Ipswich Unemployed Action.

Campaigning for Unemployed Rights.

Esther McVey: After Swan Song at Reform Think Tank is She about to Flee the Sinking Ship?

Image result for esther mcVey singing

“Swans sing before they Resign – ’twere no bad thing should certain persons die before they sing.” 

Our Newshawks have been keeping a beady eye on Esther McVey.

It looks as if she may be about to jump ship.

The far-right Express gloats,

ANOTHER blow to Theresa May Brexit plan as Esther McVey REFUSES to publicly support it

ESTHER McVey refused to publicly support Theresa May’s Brexit plan in another blow to the Prime Minister’s attempts to restore unity in her warring party.

The Work and Pensions Secretary said she was confident the Prime Minister will deliver the “Brexit that Britain voted for”.

Ms McVey was asked by the Reform think tank whether she had full confidence in the Chequers plan, to which she replied: “I will say that I have full confidence in the Prime Minister to deliver the Brexit that Britain voted for.”

But she would not give her backing to proposals agreed at Chequers, which Brexiteers have lambasted as being too soft.

Ms McVey and Penny Mordaunt, International Development Secretary, have been put on “resignation watch” by Downing Street after privately raising concerns about the Chequers plan.

The Work and Pensions Secretary’s partner, Conservative MP for Shipley Philip Davies, revealed he had submitted a letter of no confidence in the Prime Minister after losing trust in the Chequers deal.

This follows efforts to cover her  tracks (Guardian Thursday) in this remarkable Whooper Swan Speech.

In a speech to the Reform thinktank on Thursday, McVey said universal credit was adapting the welfare system to changing patterns of work and using the latest technology to create an agile service offering “tailor-made support”.

But in an almost unprecedented official admission that not all is going well with the benefit, which is six years behind schedule, she said changes were needed.

McVey added: “And where we need to put our hands up, admit things might not be be going right, we will do.”

The DWP needed to reach out to, and learn from, all organisations that could help officials design and implement a system that fully supported claimants, she said, such as the National Audit Office. . A highly critical report by the public spending watchdog into universal credit triggered a controversy that ended with McVey being accused of misleading parliament and facing calls to resign.

McVey said she was working on changes to universal credit including debt repayment, support for the self-employed and benefit payment cycles for working claimants, but gave no further details.

As is often the way it is interesting to read her Highness’ peroration beyond the newspaper’s report (extracts):

On 19 July 2018, the Rt Hon Esther McVey MP, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, gave a speech to Reform on ‘Universal Credit: Delivering the welfare revolution’.

..it really is great to be here today to talk about my vision for the welfare revolution and the changing world of work.

And it’s terrific to be on a Reform platform.

Because Reform is a fierce advocate for public services in this new age of technology.

(Pardon Ma’m what the hell do you mean here?)

This a good bit,

Interestingly, I’m the only Minister I believe who has spent their whole Ministerial career in one department- Work and Pensions – moving from Parliamentary Private Secretary into a Junior Minister role to a Minister of State to now Secretary of State – even with a spell of unemployment in the middle!

One moment Minister of State for Employment the next moment unemployed!

(Indeed …)

She continued, pontificating on the new ‘Immaterial world’ (thanks to her speech-writer for citing Paul Mason…)

there was nothing personal about a complex, indiscriminate ‘one-size fits all’ system – which, I think it is fair to say, embedded low expectations on both sides of the claim desk.

So change has to come – and change that also reflects the rapidly changing world of work in which we live.

Lots of work is changing – it is now online, tasks are being automated, and new industries are being created.

This is a great time to be alive and to be in charge of the DWP!

The gig economy matches people and tasks more dynamically than ever before – creating new opportunity.

Flexible working is no longer an exception, and we are seeing an increasingly inclusive workforce, where work fits around personal circumstances and caring responsibilities.

Gone is the job for life.

And our welfare system should reflect that. It should be nimble and adaptive – reflecting changing working patterns in this fast-paced moving world.

Our vision is one of a personalised benefit system, a digitised system.

Audience dozes off..

This digital system personalises Universal Credit. And we are constantly updating it.

This is not just IT: it is using next-generation technology, design thinking and data to support work coaches.

Sound of loud snoring.

But hark!

But we are not complacent that that all is working like clockwork.

And where we need to put our hands up, admit things might not be be going right, we will do so. We will be a culture of mea culpa, hands up and then we need to change. For just as we are adopting agile technology in this fast paced world, Ministers have to be agile too.

Nimble is Esther’s Middle name.

The speech drones on…

Personal advancement is key to social mobility and ensuring people reach their potential.

And it is by empowering people, giving them choice and flexibility to carve their own path, that everyone is able to reach this potential.

We are working hard to make Universal Credit work for all. And we want to work with you all to achieve that.

We are both a pragmatic and a visionary government, listening to business, listening to charities, listening to people on the frontline and putting in place the right support to help people taking back control of their lives. (Grammar note, that should have been ‘take’ unless she meant helping a group of people who are already taking ‘back control’ and nobody else). And most importantly, always listening to the claimant. Thank you.

