По закону человек имеет право ремонтировать купленную технику где угодно, а производители не могут принуждать его к использованию фирменных сервис-центров. Таков общий смысл предупредительных писем, которые Федеральная торговая комиссия США разослала шести крупным компаниям, которые продают автомобили, мобильные устройства и игровые системы в Соединенных Штатах. Конкретные фирмы не называются, хотя некоторые из них можно угадать по цитатам из их условий пользования продуктами (см. ниже). FTC в выражает обеспокоенность некоторыми заявлениями производителей. В частности, что потребители обязаны использовать указанные комплектующие или обращаться к указанным поставщикам услуг, чтобы сохранить гарантию. FTC предупреждает, что такие условия как правило незаконны, если гарантийная компания не предоставляет запчасти на замену бесплатно или не получила специальное разрешение от FTC. А именно, такие условия запрещены Законом о гарантии Магнусона — Мосса (Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act), который регулирует гарантийные обязательства производителей на потребительские товары. Кроме того, подобные заявления могут быть признаны вводящими в заблуждение согласно FTC Act. Ниже примеры цитат из пользовательских соглашений фирм-нарушителей. Читать дальше →
Federal Trade Commission had vowed to hold social network accountable on privacy
Spectrum Brands Holdings (SPB) was a big mover last session, as the company saw its shares rise more than 15% on the day.
В январе-марте 2018 г. число утечек конфиденциальной информации по сравнению с аналогичным периодом прошлого года возросло. Кража персональных данных превращается в постоянный бизнес для многих хакерских группировок.
В январе-марте 2018 г. число утечек конфиденциальной информации по сравнению с аналогичным периодом прошлого года возросло. Кража персональных данных превращается в постоянный бизнес для многих хакерских группировок.
Forbes выяснил, как президент США использует должность ради извлечения выгоды для бизнеса. Оказывается, ему удается даже сдавать недвижимость в аренду самому себе, а реальный конфликт интересов Трампа связан с Китаем, а вовсе не с Россией
Bill Below, OECD* Big data is in the spotlight again, this time with controversies surrounding Facebook’s handling of personal data raising eyebrows. As technologies and social media continue to evolve, are users’ best interests being looked after? Bill Below looks at some of the issues. Growing up, I had a front-row seat to the rise […]
When it comes to obeying laws protecting personal information, Americans have less faith in Facebook than other tech companies. That's according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll. As Statista's Niall McCarthy notes, Facebook has been engulfed in a storm of criticism after it emerged that political consultancy Cambridge Analytica harvested and exploited the personal information of 50 million of its users. The firm is trying to restore its badly tarnished image with CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently issuing a public apology. Judging by the findings of the poll, the social network certainly has serious work to do in order to restore confidence in its user base. You will find more infographics at Statista The research found that only 41 percent of Americans trust Facebook to obey U.S. privacy laws, far less than other tech companies known to gather user data. 66 percent of respondents said they trust Amazon, 62 percent trust Google and 60 percent trust Microsoft. Apple and Yahoo! were also ahead of Facebook in the trust stakes. The evaporation of trust among its users wasn't the only headache for Facebook in recent days. The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) said it is investigating the firm to determine if it had "failed" to protect the privacy of its users. According to former FTC officials, the social network could be penalized severely if it is found to have violated or failed to comply with the consent decree it agreed in 2011. Fines could amount to $40,000 per violation and theoretically, this could all add up to $2 trillion.
As Facebook scrambles to avoid a potentially devastating fine from the Federal Trade Commission, the company announced more measures on Thursday seemingly designed to appease Democratic lawmakers like Senator Mark Warner who are insisting that strenuous regulations are the only way to ensure that Facebook does everything within its power to prevent state actors from "sowing discord" by planting disingenuous advertisements and posts on the company's platform. According to the Verge, Facebook is now partnering with "third-party fact checkers" to investigate photos and videos published on the company's platform - while also attempting to filter out fraudulent accounts. This, of course, is only "one part of [Facebook's] strategy for holding purveyors of "fake news" to account. Here’s how it works: We use signals, including feedback from people on Facebook, to predict potentially false stories for fact-checkers to review. When fact-checkers rate a story as false, we significantly reduce its distribution in News Feed — dropping future views on average by more than 80%. We notify people who’ve shared the story in the past and warn people who try to share it going forward. For those who still come across the story in their News Feed, we show more information from fact-checkers in a Related Articles unit. We use the information from fact-checkers to train our machine learning model, so that we can catch more potentially false news stories and do so faster. The company announced its plans on a conference call with journalists organized to keep them apprised of its efforts to combat tampering in the 2018 midterms. The contents of the call were later summarized in a blog post. The group of executives who spoke on the call included Alex Stamos, the company's outgoing chief information security officer. Stamos illustrated how the company is developing new methods for rooting out people making accounts under fake identities. It's also cracking down on faked metrics used to make content appear more popular than it actually is. "It’s important to match the right approach to each of these challenges" Stamos said on the call, according to the Verge, as Stamos explained how Facebook was applying different strategies based on each individual market's needs. Samidh Chakrabarti, Facebook's product manager for civic engagement who was also on the call, explained that Facebook is now proactively looking for foreign-based pages producing political content that the company believes to be inauthentic. If a user is found in violation, they will be manually removed from the platform. This applies to everything from suspicious advertisements to misleading memes. Now our work also includes a new investigative tool that we can deploy in the lead-up to elections. I’d love to tell you a little bit about how it works. Rather than wait for reports from our community, we now proactively look for potentially harmful types of election-related activity, such as Pages of foreign origin that are distributing inauthentic civic content. If we find any, we then send these suspicious accounts to be manually reviewed by our security team to see if they violate our Community Standards or our Terms of Service, said Chakrabarti. Facebook first piloted this tool in the Alabama special election, but has now deployed it to protect this year's Italian election - and it will be used to "protect Facebook users" during this year's midterms. The new rules build on the ad-transparency measures introduced by the company late last year, which purported to show Facebook users the name of the organization funding the content, as well as any other pertinent information. But those red flags were shown to entrench some people’s belief in false stories, leading Facebook to shift to showing Related Articles with perspectives from other reputable news outlets. As of yesterday, Facebook’s fact checking partners began reviewing suspicious photos and videos which can also spread false information. This could reduce the spread of false news image memes that live on Facebook and require no extra clicks to view, like doctored photos showing the Parkland school shooting survivors ripping up the constitution. The news comes on the heels of a revelation earlier today that the company is ending its partnership with "third party" data providers including TransUnion and Experian who supply advertisers with even more specific data gleaned from real-life activities and other parties that aren't Facebook. But as CEO Mark Zuckerberg prepares to testify before two Congressional committees early next month, the company hasn't said anything about its partnerships with third-party "affiliate marketers" who help hucksters sell dubious health supplements and other fraudulent products on Facebook's platform.
