The People GoFundMe Leaves Behind

citadrianne shares a report from The Outline: President Donald Trump’s proposed budget seeks to slash $ 54 billion from social services including programs like Medicaid and Meals on Wheels. As these resources dry up, crowdfunding websites will further entrench themselves as extra-governmental welfare providers in order to fill the gap. For a lucky few, these sites are a lifeline. For most people, they are worthless. Crowdfunding’s fatal flaw is that not every campaign ends up getting the money it needs. A recent study published in the journal Social Science & Medicine found that more than 90 percent of GoFundMe campaigns never meet their goal. For every crowdfunding success story, there are hundreds of failures. “As many happy stories as there are in charitable crowdfunding, there are a lot of really worthy causes when you browse these platforms that nobody has given a cent to,” Rob Gleasure, professor at the business school of the National University of Ireland, Cork told The Outline. “People haven’t come across them.”
Feller and Gleasure’s report highlighted how fickle crowdfunding can be. Of all the Razoo campaigns started in 2013, they found, more than a third didn’t receive any funding at all. According to their report, donors are more likely to give to campaigns that feature lots of pictures and accompanying text.

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The Science Behind the Paris Climate Accords

Lasrick writes: The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists offers a pretty thorough run-down of the pros and cons of the Paris climate accords. William Sweet examines not only the political machinations behind the agreement but much of what the agreement entails and how it got there after 21 years of COP meetings. “As for the tighter 1.5-degree standard, this is a complicated issue that the Paris accords fudge a bit. The difference between impacts expected from a 1.5-degree world and a 2-degree world are not trivial. The Greenland ice sheet, for example, is expected to melt in its entirely in the 2-degree scenario, while in a 1.5-degree world the odds of a complete melt are only 70 percent… But at the same time the scientific consensus is that it would be virtually impossible to meet the 1.5-degree goal because on top of the 0.8–0.9 degrees of warming that already has occurred, another half-degree is already in the pipeline, ‘hidden away in the oceans,’ as Schellnhuber put it.” In an additional audio recording of a teleconference briefing given to the Bulletin’s Science and Security Board and other leading scientists and policy makers, Sivan Kartha and Richard Somerville (both on the S & S Board) explain what was accomplished (and not accomplished).

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WordPress Hacks Behind Surging Neutrino EK Traffic

msm1267 writes: More than 2,000 websites running WordPress have been compromised and are responsible for a surge this week in traffic from the Neutrino Exploit Kit. Attacks against sites running older versions of the content management system, 4.2 and earlier, were spotted by Zscaler. Those sites are backdoored and redirect a victim’s browser through iframes to a landing page hosting the exploit kit where a Flash exploit awaits. The exploits generally target Internet Explorer, Zscaler said, and victims’ computers are eventually infected with CryptoWall 3.0 ransomware. This analysis is in line with a similar report from the SANS Institute, which pointed the finger at a particular cybercrime group that had steered away from using the prolific Angler Exploit Kit and moved operations to Neutrino.

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NBC Report: Russian Hackers Behind Attack On Pentagon Mail System

New submitter packetspike alerts us to a story at CNBC, according to which U.S. officials have told NBC News that Russian hackers are behind a “sophisticated cyberattack” against the unclassified email system used by the Pentagon’s Joint Staff , which has since been shut down and taken off line. “According to the officials, the “sophisticated cyber intrusion” occurred sometime around July 25 and affected some 4,000 military and civilian personnel work for the Joint Chiefs of Staff.” The story claims that it’s unclear whether the mail-system’s attackers were backed by the Russian government. (Expect more to come on this story.)

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Behind the Microsoft Write-Off of Nokia

UnknowingFool writes: Previously Microsoft had announced that they had written off the Nokia purchase for $ 7.6B in the last quarter. In doing so, Microsoft would create only the third unprofitable quarter in the company’s history. Released on July 31, new financial documents detail some of the reasoning and financials behind this decision. At the core of the problem was that the Phone Hardware business was only worth $ 116M, after adjusting for costs and market factors. One of those factors was poor sales of Nokia handhelds in 2015. Financially it made more sense to write it all off.

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Symantec: Hacking Group Black Vine Behind Anthem Breach

itwbennett writes: Symantec said in a report that the hacking group Black Vine, which has been active since 2012 and has gone after other businesses that deal with sensitive and critical data, including organizations in the aerospace, technology and finance industries, is behind the hack against Anthem. The Black Vine malware Mivast was used in the Anthem breach, according to Symantec.

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