Off to the bar….

And now there is this:

Universal Credit rollout bungle blamed as over 1million people are fined for mistakenly claiming free prescriptions

Mirror. 20th of June.

The bungled Universal Credit rollout has been blamed for more than a million people being fined for mistakenly claiming free prescriptions.

Labour accused Government of “penalising ill people” by failing to inform them of entitlement after moving to the all-in-one benefit.

Helen Goodman blasted the Department for Work and Pens­ions and called on Employment Minister Alok Sharma for refunds.

Fines can be as high as £100 per prescription. The MP said: “This is the minister’s fault.

“They should not penalise ill people because of their shambolic rollout of Universal Credit.”

Written by Andrew Coates

July 22, 2018 at 10:00 am

67 Responses

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  1. ATOS runs the whole Tory Governments IT Computer System which is copywritten. For the Tories to get out of the contract with ATOS they would have to develop it’s own IT System or pay someone else to develop a new computer IT System. When ATOS get a £500 Million a year contract in a certain department of the Government, not only do the Tories pay ATOS £500 million a year they also give ATOS a £500 Millon bonus at the end of each contract year. The Tories are so controlled by ATOS that you think that France is running the UK. ATOS sell weapons of war. Sanctions also apply to the Tories when it comes to contracting corporate companies.

    8 Year Welfare Reform Bill somewhere near £80 Billion. That will be rising rapidly when the cost of 120,000 Government Assisted Deaths need to be hidden.

    The Tories hiding behind Corporate Manslaughter when really it’s State Sponsored Assisted Suicide Murder.

    Now who’s policy is that IDS, Esther McVey the whole Tory Cabinet from 2010.

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    July 22, 2018 at 10:53 am

  2. There’s no such thing as “agile technology”. This “agile” that people keep talking about is an iterative method used by software developers and programmers to manage projects and develop software. Based on what I have heard agile hasn’t been much used developing the software Universal Credit uses, nor does it make anything easier or possible that wasn’t easy or possible to do using other methodologies, e.g., waterfall.

    Time for Esther to go and spend more time with her family…

    … or somebody else’s family, probably, as she has no children or family of her own.

    Turdster

    July 22, 2018 at 10:54 am

  3. Reblogged this on michaelsnaith.

    snaithmagmailcom

    July 22, 2018 at 11:34 am

  4. I bet she’s on her way out. None of them stick the job for long.

    trev

    July 22, 2018 at 12:32 pm

  5. […] via Esther McVey: After Swan Song at Reform Think Tank is She about to Flee the Sinking Ship? — Ipswic… […]

  6. The employee who works at prada but sleeps on the streets. How tens of thousands of people are working for high street brands while homeless because they can’t afford their own home.

    http://www.mailonsunday.co.uk/news/article-5978397/Tens-thousands-people-working-high-street-brands-sleeping-streets-Britain.html

    Violet

    July 22, 2018 at 2:58 pm

  7. Torys employ the utter dregs.

    Violet

    July 22, 2018 at 3:03 pm

  8. That picture of Ms McVey looks like the stripper who “entertained” me and my mates at a recent stag party. Is Esther so insecure in respect to her job that she’s doing a bit of moonlighting on the side to get the money in?

    Chalky

    July 22, 2018 at 3:29 pm

  9. Mucky minister 😵 how true.

    Violet

    July 22, 2018 at 4:48 pm

  10. Multi-million pound fund to help tackle the disability employment gap launched

    The fund is the latest in a range of government measures that aims to see 1 million more disabled people in work by 2027.

    Published 16 July 2018

    A £4.2 million challenge fund to support people with mental health or musculoskeletal conditions to stay in work has been launched by the Minister for Disabled People, Health and Work, Sarah Newton, and the Minister for Mental Health and Inequalities, Jackie Doyle-Price.

    The fund is the latest in a range of government measures that are part of a 10-year strategy which aims to see 1 million more disabled people in work by 2027.

    The challenge fund, run by Rocket Science on behalf of the government, is aimed at testing new approaches to help people experiencing mental ill health or musculoskeletal issues to remain in employment.

    They might be at risk of losing employment because of the effects of their condition, or may already be temporarily off work through ill health.

    Minister for Disabled People, Health and Work Sarah Newton, said:

    “We know there is a gap between disabled people who want to work and those who have the opportunity to do so.

    “With 78% of people acquiring their disability or health condition during their adult life, it’s crucial that we support disabled people who want to work to stay in or return to employment.”

    The joint initiative between the Department for Work and Pensions and the Department of Health and Social Care will fund projects that help people to stay in work by:
    •increasing their ability to self-manage their conditions
    •helping people access advice and support about what sort of work they might be capable of doing

    Minister for Mental Health and Inequalities Jackie Doyle-Price, said:

    “For too long if you had a disability or serious mental health issue the world of work was off limits, potentially affecting the lives of millions of people across the country.

    “This fund will help people overcome the barriers that so many still face when trying to get into and progress in the workplace.”