Identity theft is not a problem you can make go away with a cold shoulder. Instead, it’s best to remain on high alert for telling fraud indicators.
The Dow experienced a volatile holiday-shortened week marked by steep gains and losses.
First comes the news of yet another improper leak of personal data. Then the outrage and investigations in Washington, the calls for a chastened CEO to testify in front of Congress, the cries for tough news laws and regulations to protect people’s privacy. Then, typically, nothing much happens.The Facebook privacy scandal could turn out differently. But that would make it the exception in a long string of U.S. data-privacy furors, which have come and gone with no serious laws, rules or other major repercussions for companies like Equifax, Yahoo, Uber or Home Depot — even those whose leaks were arguably worse than Facebook’s.Lax security at Equifax, for example, allowed hackers to steal highly personal and financial data on as many as 148 million Americans — exposing them to the risk of identity theft and ruined credit. But nearly seven months after that news broke, Congress has largely dropped the issue, while state and federal regulators are investigating.Much the same is true for Yahoo, which admitted last fall to two mammoth breaches that exposed the data on all 3 billion of its users, feeding the black market for identity thieves and allegedly giving Russian intelligence officers access to high-value email accounts. While Yahoo took a financial hit — Verizon shaved $350 million from its offer to buy the company — lawmakers weren’t able to move any serious responses.“My hope is that [this time] is different, but my fear is that a lot of Americans throw up their hands and say, ‘What can I do?’” said Justin Hendrix, who heads the NYC Media Lab and is helping lead a tech and media initiative called Regulate Social Media. “You’ve got all this momentum, but even if the ball’s really rolling, it’s not clear what direction it’s going to roll,” added Jake Laperruque, a digital privacy specialist with the Project on Government Oversight.Still, advocates retain a degree of optimism that Cambridge Analytica’s repurposing of data on 50 million Facebook users during the 2016 election might eventually lead to regulatory changes — even if it doesn’t occur in the coming months. They say this latest digital misconduct gets to the visceral issue of Americans’ ability to conduct fair elections, making it different than the more common data breaches that have become a regular occurrence. “It seems like more than ever before if we don’t act, [lawmakers] are actually abdicating their responsibility to people across the country,” said Amie Stepanovich, U.S. policy manager for the digital rights group Access Now. Doing nothing, Hendrix added, is “not an option if you prefer democracy.” Still, the track record of other headline-grabbing data scandals offers reason for skepticism that Washington is about to break up Facebook, hit it with multitrillion-dollar fines, regulate it like a utility or impose the other draconian penalties people have floated.Here’s a look at how those other data furors have played out:YAHOOWhen: Occurred in 2013 and 2014, discovered in 2017How many people affected: 3 billionWhy it mattered: The twin breaches set records for the number of people compromised in a single digital intrusion. The first one, which alone hit 3 billion, will probably never be matched unless someone breaches every single user of a company like Google. (The second Yahoo breach exposed 500 million Yahoo users.)Prosecutors, who secured indictments of four men for the smaller hack, said Russian intelligence agents conspired with notorious criminal hackers to steal the data, then used it to build dossiers on journalists, dissidents and U.S. officials. Meanwhile, the criminals leveraged it to steal identities and launch email spam schemes.Consequences: Congress largely let the Yahoo incident slide with little more than a public chastising of former CEO Marissa Mayer, whom the Senate Commerce Committee subpoenaed to testify last November. Committee Chairman John Thune (R-S.D.) said Mayer’s testimony would be “important in shaping our future reactions,” but his committee has yet to move any related legislation. EQUIFAXWhen: Occurred and discovered in 2017How many people affected: 148 million, potentially half the adult U.S. populationWhy it mattered: This may have been the most damaging breach of all time, especially because the information that was compromised — such as Social Security numbers — is considered the crown jewels for identity thieves. (Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts has alleged that it also included passport numbers, which the company denies.)The company compounded matters with a slow, confusing response that included an apparent attempt to limit customers’ rights to sue, as well as suspicious stock sales that led to recent insider-trading charges against a former executive who dumped nearly $1 million in Equifax shares before the breach was announced.Consequences: Congress proposed myriad changes to the legal requirements for companies to respond to data leaks and protect Americans’ sensitive information, and Democratic bills sought to tighten oversight of credit reporting companies more specifically.But momentum stalled within months. A working group featuring senior lawmakers from both parties was effectively put on hold, falling victim to years-old battles between industries such as banking, retailing and telecommunications over whom any legislation would cover and what the specific security and privacy requirements should be.Meanwhile, the Senate passed a sweeping banking bill this month that would reward Equifax and other credit monitoring companies by protecting them from some consumer lawsuits and letting them expand into the mortgage business.However, regulators have descended on Equifax in the wake of the incident. Both the Federal Trade Commission and a number of states are examining whether there was any malfeasance in the way the company handled the breach.UBERWhen: Occurred and discovered in 2016, covered up until 2017How many people affected: 57 millionWhy it mattered: This breach added a new element to the discussion — the cover-up. The ride-hailing giant revealed last November that it had conspired for more than a year to keep the leak secret by paying the hackers $100,000 to destroy the data. That way, the company hoped to keep the data off the black markets, where a researcher might discover it and alert the public.Uber’s actions may have violated state laws requiring companies to alert victims, authorities and regulators about the breach.Consequences: Numerous states are investigating the matter, and the FTC — which had previously penalized Uber over privacy issues — has said it is “closely evaluating the serious issues” raised by the incident.On Capitol Hill, Uber got roped into the Equifax fallout. Lawmakers also pushed proposals to address the specifics of the Uber breach, including a bill co-sponsored by three Democratic senators that would let prosecutors seek jail time for individuals who knowingly cover up a data breach. But that bill has shown no signs of moving.TARGET When: Occurred and discovered in 2013How many people affected: 40 million Why it mattered: This was the breach that started it all. While Target was far from the first company to experience a digital intrusion, the infiltration over the 2013 holiday season infiltration brought the issue into mainstream conversation. The exposure of 40 million customers’ payment card data was a gobsmacking figure at the time and made those victims easy targets for fraud.Consequences: A Target executive appeared on Capitol Hill within weeks, and lawmakers re-upped dormant proposals to require timely breach notification for victims. