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Morning Update: Unredact My Heart

Mueller report release day, popular Android apps committing ad fraud, Galaxy Fold phone troubles

Posted on April 18, 2019, at 8:14 a.m. ET

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The Mueller report is finally being published

After a two-year investigation into President Donald Trump’s campaign and Russian interference in the 2016 election, a redacted version of Robert Mueller’s report will finally be made public today.

We will have all-day coverage of the release of the report, on buzzfeednews.com.

What we already know about the report:

According to Attorney General William Barr, Mueller found that the Trump campaign did not conspire with Russia.

Also, while Mueller himself did not reach a conclusion about whether Trump committed any obstruction offenses, Barr said “the evidence developed during the Special Counsel's investigation is not sufficient” to reach that conclusion. (A refresher).

What happens after the full report is released:

We already know the report won’t tell the full story. Barr is expected to make broad redactions to hide counterintelligence information, grand jury testimony, and ongoing investigations by other federal prosecutors.

Since January, we’ve filed more than two dozen Freedom Of Information Act requests for documents related to the Mueller inquiry — and we expect to take the additional step of fighting for their release in court.

Here are some of the things we’re trying to find out.

SNAPSHOTS

A man carrying two gas cans and lighters was arrested at NYC’s St. Patrick’s Cathedral. A security guard at the historic Midtown church confronted the man inside the building, which had worshipers inside, and notified officers stationed nearby. Police say the man’s motives were under investigation by the counterterrorism unit.

Samsung’s $2,000 Galaxy Fold phones are breaking after a few days, reviewers say. The phone has two touchscreens: a smaller one that's activated when folded, and a larger tablet-sized one. Three reporters said the larger screens on their Galaxy Fold review units failed in various ways.

More than 100 high-end cars were stolen in Chicago using an app in a possible crime spree. Car2go, a car sharing company, reported that some of its fleet was stolen using its mobile app, forcing it to temporarily shut down in the city. Police say 100 vehicles, including at least 50 Mercedes-Benz cars, are still unaccounted for.

An armed 18-year-old woman “infatuated” with the Columbine shooting killed herself. A massive search for Sol Pais began after she flew from Miami to Colorado and immediately bought a weapon. Authorities said Pais “made threats to commit an act of violence in the Denver metropolitan area,” just days before the 20th anniversary of the Columbine massacre.

A measles case has hit Google’s Silicon Valley headquarters. In an email to employees that we obtained, a staff doctor at Google wrote that a worker who had recently been in one of its Mountain View, California, buildings had been diagnosed with the highly contagious virus.

Jason Momoa shaved off his beard. You will survive this, I promise.

Beyoncé. Coachella. You already know. Queen Bey released a Netflix documentary that got real about how demanding her Coachella performance was. Because the world is good, she also dropped a live album of the historic performance. In the doc, Beyoncé says of the performance, “I will never push myself that far again.”

Netflix

Popular apps in Google’s Play store are abusing permissions and committing ad fraud

A new BuzzFeed News investigation revealed that a host of popular Android apps from a major Chinese app developer, including one with over 50 million downloads, have been committing large-scale ad fraud and abusing user permissions.

In several cases, the apps took steps that concealed their connections to the developer, DU Group, from users and failed to clearly disclose they were collecting and sending data to China.

On top of that, at least six of DU Group’s apps, which together have more than 90 million downloads from the Google Play store, have been fraudulently clicking on ads to generate revenue.

Read Craig Silverman and Jeremy Singer-Vine’s investigation that also raises questions about Google's policing of apps in the Play store for fraud and data collection practices.

This mom’s reaction to discovering her kids had shaved their heads has everyone on the internet applauding

Stephanie Plucknette was away from her kids for about eight minutes while they were playing in the backyard. Pucknette didn’t know she left the dog-grooming clippers out accidentally, after grooming the dog.

While you can predict exactly what happened next — some, uh, creative haircuts — it’s Plucknette’s reaction that stole the internet’s heart.

Through tears and laughter, she calmed her kids down and said “we’ll make it work, OK?”

Her response to the situation has many people applauding her mom skills.

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