    Other areas to be tested will include new approaches to help employers and employees develop workplace solutions, and developing ways of working that facilitate greater participation of those with mental health or musculoskeletal conditions.

    Applications are welcome from organisations in any sector, including employers, charities, social enterprises, local authorities, health bodies and others, with applications from smaller organisations particularly welcome.

    https://www.gov.uk/government/news/multi-million-pound-fund-to-help-tackle-the-disability-employment-gap-launched

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    July 22, 2018 at 6:40 pm

    • Rock Science

      Poverty and Welfare

      We have developed expertise and understanding of the dynamics of poverty in the UK.

      When Rocket Science started it was a truism that ‘the best way out of poverty is employment’ – but today, many live in poverty despite working and earning.

      Welfare reform has created a need to understand its impact and develop appropriate responses to help the most vulnerable.

      We work extensively in our poorest communities, helping clients understand needs and potential responses. We help review and develop anti-poverty approaches.

      Increasingly we are asked to explore the connections between work, poverty, housing, and health.

      http://rocketsciencelab.co.uk/poverty-and-welfare/

      Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

      July 22, 2018 at 6:43 pm

      • ROCKET SCIENCE

        Our Specialisms

        Employability, Education and skills

        Poverty and Welfare

        Health, Social Care and Wellbeing

        Charities and Civil Society

        Research, Consultation and Analysis

        Organisation and Partnership Development

        Grant and Fund Management

        Evaluation and Impact Measurement

        Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

        July 22, 2018 at 6:46 pm

      • About us

        Launched on 01 October 2001, Rocket Science is an independent research and consultancy company with offices in London, Edinburgh and the North East.

        We are committed to making a difference to the lives of people and communities across the UK by supporting national and local government, its agencies, charities and the voluntary sector to deliver and improve their services.

        Since our inception we have worked with over 500 organisations using ‘rocket science’ to deliver practical solutions for complex problems.

        Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

        July 22, 2018 at 6:48 pm

  11. £4.2 million challenge fund to support Rocket Science Lab Disabled Work Lab Rats.

    Tories it’s not Rocket Science !!!

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    July 22, 2018 at 6:49 pm

  12. Minister for Disabled People, Health and Work, Sarah Newton, and the Minister for Mental Health and Inequalities, Jackie Doyle-Price.

    SACKED Esther McVey has already gone.

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    July 22, 2018 at 6:51 pm

  13. Rocket Science Labs

    Rocket Science Labs is a product conceptualizer and think tank company.

    Los Gatos, California, United States

    Rocket Science Labs is a product conceptualizer and think tank company founded on the premise of creating and developing new and innovative products to make their lives peaceful, easier, and more enjoyable.

    Rocket Science Labs conceives, creates, researches, and develops products for licensing and has an on-going relationship with many successful manufacturers and marketers that have brought their products to market.

    Rocket Science Labs prides itself on its diversification and creating well-researched products using existing technologies or creating new technologies to enable those products to become a reality.

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    July 22, 2018 at 7:07 pm

    • Amber Rudd is part of Rocket Science doing PR on Twitter.

      My Disability Needs A Think Tank Of Money Launderers.

      Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

      July 22, 2018 at 7:09 pm

  14. The cashless society is a con – and big finance is behind it

    Brett Scott

    Banks are closing ATMs and branches in an attempt to ‘nudge’ users towards digital services – and it’s all for their own benefit

    All over the western world banks are shutting down cash machines and branches. They are trying to push you into using their digital payments and digital banking infrastructure. Just like Google wants everyone to access and navigate the broader internet via its privately controlled search portal, so financial institutions want everyone to access and navigate the broader economy through their systems.

    Another aim is to cut costs in order to boost profits. Branches require staff. Replacing them with standardised self-service apps allows the senior managers of financial institutions to directly control and monitor interactions with customers.

    Banks, of course, tell us a different story about why they do this. I recently got a letter from my bank telling me that they are shutting down local branches because “customers are turning to digital”, and they are thus “responding to changing customer preferences”. I am one of the customers they are referring to, but I never asked them to shut down the branches.

    There is a feedback loop going on here. In closing down their branches, or withdrawing their cash machines, they make it harder for me to use those services. I am much more likely to “choose” a digital option if the banks deliberately make it harder for me to choose a non-digital option.

    In behavioural economics this is referred to as “nudging”. If a powerful institution wants to make people choose a certain thing, the best strategy is to make it difficult to choose the alternative.

    We can illustrate this with the example of self-checkout tills at supermarkets. The underlying agenda is to replace checkout staff with self-service machines to cut costs. But supermarkets have to convince their customers. They thus initially present self-checkout as a convenient alternative. When some people then use that alternative, the supermarket can cite that as evidence of a change in customer behaviour, which they then use to justify a reduction in checkout employees. This in turn makes it more inconvenient to use the checkout staff, which in turn makes customers more likely to use the machines. They slowly wean you off staff, and “nudge” you towards self-service.

