According to Bloomberg,
Silicon Valley Nerds Seek Revenge on NSA Spies With Super Coding (Bloomberg)
Google Inc., Facebook Inc. and Yahoo! Inc. are fighting back against the National Security Agency by using harder-to-crack code to shield their networks and online customer data from unauthorized U.S. spying.
The companies, burned by disclosures they’ve cooperated with U.S. surveillance programs, are protecting user e-mail and social-media posts with strengthened encryption that the U.S. government says won’t be easily broken until 2030.
While the NSA may find ways around the barriers, the companies say they have to assure users their online connections are secure and data can’t be grabbed when transmitted over fiber-optic networks or digitally stored.
Microsoft Corp. is convinced it must “invest in protecting customers’ information from a wide range of threats, which if the allegations are true, include governments,” Matt Thomlinson, general manager of trustworthy computing, said in an e-mail. He didn’t provide details.
Internet companies including Google, Yahoo, Facebook, Microsoft and Apple Inc. are trying to distance themselves from news reports that they gave the agency data on electronic communications of Americans and foreigners or have lax security.
While the companies are trying to prevent the NSA from gaining unauthorized access to their data, they say they comply with legal court orders compelling them to provide the government information.
The NSA has tapped fiber-optic cables abroad in order to siphon off data from Google and Yahoo, circumvented or cracked encryption, and covertly introduced weaknesses and back doors into coding, according to reports in the Washington Post, the New York Times and the U.K.’s Guardian newspaper based on documents leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.
Posted in Economy, Events, Finance, Regulation, Research
Tagged Apple, facebook, Google, Microsoft, National Security Agency, New York Times, Washington Post, Yahoo
Trading firms would do well to heed lessons in testing and crisis management
What a book! Who knew that a trading error at a Jersey City firm could end up being so interesting? One year ago, the mother of all electronic trading debacles scared Wall Street, when sophisticated trading outfit Knight Capital erroneously launched thousands of orders that led it to accumulate an impossible $7 billion position.
After catastrophic incidents like the Flash Crash, the failed Facebook IPO led by Nasdaq OMX, and BATS, the IPO that just couldn’t get off the ground despite all the brainpower behind, this time was supposed to be different. Yet, as author Edgar Perez details, hubris and failed crisis management procedures made this incident particularly painful to shareholders and employees, who didn’t know if the company could survive.
It is interesting to read about the true reasons for top executives not to take decisive action when their CEOs are not present. It was less and less about investors and shareholders, and more about fear, egos, fees and prestige. Nasdaq? Knight? Next?
If the reader is not intensely interested in financial markets, he or she will likely not make it through this book. If the reader skips CNBC or FOX Business Network or Bloomberg TV when flipping through the channels, then this book probably isn’t for him or her. It would be very interesting, but the reader probably won’t make it to the juicy chapters.
Perez makes a compelling case about the need for trading firms to rethink their technology management. Does anyone on Wall Street will ever really learn anything from this debacle? While all eyes are focused on SEC’s new regulations that force companies to show the impossible, the next trading debacle is probably lurking around, ready to storm Wall Street at a time when nobody will expect it.
The book goes into great detail when it analyses the backstories of the main characters involved in the company starting with founders Ken Pasternak and Walter Raquet, CEO Tom Joyce (known as T.J. since his Harvard days) and vulture bidders Daniel Coleman from GETCO and Vincent Viola from Virtu. While other books lose many people early, Perez whets readers’ appetites early by hitting the ground running in chapter one focusing on the chaos that ensued Knight’s infamous trades at the opening.
Perez does a tremendous job in making the histories of all of the people and companies involved as easy to digest as possible; peg orders are arguably not an easy concept to explain. Again – excellent book, but readers have to invest some time slogging through the first 25% of the book to get back to the action. As soon as Joyce comes back to the office after surgery and realizes the extent of the challenges ahead, all hell breaks loose and things start to get very exciting again.
