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 Tuesday, October 13, 2009

About a third of UK employees throw sensitive documents in the bin instead of shredding them, research suggests. The study also found almost three-quarters of workers felt their organisations could do more to protect their customers' sensitive information.

The data was compiled for National Identity Fraud Prevention Week. Identity fraud costs the UK more than 1.2bn annually. The UK's Fraud Prevention Service says 60,000 people have fallen victim so far this year.

 

(Source: BBC)

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BBC 

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 4:43:52 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Facebook has seen an impressive bump in traffic versus this time last year. For September 2009, the site claimed 58.6 percent of U.S. social networking tracking, a jump of 194-percent over the same period last year. Twitter's increase, meanwhile, was downright absurd, jumping 1,170 percent over the past year.

In September 2008, Facebook recorded a 19.94 share, which increased to 58.59 percent for Sept. 2009. MySpace, by contrast, dominated the social-networking sites last September, with a 66.8 percent share. Since then, however, MySpace's market share has plunged to 30.3 percent, still leaving it second in U.S. traffic.

 

(Source: PC Magazine)

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PC Magazine

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 4:29:28 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, October 12, 2009

For the fourth time this year, Adobe has admitted that hackers used malicious PDF documents to break into Windows PCs.

The bug in the popular Reader PDF viewer and the Acrobat PDF maker is being exploited in "limited targeted attacks," Adobe said yesterday. That phrasing generally means hackers are sending the rigged PDF documents to a short list of users, oftentimes company executives or others whose PCs contain a treasure trove of confidential information.

 

(Source: ComputerWorld)

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ComputerWorld

Monday, October 12, 2009 2:54:32 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Security researchers are warning that Web-based applications are increasing the risk of identity theft or losing personal data more than ever before.

The best defense against data theft, malware and viruses in the cloud is self defense, researchers at the Hack In The Box (HITB) security conference said. But getting people to change how they use the Internet, such as what personal data they make public, won't be easy.

 

(Source: PCWorld)

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PCWorld 

Monday, October 12, 2009 2:15:17 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, October 09, 2009

Scammers have grabbed the Hotmail passwords that leaked to the Web and are using them in a plot involving a fake Chinese electronics seller to bilk users out of cash and their credit card information, a security researcher said.

"We've seen a 30% to 40% increase in these types of spam messages in the last several days," said Patrik Runald, senior manager of Websense's security research team. "By 'these types of spam,' I mean messages that are advertising great consumer electronics bargains, such as cameras and computers."

 

(Source: ComputerWorld)

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ComputerWorld

Friday, October 09, 2009 2:08:26 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

1. There's always a friend's computer. 2. They're a form of censorship. 3. They give you a false sense of security. 4. Kids resent them -- and you. 5. Kids can defeat them. 6. They catch too much. 7. They don't catch everything.

Most parental control programs use a combination of filtering techniques to block access to unwanted sites. But each method is vulnerable, and none promises 100% accuracy. Text-based filters can't really determine the context of words or phrases, so they can block access to perfectly acceptable sites. Words like "sucking," for example, might get caught in the filter and prevent your kid from researching, say, mosquitoes.

 

(Source: Common Sense)

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Common Sense

Friday, October 09, 2009 9:43:22 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Meet "network man." He has basic desires of his own, but has many arbitrary preferences, such as in music or clothes, that have been influenced by the people he knows. Network man's likes and dislikes, in turn, affect the behavior of his friends, and their friends, and their friends.

People have profound influences on each other's behavior within three degrees of separation, the authors find. That means that your friends, your friends' friends, and your friends' friends' friends may all affect your eating habits, voting preferences, happiness, and more. At the fourth degree, however, the influence substantially weakens.

 

(Source: CNN)

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CNN

Friday, October 09, 2009 9:32:31 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The head of the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation has stopped banking online after nearly falling for a phishing attempt. FBI Director Robert Mueller said he recently came "just a few clicks away from falling into a classic Internet phishing scam" after receiving an e-mail that appeared to be from his bank.

In phishing scams, criminals send spam e-mails to their victims, hoping to trick them into entering sensitive information such as usernames and passwords at fake Web sites.

