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The Dumb ‘Smart’ Gear That Someone’s Gonna Hack in 2017
USA Created: 12 Jan 2017
Another year, another menagerie of devices that inexplicably connect to the internet - And while you can debate the usefulness of putting Wi-Fi in every last appliance in your home, it undoubtedly gives hackers more easy targets.

There’s a cartoonish version of a world full of hacked hair brushes and patio umbrellas, one in which bad actors transform smart objects into hostile trinkets. In some cases, as with many baby monitor models, that’s actually happened. The more realistic scenario, though, is usually more boring on a local level but potentially devastating on a large scale. Internet-connected devices, if not properly secured, can be roped into botnets capable of making web sites inaccessible to huge numbers of people.

The following smart devices aren’t necessarily insecure. They’re also not necessarily bad ideas. They do, though, introduce potentially vulnerable devices into the home in areas that were, for the most part, doing just fine being dumb.

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Source: WIRED, Brian Barret, 11 Jan 2017

Majority of cell phones on market may exceed FCC’s stated RF safety limit: FCC mute on issue
USA Created: 11 Jan 2017
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC)’s General Counsel, Howard Symons, Esq, and Associate Chief Counsel in the Office of Engineering and Technology, Bruce Romano, Esq, have offered no acknowledgement or reply to an inquiry posing questions about whether the FCC is adequately enforcing its existing cell phone radiation safety limits.

The inquiry letter to the FCC from Swankin & Turner in Washington, D.C. was sent September 9, 2016 on behalf of the National Institute for Science, Law & Public Policy (NISLAPP) and the Environmental Health Trust (EHT). Now four months later, the FCC’s lack of reply to important questions contained in the letter raises serious concerns of regulatory responsibility and competency.

The inquiry letter to the FCC suggests as many as 75% of cell phones on the market today may possibly exceed the FCC’s exposure limit of 1.6 W/kg peak spatial Specific Absorption Rate (psSAR), due to a +/-30% margin of error (or uncertainty factor) in the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) methodology for assessing psSAR (on which the FCC’s exposure limits are substantially based). Any phone with a psSAR of greater than 1.231 W/kg with the 30% uncertainty factor could theoretically exceed the 1.6 W/kg FCC limit.

Examples of how various popular phones brands, and wireless transmitting devices (WTDs) such as tablets, may easily exceed the FCC’s limit, with psSARs as high as 2.08 W/kg, were included with the letter as Exhibit A.

The inquiry letter to the FCC from Swankin & Turner also posed other questions regarding FCC oversight of cell phone and wireless transmitting devices, including how the FCC considers its current safety limit to protect children if the psSAR assessment methodology the FCC uses was never intended to protect children.

L. Lloyd Morgan, Senior Research Fellow, Environmental Health Trust, says, “We urge the media, all cell phone users and public health officials to contact the FCC, as well as members of Congress, demanding a response to this important letter of inquiry. It appears many cell phones on the market should never have been certified.“

Camilla Rees, Senior Policy Advisor, National Institute for Science, Law & Public Policy, says, “The FCC has failed to protect children, despite scientific evidence there is significantly greater absorption of cell phone radiation in the brain and bone marrow of the skull in children, compared to adults. So the question of how the FCC considers its safety limits to protect children calls for an immediate and urgent reply. An entire generation looks to be at risk.”

Dr. Devra Davis, PhD, President of the scientific and policy research organization, Environmental Health Trust, adds, “The issues raised in this inquiry letter highlight the FCC’s failures to protect public health. We urge FCC leadership in the new Administration to come to the table with integrity to see that the important questions raised here are answered thoroughly, and that steps are taken to assure compliance with the FCC’s psSAR microwave radiation safety limit.”

Environmental Health Trust
Devra Davis, PhD
Founder & President
info {-at-}
L. Lloyd Morgan, B.S.
Senior Research Fellow
Lloyd.L.Morgan {-at-}
National Institute for Science, Law & Public Policy
Camilla Rees, MBA
Senior Policy Advisor
crgr {-at-}
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Source: Environmental Health Trust, BusinessWire, 10 Jan 2017

Italian Epidemiologist Distorts Power Line Risks
USA Created: 10 Jan 2017
Facts don’t seem to mean much anymore - We live in a “post-truth” time. As 2017 opened for business, a stark example of the new reality came to our attention courtesy of Paolo Boffetta, an Italian epidemiologist now at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City.