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle expressed an interest in such an idea. “This might provide the chance to take action quickly,” said Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley, then the top Republican on the Judiciary Committee.Some Democrats also pushed for a law that would instruct the FTC to write nationwide digital security standards for companies handling sensitive data.Nothing ultimately happened in Congress. However, CEO Gregg Steinhafel resigned several months later, in part due to the breach. Target agreed in 2015 to pay affected banks $39.4 million to cover their expenses and struck a deal with Visa to give $67 million to credit card companies’ victimized customers. A class action settlement is still pending.In total, Target has said it spent over $200 million recovering from the breach.HOME DEPOTWhen: Occurred and discovered in 2014How many people affected: 56 millionWhy it mattered: This theft of credit card data showed the public that Target was far from unique, and set the record at the time for the largest retail card breach ever. Ensuing news reports revealed that the home improvement giant had ignored years of warnings from its own computer experts that its systems were vulnerable.Consequences: Capitol Hill went through the same motions: outrage, a demand for testimony and a vow to change things.“I do sincerely believe that is an achievable goal,” said Rep. Michael Burgess (R-Texas), then the chairman of the House Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade, at a January 2015 hearing. The hearing followed both the Home Depot breach and a leak at banking giant JPMorgan Chase that compromised 83 million accounts. But nothing much happened.The company’s business didn’t even suffer significantly, with sales remaining in line with expectations the month the breach was announced. Home Depot also didn’t change its expectations for sales growth for fiscal 2014. And despite a brief dip in stock price after the breach was revealed, Home Depot’s stock price is nearly double today what it was in late 2014.Like Target, the company has had to settle a variety of lawsuits, agreeing in 2016 to pay at least $19.5 million to victims and doling out $25 million to banks last year. In total, the company says the breach has cost it at least $179 million. U.S. OFFICE OF PERSONNEL MANAGEMENTWhen: Occurred in 2014, discovered in 2015How many people affected: 22 millionWhy it mattered: This breach, blamed on Chinese hackers, exposed some of the government’s most sensitive documents — the detailed questionnaires used to process security clearances for more than 20 million current and former federal employees and applicants. It also included personnel files on every federal worker and was a huge espionage victory for Beijing.Security clearance applications are exhaustive, including 127 pages of details on people’s most closely held secrets, such as affairs, drug and alcohol abuse or bankruptcies. Intelligence professionals say they are a treasure trove for blackmail and can be used to identify undercover American agents, especially when cross-referenced with data like airline travel logs, which Chinese hackers are also suspected of stealing.Consequences: The OPM breach could be considered the one digital privacy scare that led to serious ramifications and concrete action. Within weeks, then-OPM Director Katherine Archuleta stepped down after running a gantlet of Capitol Hill hearings where lawmakers admonished her handling of the agency’s digital security practices. Months later, the agency’s chief information officer resigned under pressure from Congress. And the incident led to a broad overhaul of the government's security clearance process, which put the Defense Department in charge of protecting the background check forms.Meanwhile, lawmakers revived a long-stalled proposal to offer incentives for companies to share more data on hacking threats with the government. By December 2015, just six months after OPM revealed the breach, the legislation became law. It was the first major cybersecurity bill Congress had approved in years — and, so far, it’s the last one.
Authored by Mark Jeftovic via EasyDNS.com, In 1994, Wired magazine ran a short story entitled “Hack the spew” . This was back when Wired was actually cutting edge and not the insufferable Silicon Valley stroke job it became after Conde Naste acquired it. In it our antihero “Stark” finds himself inexplicably recruited as a kind of data scout, looking for viable consumer trends emerging from the fully immersive, all encompassing data field known as “The Spew”. “When a schmo buys something on the I-way it goes into his Profile, and if it happens to be something that he recently saw advertised there, we call that interesting, and when he uses the I-way to phone his friends and family, we Profile Auditors can navigate his social web out to a gazillion fractal iterations, the friends of his friends of his friends of his friends, what they buy and what they watch and if there’s a correlation.” The Spew of course, was the near future analogy of where the internet was headed, and when I went looking to link to it for this post, the piece turned out to be written by none other than Neal Stephenson. That means I read “Hack The Spew” and it made an impression on me before I even knew who Stephenson was or perhaps was on his way to becoming. Few would argue that Stephenson has a gift for seeing the general ambience of our oncoming future. Cryptonomiconuncannily anticipated the impetus toward crypto-currencies; the current systemic dysfunction of national sovereignty worldwide was foretold in Snow Crash; so it follows that all this will likely culminate in something that resembles The Diamond Age. Today, “The Spew” is not equivalent to the Internet itself, but it is more accurately analogous to say the social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, especially when combined with the twin monopolies of Google and Amazon, collectively are: The Spew. It is like a global garbage pile of digital flotsam and jetsam, over which peasants scurry around and scour, looking for some morsel here, a crumb there, which can be monetized. If a trend or a trait is detected, even better. Those can be aggregated, syndicated, federated, even rehypothecated and at scale that can yield staggering financial payoffs and perhaps, even steer the course the history. At least that’s the narrative since the Cambridge Analytica scandal blew up in Facebook’s …face. After a long string of successive privacy fails (a.k.a a pattern of abuse?) this time feels different, as if the chickens are finally coming home to roost for Facebook. Cambridge Analytica is not unique Ever heard of Kareem Serageldin? Probably not. To date, he is the only banker to have been sent to prison in connection with the 2008–2009 Global Financial Crisis for his role in issuing fraudulent mortgage-backed securities (at least outside of Iceland). To be sure, he was a fall guy, a token sacrifice to demonstrate contrition for what was a systemic, institutionalized effort to inflate a bubble whose implosion nearly crashed the entire global financial system. In this case while Facebook attempted to throw water on this crisis by ceremonially banishing Cambridge Analytica from its system, the longstanding pattern of abuse remains, and is perhaps now, finally, awareness of that is reaching critical mass with the public: Facebook scraped your call data from Android phones for years (iPhone’s are also vulnerable to privacy intrusions, see below). Facebook enables features such as “racial profiling” to advertisers Election rigging? Facebook approached major Australian political partiesto micro target voters in 2016 election (the Liberals turned them down, Labour took them up) And while there were key differences in the way data was used, (not to mention more informed consent) the 2012 Obama re-election campaign used the same data mining features and accessed the same data as the Cambridge Analytica app In fact it may be veritably baked into their ecosystem to such a degree that it is almost impossible to develop and create an app on Facebook thatdoesn’t harvest your data Mark Zuckerberg has issued yet another “Mea Culpa” on CNN, and Facebook will take out full page ads in newspapers to apologize to the public. Yet, by now, “Groveling Zuckerberg apologies” are just part of the Facebook playbook, as Liz Gannes observed back in 2011, after Facebook had just settled with the US Federal Trade Commission over still more privacy violations: “At this point, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s pattern on privacy is clear. Launch new stuff that pushes the boundaries of what people consider comfortable. Apologize and assure users that they control their information, but rarely pull back entirely, and usually reintroduce similar features at a later date when people seem more ready for it.” It becomes clear, as Futurist (and easyDNS member) Jesse Hirsh made this point on Steve Pakin’s “The Agenda” over the