    Financial institutions, likewise, are trying to nudge us towards a cashless society and digital banking. The true motive is corporate profit. Payments companies such as Visa and Mastercard want to increase the volume of digital payments services they sell, while banks want to cut costs. The nudge requires two parts. First, they must increase the inconvenience of cash, ATMs and branches. Second, they must vigorously promote the alternative. They seek to make people “learn” that they want digital, and then “choose” it.

    We can learn from the Marxist philosopher Antonio Gramsci in this regard. His concept of hegemony referred to the way in which powerful parties condition the cultural and economic environment in such a way that their interests begin to be perceived as natural and inevitable by the general public. Nobody was on the streets shouting for digital payment 20 years ago, but increasingly it seems obvious and “natural” that it should take over. That belief does not come from nowhere. It is the direct result of a hegemonic project on the part of financial institutions.

    We can also learn from Louis Althusser’s concept of interpellation. The basic idea is that you can get people to internalise beliefs by addressing them as if they already had those beliefs. Twenty years ago nobody believed that cash was “inconvenient”, but every time I walk into London Underground I see adverts that address me as if I was a person who finds cash inconvenient. The objective is to reverse-engineer a belief within me that it is inconvenient, and that cashlessness is in my interests. But a cashless society is not in your interest. It is in the interest of banks and payments companies. Their job is to make you believe that it is in your interest too, and they are succeeding in doing that.

    The recent Visa chaos, during which millions of people who have become dependent on digital payment suddenly found themselves stranded when the monopolistic payment network crashed, was a temporary setback. Digital systems may be “convenient”, but they often come with central points of failure. Cash, on the other hand, does not crash. It does not rely on external data centres, and is not subject to remote control or remote monitoring. The cash system allows for an unmonitored “off the grid” space. This is also the reason why financial institutions and financial technology companies want to get rid of it. Cash transactions are outside the net that such institutions cast to harvest fees and data.

    A cashless society brings dangers. People without bank accounts will find themselves further marginalised, disenfranchised from the cash infrastructure that previously supported them. There are also poorly understood psychological implications about cash encouraging self-control while paying by card or a mobile phone can encourage spending. And a cashless society has major surveillance implications.

    Despite this, we see an alignment between government and financial institutions. The Treasury recently held a public consultation on cash and digital payments in the new economy. It presented itself as attempting to strike a balance, noting that cash was still important. But years of subtle lobbying by the financial industry have clearly paid off. The call for evidence repeatedly notes the negative elements of cash – associating it with crime and tax evasion – but barely mentions the negative implications of digital payments.

    The UK government has chosen to champion the digital financial services industry. This is irresponsible and disingenuous. We need to stop accepting stories about the cashless society and hyper-digital banking being “natural progress”. We must recognise every cash machine that is shut down as another step in financial institutions’ campaign to nudge you into their digital enclosures.

    • Brett Scott is a campaigner, former broker and the author of The Heretic’s Guide to Global Finance: Hacking the Future of Money

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jul/19/cashless-society-con-big-finance-banks-closing-atms + comments

    The Guardian

    July 22, 2018 at 8:42 pm

  15. Chalky

    July 23, 2018 at 8:43 am

    • A pretty decisive answer to the McVey speech, eh?

      Where’s yer ‘agile’ system now!

      ““The IT system on which universal credit is built is so fundamentally broken and poorly designed that it guarantees severe problems with claims.”

      He said the system was overcomplex and prone to errors that affected payments and often proved slow to correct. “In practical terms, it is not working the way it was intended and it is having an actively harmful effect on a huge number of claimants.””

      Andrew Coates

      July 23, 2018 at 11:40 am

  16. Even the Murdoch owned and very pro-Tory Sun are homing in on Universal Credit:

    “UNIVERSAL FAILURE Brits are losing hundreds of pounds in benefits ‘because Universal Credit IT systems are in tatters'”

    https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/6842631/brits-are-losing-hundreds-of-pounds-in-benefits-because-universal-credit-it-systems-are-in-tatters/

    Chalky

    July 23, 2018 at 9:51 am

  17. Andrew Coates

    July 23, 2018 at 11:52 am

  18. An acid attack on a three year old toddler – absolutely f*cking despicable, poor little thing will be scarred for life now.

    Violet

    July 23, 2018 at 12:39 pm

    • Incomprehensible.

      Walt

      July 23, 2018 at 4:29 pm

  19. Universal Credit staff ‘it was more about getting them off the phone’ (Tory scums IT systems return Britain to Dickensian style destitution)

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/jul/22/universal-credit-whistleblowers-heartbreaking-impact-flawed-system-claimants

    Violet

    July 23, 2018 at 12:57 pm

  20. Reblogged this on seachranaidhe1.

    seachranaidhe1

    July 23, 2018 at 10:41 pm

  21. The Sinking Ship

    Some quotes from a benefit advisor as yet another call to halt Universal Credit is made:

    An insider at a universal credit service centre has revealed the IT system on which universal credit is built is “so fundamentally broken and poorly designed it guarantees severe problems with claims”.

    “It felt like these were not people that you serve – not customers, and not important, but people who get in the way of what you are are trying to do, which was to hit call targets.”