 

(Source: ComputerWorld)

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ComputerWorld

Friday, October 09, 2009 8:08:12 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, October 08, 2009

IPhone lovers and other smartphone users should take heed: A security researcher showed ways to spy on a BlackBerry user during a presentation Wednesday, including listening to phone conversations, stealing contact lists, reading text messages, taking and viewing photos and figuring out the handset's location via GPS.

And ironically, Sheran Gunasekera, head of research and development at ZenConsult, said the BlackBerry is one of the most secure smartphones available, in some ways better than the iPhone.

 

(Source: ComputerWorld)

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ComputerWorld

Thursday, October 08, 2009 9:44:01 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Investigators in the United States and Egypt have smashed a computer "phishing" identity theft scam described as the biggest cyber-crime investigation in US history, officials said Wednesday.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation said 33 people were arrested across the United States early Wednesday while authorities in Egypt charged 47 more people linked to the scam. A total of 53 suspects were named in connection with the scam in a federal grand jury indictment, the FBI said.

 

(Source: AFP)

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AFP

Thursday, October 08, 2009 9:28:26 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Privacy and security are foundational to health care reform. Patients will trust electronic health care records only if they believe their confidentiality is protected via good security.

As vice chairman of the federal Healthcare Information Technology Standards Committee, I have been on the front lines in the debate over the standards and implementation guidance needed to support the exchange of health care information. Over the past few months, I've learned a great deal from the committee's privacy and security workgroup.

 

(Source: ComputerWorld)

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ComputerWorld

Wednesday, October 07, 2009 10:33:29 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The social networking site said that its security teams had noticed an increase in scams where people's login information is collected through phishing sites, and then their accounts are accessed without permission to ask friends for money.

"While the total number of people who have been impacted is small, we take any threat to security seriously and are redoubling our efforts to combat the scam," The attacks, known as 419 scams, involve a fraudster accessing Facebook accounts and posing as the account owner.

 

(Source: Telegraph)

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Telegraph

Wednesday, October 07, 2009 9:40:19 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Microsoft blocked access to thousands of Hotmail accounts in response to hackers plundering password information and posting it online.

Cyber-crooks evidently used "phishing" tactics to dupe users of Microsoft's free Web-based email service into revealing account and access information, according to the US technology giant. Phishing is an Internet bane and involves using what hackers refer to as "social engineering" to trick people into revealing information online or downloading malicious software onto computers.

 

(Source: AFP)

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AFP

Tuesday, October 06, 2009 10:56:48 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

In a somewhat unusual data breach, hackers recently stole the login credentials of an unknown number of customers of payroll processing company PayChoice Inc., and then attempted to use the data to steal additional information directly from the customers themselves.

Hackers broke into the site and managed to access the real legal name, username and the partially masked passwords used by customers to log into the site. They then used the information to send very realistic looking phishing e-mails to PayChoice's customers directing them to download a Web browser plug-in to be able to continue using the onlineemployer.com service.

 

(Source: ComputerWorld)

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ComputerWorld

Tuesday, October 06, 2009 9:59:37 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, October 02, 2009

US Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said Thursday that her department has received the green light to hire up to 1,000 cybersecurity experts over the next three years.

Kicking off "National Cybersecurity Awareness Month," she said the new recruits would "help fulfill the department's broad mission to protect the nation's cyber infrastructure, systems and networks." "Effective cybersecurity requires all partners -- individuals, communities, government entities and the private sector -- to work together to protect our networks and strengthen our cyber resiliency," Napolitano said.

 

(Source: AFP)

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AFP

Friday, October 02, 2009 11:44:23 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

"We were at a restaurant for my mom's birthday. I looked over and there are my daughter and my oldest son texting, holding their phones under the table," said the mom of four in Lewiston, Idaho. "I just came unglued. I was like, `Are you kidding? You're at your grandma's birthday party. Put those phones away now!'"

We all know teens love their gadgets more for texting than talking. But the devices are posing some new challenges for parents. How can they teach their tech-savvy kids some electronic etiquette? So far, parents are learning on the fly, imposing new rules for their young offenders such as "no texting at dinner."

 

(Source: AP)

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AP

Friday, October 02, 2009 10:21:46 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, October 01, 2009

A long-time critic of the video game industry has sued Facebook for US$40 million, saying that the social networking site harmed him by not removing angry postings made by Facebook gamers.

