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EU — Trafficking in human beings 2010-2014: eradicating the slave trade

November 12, 2014 Comments off

Trafficking in human beings 2010-2014: eradicating the slave trade
Source: European Commission

During the years 2010-2012, EU Member States registered 30 146 victims of trafficking in human beings. Behind this number are human tragedies, broken hopes and destroyed plans for a better life. During the same period, 8 551 prosecutions against traffickers were reported across the EU. 80 percent of victims of trafficking were female, and over 1 000 child victims were registered as trafficked for sexual exploitation. This data is part of a statistical report on victims and perpetrators of trafficking released today by the European Commission. A report also shows that many concrete measures against this severe human rights violation have been undertaken during 2010-2014, such as better cooperation with civil society, and guidelines issued to border authorities and other stakeholders on how to better identify victims.

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FBI Releases 2013 Crime Statistics

November 10, 2014 Comments off

FBI Releases 2013 Crime Statistics
Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation

The estimated number of violent crimes in the nation decreased 4.4 percent in 2013 when compared with 2012 data, according to FBI figures released today. Property crimes decreased 4.1 percent, marking the 11th straight year the collective estimates for these offenses declined.

The 2013 statistics show the estimated rate of violent crime was 367.9 offenses per 100,000 inhabitants, and the property crime rate was 2,730.7 offenses per 100,000 inhabitants. The violent crime rate declined 5.1 percent compared to the 2012 rate, while the property crime rate declined 4.8 percent.

These and additional data are presented in the 2013 edition of the FBI’s annual report Crime in the United States. This publication is a statistical compilation of offense and arrest data reported by law enforcement agencies voluntarily participating in the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program.

An Administrator’s Guide to Internet Password Research

November 7, 2014 Comments off

An Administrator’s Guide to Internet Password Research
Source: Microsoft Research

The research literature on passwords is rich but little of it directly aids those charged with securing web-facing services or setting policies. With a view to improving this situation we examine questions of implementation choices, policy and administration using a combination of literature survey and first-principles reasoning to identify what works, what does not work, and what remains unknown. Some of our results are surprising. We find that offline attacks, the justification for great demands of user effort, occur in much more limited circumstances than is generally believed (and in only a minority of recently-reported breaches). We find that an enormous gap exists between the effort needed to withstand online and offline attacks, with probable safety occurring when a password can survive 106 and 1014 guesses respectively. In this gap, eight orders of magnitude wide, there is little return on user effort: exceeding the online threshold but falling short of the offline one represents wasted effort. We find that guessing resistance above the online threshold is also wasted at sites that store passwords in plaintext or reversibly encrypted: there is no attack scenario where the extra effort protects the account.

CRS — Sexual Violence at Institutions of Higher Education (October 23, 2014)

November 6, 2014 Comments off

Sexual Violence at Institutions of Higher Education (PDF)
Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists)

In recent years, a number of high-profile incidents of sexual violence at institutions of higher education (IHEs) have heightened congressional and administration scrutiny of the policies and procedures that IHEs currently have in place to address campus sexual violence and how these policies and procedures can be improved. Campus sexual violence is widely acknowledged to be a problem. However, reported data on the extent of sexual violence at IHEs varies considerably across studies for a variety of methodological and other reasons. Victims of sexual violence may suffer from a range of physical and mental health conditions including injuries, pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, suicidality, and substance abuse. College students who are the victims of sexual violence may experience a decline in academic performance, and they may drop out, leave school, or transfer.

Currently, there are two federal laws that address sexual violence on college campuses: the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (Clery Act, P.L. 101-542) and Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX, P.L. 92-318). These two statutes differ in significant respects, including in their purpose, coverage, enforcement, and remedies.

CRS — Cities Try, and Fail (So Far), to Prevent Federal Marijuana Enforcement, CRS Legal Sidebar (October 24, 2014)

November 6, 2014 Comments off

Cities Try, and Fail (So Far), to Prevent Federal Marijuana Enforcement, CRS Legal Sidebar (PDF)
Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists)

To paraphrase Mark Twain, reports of the death of federal marijuana enforcement appear to have been exaggerated. While federal authorities have created a perceived safe harbor for the operation of marijuana businesses in states that have legalized the drug, the Department of Justice (DOJ) is still punishing violations of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) when a business’s activities threaten certain core federal interests, such as preventing the distribution of marijuana to children and combating the involvement of criminal enterprise. One tool the DOJ has used to close down offending dispensaries, grow facilities, and retail shops is civil forfeiture—a legal process by which the government may seize and liquidate a wide array of property “used or intended to be used to facilitate a violation of the CSA.” Once a decision to initiate a forfeiture proceeding has been made, there appears to be very little that states or localities, that actively support the operation of marijuana businesses, can do to prevent federal authorities from enforcing federal law.

CA — 2013-14 Privacy Act Annual Report to Parliament

November 4, 2014 Comments off

2013-14 Privacy Act Annual Report to Parliament
Source: Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada

The year in particular was marked by the continuation of a long-running debate in Canada about lawful access to subscriber information along with a series of ongoing revelations about state surveillance activities that had impact globally as well as within our borders.

As another indicator, statistics show there was a continued rise in the number of complaints. Also continuing are complaints from a large number of individuals that arise from a single event. For example, the Office is currently investigating 339 complaints over a mass mailing by Health Canada which allegedly exposed the names and mailing addresses of some 40,000 people involved in the marijuana medical access program.

In a year where perhaps unprecedented attention was paid to public sector data breaches, the 228 separate data breaches voluntarily reported across the federal government in 2013-2014 were more than double those from the previous fiscal year. This marked the third consecutive year where a record high was reached for such reports. Accidental disclosure was provided as the reason indicated by reporting organizations behind more than two-thirds of the breaches.

Juvenile Court Statistics 2011

November 4, 2014 Comments off

Juvenile Court Statistics 2011 (PDF)
Source: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention

Juvenile Court Statistics 2011, which the National Juvenile Court Data Archive compiled and produced, chronicles the progress that has been made over the years and highlights the challenges that remain. This report profiles approximately 1.2 million delinquency cases that U.S. courts with juvenile jurisdiction handled in 2011. It also describes trends in delinquency cases that juvenile courts processed between 1985 and 2011 and the status offense cases they handled between 1995 and 2011. One challenge that remains is producing credible estimates that include details on cases involving youth of Hispanic ethnicity and that will be a focus of the project moving forward.

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