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Communications of the ACM

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An edited collection of advanced computing news from Communications of the ACM, ACM TechNews, other ACM resources, and news sites around the Web.


Access Denied: Faulty Automated Background Checks Freeze Out Renters
From ACM News

Access Denied: Faulty Automated Background Checks Freeze Out Renters

Computer algorithms that scan everything from terror watch lists to eviction records spit out flawed tenant screening reports. And almost nobody is watching.

Microsoft Bans Police Face Recognition Sales as Big Tech Reacts to Protests
From ACM News

Microsoft Bans Police Face Recognition Sales as Big Tech Reacts to Protests

The announcement came a day after rival Amazon.com declared it was pausing police use of its "Rekognition" service for a year.

Younger People, Users of Niche Social Media Platforms More Likely to Share Covid-19 Disinformation
From ACM TechNews

Younger People, Users of Niche Social Media Platforms More Likely to Share Covid-19 Disinformation

More than half of respondents to the study who shared disinformation were 39 or younger.

U.S. Voting Data from Millions of People is Being Traded on the Dark Web
From ACM TechNews

U.S. Voting Data from Millions of People is Being Traded on the Dark Web

Researchers have found that data on millions of U.S. voters is being illegally traded on parts of the Internet not searchable using normal means.

NYU Report Calls On Social Media Titans to Stop Outsourcing Content Moderation
From ACM TechNews

NYU Report Calls On Social Media Titans to Stop Outsourcing Content Moderation

A New York University report urges social media companies to stop outsourcing the moderation of their content.

AI vs. AI
From ACM News

AI vs. AI

Financial institutions use AI to create "synthetic identities" for customers; hackers use 'bad' AI to fool the 'good' AI.

Untold History of AI: Algorithmic Bias Was Born in the 1980s
From ACM News

Untold History of AI: Algorithmic Bias Was Born in the 1980s

A medical school thought a computer program would make the admissions process fairer—but it did just the opposite.

Amazon Pauses Police Use of Its Facial Recognition Software
From ACM News

Amazon Pauses Police Use of Its Facial Recognition Software

The company said it hoped the moratorium "might give Congress enough time to put in place appropriate rules" for the technology.

Evidence Suggests The U.S. Loses Hundreds of Billions to Cybercrime
From ACM TechNews

Evidence Suggests The U.S. Loses Hundreds of Billions to Cybercrime

The U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology estimates 2016 losses due to cybercrime exceeded $160 billion.

IBM Will No Longer Offer, Develop, or Research Facial Recognition Technology
From ACM News

IBM Will No Longer Offer, Develop, or Research Facial Recognition Technology

IBM's CEO says we should reevaluate selling the technology to law enforcement.

The Epic Battle Against Coronavirus Misinformation and Conspiracy Theories
From ACM TechNews

The Epic Battle Against Coronavirus Misinformation and Conspiracy Theories

Scientists worldwide are scrambling to track and counter the spread of misinformation and conspiracy theories about the coronavirus pandemic.

Colorblind Users Push Technology Designers to Use Signals Beyond Color
From ACM TechNews

Colorblind Users Push Technology Designers to Use Signals Beyond Color

Colorblind users are pressing technology developers to redesign products to accommodate their disability.

Encrypted Messaging App Signal Adds Facial Recognition Protection for Protesters
From ACM TechNews

Encrypted Messaging App Signal Adds Facial Recognition Protection for Protesters

The Signal encrypted messaging app is introducing a blur tool to hide faces in photos before sharing them.

Germany, France Hope Cloud Data Project to Boost Sovereignty
From ACM TechNews

Germany, France Hope Cloud Data Project to Boost Sovereignty

Germany and France have launched a project to establish a European cloud computing platform.

In Virus-Hit South Korea, AI Monitors Lonely Elders
From ACM TechNews

In Virus-Hit South Korea, AI Monitors Lonely Elders

SK Telecom operates an artificial intelligence-powered network of voice-enabled "smart" speakers to monitor thousands of seniors during the coronavirus pandemic...

Fake News Gets Shared More When It is Angry, Anxiety-Inducing
From ACM TechNews

Fake News Gets Shared More When It is Angry, Anxiety-Inducing

Researchers in China have found that fake news may go viral more quickly when it uses words associated with anger.

Butterfly Landmines Mapped by Drones, Machine Learning
From ACM TechNews

Butterfly Landmines Mapped by Drones, Machine Learning

Researchers say drones and advanced machine learning can be used to detect improvised explosive devices and butterfly landmines.

Algorithms Used in Policing Face Policy Review
From ACM TechNews

Algorithms Used in Policing Face Policy Review

The U.S. Government Accountability Office last month published the first half of a review of privately developed algorithms used in policing.

Publishers Sue Internet Archive Over Free E-Books
From ACM News

Publishers Sue Internet Archive Over Free E-Books

Penguin Random House, HarperCollins, Hachette,  and Wiley accused the nonprofit of piracy for making over 1 million books free online.

National Security Agency Exposes Tool Used by Russian Hackers
From ACM TechNews

National Security Agency Exposes Tool Used by Russian Hackers

The U.S. National Security Agency last week accused Russian hackers of exploiting a software vulnerability in Linux computers.
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