weekend: “Facebook ships with all privacy enhanced settings disabled” — further, my personal findings are that they use obfuscation to make it harder to disable data sharing settings. You have to jump through hoops to do it. Should you #deleteFacebook? WhatsApp founder Brian Acton, who became a billionaire when Facebook bought his company hasn’t let that dissuade him from telling the world what he thinks of all this: Should you? Should easyDNS? Here’s my take on it: If you are a business: keep your page but don’t be reliant on it There is a difference between a business who uses Facebook as an antennae to provide additional ways to stay in touch with customers and those whose business model is completely dependent on Facebook. We started our Facebook page when we were pulled into the Wikileaks Crisis as a way to stay in touch with our customers while that entire fiasco played out. We maintain it today for the same reason, and people do frequently contact us through that page looking for support. But some businesses are completely reliant on Facebook to survive. I subscribe to James Schramko’s Superfast Business Podcast. A recent episode had the founder of Dogtington Post on it, a site I frequented myself in my early days of being a dog owner (our family Husky). You have to credit the guy with dominating his niche but I couldn’t help wondering what would happen to his business if something substantial changed at Facebook, or if some of his readers would feel “used” if they understood some of the myriad tactics some of these sites routinely use, via Facebook, to drive their own affiliate revenues. It brings to mind 2 things: My late friend and one of the original easyDNS customers Atul Chitniswho was among the first to observe “if you’re not paying for the product, you are the product” My own maxim, which I introduced in the Guerrilla Capitalism Overviewthat there are two kinds of companies, those that feed on customer ignorance compared to those who prosper via customer savvy . I think it is obvious to all, at least now, that Facebook needs customer ignorance to survive. (Or as Zuck eloquently observed it back in his dormroom days) YMMV on your personal pages I read a long time ago “don’t put anything on the internet that you wouldn’t want to read in the newspapers the next day”, and that has served me well as a guide over the years. My basic assumption is that everything I post to Facebook, including “private” messages are wide open, being harvested, data mined, aggregated, used to target and retarget ads to me, build a profile and otherwise compile a comprehensive dossier, even stuff I’ve “deleted”. (If you’ve ever watched “Terms and Conditions May Apply” you’ll know that Facebook actually keeps the stuff you “delete”). So I never say anything on Facebook or put anything on there that is remotely confidential or proprietary. It’s strictly a water cooler. I like it because it enabled me to reconnect with various groups of my friends and peers over the years, from the kids I grew up and went to high school with in Galt, Ontario to the misfits from the London underground music scene in college, to the tech entrepreneurs from the mid-90’s on. Would I use it to send anything to anybody that I found myself hoping that it’s never going to leak or be used against me? Uh, no. That would be terribly naive. So to that end, I’ll probably keep my personal Facebook page, even though I sometimes catch myself spending too much time arguing stupid pointless crap (like politics) with people I’d otherwise never associate with. But that’s a self-discipline issue, not a data soveriengty issue (although it is now also common knowledge that Facebook deliberately codes the platform itself to be as addictive as possible) All that said… At least #deleteFacebook from your mobile devices Facebook harvests your contact lists from your mobile devices (don’t believe me, go here) There are people in that list that I do not know. There are phone numbers from people who work for my competitors in there. My daughter’s (age 11) cell phone number is in there. You can “delete” all this here: (but as you know Facebook never actually deletes anything). Then when you go to “delete” all your contacts you get a message “We won’t be able to tell you when your friends start using Messenger if you delete all your uploaded contact info.” They say that like it’s a bad thing. But there is also this curious sentence: “If you have Continuous Uploading turned on in the Messenger app, your contact info will be uploaded again the next time the app syncs with Facebook servers.” I had deleted the Facebook mobile app from my phone a long time ago. I kept messenger installed because sometimes customers would contact easyDNS or Zoneedit via our Facebook pages for support. But Writing this I wanted to turn off “continuous uploading” in the app. Despite this Facebook help article not explaining how to do it, while this third party article from 2016 did. It turned out I had already disabled continuous uploading but I was surprised to find that the messenger app had defaulted permission to access my phone’s microphone. After this exercise I simply deleted the Messenger app from my phone as well. Personal Data Sovereignty is an idea who’s time has come I think it would be safe to assume, that barring some widespread public pushback (such as the one happening right now), this is The New Normal. People who may have been complacently oblivious to the fact that their social network was pimping them as mere data points are realizing that they don’t like it as they have their faces rubbed in one data breach and privacy violation after another. Given the outrages of Equifax, Facebook et al, we may have arrived at the crossroads and we may only get this choice once. Do we push back and say “NO”, I own my own data, I control who gets it and what happens with it. ? Or, do we calm down after a few days, or weeks and then it’s business as usual. Next year Zuck will apologize for some other new breach of trust ahead of his 2020 presidential bid, while us “shmoes” go ahead and vote for him.
Under the direction of CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook built tools to help the world's largest brands target ads to consumers with data-enhanced precision. Then the company stood idly by as scammers hijacked those tools and used them to sell sham products and services to gullible consumers. Shortly before news broke this morning that Zuckerberg would testify before at least two Congressional committees - while shunning lawmakers in the UK, Bloomberg published a detailed feature about the world of scammers, charlatans and hucksters who use Facebook's marketing tools to sucker unsuspecting Facebook users into buying their shoddy wares. Thanks to the social network's influence, a lucrative cottage industry has been created to help connect sellers of sham goods - everything from "miracle" diet pills to "male enhancers" - to buyers. In addition to the manufacturers, there now exists a layer of so-called affiliate marketers: Middlemen who by online ad space in bulk then offer to create and place advertisements for companies in exchange for sales commissions. To be sure, these mercenary marketers work for legitimate companies, too - eBay and Amazon are two notable companies that hire affiliate marketers. But by far the largest profit margins can be obtained by working with sellers of dietary supplements and other extremely high-margin goods. The top affiliates—virtually all of them young men—assemble a few times a year to learn the latest schemes and trade tips about gaming the rules set by social networks and search platforms. They think of themselves as kin to the surfers-slash-bank-robbers of the 1991 movie Point Break, just more materialistic, jetting from nightclub to Lamborghini race while staying a step ahead of the authorities. One San Diego crew took in $179 million before getting busted last year by the Federal Trade Commission for violating three laws governing online conduct. Bloomberg's story begins with a trip to the aptly named "Stack That Money" conference, described as the "Davos for digital hucksters" - a conference in Berlin for affiliate marketers hosted by a popular web forum. But as Bloomberg points out, visitors could be forgiven for thinking Facebook organized the conference. The Berlin conference was hosted by an online forum called Stack That Money, but a newcomer could be forgiven for