    Her role was “more about getting the person off the phone, not helping”.

    In some cases, she would tell callers they had to make an appointment with the jobcentre work coach to solve a problem, only for the work coach to tell them to contact the call centre.

    https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/politics/calls-universal-benefits-system-rollout-12969336

    Doom

    July 24, 2018 at 8:07 am

    • “An insider at a universal credit service centre has revealed the IT system on which universal credit is built is “so fundamentally broken and poorly designed it guarantees severe problems with claims” – Windows 10, anyone?

      Steve Jobs

      July 24, 2018 at 8:32 am

      • Interestingly, the white text on a black background payment dialogue that you see when your roach is putting your payment through is a DOS programme*. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it!

        *what dumb phone users call an ‘app’.

        Windoze

        July 24, 2018 at 8:38 am

      • That screen takes me back to when I signed on at the Labour Exchange way back in the early 70s.

        Old Timer

        July 24, 2018 at 8:46 am

    • Three-letter agency, spyware vendor Gugle are now forcing websites to use encrypted (HTTPS) connections. It appears that Gugle is in league with some certificate provider called ‘lets encrypt’ which offers FREE certificates…. for now. Three-letter agency front Cloudfare is also in on the act. Remember whatever Gugle does, not matter what they publicly state their intent is, is to spy on, and track whoever is dumb enough to run their spyware as well as make as many dollars as possible.

      “Google Chrome users who visit unencrypted websites will be confronted with warnings from tomorrow. The changes will come for surfers using the latest version of Google Chrome, version 68. Any web page not running HTTPS with a valid TLS certificate will show a “Not secure” warning in the Chrome address bar from version 68 …”

      https://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/07/23/https_dday_google_chrome/

      Tech Slave

      July 24, 2018 at 9:04 am

      • Fuck Google, I will use HTTP when I want !!
        HTTP is good enough for almost everything. Hell Amazon was HTTP between 1995 and 2017. (Only their login page used HTTPS, but no other page) If HTTP is good enough for Amazon, it’s good enough for 99,9% of websites anyway. And banking websites use HTTPS since forever.

        So this HTTPS movement is sponsored by NSA. So that only NSA can intercept traffic, while no other party can. But it means a lot of downsides, like when you are behind a proxy. So in 99% of web traffic HTTP is fine, yet a sponsored movement forces HTTPS. And all their front-shops (Google, Micro-$haft) enforce HTTPS. Fuck them.

        And let’s not forget LAN (local area network), HTTP is fine enough there too …get of my lawn you insensitive bastard (GOOO/M$$)

        And this centralized Let’s Encrypt is shaddy – guess who is behind it, and can encrypt every of those websites with one key. Oh it’s NSA. And guess why Let’s Encrypt has to be dongled with a root process to update the cert every 60 days – so they can slip in a new cert when they need “special access”. Not everyone is that dumb, but many are careless. And weren’t all these HTTPS-websites vulnerable and very accessible to everyone, because of backdoors (“hearthbleed”).

        Tech Slave

        July 24, 2018 at 9:07 am

      • If Google had security in mind, they’d warn about websites using Javascript. Particularly when those scripts are loaded from external servers. They would gradually work on reducing the numbers of features webbrowsers need to implement to make web browsers smaller and therefore more secure.

        We now are at a point when browsers are the most complex single pieces of software a regular person comes into contact with. We now are at a point where TLS, the protocol that is supposed to save us all, is so complex that there’s just a handfull of implementations around.

        This is not a healthy situation.

        Tech Slave

        July 24, 2018 at 9:14 am

      • HTTP is completely insecure and all information passing between users and websites can be intercepted and surveiled. There is no way that any user can see who owns the website they are connected to either with HTTP, meaning that scammers and fakers of every description normally stick to HTTP in order to take advantage of folk; with HTTPS because a registered certificate is required by the user in order to allow public-key encryption to take place between their browser and some web server hosting a website, if you click on the padlock, usually in the address bar, you can see what you are connected to helping to avoid crimbos and fake websites.

        Personally I would always use HTTPS whenever possible, so much so in fact that I always install an add-on called “HTTPS Everywhere” made available by the Electronic Frontier Foundation to force HTTPS to be used whenever possible. You can read about the add-on/extension here:

        https://www.eff.org/https-everywhere

        Touching Cloth

        July 24, 2018 at 10:29 am

      • Using https is more resource intensive. Google, Micro$haft, Intel, AMD… want to crush older hardware and force users into buying new machines. And all the while virtue-signalling with their greenie credential bollocks. It was Google who flagged Windows XP with “this browser is no longer supported”. Chrome (and other browsers also ‘disable’ older hardware and graphics cards. And to make life tough for older hardware Google separated each tab and extension in Chrome into a separate process “for security”. You need a Cray supercomputer to open a bleedin’ web page. Come on, a web page.

