga.com By Wayne Duggan, Benzinga Staff

Friday, 26 January 2018 13:45

How to use TOR

The feeling that you're being watched is sadly no longer considered paranoia, but just a fact of life. Our activities are monitored online for a number of reasons regardless of if we agree with them or not. To keep your web browsing to yourself, TOR is the perfect tool.

With privacy becoming much more of a pressing issue in today’s modern world both online and off, many people are turning to use The Onion Router (TOR) for their web browsing.

TOR offers a wide array of privacy protection when moving between websites, preventing your ISP from recording the sites that you are visiting. If you’d like to shake the feeling that every move you make online is being recorded, then using TOR will make it virtually impossible to track your movements across the web.

Using a VPN for general security and peace of mind when online is highly recommended. They're very easy to set up and use, and unobtrusive to work with. Check out our list of the best VPNs of 2018 here.

How to use TOR

Considering the level of security and the technology behind it, TOR is very easy to use as it functions just like a regular web browser.

Start off by downloading and installing the TOR browser.

Fire it up, and you’ll have a settings box pop up. Click “Connect” to move forward.

The TOR browser will then connect to the network which may take a few moments, as your connection is routed through several different nodes around the world, making it almost impossible to track. Once this connection has been made, the browser will be ready to use.

While it might look a little less fancy than a regular browser, it will function in much the same as Chrome, Edge, and Firefox (TOR is based on Firefox code).

The goal of TOR is to strike a balance between your web security and efficiency when moving around the web.  You could have the highest level of TOR security activated, but it would take you longer to load pages and certain elements on the page wouldn’t load at all.

To adjust this level of security, click on the green onion to the left of the address bar at the top left. The more security you apply, the slower and less complete your experience may become – but the safer you will be. It’s a balancing act that comes down to personal preference, but even the lowest security rating allows you to be far more secure compared to using a regular browser.

If you’re using the internet, you’re almost certainly using a search engine like Google or Bing. To stop these sites from tracking you online, you’ll have to start using a search engine such as DuckDuckGo or Disconnect.me which will stop your data being harvested as you search.

TOR also allows you to access sites with the “.onion” address. These sites are not found by search engines, and you have to access them directly. They offer one of the most secure ways to access information on the internet, but that does also mean that because of their anonymity and security, they can contain illegal content – so do take care.

Source: This article was published techadvisor.co.uk By Sean Bradley

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