wondering if it was somehow sponsored by Facebook Inc. Saleswomen from the company held court onstage, introducing speakers and moderating panel discussions. After the show, Facebook representatives flew to Ibiza on a plane rented by Stack That Money to party with some of the top affiliates. It was hard to believe that Facebook would cozy up to disreputable advertisers in mid-2017 as it was under intense scrutiny from lawmakers and the media over revelations that Russian trolls had used the platform to influence the 2016 presidential election. Officially, the Berlin conference was for aboveboard marketing, but the attendees I spoke to dropped that pretense after the mildest questioning. Some even walked around wearing hats that said “farmin’,” promoting a service that sells fake Facebook accounts. But while the conference was ostensibly organized on behalf of legitimate marketers, attendees dropped their cover at the slightest provocation, speaking freely about the tools and strategies they use to evade protections on platforms like Facebook that filter out spammers and scammers. Facebook, they explained, had revolutionized the world of digital scamming. The key to the whole puzzle is an indispensable software program called Voluum which allows the affiliate marketers to manage their "campaigns." The program was invented by a man named Robert Gryn. With an estimated net worth of $180 million, he's one of the richest men in Poland. Granted anonymity, affiliates were happy to detail their tricks. They told me that Facebook had revolutionized scamming. The company built tools with its trove of user data that made it the go-to platform for big brands. Affiliates hijacked them. Facebook’s targeting algorithm is so powerful, they said, they don’t need to identify suckers themselves—Facebook does it automatically. And they boasted that Russia’s dezinformatsiya agents were using tactics their community had pioneered. When I asked who was at the heart of this game, someone who could explain how the pieces fit together, the affiliates kept nominating the same person. He was a Pole who’d started out as an affiliate himself, they said, before creating a software program called Voluum—an indispensable tool they all use to track their campaigns, defeat the ad networks’ token defenses, and make their fortunes. His name was Robert Gryn. Gryn strutted into Station Berlin like a celebrity, wearing a trim gray suit, a shiny gold watch, and gold-rimmed mirrored sunglasses. He was trailed by a personal videographer, and men he didn’t recognize ran up to him for bro hugs. Only a few years ago, Gryn was just another user posting on Stack That Money. Now, at 31, he’s one of the wealthiest men in Poland, with a net worth estimated by Forbes at $180 million. On Instagram, he posts pictures of himself flying on private jets, spearfishing, flexing his abs, and thinking deep thoughts. Last year he posed for the cover of Puls Biznesu, a Polish financial newspaper, with his face, neck, and ears painted gold. Gryn’s prominent cheekbones, toned biceps and forearms, perfectly gelled pompadour, and practiced smile lend him a resemblance to his favorite movie character: Patrick Bateman, the murderous investment banker played by Christian Bale in American Psycho. During their conversation, Gryn explained how the industry works. The basic process isn’t complicated. For example: A maker of bogus diet pills wants to sell them for $100 a month and doesn’t care how it’s done. The pill vendor approaches a broker, called an affiliate network, and offers to pay a $60 commission per sign-up. The network spreads the word to affiliates, who design ads and pay to place them on Facebook and other places in hopes of earning the commissions. The affiliate takes a risk, paying to run ads without knowing if they’ll work, but if even a small percentage of the people who see them become buyers, the profits can be huge. And he also explained how Facebook has made the grunt work of affiliate marketing much, much easier. Furthermore, the company has only recently taken serious steps toward combating these advertisers. Ben Dowling, one of only three such employees when he was hired in 2012, says Facebook was focused on checking whether ads followed policies about things such as the percentage of text and images, and not on catching people with bad intentions. Affiliates once had to guess what kind of person might fall for their unsophisticated cons, targeting ads by age, geography, or interests. Now Facebook does that work for them. The social network tracks who clicks on the ad and who buys the pills, then starts targeting others whom its algorithm thinks are likely to buy. Affiliates describe watching their ad campaigns lose money for a few days as Facebook gathers data through trial and error, then seeing the sales take off exponentially. "They go out and find the morons for me," I was told by an affiliate who sells deceptively priced skin-care creams with fake endorsements from Chelsea Clinton. Most of the efforts undertaken by Facebook to guard against the practice could be easily circumvented using Gryn's software. And yet, Gryn appears to have a cordial relationship with Facebook - even visiting the company's London offices to meet with top executives. The company hired a few dozen reviewers in Austin and Hyderabad, India, to look over ads that users or algorithms had flagged as questionable and ban accounts that broke the rules. But affiliates evaded them using a subterfuge they call "cloaking." It was easy, especially if you were running Voluum. Gryn’s software allows affiliates to tailor the content they deliver according to a number of factors, including the location or IP address associated with a user. The feature is useful for ad targeting—for example, showing Spanish speakers a message in their native language. But it’s also a simple matter to identify the addresses of Facebook’s ad reviewers and program campaigns to show them, and only them, harmless content. Those who were caught and banned found that this was only a minor setback—they just opened new Facebook accounts under different names. Some affiliates would buy clean profiles from “farmers,” spending as much as $1,000 per. Others would rent accounts from strangers or cut deals with underhanded advertising agencies to find other solutions. Even after banning the accounts of unscrupulous marketers, Facebook salespeople would still come to industry meetups. Affiliates say Facebook has sent mixed signals over the years. Their accounts would get banned, but company salespeople would also come to their meetups and parties and encourage them to buy more ads. Two former Facebook employees who worked in the Toronto sales office said it was common knowledge there that some of their best clients were affiliates who used deception. Still, the sources said, salespeople were instructed to push them to spend more, and the rep who handled the dirtiest accounts had a quota of tens of millions of dollars per quarter. (He left Facebook last year.) Considering the speed with which Bloomberg published this rather lengthy feature, we imagine it won't be the last story about the company's shady business practices we see before the furor dies down. The initial stories about Cambridge Analytica opened Pandora's Box. Now, it's open season on Facebook: And America's media companies - who have long suffered at the hands of the revenue-siphoning social media behemoth - have been waiting for an opportunity to exact their revenge.
Во вторник, 27 марта, ключевые фондовые индексы Соединенных Штатов Америки в первой половине сессии демонстрируют смешанную динамику. При этом S&P и Dow Jones продолжают позитивную тенденцию предыдущего торгового дня на фоне ослабления волнений касательно торговых войн, а индексу Nasdaq пока не удается выйти в плюс во многом за счет просадки акций оператора социальной сети Facebook, (-2,2%) подвергшегося проверке федеральной торговой комиссии США. Тем временем, США и "Поднебесная" пытаются сделать шаг навстречу друг другу и начать переговоры по урегулированию торговых разногласий. В частности, администрация Дональда Трампа подтвердила, что президент поручил министру финансов Стивену Мнучину и торговому представителю Роберту Лайтхайзеру попытаться договориться с властями Китая на тему ограничений по импорту друг друга. В свою очередь, премьер-министр азиатской страны Ли Кэцян заявил, что верит в возможность разрешения противоречий.