        Google Chrome eats RAM and CPU cycles for breakfast. Google stole the Chromium browser project and turned it into a resource hungry spyware-infested turd. Opera had a decent browser with many innovative features such as tabbed browsing running on their Presto engine, but Opera were crushed, were beaten into going with the Chrome engine, and eventually sold out to a Chinese company. The ‘big boys’ are not our friends. They have destroyed many innovative and good ideas. They have bought out companies and ideas and either run them into the ground on purpose or just left them to wither on the vine. Beware of Greeks (or Google) bearing gifts.

        Linus Pauling

        July 24, 2018 at 5:48 pm

      • Security warnings will pop up on the Daily Mail website today if visitors are using the latest version of Google’s Chrome browser.

        It is one of many sites the browser will flag because they do not use HTTPS – the secure version of the web’s underlying data transfer protocol.

        Many sites have switched to this version to protect visitors against data theft and hijacking.

        About 20% of the world’s top 500 websites are using HTTP.

        The HyperText Transfer Protocol (HTTP) defines how data is passed around the web. The “S” in HTTPS stands for “Secure” and ensures that data is encrypted before it travels.

        In the UK many other sites, such as Sky Sports, Argos and Boohoo have also not yet adopted HTTPS.

        There is no evidence that any of the sites which have not made the change to HTTPS are currently subject to attacks that abuse insecure data.

        Why does it say the sites are not secure?

        It’s because they do nothing to scramble the data passing between you and that website.

        According to statistics gathered by security researcher Troy Hunt, more than half of all the web’s top one million sites have not flipped to HTTPS.

        Mr Hunt has launched a site called WhyNoHTTPS? that lists the world’s most popular websites that are not using it. The list draws on statistics gathered by British security researcher Scott Helme.

        The Daily Mail tops his UK list as the busiest site to lack the protective measure.

        Other big names on the list include Chinese messaging firm Tencent QQ, block-building game Roblox and sports broadcaster ESPN.

        And while BBC News’ pages do use HTTPS, some of the broadcaster’s other sites have not implemented the measure, including its BBC America pages.

        Why are these warnings appearing today?

        It is not because anything on these sites has changed. It’s because today is the day Google updated to Chrome 68 – which has been changed to flag HTTP-only sites.

        Google began the process of warning people about sites that use HTTP in early 2017. Initially the “Not secure” warnings were only used on sites that collected passwords or credit cards. Firefox and Safari added similar systems about the same time.

        Now all sites that have not switched will be flagged by Chrome. The other big browser makers are expected to follow soon.

        Others – including governments – are joining the push for HTTPS. The UK’s National Cyber Security Centre recently issued advice saying that all sites should use HTTPS.

        In addition, the Let’s Encrypt project aims to make it easy for small sites to adopt it by publishing easy-to-follow guides and tools that simplify the process.

        Is my data at risk?

        Mr Hunt, and many other security experts, have demonstrated ways to hijack and redirect users if they only connect to a site via HTTP.

        Without HTTPS, data is effectively broadcast as it travels back and forth across the web. There are circumstances that cyber-criminals can exploit to intercept that information, abuse it to steal data or insert their own code or malicious adverts.

        It is not clear how many criminals are using these methods to fool users and steal data, but several successful campaigns have been spotted that use these techniques.

        There is no suggestion that the sites currently only using HTTP are subject to attacks targeting insecure data.

        Also, many sites are now rapidly adopting HTTPS as a result of a growing consensus around its use. Mr Hunt’s list of insecure sites is regularly updated, but some sites on it, such as JustEat and Sage.com, have already adopted HTTPS.

        Should I avoid sites that are flagged as not secure?

        No, but you should be wary on those that require you to sign in or which let you buy goods and services through them.

        To stay safe, pick a hard-to-guess password and ensure your browser and other software on your device are up to date. If there are other methods you can use to secure transactions, such as two-factor authentication, it could be well worth adopting them.

        If you run your own website then it has got a lot easier to adopt the technology to help protect visitors.

        Linus Pauling

        July 24, 2018 at 5:58 pm

      • Is this the same Google that is always being fined billions of pounds by the EU for anti-competitive practices,
        illegal data-sharing, you name it.

        Red Hat

        July 24, 2018 at 6:06 pm

      • Is this the same Google that is always being fined billions of pounds by the EU for anti-competitive practices,
        illegal data-sharing, you name it…

        Red Hat

        July 24, 2018 at 6:07 pm

      • Is this the same Google that is always being fined billions of pounds by the EU for anti-competitive practices,
        illegal data-sharing, you name it…..

        Red Hat

        July 24, 2018 at 6:07 pm

      • You can’t choose whether to use https or http if the website you are connected to is only hosted on a server which uses https. More and more you have to connect to websites using secure sockets. Personally I try to avoid Google stuff. I do use GoogleEarth, which Google is only now making available via their Chrome browser unless you download a legacy application, but don’t and would never use Chrome, which is based on Chromium and open source webkit browser. If you want a decent browser I recommend:

        (1) Opera
        (2) Vivaldi
        (3) Firefox.

