Is TikTok a security threat? It’s complicated.

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TikTok is one of the hottest apps on the planet among teens and social media addicts. But the app, owned by China’s ByteDance, is under ever-increasing scrutiny from U.S. government officials, including President Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who are threatening to ban it, claiming the app is a national security threat.

According to researchers, however, the fear of TikTok being used for some form of espionage is directly tied to the growing geopolitical tensions between the U.S. and China. It’s not that the app collects any more information than contemporaries like Facebook, experts say, but rather that TikTok has ties to China.

“I Think TikTok has been doing a lot of things very, very, very quickly to try to establish that it’s safe for Americans to use,” explained U.C. Berkeley professor Steven Weber, faculty director for the Berkeley Center for Long Term Cybersecurity. “In this political environment

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How to pick the right read and host a virtual discussion on Zoom

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Here’s something you can still do very well while staying at home to avoid coronavirus exposure: Read a book.

Another thing you can do effectively while quarantined? Participate in a book club.

Sure, it will be different without everyone piling onto the same couch or convening at a favorite coffee shop. But take it from three book clubbers (longtime host Barbara VanDenburgh, regular reader Mary Cadden and newbie Carly Mallenbaum all collaborated on this story), virtual book club has the potential to be a rewarding and intimate meet-up that serves a calendar commitment you’re actually psyched for.

Plus, you can invite people who don’t live in your city, or even your time zone!

So how do you put together a successful book club while in lockdown? We have some tips:

Staying Apart, Together: A newsletter about how to cope with the coronavirus pandemic

Start with a small guest list

If

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This online course sale could help you launch your dream business

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This online course sale could help you launch your dream business
This online course sale could help you launch your dream business

TL;DR: Get help turning your ideas into dollars with The Entrepreneur and Business Skills bundle for $29.97, a 98% savings as of July 15.

Do you regularly come up with brilliant ideas for businesses you never follow through with? What’s holding you back?

The trick is knowing the best strategies to not only launch your business idea into the stratosphere but also keep it profitable and competitive in today’s ever-changing business landscape. Of course, you could just wing it and hope for the best, but why risk becoming another Shark Tank failure? Instead, get the push you need in the right direction with this Entrepreneur and Business Skills Bundle.

Through nine courses and 12 hours of content, this training will take you step-by-step through the process of launching your own business, starting with the basics.

Got an idea, but

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Best bike locks

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Although your bicycle might not be the most expensive item you own, there is an inarguable emotional attachment to it, which makes bike theft an agonising experience, and a bike lock an essential for any cyclist.

If you commute to work, pop down to the store for groceries, or leave your bike latched to your car’s bike rack outside a venue, without the security of sturdy bike lock there is always the risk of it not being there on your return. 

Bike theft is a scourge. It has been incentivised by the demand for pre-owned bikes and components, due to ever-growing retail prices. Thieves can quickly use online resources to calculate the expected returns from their illicit activity. 

To ensure that your bike is always where you parked it last, investing in a robust bike lock is paramount. Good bike locks are a one-time purchase and don’t require replacement every

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Coronavirus: Here’s how to negotiate your college tuition

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In the spring, the coronavirus pandemic forced colleges and universities to shift to online learning, a move that many plan to continue into the fall semesters. While adjusting to the new learning setup, students may also want to consider asking for a break on their tuition bills.

Some universities have already announced discounts, such as Princeton which is offering 10% off for all undergraduate students starting the 2020-21 school year. For others, you may need to ask for a discount yourself.

“Many colleges use very sophisticated modeling to help them predict exactly how many students they need to accept and at what price point in order to fill their class and bring in the tuition revenue that they want,” Shannon Vasconcelos, director of college finance at Bright Horizons College Coach. “This year, though, the models have been thrown out the window.”

