Hackers hit New Orleans city government website — are other cities at risk?

No harm done this time, but it's an ominous occurrence.

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  • Late last week, the city of New Orleans was hit by a ransomware attack.
  • Government offices were able to avoid the worst of it, as the result of following existing procedures.
  • Attacks like this on city governments are more common than you'd think.
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Billions of fake accounts: Who's messaging you on Facebook?

The social media company's recent transparency report claimed that it had taken down a staggering number of fake accounts — but it's unlikely they're catching them all.

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  • Facebook's recent transparency report revealed that it took down 5.4 billion accounts in 2019 thus far, a huge jump from 2018's 3.3 billion removals.
  • Facebook claims that this jump in take-downs is due to improved methods for identifying fake accounts, but it has to be assumed that some are still slipping through the cracks.
  • What are the primary activities of these fake accounts?
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Imprisonment: Doctor who illegally prescribed 500,000 doses of opioids to serve 40 years

Dr. Joel Smithers was recently sentenced to decades in prison for the numerous illegal prescriptions he gave out.

Image source: Southwest Virginia Regional Jail Authority/photofunny.net
  • According to law enforcement officials, every individual who visited Smithers' practice in Martinsville, Virginia, was given an opioid prescription.
  • Patients traveled hundreds of miles to visit his practice, where Smithers only accepted cash or credit cards and not insurance.
  • Smithers and similar doctors represent one part of the chain of responsible parties who contributed to the opioid epidemic.
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Photo credit: Roberto Machado Noa / LightRocket via Getty Images
  • The NGO China Tribunal accused China of killing persecuted minorities and harvesting thousands of organs from them.
  • They recently presented their findings to the U.N. Human Rights Council.
  • China has denied the large-scale harvesting of organs.
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Purdue Pharma, maker of OxyContin, files for bankruptcy

Some critics say the move is designed to shield those who profited from the dangerous drug.

  • Purdue Pharma is facing thousands of lawsuits that allege the decades-old drug company misleadingly marketed the opioid OxyContin.
  • On Sunday, Purdue filed for bankruptcy after reaching a tentative settlement deal with some of the parties suing the company.
  • The deal, which some plaintiffs have already rejected, calls for a potential payout of up to $12 billion and for the company to restructure itself.
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