        All free and all superior choices to Chrome. I like Opera because it has a great speed dial, built in ad-blocker, turbo mode (which compresses data to save bandwidth), and a VPN option which is great if you’re using free public Wi-Fi to connect to the web in a library or elsewhere. Opera is owned by a Chinese consortium but designed and developed in Norway, so is fully compliant with EU data security and privacy legislation.

        Jim

        July 25, 2018 at 7:15 am

      • HTTP scare mongering

        Firstly unless your shopping,banking or parting with personal data, any stolen data is just browsing data. Yes, IP can be obtained but IP is nothing if it cant be associated to a particular person. Its also pointless as the site you join will just pass that on to third parties anyway when the force you into either give us your data or we will not let you use the service method. Ontop of that good sniffer programs if used grab your data before you make the link meaning what you type is recorded before the protocol even kicks in.

        Also not widely covered that google is up to is in authentication, another layer of so called protection whereby the person uses a phone as a second measure of security to protect online accounts. Now just like the ransom method used to get you to consent to use of personal data employed, websites using this type of authentication, often reduce services to those that don’t take it up. Basically google has entered the market of being able to identify you more via pairing of devices, a method of triangulation.

        People like google although very far from exclusive to them and this includes the likes of the NSA only seek to gather a persons footprint because people don’t know enough to muddy the water. To best explain this if i everyday went to sites A,B,C,D,E & F but only actually wanted sites B,D & F, how reliable would my footprint be if i was profiled for say targeted advertising. As you can see, the more spoof sites i visit, the less accurate that profile becomes if i only actually wanted 3 of them. As long as you spend equal time on all, they have nothing concrete and a false perception of your habits.

        Doug

        July 25, 2018 at 8:25 am

      • But look at the browser usage statistics. Dominated by a spyware-ridden piece of shit. The best browsers are not where to be seen. Dumbos and their dumb phones have ruined the internet.

        Chrome 66.87%
        Firefox 11.44%
        Internet Explorer 7.13%
        Safari 5.38%
        Edge 4.16%
        Opera 2.47%
        UC Browser 0.92%
        Yandex Browser 0.41%
        Coc Coc 0.29%
        QQ Browser 0.23%
        Chromium 0.15%
        Sogou Explorer 0.14%
        Maxthon 0.1%
        Phantom 0.05%
        360 Secure Browser 0.05%
        Vivaldi 0.05%
        Mozilla 0.04%
        Pale Moon 0.03%
        Whale Browser 0.03%
        SeaMonkey 0.01%
        Amigo 0.01%
        Other 0.06%
        Desktop web browser market share according to StatCounter for June 2018.[53]

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vivaldi_(web_browser)

        Idiocracy

        July 25, 2018 at 9:00 am

      • “Yes, IP can be obtained but IP is nothing if it cant be associated to a particular person.” HTTPS doesn’t hide your IP address! What gave you that idea, doug?

        Fedora

        July 25, 2018 at 9:05 am

      • Google are hell-bent on dominating the browser market. Websites and developers will then have no choice but to dance to Google’s tune. It will then open the door for Google to introduce innovative “security” features to access the internet such as fingerprints, facial recognition. This is where we are heading if we don’t stop drinking the Google Kool-Aid.

        Fedora

        July 25, 2018 at 9:12 am

      • Early last year, YouTube received a design refresh with Google’s own Polymer library which enabled “quicker feature development” for the platform. Now, a Mozilla executive is claiming that Google has made YouTube slower on Edge and Firefox by using this framework. In a thread on Twitter, Mozilla’s Technical Program Manager has stated that YouTube’s Polymer redesign relies heavily on the deprecated Shadow DOM v0 API, which is only available in Chrome. This in turn makes the site around five times slower on competing browsers such as Microsoft Edge and Mozilla Firefox.

        https://news.slashdot.org/story/18/07/25/1128225/google-has-made-youtube-slower-on-edge-and-firefox-mozilla-alleges

        Steve Jobs

        July 25, 2018 at 9:27 pm

      • It appears Google recently turned on VP9 codec on YouTube for delivering 4K video. However, because of this, Safari users are unable to watch videos uploaded to the service since early December in full 4K resolution. From a report:

        Specifically, YouTube appears to be storing video on its servers using either the more efficient VP9 codec or the older H.264 codec. Safari only supports the latter, which explains why recently uploaded 4K videos are only able to be viewed in up to 1440p. Funnily enough, the same videos can be streamed by Safari in native 4K as long as they’re embedded in another website, suggesting that the VP9 codec support requirement only applies to videos viewed directly on YouTube’s website. Until Apple updates Safari to support the VP9 codec, Mac users who want to access newer 4K video on YouTube in native 2160p resolution are advised to use a different browser.

        John Gruber of DaringFireball writes, “I’m curious what Google’s thinking is here. My guess: a subtle nudge to get more Mac users to switch from Safari to Chrome. 4K playback is going to require H.264 support if they want it to work on iOS, though.”

        https://news.slashdot.org/story/17/01/17/1736224/safari-users-unable-to-play-newer-4k-video-on-youtube-in-native-resolution

        Steve Jobs

        July 25, 2018 at 9:30 pm

      • John Gruber of DaringFireball writes, “I’m curious what Google’s thinking is here. My guess: a subtle nudge to get more Mac users to switch from Safari to Chrome.