Some universities have already announced discounts, such as <a href="https://www.princeton.edu/news/2020/07/06/princeton-announces-plan-fall-2020-guidelines-undergraduates-returning-campus" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Princeton which" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Princeton which </a>is offering 10% off for all undergraduate students starting the 2020-21 school year. Photo: Getty Creative
Some universities have already announced discounts, such as Princeton
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How to Make Homestyle Dosas: A Primer

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When Epicurious approached Tara O’Brady about writing this dosa primer, accepting the assignment was not as simple as saying yes or no. Read O’Brady’s essay about the decision here.

Dosa (alternatively, dhosai or dhosha), a fermented rice and lentil crepe originating in south India, has been a staple bread for at least a thousand years. It was classically a breakfast food, but as its popularity spread across the subcontinent and beyond, demand stretched to 24/7.

The most well-known dosa is made from long-grain white rice, skinned urad dal (black gram), and salt, all of which are soaked and ground with water to form a batter that is then cooked until golden and crisp. Consider this the default dosa: single-named, ubiquitous.

Homestyle Dosas with Tomato Chutney

Tara O’Brady

At restaurants this type of dosa can reach impressive physical proportions, the batter spread thin, then coaxed into rolls that span the width

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How to file for a tax extension online if you aren’t able to meet the July 15 deadline

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As the pandemic swept across the nation in March, the Internal Revenue Service moved the original tax filing deadline and tax payment deadline from April 15 to July 15.

That deadline arrived Wednesday. But individual taxpayers who are unable to meet the July 15 deadline can request an automatic extension til October 15.

Here’s what taxpayers should know.

How do I file an automatic extension until October 15?

Taxpayers who’d like an extension until October 15 must fill out an Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Income Tax Return (Form 4858) by July 15.

According to the IRS, this form can be completed electronically through the IRS Free File or a tax software provider.

“To get an extension, taxpayers must estimate their tax liability on the

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We Need to Change How We Share Our Personal Data Online in the Age of COVID-19

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A few months into the coronavirus pandemic, the web is more central to humanity’s functioning than I could have imagined 30 years ago. It’s now a lifeline for billions of people and businesses worldwide. But I’m more frustrated now with the current state of the web than ever before. We could be doing so much better.

COVID-19 underscores how urgently we need a new approach to organizing and sharing personal data. You only have to look at the limited scope and the widespread adoption challenges of the pandemic apps offered by various tech companies and governments.

Think of all the data about your life accumulated in the various applications you use – social gatherings, frequent contacts, recent travel, health, fitness, photos, and so on. Why is it that none of that information can be combined and used to help you, especially during a crisis?

It’s because you aren’t in control

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$20M In Grants For Camden County’s Small Businesses Amid Pandemic

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CAMDEN COUNTY, NJ — Small businesses in Camden County will share in $20 million worth of federal grants amid the coronavirus pandemic, local officials announced Wednesday afternoon.

The county has received federal funds from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to assist struggling businesses during the coronavirus pandemic. The funding is for both profit and nonprofit organizations, and priority will be given to businesses that have not received state or federal funding already.

“We know the business community, especially the foundation of our economy, small businesses, have been hurting and are in need of dire relief,” Camden County Freeholder Director Louis Cappelli Jr. said. “We need to ensure that every proprietor and principal of a small business has access to these grant funds in order to help maintain and stabilize their operations. Moving forward the grants have the potential to provide a business owner with up to

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BitLicense Feedback, Digital Yuan Trial and How US Bills Could Threaten Privacy

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China will trial its digital yuan with a mega food retailer, U.S. bills are seriously threatening online privacy and an a16z alum is launching a venture firm focused on distributed tech. Here’s the story:

Trial Plan
China wants to trial its digital yuan with online food seller Meituan-Dianping as well as another two Tencent-backed companies. The Beijing-based company has held talks with the research wing at the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) over trialling the digital yuan on its platform, according to sources speaking to Bloomberg. The exact details of the collaboration are not yet known. Listed in Hong Kong, Meituan-Dianping’s 400 million active users make it one of the largest food delivery platforms in the world.

Funding Dissent
Opposition politicians and dissidents in Russia are using bitcoin to fund their activities against President Vladimir Putin. “Our opponents understand they can’t cut us off from sources of funding because [if

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