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 Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The World Economic Forum today released its study on Scaling Opportunity: Information and Communications Technology for Social Inclusion, an analysis of how ICT is evolving to address the social and economic needs of the poor. The study notes that, as 4 billion people have access to the global communications infrastructure, the opportunity to create innovative and inclusively tailored solutions for connecting the unconnected is extraordinary.

Along with highlighting the rapid adoption rate of mobile phone usage within emerging economies, the report focuses on the question: “What’s next?”

 

(Source: eGov Monitor)

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eGov Monitor

Wednesday, January 20, 2010 11:45:25 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Hackers are attacking consumers with an exploit of Internet Explorer (IE) that was allegedly used last month by the Chinese to break into Google's corporate network, a security company said Monday.

That news came on the heels of warnings by the information security agencies of the French and German governments, which recommended that IE users switch to an alternate browser, such as Firefox, Chrome, Safari or Opera, until Microsoft fixes the flaw. In a Monday alert Websense said it identified "limited public use" of the unpatched IE vulnerability in drive-by attacks against users who strayed onto malicious Web sites.

 

(Source: ComputerWorld)

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ComputerWorld

Wednesday, January 20, 2010 10:59:42 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, January 19, 2010

A man who ran a music-sharing website with almost 200,000 members has been found not guilty of conspiracy to defraud at Teesside Crown Court. Alan Ellis, 26, was the first person in the UK to be prosecuted for illegal file-sharing. He operated the site, called Oink, from his flat in Middlesbrough from 2004 until it was closed down in a police raid in October 2007. In that time Oink facilitated the download of 21 million music files.

 

(Source: BBC)

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BBC

Tuesday, January 19, 2010 4:30:00 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, January 18, 2010

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation is advising people to be careful when evaluating donation programs related to the earthquake in Haiti as one security firm is already seeing scam e-mails circulate. People should apply a "critical eye" to requests for financial donations following Tuesday's earthquake in Haiti, which caused an unknown number of deaths and severe damage to the country's infrastructure.

Scam e-mails are already emerging. Symantec noted a so-called 419-style e-mail that purported to come from the British Red Cross. A 419 scam, named after the number of a statute in Nigeria's criminal code banning the practice, is one in which an e-mail or a letter implores a person to send money for some bogus reason.

 

(Source: ComputerWorld)

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ComputerWorld

Monday, January 18, 2010 2:06:57 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, January 14, 2010

With communications in Haiti ravaged by an earthquake, tech-savvy residents turned to Twitter to send pictures and news of the destruction while others used the Web service to mobilize appeals for aid.

Harrowing personal accounts, heart-rending pictures and rallying cries for relief for quake-ravaged Haiti spread swiftly on Twitter as the microblogging platform once again became a key communications tool during disaster. Haiti solidarity groups sprang up on social network Facebook, meanwhile, including one that quickly attracted more than 142,000 members, and video of the aftermath of the 7.0-magnitude quake appeared on YouTube.

 

(Source: AFP)

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AFP

Thursday, January 14, 2010 11:41:01 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Facebook is trying to strengthen security on its Web site with some outside help. Computer security company McAfee Inc. will now scan and repair the computers of Facebook users whose accounts have been compromised, the company said Wednesday. The scanning process will be added to the steps that Facebook already makes the users of such accounts go through if they want to reclaim their pages.

Facebook says spam and viruses affect a tiny percentage of its users. But hackers are increasingly targeting the social sites as they become a core part of the Web. Spokesman Barry Schnitt said Facebook spends a lot of time and resources to keep users' accounts secure.

 

(Source: AP)

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AP

Thursday, January 14, 2010 10:50:08 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The cyber threat environment is constantly changing and becoming more challenging with every day that passes. Malware grew last year at the highest rate in 20 years. Multiple security reports showed that more than 25 million new strains of malware were identified in 2009.

Forecasts suggest that 2010 will again see unprecedented growth in malware and the trend is expected to continue for the foreseeable future. Not only will the cyber attack volume escalated dramatically, but the sophistication of malware delivery modalities will also become much more sophisticated and dangerous. In addition, social networking sites will become major targets of choice for cyber criminals.

