STLR Link Roundup – March 3, 2017

JP Morgan’s New Contract Processing Software

Since June, JPMorgan Chase & Co. has been using a computing program called COIN, for Contract Intelligence, to interpret their commercial loan agreements. This program will replace 360,000 hours of work by lawyers and loan officers each year. This comes as part of the company’s push to enhance their technological capacity, driven by COO Matt Zames and CIO Dana Deasy. JPMorgan is investing $9.6 billion in its tech budget, one third of which is devoted to development of new tech hubs for teams looking into big data, robotics and cloud infrastructure, and other means of automating mundane tasks. This is double the industry average, relative to projected revenue.


Yahoo Counsel Steps Down

Following an investigation into the 2014 hack of Yahoo user data and subsequent incidents, Yahoo’s General Counsel Ronald Bell has left the company. An investigation of security breaches conducted in preparation for the sale of the company’s web resources to Verizon. In a security filing, Yahoo claims that Bell and his team were aware of the hacks in 2014, and subsequent attacks in 2015 and 2106, but failed to properly advise on the legal and business risks associated with the 2014 incident.   Yahoo’s CEO, Marissa Mayer, lost her 2016 bonus as a result of the same board investigation. The investigation did not conclude that either party intentionally suppressed information.


FCC Halts New Data Security Rules

Ajit Pai, Chairman of the FCC, announced this week that a portion of the privacy rules passed in October will be temporarily stayed. The rules would have required internet security providers and phone companies to take reasonable steps to secure user data against hacking and other unauthorized use.   This includes provisions such as those requiring ISP’s to have opt-in policies for sharing browsing data with advertisers, rather than the current opt-out default. The FCC currently regulates broadband providers like ATT and Comcast under the recent net-neutrality rulings, which established them as common carriers. Pai has stated as recently as last week that he sees this ruling as a “mistake,” and widely favors minimal regulation for internet providers.


Researchers Turn to Social Media

Scientific researchers have struggled for decades with the difficulty of finding valid feedback on projects before publication. ResearchGate, a new social media tool for scientists, is helping to minimize this problem by allowing researchers to upload their work to the site and get real-time feedback to adjust their experiments. Founder Ijad Madish, intended the site to increase collaboration between scientists. 12 million researchers currently upload roughly 2.5 million papers to ResearchGate every month, including computer scientists who save time by sharing code for unrelated projects and medical researchers looking for tips and tools to focus their research. ResearchGate raised $52.6M this year from a variety of investors and venture capital firms including Bill Gates, Benchmark, and Goldman Sachs Investment Partners.

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