Friday, April 20, 2012

Teachers can be fired for "objectionable" Internet material posted before they were hired, even if posted by others; filters help some

A teacher in Oxnard, CA was fired for a having appeared in porn videos before she was hired as a teacher.
Curiously, the school’s computer system had blocked the video, so for a while the school didn’t find out and the Internet filtering actually protected her. But eventually students found it on mobile phones.

The Huffington Post has an updated story about Stacie Halas here.

These sorts of things have happened before, as far back as 1999, when a nurse was fired from a Scottsdale AZ hospital for appearing in porn videos with her husband, as documented on ABC 20-20.

But the new incident raises the idea that teachers could be fired if others posted questionable pictures of them in public places, and, particularly, tagged the pictures, even if the pictures had been taken before the teachers had applied for their positions.

Monday, April 09, 2012

My novel manuscript has a scary legal scenario

In my novel, in an early chapter, there is an incident where a hacker “hijacks” home users and starts deleting hard drive space and even cloud backups if the user doesn’t “give in” and not only buy fake “anti-virus software” but also download illegal material (c.p.). Then some of the people who have given in (to this “shakedown virus attack”) to save their data get arrested and prosecuted under “absolute liability” laws in some states.  At one point in the novel, a university stops posting its grades online because of fear of the shakedown and displays grades to old-fashioned way, on professors' doors. 

I don’t know that this has really happened, but it’s a scary thought. 

In fact, later Monday, MSNBC published a story about an individual in Indiana running an ISP who had an extortion operation targeting minors, link here