James Graham/Getty Images “It’s no good fighting an election campaign on the facts,” Cambridge Analytica’s managing director told an undercover reporter, “because actually it’s all about emotion.” To target U.S. voters and appeal to their hopes, neuroses, and fears, the political consulting firm needed to train its algorithm to predict and map personality traits. That required lots of personal data. So, to build these psychographic profiles, Cambridge Analytica enlisted a Cambridge University professor, whose app collected data on about 50 million Facebook users and their friends. Facebook, at that time, allowed app developers to collect this personal data. Facebook argued that Cambridge Analytica and the professor violated its data polices. But this was not the first time its policies were violated. Nor is it likely to be the last. This scandal came on the heels of Russia’s using Facebook, Google, and Twitter “to sow discord in the U.S. political system, including the 2016 U.S. presidential election.” It heightened concerns over today’s tech giants and the influence they have. That influence comes in part from data. Facebook, Google, Amazon, and similar companies are “data-opolies.” By that I mean companies that control a key platform which, like a coral reef, attracts to its ecosystem users, sellers, advertisers, software developers, apps, and accessory makers. Apple and Google, for example, each control a popular mobile phone operating system platform (and key apps on that platform), Amazon controls the largest online merchant platform, and Facebook controls the largest social network platform. Through their leading platforms, a significant volume and variety of personal data flows. The velocity in acquiring and exploiting this personal data can help these companies obtain significant market power. Is it OK for a few firms to possess so much data and thereby wield so much power? In the U.S., at least, antitrust officials so far seem ambivalent about these data-opolies. They’re free, the thinking goes, so what’s the harm? But that reasoning is misguided. Data-opolies pose tremendous risks, for consumers, workers, competition, and the overall health of our democracy. Here’s why. Why U.S. Antitrust Isn’t Worried About Data-opolies The European competition authorities have recently brought actions against four data-opolies: Google, Apple, Facebook, and Amazon (or GAFA for short). The European Commission, for example, fined Google a record €2.42 billion for leveraging its monopoly in search to advance its comparative shopping service. The Commission also preliminarily found Google to have abused its dominant position with both its Android mobile operating system and with AdSense. Facebook, Germany’s competition agency preliminarily found, abused its dominant position “by making the use of its social network conditional on its being allowed to limitlessly amass every kind of data generated by using third-party websites and merge it with the user’s Facebook account.” We will likely see more fines and other remedies in the next few years from the Europeans. But in the U.S., the data-opolies have largely escaped antitrust scrutiny, under both the Obama and Bush administrations. Notably, while the European Commission found Google’s search bias to be anticompetitive, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission did not. From 2000 onward, the Department of Justice brought only one monopolization case in total, against anyone. (In contrast, the DOJ, between 1970 and 1972, brought 39 civil and 3 criminal cases against monopolies and oligopolies.) The current head of the DOJ’s Antitrust Division recognized the enforcement gap between the U.S. and Europe. He noted his agency’s “particular concerns in digital markets.” But absent “demonstrable harm to competition and consumers,” the DOJ is “reluctant to impose special duties on digital platforms, out of [its] concern that special duties might stifle the very innovation that has created dynamic competition for the benefit of consumers.” So, the divergence in antitrust enforcement may reflect differences over these data-opolies’ perceived harms. Ordinarily the harm from monopolies are higher prices, less output, or reduced quality. It superficially appears that data-opolies pose little, if any risk, of these harms. Unlike some pharmaceuticals, data-opolies do not charge consumers exorbitant prices. Most of Google’s and Facebook’s consumer products are ostensibly “free.” The data-opolies’ scale can also mean higher quality products. The more people use a particular search engine, the more the search engine’s algorithm can learn users’ preferences, the more relevant the search results will likely be, which in turn will likely attract others to the search engine, and the positive feedback continues. As Robert Bork argued, there “is no coherent case for monopolization because a search engine, like Google, is free to consumers and they can switch to an alternative search engine with a click.” How Data-opolies Harm But higher prices are not the only way for powerful companies to harm their consumers or the rest of society. Upon closer examination, data-opolies can pose at least eight potential harms. Lower-quality products with less privacy. Companies, antitrust authorities increasingly recognize, can compete on privacy and protecting data. But without competition, data-opolies face less pressure. They can depress privacy protection below competitive levels and collect personal data above competitive levels. The collection of too much personal data can be the equivalent of charging an excessive price. Data-opolies can also fail to disclose what data they collect and how they will use the data. They face little competitive pressure to change their opaque privacy policies. Even if a data-opoly improves its privacy statement, so what? The current notice-and-consent regime is meaningless when there are no viable competitive alternatives and the bargaining power is so unequal. Surveillance and security risks.In a monopolized market, personal data is concentrated in a few firms. Consumers have limited outside options that offer better privacy protection. This raises additional risks, including: Government capture. The fewer the number of firms controlling the personal data, the greater the potential risk that a government will “capture” the firm. Companies need things from government; governments often want access to data. When there are only a few firms, this can increase the likelihood of companies secretly cooperating with the government to provide access to data. China, for example, relies on its data-opolies to better monitor its population. Covert surveillance. Even if the government cannot capture a data-opoly, its rich data-trove increases a government’s incentive to circumvent the data-opoly’s privacy protections to tap into the personal data. Even if the government can’t strike a deal to access the data directly, it may be able to do so covertly. Implications of a data policy violation/security breach. Data-opolies have greater incentives to prevent a breach than do typical firms. But with more personal data concentrated in fewer companies, hackers, marketers, political consultants, among others, have even greater incentives to find ways to circumvent or breach the dominant firm’s security measures. The concentration of data means that if one of them is breached, the harm done could be orders of magnitude greater than with a normal company. While consumers may be outraged, a dominant firm has less reason to worry of consumers’ switching to rivals. Wealth transfer to data-opolies. Even when their products and services are ostensibly “free,” data-opolies can extract significant wealth in several ways that they otherwise couldn’t in a competitive market: First, data-opolies can extract wealth by getting personal data without having to pay for the data’s fair market value. The personal data collected may be worth far more than the cost of providing the “free” service. The fact that the service is “free” does not mean we are fairly compensated for our data. Thus, data-opolies have a strong economic incentive to maintain the status quo, in which users, as the MIT Technology Review put it, “have little idea how much personal data they have provided, how it is used, and what it is worth.” If the public knew, and