Items tagged with security

If you haven't changed your LinkedIn password in several years, now would be a good time to get on that. Not only is it good practice to change passwords much more frequently than that, there's a chance that your login details were compromised four years ago and are just now being shopped around in an underground marketplace. A hacker who goes by the name "Peace" is shopping around account information of 117 million LinkedIn users. The data was stolen during a security breach at LinkedIn in 2012, at which time around 6.5 million encrypted passwords were posted to the web. LinkedIn never said how... Read more...
It's fair to say that relations between the U.S. and China are strained, especially in regards to technology. Security researchers have often traced cyberattacks big and small back to China, for which the Chinese government often denies, and there's contention over shipping products to the region. The latter is likely to escalate as China ramps up its security reviews on U.S. tech companies such as Apple and Microsoft.China has a deep distrust of technology products originating from the U.S. As a result, China's been conducting more intensive reviews of tech companies with a focus on encryption... Read more...
John McAfee, the antivirus pioneer who created the self-titled AV software that was eventually sold to Intel for $7.68 billion, tried shopping a story to the media that he and his merry band of hackers thwarted WhatsApp's encryption because of a major flaw in Android. The only problem is it didn't exactly happen that way.WhatsApp is an interesting target because it recently announced the addition of end-to-end encryption. It's also the most used messaging application in the world with over a billion users, so if there's a flaw in Android, the most popular mobile OS on the planet, that compromises... Read more...
The rise of the Internet has forever changed the way we go about our daily lives and made certain things more convenient, but the more online services a person uses, the higher the potential privacy cost. That's been a rising deterrent for Americans, many of which now avoid certain online activities over concerns about privacy and security, according to a recent study by the National Telecommunications & Information Administration. NTIA combed over survey data collected by the U.S. Census Bureau, which included answers to several privacy and security questions by more than 41,000 households... Read more...
Researchers at Aarhus University in Denmark caused quite the online kerfuffle when they posted personal information of nearly 70,000 users registered at OkCupid, a popular online dating website. The data dump contained usernames, ages, gender, religion, personality traits, and answers to questions designed to help the site find matches for singles. Lead author Emil Kirkegaard and his research partner Julius Daugbjerg Bjerrekaer zeroed in on OkCupid "because users often answer hundreds of not thousands of questions," making it a rich and readily available source of survey data. The information obtained... Read more...
The FBI ultimately dropped its suit against Apple involving the now infamous iPhone that was connected to a terrorist in the San Bernardino shooting, but the quest to set a legal precedent marches on. FBI Director James Comey hinted as much when said this week there would be more legal battles over encryption and with regards to forcing tech companies to help law enforcement access data on electronic devices.It's not game over, in other words. Though the FBI ultimately didn't need Apple's help in extracting data from the iPhone 5c model it confiscated from a dead terrorist who had locked the handset... Read more...
Slack, the popular real-time messaging tool, is making it easy for users to register with and log into other services and applications. It's doing that through "Sign in with Slack," a feature that ties a person's Slack account to external services so they can use their same login information. Sounds familiar, doesn't it? Sign in with Slack does essentially the same thing as Facebook Connect and Google Apps Identity, to name just two similar services, though Slack's reasoning is more business oriented. By introducing this feature, Slack aims to keep teams connected across the various apps their... Read more...
Apple would have you believe that it's iPhone devices are locked down tighter than Fort Knox, that its encryption and security schemes are so well implemented that even its own engineers would have trouble hacking a handset. But is that really the case? In a murder investigation involving an actor from The Shield, the Los Angeles Police Department made quick work of hacking an iPhone 5s model that belonged to the victim.Ironically enough, murder suspect Michael Jace is best known for playing a member of the LAPD in the popular FX drama The Shield. He stands accused of killing his wife April Jace... Read more...
Buying into the Internet of Things (IoT) movement that's emerging means putting a great deal of trust into the cloud. It's a double-edged sword, because on the one hand the cloud is key to smart conveniences offered by IoT devices, but it also introduces risk. In case we need reminding of the latter, cybersecurity researchers at the University of Michigan showcased a series of proof-of-concept attacks targeting Samsung's popular SmartThings platform. One of their creations is a lock-pick malware app. What it does is eavesdrop on someone setting up a new PIN code for a door lock and then sends the... Read more...
It's beginning to look a lot like no website on Earth can be trusted with our important data, as attackers are attracted to any service that has a huge number of users. They're even attracted to websites that seek out attractiveness, apparently, as BeautifulPeople.com has had its mammoth user database stolen. Are you unsightly and want revenge? Good news! The database is for sale. As its name implies, BeautifulPeople.com is a site dedicated to hooking up good-looking blokes and gals. That makes it quite an exclusive site, especially thanks to the fact that you have to be approved by the community... Read more...
Someone posted a list to Pastebin containing compromised account credentials belonging to a relatively small number of Spotify users. The list, which is few hundred names deep, contains usernames, passwords, emails, account type, and other details, seemingly suggesting the site has been hacked. The accounts appear to all have been compromised within the past few days, though Spotify contends that it wasn't hacked. Assuming that's true, it would point to a collection of names gathered by other means, such as phishing attempts and poor computing habits, including the use of a single password for... Read more...
In an attempt to kill Saddam Hussein and intimidate the enemy, United States military forces conducted a shock and awe campaign that saw a barrage of bombs dropped on Baghdad and other parts of Iraq over a decade ago. Fast forward to today and the U.S. is still dropping bombs on enemies, albeit instead of explosives they're now of cyber variety.It's not that the U.S. military lacks explosives, but the landscape is different now, and so is the target. The Islamic jihadist militant group known as ISIS conducts much of its effort online, and that's where they're perhaps most vulnerable. So in addition... Read more...
Sometimes you wake up not feeling real confident in yourself or your abilities and it seems as though Google might have been in that sort of mood yesterday. Had you used Google's own Safe Browsing Tool on Tuesday morning to check Google.com, as one reddit user did, you'd have discovered Google reporting its search site as "partially dangerous." Google's tool combs through billions of URLs each day in search of unsafe websites that might be serving up malware. And each day it discovers thousands of new online land mines, "many of which are legitimate websites that have been compromised," Google... Read more...
When Edward Snowden blew the whistle on the NSA's comprehensive spying efforts a few years ago, some might have thought that the agency (along with others) would cool their jets. After all, they were caught red-handed prying into our lives without our knowledge. As recent months have shown, however, the government, and especially the FBI, has no qualm about prying into our mobile devices if the desire is there. The FBI apparently even found a way into iPhones without Apple's help (which Apple has chosen to ignore). Fortunately for us, many software solution providers are capitalizing on consumer... Read more...
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