Thompson is best know for bringing suit against Grand Theft Auto's Take Two Interactive, Sony Computer Entertainment America, and Wal-Mart, arguing that the game caused violent behavior. In 2005 episode of CBS's 60 Minutes, Thompson likened the popular video game to a "murder simulator" and blamed it for the 2003 shooting deaths of two police officers and a 911 dispatcher in Fayette, Alabama.

 

(Source: PCWorld)

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PCWorld 

Thursday, October 01, 2009 2:05:12 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

It's your birthday. And thanks to your Facebook profile, everybody knows that. Your wall fills up with well wishes from hundreds of "friends." Sure, it's nice to be noticed. But security experts are skeptical about whether sharing information, such as birthdays, with a broad audience is a bright idea. "It's all about providing the bad guy with intelligence," said Robert Siciliano, CEO of IDtheftsecurity.com.

Many people use their birthdate in passwords and personal identification numbers, and security questions often ask for it to resend a lost password. So broadcasting a birthdate could help cybercriminals pose as others as they log on to various Web sites, experts warned.

 

(Source: CNN)

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CNN

Thursday, October 01, 2009 10:49:51 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Cybersecurity researchers often scare the IT world with tales of brilliant and devious hacks: encryption cracking techniques, wi-fi booby-traps and undetected vulnerability data sold on the black market. But the most common path cybercriminals use to gain access to victims' PCs today, according to a new report, is far more mundane: buggy software that users and IT administrators fail to patch for months, long after fixes are publicly available.

The study to be released Tuesday by the security-focused SANS Institute states that the cybersecurity community is facing an epidemic of unpatched software, particularly widely used applications like Adobe Flash, Java and Microsoft programs like Word and PowerPoint.

 

(Source: Forbes)

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Forbes

Wednesday, September 30, 2009 2:26:47 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Microsoft on Tuesday began serving up scam warnings with Bing search results for topics such as fixing credit scores or rescue from home foreclosure that are prime material for online cons.

Microsoft worked with the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Postal Inspection Service, and Western Union to provide public service announcements (PSAs) in the form of advertising posted on relevant Bing results pages. Targeted in the campaign are key words related to searches for information about foreclosure rescue offers; promises to fix credit problems, and "lottery scams" in which people are told they've won prizes but must pay to collect.

 

(Source: AFP)

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AFP

Wednesday, September 30, 2009 10:01:30 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Web surfing is no longer a solo affair. Facebook, Twitter, and other social networks have quickly become an integral part of the online culture, and with them comes a whole new array of potential security threats.

Social networking is built on the idea of sharing information openly and fostering a sense of community. Unfortunately, an online network of individuals actively sharing their experiences and seeking connections with other like-minded people can be easy prey for hackers bent on social-engineering and phishing attacks. It's important to be aware of the threats, and to maintain a healthy skepticism in your online interactions.

 

(Source: ComputerWorld)

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ComputerWorld

Tuesday, September 29, 2009 10:50:43 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The US Secret Service is trying to identify the people who launched an online poll at Facebook asking whether US President Barack Obama should be assassinated. Facebook on Monday shut down the user-generated poll, which was titled "Should Obama be killed?" and offered answer choices of yes, no, maybe, and "If he cuts my health care."

"Once we found out about it, we worked with Facebook to have it removed," Secret Service spokesman Malcolm Wiley told AFP. "We are certainly investigating; just like we would with any threat case." More than 750 Facebook users had reportedly cast votes by the time the poll was yanked from the wildly popular online social networking community.

 

(Source: AFP)

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AFP

Tuesday, September 29, 2009 10:08:33 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, September 28, 2009

A network of Russian malware writers and spammers paid hackers 43 cents for each Mac machine they infected with bogus video software, a sign that Macs have become attack targets, a security researcher said yesterday.

In a presentation Thursday at the Virus Bulletin 2009 security conference in Geneva, Switzerland, Sophos researcher Dmitry Samosseiko discussed his investigation of the Russian "Partnerka," a tangled collection of Web affiliates who rake in hundreds of thousands of dollars from spam and malware, most of the former related to phony drug sites, and much of the latter targeting Windows users with fake security software, or "scareware."