if they had viable alternatives, they might hold out for compensation. Second, something similar can happen but with the content users create. Data-opolies can extract wealth by getting creative content from users for free. In a competitive market, users could conceivably demand compensation not only for their data but also their contributions to YouTube and Facebook. With no viable alternatives, they cannot. Third, data-opolies can extract wealth from sellers upstream. One example is when data-opolies scrape valuable content from photographers, authors, musicians, and other websites and post it on their own platform. In this case, the wealth of the data-opolies comes at the expense of other businesses in their value chain. Fourth, data-opolies can extract our wealth indirectly, when their higher advertising fees are passed along in the prices for the advertised goods and services. If the data-opolies faced more competitors for their advertising services, ads could cost even less – and therefore so might the products being advertised. Finally, data-opolies can extract wealth from both sellers upstream and consumers downstream by facilitating or engaging in “behavioral discrimination,” a form of price discrimination based on past behavior – like, say, your internet browsing. They can use the personal data to get people to buy things they did not necessarily want at the highest price they are willing to pay. As data-opolies expand their platforms to digital personal assistants, the Internet of Things, and smart technologies, the concern is that their data advantage will increase their competitive advantage and market power. As a result, the data-opolies’ monopoly profits will likely increase, at our expense. Loss of trust. Market economies rely on trust. For online markets to deliver their benefits, people must trust firms and their use of the personal data. But as technology evolves and more personal data is collected, we are increasingly aware that a few powerful firms are using our personal information for their own benefit, not ours. When data-opolies degrade privacy protections below competitive levels, some consumers will choose not “to share their data, to limit their data sharing with companies, or even to lie when providing information,” as the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority put it. Consumers may forgo the data-opolies’ services, which they otherwise would have used if privacy competition were robust. This loss would represent what economists call a deadweight welfare loss. In other words, as distrust increases, society overall becomes worse off. Significant costs on third parties. Additionally, data-opolies that control a key platform, like a mobile phone operating system, can cheaply exclude rivals by: steering users and advertisers to their own products and services to the detriment of rival sellers on the platform (and contrary to consumers’ wishes) degrading an independent app’s functionality reducing traffic to an independent app by making it harder to find on its search engine or app store Data-opolies can also impose costs on companies seeking to protect our privacy interests. My book with Ariel Ezrachi, Virtual Competition, discusses, for example, Google’s kicking the privacy app Disconnect out of its Android app store. Less innovation in markets dominated by data-opolies. Data-opolies can chill innovation with a weapon that earlier monopolies lacked. Allen Grunes and I call it the “now-casting radar.” Our book Big Data and Competition Policy explores how some platforms have a relative advantage in accessing and analyzing data to discern consumer trends well before others. Data-opolies can use their relative advantage to see what products or services are becoming more popular. With their now-casting radar, data-opolies can acquire or squelch these nascent competitive threats. Social and moral concerns. Historically, antitrust has also been concerned with how monopolies can hinder individual autonomy. Data-opolies can also hurt individual autonomy. To start with, they can direct (and limit) opportunities for startups that subsist on their super-platform. This includes third-party sellers that rely on Amazon’s platform to reach consumers, newspapers and journalists that depend on Facebook and Google to reach younger readers, and, as the European Commission’s Google Shopping Case explores, companies that depend on traffic from Google’s search engine. But the autonomy concerns go beyond the constellation of app developers, sellers, journalists, musicians, writers, photographers, and artists dependent on the data-opoly to reach users. Every individual’s autonomy is at stake. In January, the hedge fund Jana Partners joined the California State Teachers’ Retirement pension fund to demand that Apple do more to address the effects of its devices on children. As The Economist noted, “You know you are in trouble if a Wall Street firm is lecturing you about morality.” The concern is that the data-opolies’ products are purposefully addictive, and thereby eroding individuals’ ability to make free choices. There is an interesting counterargument that’s worth noting, based on the interplay between monopoly power and competition. On the one hand, in monopolized markets, consumers have fewer competitive options. So, arguably, there is less need to addict them. On the other hand, data-opolies, like Facebook and Google, even without significant rivals, can increase profits by increasing our engagement with their products. So, data-opolies can have an incentive to exploit behavioral biases and imperfect willpower to addict users—whether watching YouTube videos or posting on Instagram. Political concerns. Economic power often translates into political power. Unlike earlier monopolies, data-opolies, given how they interact with individuals, possess a more powerful tool: namely, the ability to affect the public debate and our perception of right and wrong. Many people now receive their news from social media platforms. But the news isn’t just passively transmitted. Data-opolies can affect how we feel and think. Facebook, for example, in an “emotional contagion” study, manipulated 689,003 users’ emotions by altering their news feed. Other risks of this sort include: Bias. In filtering the information we receive based on our preferences, data-opolies can reduce the viewpoints we receive, thereby leading to “echo chambers” and “filter bubbles.” Censorship. Data-opolies, through their platform, can control or block content that users receive, and enforce governmental censorship of political or religious information. Manipulation. Data-opolies can promote stories that further their particular business or political interests, instead of their relevance or quality. Limiting the Power of Data-opolies Upon closer examination, data-opolies can actually be more dangerous than traditional monopolies. They can affect not only our wallets but our privacy, autonomy, democracy, and well-being. Markets dominated by these data-opolies will not necessarily self-correct. Network effects, high switching costs for consumers (given the lack of data portability and user rights over their data), and weak privacy protection help data-opolies maintain their dominance. Luckily, global antitrust enforcement can help. The Reagan administration, in espousing the then-popular Chicago School of economics beliefs, discounted concerns over monopolies. The Supreme Court, relying on faulty economic reasoning, surmised that charging monopoly prices was “an important element of the free market system.” With the rise of a progressive, anti-monopoly New Brandeis School, the pendulum is swinging the other way. Given the emergence of data-opolies, this is a welcomed change. Nonetheless, global antitrust enforcement, while a necessary tool to deter these harms, is not sufficient. Antitrust enforcers must coordinate with privacy and consumer protection officials to ensure that the conditions for effective privacy competition and an inclusive economy are in place.
LIZ SHELD’S MORNING BRIEF: FTC Looks at Facebook, Media Continues Kids’ Anti2A March and Much, Much …
LIZ SHELD’S MORNING BRIEF: FTC Looks at Facebook, Media Continues Kids’ Anti2A March and Much, Much More. “Just as a reminder, no one cared about Facebook’s practices until it appeared to help President Trump.”
