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Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Free Internet Press Newsletter - Wednesday October 1 2008 - (813)

Wednesday October 1 2008 edition
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US Backs Citigroup Takeover Of Wachovia
2008-10-01 00:22:38
Citigroup agreed to buy troubled Wachovia's banking operations in a deal Monday that gives the US government a stake in another sector shakeup amid the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.

The government-engineered rescue marked further consolidation of the struggling US banking sector saddled with heavy losses from the bursting of the real estate bubble and a related credit crunch.

It came as Wachovia, the fourth-largest US bank by assets, faced a near collapse of its share price and weakening confidence because of its exposure to the subprime mortgage crisis.

The Wachovia takeover was unveiled just hours before the US House of Representatives rejected a massive 700-billion-dollar bailout of financial firms, roiling markets.

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MI6 Terrorist Surveillance Photos Sold On eBay
2008-10-01 00:11:12
A camera sold on Ebay contained photos and confidential records of MI6 terror suspects, according to newspaper reports.

Photographs, fingerprints and confidential documents relating to suspected Al-Qaeda terrorists were allegedly found in the memory of the second-hand Nikon Coolpix camera, which was bought on the auction site for only £17.

The confidential files were discovered after the buyer downloaded his holiday photos. He immediately reported the files to the police, who initially treated it as a joke, according to a report in The Sun.

However, the police subsequently descended on the man's home, seizing his computer and camera equipment.

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Somali Pirates Tell All: They're in It for the Money
2008-09-30 23:59:03
The Somali pirates who hijacked a Ukrainian freighter loaded with tanks, artillery, grenade launchers and ammunition said in an interview on Tuesday that they had no idea the ship was carrying arms when they seized it on the high seas.

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DHS Working on Anxiety Detection Screener
2008-10-01 00:19:45

Although in its infancy, the next generation of passenger screening technology being developed by the Department of Homeland Security detects travelers' anxiety levels.

USA Today's Thomas Frank reports:

It may seem Orwellian, but on Thursday, the Homeland Security Department showed off an early version of physiological screeners that could spot terrorists. The department's research division is years from using the machines in an airport or an office buildingâ€" if they even work at all. But officials believe the idea could transform security by doing a bio scan to spot dangerous people.

The Future Attribute Screening Technology (FAST) works much like a polygraph test, looking for sharp elevations in body temperature, pulse, and breathing rate as passengers file past video cameras with scanning technology.

Critics, however, doubt FAST will be implemented since it subjects travelers to "the intrusion of a medical exam."

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Back Door Cheating Found In Online Poker Games
2008-10-01 00:02:20

Detective work by an Australian online poker player has uncovered a $US10 million cheating scandal at two major poker websites and triggered a $US75 million legal claim.

In two separate cases, Michael Josem, from Chatswood, analysed detailed hand history data from Absolute Poker and UltimateBet and uncovered that certain player accounts won money at a rate too fast to be legitimate.

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The Risk Of A Total Systemic Economic Meltdown Is Now As High As Ever
2008-09-30 23:58:42
It is obvious that the current financial crisis is becoming more severe in spite of the Treasury rescue plan (or maybe because of it as this plan it totally flawed). The severe strains in financial markets (money markets, credit markets, stock markets, CDS and derivative markets) are becoming more severe rather than less severe in spite of the nuclear option (after the Fannie and Freddie $200 billion bazooka bailout failed to restore confidence) of a $700 billion package
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