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In April of last year, a freelance photojournalist named J.D. Duggan was covering a protest in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, a suburb of Minneapolis, when things took a disturbing turn. A few days earlier, a police officer in Brooklyn Center had shot and killed 20 year-old Daunte Wright, and a community wounded and incensed by George Floyd’s murder less than a year earlier took to the streets.

As Duggan was documenting the demonstrations, they say a “couple hundred” officers surrounded a group of protestors and journalists and told everyone to get on the ground. Officers sorted the press from the protestors, walked them to a parking lot, and began photographing them, one by one, with cell phones. Duggan estimates that a few dozen journalists were cataloged in the same manner that night before being released.  

“I asked where the pictures would go,” Duggan says. “And the officer told me that it just goes into their system. He didn’t really give me any details. He said they have an app.” 

Duggan filed a personal data request with the Minnesota State Patrol on April 17. On July 19, the state patrol provided three pages that included multiple photos of them, the geographical coordinates of where the photos were taken, the angle of the camera, and information about the officer using the application. MIT Technology Review requested the rest of the document in which Duggan’s personal data appeared on January 21, 2022, as well as information about the collection, retention, and dissemination of Duggan’s information. The state patrol disclosed that the data was collected using a tool called Intrepid Response, which appended geolocation data to the images. Another journalist who was photographed that night, Dominick Sokotoff, also obtained his personal data from the state patrol. It appears to have been collected and stored in the same way as Duggan’s.

Intrepid Response, a product of Intrepid Networks, provides an easy means to capture and share information that identifies whoever is on the other side of an officer’s smartphone. The app was critical to the law enforcement agencies that assembled and analyzed information about people at the Brooklyn Center protests, allowing them to almost instantly de-anonymize attendees and keep tabs on their movements.

The photos and data shared in real time via the app found their way into one of three known data repositories that MIT Technology Review has identified which include photos and personal information about individuals at protests and appear to be accessible to multiple agencies, including federal groups. None of the other journalists who were photographed while covering the protests appeared to have been charged with any crimes or told they were suspects while their data was being collected. 

Policing agencies in Minnesota compiled the shared documents, spreadsheets, and other databases as part of Operation Safety Net (OSN), a multiagency effort to respond to protests stemming from George Floyd’s murder that has expanded far beyond its original publicly stated scope and appears to be ongoing. 

To support MIT Technology Review’s journalism, please consider becoming a subscriber.

Several agencies involved with OSN have access to Intrepid Response, including the Minnesota State Patrol, the state’s Department of Natural Resources, and the Minnesota Fusion Center, according to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. Fusion centers are controversial data sharing centers that analyze and disseminate information across local and federal law enforcement agencies, the National Guard, and others. Intrepid Networks’ website reports that the Saint Paul Police Department uses the Intrepid Response software, and the company’s marketing materials feature a testimonial from the department’s assistant chief of police commenting on the role of the app during last year’s unrest. It’s likely that federal agencies were also able to access information collected via Intrepid Response and shared with the Minnesota Fusion Center. 

An email to MIT Technology Review from the Minnesota State Patrol in response to inquiries regarding the photographing of reporters, which revealed the involvement of Intrepid Response for the first time.

Like Slack for SWAT

Sold by AT&T, Verizon, and others, Intrepid Response is a

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By: Sam Richards, Tate Ryan-Mosley
Title: The secret police: Inside the app Minnesota police used to collect data on journalists at protests
Sourced From: www.technologyreview.com/2022/03/23/1047899/secret-police-app-minnesota-police-journalists-protests-data/
Published Date: Wed, 23 Mar 2022 11:00:00 +0000

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LATAM crypto exchange Bitso and FMF launch NFT of Mexico’s National Team jerseys

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Bitso, a leading cryptocurrency platform operating in Latin America, and the Mexican Football Federation (FMF), today announced the joint launch of the first collectible NFT of the Mexico National Team’s jerseys that was acquired in cryptocurrencies.

This morning through their social media platforms, the FMF and Bitso announced the opportunity to acquire the new official National Team fan jerseys ahead of the team’s participation in the 2022 World Cup. In just 20 minutes, the entire collection sold out.

bitsonftjeysey
The NFTs of the jerseys have an exclusive design for the metaverse – each is unique on the blockchain and can be resold by its owner in subsequent transactions.

The collection consisted of 100 official physical jerseys, each with a corresponding NFT version of the jersey that fans’ avatars can wear within the Decentraland metaverse. Each physical and NFT jersey set sold for the equivalent of $1,800 MXN in ethers.

“Our mission is to make cryptocurrency useful in the everyday life of Mexicans; we are committed to spreading the technology through innovative opportunities that help people throughout the country familiarize themselves with this new world. We are very excited to offer the incredible, historic opportunity for the fans of our National Team so that through their Bitso account, they can wear the colors of the National Team on and ‘off’ the field in the metaverse.”
– Bárbara González Briseño, General Director of Bitso México

Jersey NFTs

Created by Bitso, the virtual jersey sports the official colors of Mexico and the new National Team shield, characteristics that will make it stand out when users wear it in the virtual world of Decentraland.

The post LATAM crypto exchange Bitso and FMF launch NFT of Mexico’s National Team jerseys appeared first on CryptoNinjas.