Федеральная торговая комиссия США 26 марта подтвердила, что начала расследование в связи с утечкой данных пользователей фейсбука. Комиссия проверит принятые в соцсети правила защиты конфиденциальной информации. Акции Facebook накануне публикации расследований
23.12.2014 Власти США и Канады заблокировали продажу «Роснефти» нефтетрейдингового подразделения Morgan Stanley. За год сторонам так и не удалось получить одобрения регуляторов. Западные санкции также снизили привлекательность этой сделки, сумма которой оценивалась в $400 млн. Комитет по иностранным инвестициям США отказался согласовывать сделку с Morgan Stanley, поэтому «Роснефть» не смогла ее завершить, заявил РБК вице-президент компании по связям с общественностью и СМИ Михаил Леонтьев. «Отказ в выдаче регламентирующих соглашений мы получили не только от американских, но и от канадских регуляторов. Это их право: оспаривать незаключенную сделку мы не будем», – пояснил он. «Роснефть» договорилась о покупке нефтетрейдингового бизнеса Morgan Stanley 20 декабря 2013 года. В случае завершения сделки российской компании перешли бы международная сеть нефтехранилищ, запасы нефти и нефтепродуктов, прямые контракты с потребителями, контракты на условиях предоплаты, логистические контракты, а также акции и доли в профильных дочерних компаниях в области инфраструктуры, международного маркетинга и исследований. На работу в «Роснефть» также должны были перейти более 100 нефтетрейдеров из офисов Morgan Stanley в Великобритании, США и Сингапуре, а также около 180 менеджеров из вспомогательных подразделений. В июне сделку одобрила Федеральная торговая комиссия США, а в июле «Роснефть» и Morgan Stanley обратились в комитет по иностранным инвестициям. В сообщении «Роснефти» отмечается, что «стороны затратили на подготовку сделки существенные усилия и сожалеют о невозможности ее закрыть». Но потерь от срыва сделки «Роснефть» не понесла, утверждает Леонтьев. «Не факт, что в текущих условиях эта сделка была бы так же интересна, как раньше», – добавил он. А Morgan Stanley рассмотрит теперь ряд вариантов в отношении нефтетрейдингового подразделения с учетом интересов акционеров, клиентов и служащих компании, говорится в сообщении банка, которое приводит ТАСС. Сумма сделки не раскрывалась. Но, по данным The Wall Street Journal, она могла составить «несколько сотен миллионов долларов». Аналитики Platts оценивали ее примерно в $400 млн. Из-за несостоявшейся сделки «Роснефть» почти ничего не потеряла, компания могла потратиться лишь на консультантов, но это незначительные средства, говорит старший аналитик «Уралсиб Кэпитал» Алексей Кокин. О том, что сделка может сорваться, стало известно еще осенью. «Роснефть» до последнего это не признавала, но американцы не исключали такую возможность. «В нынешних условиях нет и не может быть никаких гарантий того, что сделка будет закрыта, особенно учитывая прописанное в договоре требование о том, что все необходимые разрешения должны быть получены до конца года», – говорил представитель Morgan Stanley в октябре. Источники Financial Times тогда сообщали, что сделка фактически не имеет перспектив. Это стало ясно после того, как санкции отрезали «Роснефти» доступ к долгосрочным валютным кредитам в сентябре, говорит Кокин. Нефтетрейдинговый бизнес подразумевает доступ компании к кредитам в несколько десятков миллиардов долларов, иначе бизнес не будет работать, указывает он. Таким образом, для срыва сделки были и объективные причины, заключает эксперт. Это не первый случай, когда планам «Роснефти» помешали санкции. В конце сентября Exxon Mobil приостановила сотрудничество с российским партнером по девяти из десяти СП в России, а затем свернула работы и на совместном проекте в Карском море. В ноябре норвежская North Atlantic также была вынуждена отложить сделку с «Роснефтью» до 2015 года. http://www.rbcdaily.ru/industry/562949993439576 19.06.2014 Глава Роснефти Игорь Сечин, процитировав в интервью телеканалу CNBC французского государственного деятеля Шарля Мориса Талейрана, назвал введенные в отношении него санкции со стороны США бессмысленными. «Я думаю, что эту прискорбную ситуацию можно описать словами французского политика Шарля Мориса де Талейрана, который, насколько я помню, сказал примерно следующее – «все лишнее не имеет значения», – передает ИТАР-ТАСС. Относительно возможного ужесточения санкций в отношении России Сечин заявил, что Роснефть продолжает работать, чтобы показать эффективность совместной взаимовыгодной деятельности с американскими корпорациями. «Однако, если решения о санкциях будут приняты, мы продолжим реализацию наших проектов самостоятельно, оставив их открытыми для наших американских партнеров, которые смогут вернуться, когда это станет возможным», – подчеркнул президент Роснефти. По словам Сечина, он не может понять «никаких обоснований» для введения санкционного режима. «Я не понимаю, какую цель они преследуют. Я не вовлечен в принятие политических решений... Так что введение санкций я считаю бессмысленным», – заключил глава Роснефти, добавив, что не думает, что его активная взаимовыгодная работа с американскими компаниями может выступать основанием для санкций. «Серьезные люди не должны принимать серьезные решения под давлением», – резюмировал президент Роснефти. Напомним, в конце апреля глава Роснефти уже говорил, что воспринял решение США ввести персональные санкции против него как высокую оценку эффективности работы подконтрольной ему компании. Перед этим США объявили о новой волне карательных мер против Москвы. В санкционный список кроме главы Роснефти Игоря Сечина вошли полпред президента России в Крыму Олег Белавенцев, глава Ростеха Сергей Чемезов, вице-премьер Дмитрий Козак, председатель международного комитета Госдумы Алексей Пушков, директор ФСО Евгений Муров, первый замглавы кремлевской администрации Вячеслав Володин. Тогда же представитель американского минфина сообщил, что граждане США продолжат работать в совете директоров Роснефти, несмотря на санкции, введенные в отношении главы нефтяной компании. http://vz.ru/news/2014/6/19/691836.html 16.06.2014 Чем опасен Игорь Сечин Человек, максимально близкий Владимиру Путину, самый тяжелый из политических тяжеловесов, теневой премьер-министр — каких только названий не выдумывается для президента «Роснефти» Игоря Сечина! Когда он только переместился на нынешнюю должность из зампредов правительства, казалось, что это тяжелое аппаратное поражение; но давно очевидно, что никакое не поражение, а серьезное возвышение. ... (Кстати замечу, что и кремлевскому покровителю весьма выгодна эта странная конструкция: можно в ответ на всякие нападки справедливо указывать, что в правительстве сидят сплошь экономические либералы, и не беспокоиться о содержании их деятельности, когда важнейшей частью экономики занимается такой ультрагосударственник, как президент Сечин.) ... Тайком направить войска в Крым, конечно, президенту Сечину не по чину будет — но на своем родном поле, в энергетической сфере, он явно может действовать без оглядки на, назовем это так, условности. А как мы знаем из истории, даже самым великим людям иногда решительно отказывает чувство меры. Опровержение Решением Останкинского районного суда г. Москвы от 26 августа 2014 года признаны не соответствующими действительности и порочащими честь, достоинство и деловую репутацию Сечина Игоря Ивановича , а потому подлежащими опровержению распространенные 16 июня 2014 года редакцией электронного периодического издания «Ведомости» («Vedomosti») по адресу http://www.vedomosti.ru/newspaper/ article/697301/igor-sechin следующие сведения: «Потому что на нынешней своей позиции способности и возможности влиять на принятие основных государственных решений президент Сечин нисколько не утратил: вроде бы “Роснефть” и подконтрольна правительству, поскольку приходится ему “внучкой”,- а вроде и не очень-то. Поразительна была, например, история с дивидендами нефтяной госкомпании, которые правительству Дмитрия Медведева хотелось использовать как-то по-своему, да не вышло, пришлось очень долго обсуждать судьбу этих денег; а уж история прошлой недели с налоговым маневром, согласованным было Минфином и Минэнерго, но отправленным в корзину одним росчерком пера (т. е. письмом) президента Сечина, — прямо символ!» «… на президентской позиции Игоря Сечина … с возможностью … по сути, не отвечать ни за какие свои действия ни перед кем, кроме кремлевского покровителя.» «…хороша ли такая бесконтрольность: нельзя приравнять российское государство, от имени которого совершает топ-менеджерские поступки президент Сечин, ни к нему…»