In an interview with Fox News, Boffetta said that the link between power lines and childhood leukemia had been debunked. In response to a question as to whether it was safe for a pregnant woman to live next to “huge power lines,” Boffetta advised that there was no reason for concern.

Boffetta has lost his truth compass. The power-frequency EMF link to cancer stands.

This is not the first time Boffetta has courted controversy. His work as an expert witness defending a company accused of negligence for exposing workers to asbestos has rankled the international public health community. One of the leading Italian newspapers has called him the “devil's advocate.”

Boffetta now helps set cancer prevention policy at Mount Sinai medical school. This is the same medical center where Irving Selikoff did his landmark studies showing the toxicity of asbestos. What would Selikoff say if he were alive today?

Read our story here:

Louis Slesin, PhD
Editor, Microwave News
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Source: Microwave News, Louis Slesin PhD, 09 Jan 2017

BioInitiative Working Group Issues a “No Confidence” Letter to the WHO EMF Program Manager
USA Created: 21 Dec 2016
The BioInitiative Working Group has advised the World Health Organization’s Emilie van Deventer that the membership composition of the RF Environmental Health Criteria Core Group is unacceptable. WHO is urged to make changes to the WHO RF EHC Core Group membership to more fairly reflect membership and expertise of the 2011 IARC RF Working Group. At present the WHO RF EHC Core Group is indistinguishable from ICNIRP (1, 2) undermining credibility of the process and ensuring doubt about conclusions.

*SNIP* read the entire letter via the source link below...
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Source: BioInitiative Working Group, 19 Dec 2016

Getting It Wrong, Wrong, Wrong - New Book Dismisses Cell Phone Risks
USA Created: 9 Dec 2016
An epidemiologist at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City has written a new book that, according to the publisher, offers a "much-needed antidote to what has been called 'an epidemic of false claims'." One of these is that cell phones might cause brain cancer.

What purports to be common sense advice about how to evaluate health risks is anything but. It's nothing more than industry pseudoscience.

The public deserves better --so does Albert Einstein.

Read our review of this bad little book, with the misleading title, Getting Risk Right.

Louis Slesin, PhD
Editor, Microwave News
Click here to view the source article.
Source: Microwave News, Louis Slesin, 05 Dec 2016

Wi-Fi Health Hazards Shown in Video Series
USA Created: 9 Dec 2016
Wi-Fi health advocate Cecilia Doucette and parent Keith Marciniak have created a five-part YouTube series that describes the health hazards of pulsed electro-magnetic radiation that floods the environment.

The series covers radiation sources such as cellphones, computers, iPads, cordless phones, cell towers, and Wi-Fi routers that are in most classrooms in the U.S.

Episodes are “Discovering the Dangers”; “Educating the Greater Community”; “Why We Don’t Know”; “Impacts of Excessive Screen Time,” and “Solutions.”

Doucette has lectured at the Ashland, Mass., library, which earlier this year hosted a six-part series on the dangers of radiation.

BULLETIN: Apple now recommends using a headset when talking to the iPhone Activate the hands-free option. It tells users to carry the iPhone at least 5 mm [one-fifth of an inch] away from the body. Says Apple: "This ensures that the load is not above the values determined in the tests. Enclosures with metal parts [i..e., cars, buses, trains, planes] may alter the RF (high-frequency) performance of the equipment and adversely affect its compliance with the RF power guidelines in a manner that has not been tested or certified."

Apple is reacting to measurements that show its two latest products, the iPhone 7 and the iPhone 7 plus, have a significantly higher radiation load than older models. Both products are at the so-called SAR value (specific absorption rate) at up to 1.38.

*SNIP* read the entire article via the source link below...
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Source: O'Dwyers, Jack O'Dwyer, 09 Dec 2016

Cell Phone Exposure To Radiation…What Do You Know About It?
USA Created: 24 Nov 2016
Technology is here to stay and the use of cell phones from elementary schools to adults in our society can be found everywhere. There is no doubt that cell phones have become a necessity for many individuals throughout the world. The ability to keep in touch with family, business associates and access to email are only a few of the reasons for the increasing importance of cell phones. The reality is most people have phones in their pockets, purses and with kids in their hoodies.