        Steve Jobs

        July 25, 2018 at 9:31 pm

      • This is what happens when any corporation gets into too many supporting markets. That situation rewards anticompetitive behaviour. Google has every incentive to use Youtube to prop up Chrome, and vice versa. They have become Microsoft.

        Remember when Google declared that Amazon Fire TV users would no longer be able to use an app to access their site, because rea$ons? Well, that’s still the state of affairs. You have to use a browser instead of an App because Amazon won’t carry Google’s devices in their web store. Well, Google doesn’t carry Amazon’s devices in their web store, either. How on earth is this not anticompetitive?

        While I’d like to see Google held accountable for their anticompetitive behaviour, the best solution is still for someone else to spin up a video streaming site. There’s enough people who want an alternative to Youtube for it to work out. But it has to be at least as friendly to uploaders as Youtube…

        Steve Jobs

        July 25, 2018 at 9:37 pm

      • Fedora

        I didn’t, im saying IP does not state the user, it states device within a network unless that user can be traced to owning/using that specific device on that specific network.

        doug

        July 26, 2018 at 9:05 am

      • True, doug. Must not everyone is as savvy. Most suspects are going to ‘fess up immediately and admit to owning/using that particular device. “Is this your phone/device?” “Yes, it is 😦 ” “Gotcha 😀 ” Providing corroboration and in effect doing Plod’s work for them. It saves Plod having to PROVE that the suspect is the owner/user of a device, had their fingers on the keyboard at the material time. In general suspects have a habit of voluntarily providing incriminating statements; placing themselves at the locus, stating that they know so and so, etc. Better to keep schtum! Say nothing! NEVER talk to the cops.

        Inspector Gadget

        July 26, 2018 at 9:27 am

      • *But not everyone is as savvy. Damned auto-correct!

        Inspector Gadget

        July 26, 2018 at 9:30 am

      • No comment 😀 😀 😀 😀

        KriMiN4l

        July 26, 2018 at 9:32 am

  22. whoknew

    July 24, 2018 at 10:22 am

    • Even Thatcher didn’t freeze benefits for four years, bring in things as cruel, unworkable and awful as the Bedroom Tax and Universal Credit, or force people on benefits to pay Council Tax before including an additional increment to entitlements beforehand, or allow a relatively small group of Euro-sceptics to drive the country out of the EU in the very worst way imaginable, while the country was still experiencing unending austerity and not yet recovered from an worldwide economic crash.

      Thatcher was a pussycat compared to the stone-hearted loons that govern us now.

      Jim

      July 24, 2018 at 10:34 am

  23. pay rise for many but benefit freeze stays in place.

    whoknew

    July 24, 2018 at 11:09 am

    • How long has this in operation, now? Must be at least 5 years!

      jj joop

      July 24, 2018 at 11:25 am

      • Three years so far; one more year to go. However it wouldn’t surprise me if the freeze gets extended or benefits get up rated by a below inflation amount in 2019, by 1% say, because of Brexit and the government promising more money for the NHS etc.

        Jim

        July 25, 2018 at 5:27 am

      • Yeah. They’ll find some way to **** us over.

        jj joop

        July 25, 2018 at 7:59 am

  24. What has the politics of this country got to do with that shitty little terrorist state, as it happens everything because their mafia run this shithole!

    Foxglove

    July 24, 2018 at 1:37 pm

  25. Academies still mimicking US charter schools on scams

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-44941691

    Yep, just as welfare reform failed in the US, so another taken from the states ideology also continues to follow suit. When an ideology like taking a public service and handing it over to profit making businesses gets put into practice,struggling financially and running deficits becomes the normal outcome and why wouldn’t it when Academy Trusts have exempt charity status meaning they are not financially accountable.

    Ultimately costs continue to rise like all things except this time the pupils suffer and government isn’t accountable to blame.

    Doug

    July 25, 2018 at 8:38 am

  26. This is what happens when any corporation gets into too many supporting markets. That situation rewards anticompetitive behavior. Google has every incentive to use Youtube to prop up Chrome, and vice versa. They have become Microsoft.

    Remember when Google declared that Amazon Fire TV users would no longer be able to use an app to access their site, because rea$ons? Well, that’s still the state of affairs. You have to use a browser instead of an App because Amazon won’t carry Google’s devices in their web store. Well, Google doesn’t carry Amazon’s devices in their web store, either. How on earth is this not anticompetitive?

    While I’d like to see Google held accountable for their anticompetitive behavior, the best solution is still for someone else to spin up a video streaming site. There’s enough people who want an alternative to Youtube for it to work out. But it has to be at least as friendly to uploaders as Youtube…

    Steve Jobs

    July 25, 2018 at 9:35 pm

  27. Reblogged this on Britain Isn't Eating.

    A6er

    July 26, 2018 at 5:22 pm


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