Good morning and Happy Friday. Have a safe and fun-filled weekend. 😎🎉
“It takes twenty years to make an overnight success.”
Top EU Court Rules Against Data Transfer
On Thursday, Europe’s top court ruled that Privacy Shield, a 2016 data transfer deal between the EU and the U.S., failed to comply with the EU’s privacy rights.
A deeper dive… Privacy Shield is used by more than 5,300 companies in the EU and U.S. to move data between the two locations with minimal restrictions.
In line with the EU’s 2018 General Data Protection Regulation, the court ruled that Privacy Shield exposes Europeans to American government surveillance, underscored by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden’s 2013 surveillance leak.
According to the court, the contracts used by companies to send data internationally will still be valid if businesses can guarantee data protection in line with European law.
While small and medium-sized businesses account for 70% of the companies using Privacy Shield, many major corporations – including Apple, Facebook, and Alphabet – could be affected by the ruling.
What’s next? Tech advocates fear that blocking transatlantic data transfer could interfere with billions of dollars in trade. At the same time, European officials downplayed the potential fallout, claiming plans were in place to ensure commerce continued smoothly.
U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross released a statement saying the Department of Commerce will remain in close contact with the EU, but continue to administer the Privacy Shield program.
Major virus news:GA Gov. Brian Kemp banned local governments from mandating masks, while the governors of CO, AR, & OH issued orders mandating masks statewide (map).
Russia Accused Of Hacking COVID Data
The American, Canadian, and UK governments on Thursday announced that a group of Russian hackers, informally known as ‘Cozy Bear,’ are attempting to steal research from organizations working on a COVID-19 vaccine. Cozy Bear is one of the most high-profile and successful hacking groups linked to the Russian government, and was blamed alongside fellow group ‘Fancy Bear’ in the 2016 hacking of the DNC.
The Supreme Court on Thursday voted 6-3 against hearing a case involving a Florida law that bans felons from voting without first paying court fees and restitution. The Supreme Court’s ruling upheld a lower court’s decision that will likely block hundreds of thousands of Florida felons from voting in the state’s primary next month – and possibly the general election in November.
The average rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage fell to 2.98%, Freddie Mac said yesterday, hitting the lowest mark in recorded history for a third consecutive week.
U.S. retail salesrose 7.5% in June, representing a 1.1% year-over-year increase (the industry’s first since the pandemic began).
Netflix posted Q2 earnings yesterday, falling short of analysts’ expectations. The company also promoted chief content officer Ted Sarandos to co-CEO alongside Reed Hastings.
In Pod We Trust
Spotify announced an exclusive podcast featuring Michelle Obama on Thursday. The Michelle Obama Podcast, which will launch July 29, is the first show to come out of last year’s deal with the former first family’s production company, Higher Ground.
More: Over the past year, Spotify has strengthened its podcast library by signing exclusive deals with Joe Rogan, DC & Warner Bros., Kim Kardashian West, and others.
Setting The Reels In Motion
Instagram confirmed plans to release Reels, its TikTok rival, in the U.S. in early August. Reels is initially scheduled to launch in India later this month (after the country banned TikTok in late June), and will be available in more than 50 other countries in the following weeks.
Follow-up: The FBI is leading a federal inquiry into Wednesday’s massive Twitter hack after an analysis found the scammers made off with $121,000.
Bridger The Brave
On July 9th, six-year-old Bridger Walker of Wyoming was playing in a friend’s yard when a 1-year-old German shepherd mix tried to attack his four-year-old sister. Without hesitation, Bridger stepped between the charging animal and his little sister, shielding her from the assault. In doing so, Bridger was bitten in the face by the dog, later undergoing a two-hour surgery to apply 90 stitches to his wounds.
Bridger, who is a big fan of Marvel’s Avengers, is now being hailed as a hero by many of the franchise’s stars – including Captain America actor Chris Evans. In a touching Instagram video shared by his aunt, Bridger – dressed as Captain America – humbly reacts to a video in which Evans commends him for his valor.
Embracing The Moment
A hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) works with children born prematurely or with severe health conditions, providing around-the-clock care and attention from the medical staff. Although the division is critical to these infants’ health, extended stays in the NICU can be emotionally taxing to both the children and their parents.
After retiring from his job as a marketing executive, 85-year-old David Deutchman of Sandy Springs, GA, decided to volunteer as a “baby cuddler” in Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta’s NICU, calming the petite patients with his warm embrace. David, who has held more than 1,200 infants in his 12 years of volunteering, also chats with anxious parents to provide emotional support during stressful times.
The Need To Feed
Before the pandemic hit, Harsh Mandavia and his mother, Heena, operated a for-profit kitchen in Mumbai, India, to prepare and deliver homemade cuisine. Shortly after the lockdowns began, one of their regular customers donated enough money to cover the cost of 100 meals and asked Harsh to provide food to the underprivileged members of his neighborhood.
When Harsh posted a message on social media thanking the compassionate customer, similar donations started pouring in from all over India – enough to help Harsh and Heena feed up to 250 impoverished neighbors each day for the past three months. To date, the kind-hearted restaurateurs have distributed more than 5,000 free meals.
What is art?
Per Wikipedia, art is “the expression of imaginative, conceptual ideas, or technical skill, intended to be appreciated for their beauty or emotional power.”
And that describes Steve Tate’s work perfectly Twenty years of experience with paints and applications gives his work a sophistication and elegance that is unparalleled. The end result? A relationship of thoughts, feelings, and emotion on canvas.
💰 Bounty Hunter… BitTorrent CEO Justin Sun – who was one of the dozens of Twitter accounts hacked Wednesday as part of a Bitcoin scam – has offered a $1 million bounty to the person who finds those responsible for the hack.
🚢 Making Emissions Their Mission… maritime engineers have created the Just Add Water (or JAWS) app, which applies machine learning to data from large ships to optimize their use of fuel and power, which saved more than 250,000 tons of CO2 emissions over the course of a year.
🌬️ A Breath Of Fresh Air… NASA recently awarded millions of dollars to Pioneer Astronautics, a company that claims it can transform lunar regolith – a fine, powdery material covering the surface of the Moon – into breathable oxygen.
Wind Beneath My Wings
What bird can fly the furthest distance without flapping its wings?
A) Andean condor B) Wandering albatross C) White-throated swift D) Rüppell’s griffon vulture
(keep scrolling for the answer)
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