However, many cell phones users are not aware that the cell phones emit microwave or radio frequency radiation (RFR). Recent scientific studies have shown that this type of radiation, previously thought to be safe, has measureable and potentially harmful biological effects on people. According to health officials, the unborn and young children are among the most vulnerable to this type of radiation. Groups such as the American Academy of Environment Medicine, Grassroots Environmental Education, medical doctors, World Health Organization (WHO), Massachusetts of Environmental Health, Office of Environmental Health and Safety, American Academy of Pediatrics and many other groups urge caution.

Many countries throughout the world, other states in our nation, teachers unions, and members of health and science groups have called for more disclosure and restrictions. “While the debate discusses the dangers of WiFi, cell phone towers and cell phones, it is the doctors who must deal with the after effects. Until we can determine why some get sick and others do not, and some are debilitated for indeterminate amounts of time, we implore you to not take the risk, with the health of many children who have entrusted you to keep them safe while at school.”…American Academy of Environmental Medicine in an open letter to School Superintendents in the United States.

If one reads what the manufacturers of the cell phone state about reducing RF energy you can learn a lot. As an Apple iphone 6 owner the company suggest… "To reduce exposure to RF energy, use a hands free option, such as the built in speakerphone, the supplied headphones, or other similar accessories. Carry phone at least 5mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as tested levels.

Cases with metal parts may change the RF performance of the device, including its compliance with RF exposure guidelines in a manner that has not been tested or certified." For more information click here.

I would certainly encourage our readers to find out about their cell phones. In addition, it’s important that given the scientific consensus on the potential of health risks from a variety of scientists that one should try to minimize RF exposure from cell phones and non-cell phone sources. Here is a list of recommendations from a number of individuals knowledgeable in the field:

- Use a wired landline instead of a cell phone for everyday calls.
- Keep cell phones and other sources at a distance. Whenever possible, use the speaker-phone mode or a plug in headset rather than holding the phone to your ear.
- If using wireless devices like computers, laptops, tablets and printers, place the wireless router away from where children and adults usually spend time.
- Avoid carrying your cell phone on your body at all times. Do not keep it near your body at night such as under the pillow or on a bedside table, particularly if pregnant. You can also put it on “flight” or “off-line” mode, which stops electromagnetic emissions. - On the phone it’s called “airplane mode” and accessed from the primary “settings” icon that looks like gears. Putting it in airplane mode will stop RF (radio frequency) transmission, but there are still lower frequency magnetic fields emitted from the phone while it is on.
- Text when possible for texting emits less radiation than voice calls. Hold your cell phone away from your body when you press send.
- Avoid using your cell phone when the signal is weak or when moving at high speed, such as in a car or train.
- Limit children’s use of a cell phone. The developing organs of a fetus or child are the most likely to be sensitive to any possible effects of exposure to electromagnetic fields. Children’s skulls are less dense and their brains are smaller resulting in higher penetration rates to a larger portion of the brain.
- In schools, WiFi routers should be turned off when not in use.
- Limit children’s use of cell phones and if your child uses the phone to play games, switch on airplane mode. A phone in airplane mode will stop RF (radio frequency) transmission but still have some magnetic field exposure.

This is all new to me and my position as a School Committee member is to do all that I can to let parents know this information as described by the World Health Organization. I urge you to do the research and find out more about radio frequency use in cell phones and other technological devices. Parents, its fine for our children to be tech experts, but you need to take the reins of being health and safety experts in your children’s lives. Start doing the research today!
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Source: GoLocalWorcester, John Monfredo, 20 Nov 2016

Wi-Fi and Smart Phone connected crib for newborn babies !!
USA Created: 22 Nov 2016
Yves Behar's robotic Snoo crib rocks babies to sleep
Exhausted parents can stay in bed while this bassinet designed by Yves Behar rocks their babies back to sleep with a "womb-like motion" whenever it hears them cry.
Described by its makers as the world's first smart sleeper, the Snoo crib has microphones, speakers and sensors embedded into its structure.
When it detects noise and agitated movement, the bed's gentle rocking movement speeds up until its occupant drifts off back to sleep – meaning parents don't have to rise.

