How One Company You’ve Never Heard Of Swallowed Tens Of Thousands Of Text Messages — Then Spit Them Back Out
People woke up to strange text messages from friends and loved ones. The messages had actually been sent months earlier, on Valentine’s Day, but had been frozen in place by a glitched server and were only shot out when the system was finally fixed nine months later.
The People’s NSA
Meet the hackers who are working with investigative journalists to expose organized crime and corruption by some of the world’s most sinister governments. Those governments are going to great lengths to shut down investigative reporting through cyber attacks and other intimidation tactics.
Moving Millions, Leaving Mayhem
Garda bought its way into the U.S. armored car industry in 2005, swallowing rivals until it blanketed the nation. But in its rush to grow, Garda took shortcuts that put unsafe trucks and error-prone drivers on the road. The result has been armored trucks hurtling out of control in communities across America.
The Spider’s Web: Britain’s Second Empire
Michael Oswald’s film The Spider’s Web reveals how at the demise of empire, City of London financial interests created a web of secrecy jurisdictions that captured wealth from across the globe and hid it in a web of offshore islands. Today, up to half of global offshore wealth is hidden in British jurisdictions.
The Soviets’ Unbreakable Code
Created at the end of World War II and introduced in 1956, the Fialka replaced the Albatross, a Soviet cipher machine that was itself more complex than the Enigma. By the 1970s, Fialka encryption machines had been widely adopted by Warsaw Pact and other communist nations, and they remained in use until the early 1990s.
Hangover Inc.: The Companies Getting You Over Last Night
Once a hush-hush luxury for the quietly-pampered, banana bags outside the hospital are hitting the mainstream. Nurses stand ready to provide intravenous care to the dehydrated, alcoholically and otherwise, in their homes and hotel rooms, at walk-in centers and on a hangover bus for special events.
In The Race For Cheap Airfare, It’s You vs. The Machine
Travel providers now use artificial intelligence software to re-price their offerings, sometimes dozens of times a day, to maximize revenue. For business and leisure travelers, the result is a variation of the cat-and-mouse game, where travel companies are almost always the cat.
Infinite Scroll: Life Under Instagram
The speed of machine learning is startling, often creepy. It is hard to tell what is creepier: the feeling that someone is somewhere out there, following your every step, or the fact that no one is, just the tracking device you carry with you in your pocket.
Craft Beer Has A Diversity Problem
Dom Cook discovered craft beer by accident. A Bronx father searching for inspiration after the death of his infant son, he picked up The Search for God and Guinness, his eye drawn to “Search for God.” In 2017 Cook launched Beer Kulture, a lifestyle brand that welcomes black drinkers to the craft community.
I Lost My Identity To A Fraudster, And It Took Six Years To Clean Up The Mess
This essay is going to scare you. There is a better-than-average chance that, at some point in the last several years, your personal information was stolen. Not something small like a credit card account, but the good stuff, your Social Security number coupled with your birthdate.
How Ads Follow You Around The Internet
The Ever-Growing Car: Why Do They Keep Getting Wider?
We all know cars getting bigger and heavier. Most of us know why they are getting bigger, too. To comply with today’s stringent crash regulations – by passing offset, side and roof impact tests, as well as those evaluating pedestrian protection performance – cars require considerable cubic metres of controllably crushable bodywork.
Credit Card Companies Are Tracking Shoppers Like Never Before
Transactions have given rise to a complex data-selling ecosystem. At the heart of it are credit card processing networks, including Visa, American Express, and Mastercard, the latter of which took in $4.1 billion in 2019 for services that include marketing analytics as well as fraud detection.
When Her Best Friend Died, She Rebuilt Him Using Artificial Intelligence
It had been three months since Roman Mazurenko, Kuyda’s closest friend, had died. Kuyda had spent that time gathering up his old text messages, setting aside the ones that felt too personal, and feeding the rest into a neural network built by developers at her artificial intelligence startup.
How To Prepare Your Kids For Jobs That Don’t Exist Yet
Artificial Intelligence will rule the jobs of the future, so learning how to work with it will be key. “There’s three job opportunities coming in the future,” says Avi Goldfarb. He divides them up into people who build AI, people who tell the machines what to do and determine what to do with their output, and, finally, celebrities.
Swarms of Teeny Robo-Tractors Will Outmaneuver Tesla’s Driverless Cars
While Elon Musk’s Tesla and Waymo Cars get all the attention — and regulations — autonomous vehicles for farming face fewer tech barriers and could be just as important.
Tim Westergren, Digital Radio Pioneer, Returns To Break The Music Industrial Complex
Disillusioned after leaving Pandora, Tim Westergren set out to create a better kind of streaming platform. His new Sessions app helps musicians get paid. Can he save struggling artists while redeeming himself?
The Citizen Scientist Who Finds Killers From Her Couch
CeCe Moore has no scientific degree. Like other prominent figures in the genealogy community, she is self-taught. Moore is, in her own estimation, among the most experienced genetic genealogists in the world. Now she is using her genetic knowledge to expose murderers.
The Myth Of The Ethical Shopper
What has happened in those sweatshops since they became a cultural fixation three decades ago? All sources led to the same conclusion: Boycotts have failed. Our clothes are being made in ways that advocacy campaigns can’t affect and in places they can’t reach. So how are we going to stop sweatshops now?
Where Amazon Returns Go To Be Resold By Hustlers
Liquidity Services, the operator of liquidation.com, became a major (though not exclusive) handler of Amazon’s American liquidations. The company calls dealing with returns “the reverse supply chain”—a part of the retail business that has been growing in importance as online shopping becomes more popular.
How Silicon Valley Ruined Work Culture
More and more offices are adopting the work culture invented by the technology upstarts. These are not the offices where your grandparents worked, clocking out at 5 sharp, eyeballing the corner office. There is no corner office here—just “hot desks” and open floor plans, wide as the prairie.