 

(Source: ComputerWorld)

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ComputerWorld

Monday, September 28, 2009 9:35:09 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Next time you're recovering from trip to the emergency room, keep an eye on the young doctors tending to you. They might be chatting about your case on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and blogs.

A survey of medical schools published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that 13 percent of respondents reported breaches of doctor-patient confidentiality, and 60 percent reported "unprofessional content" posted online.

 

(Source: PCWorld)

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PCWorld 

Monday, September 28, 2009 8:35:43 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, September 25, 2009

Many major social networking sites are leaking information that allows third party advertising and tracking companies to associate the Web browsing habits of users with a specific person, researchers warn.

That's the conclusion of a study on the leakage of personally identifiable information on social networks done at AT&T Labs and the Worcester Polytechnic Institute. "In some cases, the leakage may be unintentional, but in others, there is clever and surreptitious anti-privacy engineering at work," the EFF said.

 

(Source: ComputerWorld)

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ComputerWorld

Friday, September 25, 2009 12:29:03 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

They were crimes born of the Internet age -- romantic solicitations on popular Web site Craigslist that police say led to the fatal shooting of one woman and the robbery of another in Boston hotels this past spring. And it was high-tech, 21st-century sleuthing, along with some old-fashioned gumshoe detective work, that put police on the trail toward a suspect and eventually an arrest.

CNN looks at how technology was used to lead police to 23-year-old medical student Philip Markoff, who has been indicted on seven counts, including first-degree murder. Investigators knew they had crimes born of the Internet on their hands, but how were they able to use that same technology to help them find a suspect who went to great lengths to hide his tracks?

 

(Source: CNN)

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CNN

Friday, September 25, 2009 12:03:57 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, September 24, 2009

Scammers are increasingly using machine-generated Twitter accounts to post messages about trendy topics, and tempt users into clicking on a link that leads to servers hosting fake Windows antivirus software, security researchers said Monday.

The latest Twitter attacks originated with malicious accounts cranked out by software, said experts at both F-Secure and Sophos. The accounts, which use variable account and user names, supposedly represent U.S. Twitter users. In some cases, the background wallpaper is customized for each account, yet another tactic to make the unwary think that a real person is responsible for the content.

 

(Source: ComputerWorld)

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ComputerWorld

Thursday, September 24, 2009 10:30:33 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Teens and texting is a subject that's often discussed in pathological terms. They're texting in class! They're sexting! They need thumb therapy! But texting isn't always bad. In some families, it's become a primary form of communication between parents and children. In fact, one of my favorite texts from kids is the earth-shattering query "Wuz4dina?"

Psychologist Thomas W. Phelan says one of the biggest problems with teens is getting them to communicate at all, so if they're willing to text their parents, we should embrace the trend. "Instead of seeing the whole text thing as an enemy, see it as an ally."

 

(Source: AP)

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AP

Thursday, September 24, 2009 10:12:55 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Decades of war and occupation have not provided an answer to that question -- but the social networking Web site now permits both options, sparking fears about an anti-Facebook cyber-war. The Golan Heights is Syrian territory that was captured by Israel during the Six-Day War in 1967. Since then it has been internationally classified as Israeli-occupied territory.

Up until recently, Facebook fans in the Golan Heights could only choose Syria as their country of origin or else leave it blank. Pro-Israel Web site honestreporting.com sought to change that, starting a group called "Facebook, Golan residents live in Israel, not Syria."

 

(Source: CNN)

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CNN

Tuesday, September 22, 2009 1:38:32 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

A new botnet has caused a sharp spike in click fraud because it is skirting the most sophisticated filters of search engines, Web publishers and ad networks, according to Click Forensics. The company, which provides services to monitor ad campaigns for click fraud and reports on click fraud incidence every quarter, said on Thursday that the botnet's architects have figured out a way to mask it particularly well as legitimate search ad traffic.

Click Forensics is calling this the "Bahama botnet" because it was initially redirecting traffic through 200,000 parked domains in the Bahamas, although it is now using sites in Amsterdam, the U.K. and Silicon Valley.

 

(Source: ComputerWorld)

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ComputerWorld

Tuesday, September 22, 2009 11:00:30 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     |