Posted in Breaking news, Equity Markets, Hedge Funds, High-Frequency Trading, Regulation, Spread Trades
Tagged $440 million, Algorithmic Trading, August 1, Barbarians at the Gate, BATS, Chris Concannon, Citadel, Daniel Coleman, Dave Cummings, Den of Thieves, Direct Edge, Duncan Niederauer, Edgar Perez, electronic trading, facebook, financial markets, GETCO, Harvard University. Bob Greifeld, High-Frequency Trading, IBM, investors, IT department, Jersey City, KCG, KCG Holdings, Ken Pasternak, Knight Capital, Knightmare on Wall Street, Liar’s Poker, Michael Tobin, NASDAQ, New York Stock Exchange, NYSE, operational risks, Pricewaterhouse Coopers, Retail Liquidity Program, RLP, shareholders, software, Steven Sadoff, T.J., The Speed Traders, Thomas Joyce, traders, trading disaster, Vincent Viola, Virtu Financial, Wall Street, Walter Raquet, When Genius Failed
R. Adam Smith, Chief Executive Officer, Circle Peak Capital
The venture capital ecosystem is a hall of secrets. The rise of the venture capital blogger, notably Union Square Venture’s Fred Wilson, entrepreneur-turned-VC Mark Suster and Foundry Group’s Brad Feld, is a welcome first step in providing budding entrepreneurs a view into the venture world. But they are the exception to the rule. For the most part, VCs prefer to keep their entrepreneurs in the dark about how the process really works for one simple reason: it benefits them greatly.
To speak about this topic, R. Adam Smith, Chief Executive Officer of Circle Peak Capital, will participate of Venture Capital Happy Hour (http://www.VCHappyHour.com), on Tuesday September 4. R. Adam Smith is an experienced investor and advisor to small and middle market private companies, with approximately 20 years of experience in private equity and mergers & acquisitions at leading private investment and advisory institutions, including Caxton-Iseman Capital, Castle Harlan, Inc., Salomon Brothers and Lehman Brothers.
Prior to forming Circle Peak, Mr. Smith served in principal capacities at two leading private equity firms based in New York City, Caxton-Iseman Capital LLC and Castle Harlan, Inc., each with over $2 billion in managed equity capital. At these firms, he worked directly with senior management teams and institutional limited partners, co-investors, and lenders in the acquisition and growth of $25 million to $1 billion companies in food, beverage, restaurant, distribution, industrial, and asset management sectors.
Posted in Breaking news, Equity Markets, Events, Private Equity, Venture Capital
Tagged Apple, Brad Feld, Castle Harlan, Caxton-Iseman Capital, Chief Executive Officer, Circle Peak Capital, facebook, Foundry Group, Fred Wilson, Golden Networking, Google, Lehman Brothers, Mark Suster, Netscape, R. Adam Smith, Salomon Brothers, Union Square Ventures, VC Happy Hour, Venture Capital Happy Hour
(Reuters) – Facebook Inc and Morgan Stanley, the lead underwriter of social networking company’s IPO, were sued by shareholders who claimed the defendants hid Facebook’s weakened growth forecasts ahead of its $16 billion initial public offering.
The lawsuit, which also targeted underwriters JPMorgan Chase and Goldman Sachs among others, comes as Facebook and the banks that took it public face many questions about the IPO process, which culminated in a May 18 stock market debut plagued by technical glitches.
Facebook shares fell 18.4 percent from their $38 IPO price in the first three trading days. In early afternoon trade on Wednesday, Facebook shares were up 2.5 percent at $31.78.
To read the full article from Reuters please click here.
Posted in Uncategorized
Tagged asset, Business, Economy, equity, facebook, Facebook Inc, financial advisor, financial markets, Global Economy, Golden Networking, GoldenNetworking.net, Goldman Sachs, Hedge Funds, investment, investment portfolio, IPO, IPO market, JP Morgan Chase, Mark Zuckerberg, Media, modern finance, Modern Finance Report, Morgan Stanley, NASDAQ, stock markets, Tech, The Speed Traders, The Speed Traders Workshop, The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 Beijing, The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 Chicago, The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 Dubai, The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 Hong Kong, The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 Jakarta, The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 London, The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 Mexico City, The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 Moscow, The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 Seoul, The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 Shanghai, The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 Singapore, traders, trading, underwriting