"Snoo is often able to calm even the worst crying jags and help babies fall asleep," said Behar, who has designed internet-connected products that range from a smart thermostat to robotic furniture that reconfigures tiny apartments.
The California-based designer brought his own experience of sleepless nights as a parent to the project.
"As a father of four children, I am intimately familiar with sleep deprivation," said Behar. "It is more than a burden – it can quickly become a health problem for both parents and the baby."
Snoo comes with an app that lets parents monitor and review their child's sleep patterns. The data is collected and sent to their smartphone or tablet using a Wi-Fi connection.

The product is the result of a five-year design process, during which Behar and his studio Fuseproject worked with Harvey Karp – who wrote a book called The Happiest Baby on the Block.
The lozenge-shaped crib has white textile mesh sides that allow air to flow through. The mattress sits within a wood surround, which in turn is supported by thin, hairpin-like legs.

The crib's height was chosen so parents or carers can see the baby from their bed.

Inside, a cotton swaddle is designed to hold the baby in a sleeping position that emulates its time in the womb. The mechanism won't work unless the swaddle is securely hooked onto the bassinet sides.

A metal Wi-Fi shield in the platform of the bed sits between the baby and the module to prevent any potential radiation exposure. The Wi-Fi can to be completely turned off at the touch of a button.

One of the team's aims was to create an item that did not look high-tech but instead appeared as a piece of furniture that parents would want to have in their home.

"It was also very important that Snoo not look like a traditional robot or piece of technology," the designer said. "Its purpose, after all, was to naturally blend into the coziness and warmth of a baby nursery."

"Robots can be seen as an engineering feat, but with Hollywood dystopian undertones," Behar continued. "They don't exactly have a 'cuddly' reputation."

"On the other hand, baby furniture is often very plasticky and cliché, made cheaply and not to last," he added.

New technologies are rapidly being introduced into products for babies and children. This year, companies launched a thermometer that measures temperature with just a swipe across the forehead and a device that combines a baby monitor, sleep trainer and night light.
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Source: Agnes Ingvarsdottir

13 Investigates: Cellphone radiation
USA Created: 16 Nov 2016
INDIANAPOLIS (WTHR) — You carry your cellphone with you all the time, and it is constantly transmitting invisible electromagnetic energy.

Watch the investigative report here:

Accompanying news article:


For years, there's been debate about that radiation and whether it can cause cancer. A new study suggests there actually might be a hidden danger. 13 Investigates explains what you need to know about the science -- and the easy steps you can take right now to help reduce possible risk.

Craig and Virginia Farver’s son, Richard, died from a brain tumor at age 29.

Craig and Virginia Farver say their son Richard was perfectly healthy one moment, and the next, he was fighting for his life.

"Brain cancer is what he was diagnosed with," said Virginia, holding a graduation photo of her son. "The doctor said it was a glioblastoma."

"He said it's the most aggressive brain cancer that there is," added Craig. "That pretty much turned our lives upside down. Just devastating."

A neurosurgeon removed the brain tumor, but Richard died seven months later – just a week after his 29th birthday.

Click here to view the source article.
Source: 13WTHR, Bob Segall, 14 Nov 2016

The secret world of microwave networks
USA Created: 3 Nov 2016
Stretching between London and Frankfurt, there is a private, mysterious network that is twice as fast as the normal Internet - The connection, provided by a series of microwave dishes on masts, was once completely secret: only one very rich company was allowed to use it, and no one else knew about it.

A couple of years later though, a competitor completed its own microwave link between the two cities—and thus the first company, not wanting to lose out on potential business, revealed that it too had a link between the cities. If a competitor had never emerged, that first link would probably still be shrouded in secrecy today.

Similar stories can be found all over the world, but because these networks are privately owned, and because they're often used by financial groups trying to find an edge on the stock market and eke out a few extra billions, you have to dig deep to find them.

For example, back in 2013, just as the algorithmic high-frequency trading (HFT) bubble was starting to pop, researchers in California looked at a large corpus of market trades and found that, starting in March 2011, there had been a sudden latency drop of 2.5 milliseconds between Chicago and New York. Prior to that, the previous fastest trading latency was about 7.5 milliseconds, so a reduction to 5ms was significant. The researchers then used the FCC and other records to deduce that, at the time of their 2013 study, there were 15 (!) networks licensed to operate microwave links between the two cities. The latency drop was probably caused by a new low-latency microwave network coming online.

*SNIP* read the entire article via the source link below...
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Source: ARS Technica, Sebastian Anthony, 03 Nov 2016

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