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By: CryptoNinjas.net
Title: LATAM crypto exchange Bitso and FMF launch NFT of Mexico’s National Team jerseys
Sourced From: www.cryptoninjas.net/2022/07/29/latam-crypto-exchange-bitso-and-fmf-launch-nft-of-mexicos-national-team-jerseys/
Published Date: Fri, 29 Jul 2022 15:19:02 +0000

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Long-running crypto exchange EXMO unveils “lively” rebrand amidst growth

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EXMO, a crypto exchange platform operating since 2014, announced this week a rebranded visual identity with includes a new logo, brand colors, and design features. This new branding comes as EXMO continues to grow its crypto platform while also seeking to expand its presence in other jurisdictions.

Some new developments underway at EXMO:

Soon, users will be able to earn passive income from EXMO’s new staking platform.Plans to launch an EXMO crypto debit card.Expansion of its services in international markets with the opening of offices in Poland and Lithuania.

EXMO’s new logo

The rationale for the re-brand:

“At EXMO, we have a vision of a world where crypto is in every wallet. Hassle-free. We want to achieve this by making crypto as simple and accessible to everyone as possible. And we know that you already appreciate EXMO for offering user-friendly services and helpful support. Also for the opportunity to trade anywhere and anytime, closing deals in just a few taps. Such important changes required a rethinking of our corporate style, which has long needed a massive upgrade. So today we are introducing a new brand identity for EXMO with a completely new visual concept. We are launching a new logo, brand colors, and design elements. Our key design principles are simplicity, boldness, and a pinch of fun. But most importantly, we have changed our logo. Simple and easily recognizable, it represents the humanity of our brand. The logo stands out due to the wavy letter ‘m’ which symbolizes exchange rate charts and also resembles a spring that will launch you into the crypto world.”
– The EXMO Team regarding the re-branding

The post Long-running crypto exchange EXMO unveils “lively” rebrand amidst growth appeared first on CryptoNinjas.

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By: CryptoNinjas.net
Title: Long-running crypto exchange EXMO unveils “lively” rebrand amidst growth
Sourced From: www.cryptoninjas.net/2022/07/26/long-running-crypto-exchange-exmo-unveils-lively-rebrand-amidst-growth/
Published Date: Tue, 26 Jul 2022 08:10:38 +0000

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Stitching together the grid will save lives as extreme weather worsens

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The blistering heat waves that set temperature records across much of the US in recent days have strained electricity systems, threatening to knock out power in vulnerable regions of the country. 

The electricity has largely stayed online so far this summer, but there have been scattered problems and close calls already. 

Heavy use of energy-sucking air-conditioners is the biggest problem. But intense heat can also reduce the output of power plants, blow transformers, and force power lines to sag. Severe droughts across large parts of the country have also significantly reduced the availability of hydroelectric power, according to the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC). 

It’s unlikely to get better soon. A number of grid operators may struggle to meet peak summer demand, creating the risk of rolling blackouts, the NERC report notes.

The nation’s isolated and antiquated grids are in desperate need of upgrades to keep the lights, heat, and air-conditioning on in the midst of extreme weather events that climate change is making more common, severe, and dangerous. One clear way to ease many of these issues is to more tightly integrate the country’s regional grids, stitching them together with more long-range transmission lines. 

If electricity generated in one area can be more easily shared across much wider regions, power can simply flow to where it’s needed at those moments when customers crank up air-conditioners en masse, or when power plants or fuel supply lines fail amid soaring temperatures, wildfires, hurricanes, or other events, says Liza Reed, a research manager focused on transmission at the Niskanen Center, a Washington, DC, think tank.  

The problem is it’s proved difficult to build more long-range transmission and grid interconnections for a variety of reasons, including the permitting challenges of erecting wires through private and public lands across cities, counties, and states and the reluctance of local authorities to forfeit control or submit to greater federal oversight.

The case of Texas

The unreliability of the US grid is not a new problem. Severe heat and winter storms have repeatedly exposed the frailty of electricity systems in recent years, leaving thousands to millions of people without power as temperatures spiked or plunged.

One of the fundamental challenges is that the grids today are highly fragmented. There are three main electricity networks within the US: the Eastern Grid, the Western Grid, and the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT). But there are numerous regional transmission organizations within those first two systems, including the California Independent System Operator, Southwest Power Pool, PJM Interconnection, New York ISO, and more. 

These grids form a complex web of networks operating under different regulators, rules and market structures, and often with limited connections between them.

Map USA grid
A variety of regional transmission organizations oversee different parts of the nation’s aging and fragmented grids, which operate under different rules and with often limited connections between them.
legend

ERCOT is especially isolated, in part because of the desire among local politicians, citizens, and power companies to avoid added competition, the hassle of following other states’ rules, and oversight from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). But the state offers a case study in why that can be a serious problem amid increasingly harsh climate conditions, Reed says.

The Texas grid operator pleaded with customers several times earlier this month to cut electricity use as blistering summer temperatures created  demand surges that threatened to outstrip supply and require rolling blackouts.  Low wind conditions, cloud cover, and outages at fossil-fuel power plants added to the strains.

Shutting off the electricity needed to run air-conditioning in triple-digit temperatures

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By: James Temple
Title: Stitching together the grid will save lives as extreme weather worsens
Sourced From: www.technologyreview.com/2022/07/28/1056483/stitching-together-the-grid-will-save-lives-as-extreme-weather-worsens/
Published Date: Thu, 28 Jul 2022 08:00:00 +0000

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