 

(Source: Defense Tech)

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Defense Tech

Wednesday, January 13, 2010 4:31:43 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Despite the prevalence and popularity of social networking sites like Facebook, almost a third of respondents said that they preferred to meet friends face-to-face, although 44 percent said the internet made it easier to keep in touch with them. More than seven in 10 children said their most common use of the Internet was for gaming, while 59 percent said that they used the worldwide web in the course of doing their homework. The youngsters from Britain, Germany, France, Spain, Italy and Poland also expressed a strong sense of social responsibility, with 90 percent saying it was important to look after the planet, and 74 percent saying they recycled regularly.

They've never known a world without the Internet, but they still prefer to meet their friends offline.

 

(Source: Reuters)

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Reuters

Wednesday, January 13, 2010 11:10:29 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Violent video games have "a much bigger negative influence on kids" than pornography, a leading porn star has claimed. He said parents should be more worried about the harmful effects of such games. Mr Jeremy's comments were made at a session called the Great Porn Debate during the Consumer Electronics Show, CES, in Las Vegas. His comments angered gamers, who accused him of "ignorance".

Mr Jeremy also urged parents to play their part in preventing children from accessing adult websites. He said the industry already does all it can to protect youngsters. "Parents can block this stuff and need to stop blaming porn for a bad case of parenting," Mr Jeremy told BBC News.

 

(Source: BBC)

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BBC

Tuesday, January 12, 2010 3:35:04 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Hackers calling themselves the Iranian Cyber Army briefly hijacked the home page of China's top search engine, Baidu Inc, on Tuesday weeks after doing the same thing to Twitter.com.

Media carried screenshots of Baidu's home page showing a message: "This site has been hacked by Iranian Cyber Army" against a dark background and the flag of Iran. The group hacked popular microblogging website Twitter in December replacing Twitter's home page with the same headline and an anti-American message.

 

(Source: Reuters)

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Reuters

Tuesday, January 12, 2010 2:49:45 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, January 11, 2010

A wireless industry group said mobile phone conversations are safe from eavesdropping, even after a German security expert released the code for unscrambling calls made using most of the world's cell phones. Concerns spread last week that cell phone calls could easily be intercepted after encryption expert Karsten Nohl unveiled his research at Europe's largest hacking conference, in Berlin.

The London-based GSM Association said on Thursday that it has spent the past few years figuring out ways to thwart hackers who might try to tap into wireless calls using Nohl's research, which it first learned of in 2007.

 

(Source: Reuters)

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Reuters

Monday, January 11, 2010 12:06:38 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, January 08, 2010

People who post intimate details about their lives on the internet undermine everybody else's right to privacy, claims an academic. Dr Kieron O'Hara has called for people to be more aware of the impact on society of what they publish online. "If you look at privacy in law, one important concept is a reasonable expectation of privacy," he said. "As more private lives are exported online, reasonable expectations are diminishing."

The rise of social networking has blurred the boundaries of what can be considered private, he believes - making it less of a defence by law. We live in an era that he terms "intimacy 2.0" - where people routinely share extremely personal information online.

 

(Source: BBC)

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BBC

Friday, January 08, 2010 1:39:04 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, January 07, 2010

The new year will usher in some interesting new changes in the world of malware and cyber-attacks, according to one company's predictions for 2010. Watchful eyes will have to be kept on mobile phone apps, Google Wave accounts, file sharing and peer-to-peer networks -- cyber-criminals will target those in greater numbers, according to predictions released by Kaspersky Labs, a provider of Internet threat management solutions for combating malware.

"Given the growing sophistication of threats -- it's no longer just an e-mail saying, ‘Please click on this attachment,' and you get infected with something -- the schemes are much more elaborate than that," said Roel Schouwenberg, the company's senior malware researcher.

 

(Source: Government Technology)

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Government Technology

Thursday, January 07, 2010 2:24:01 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Got an e-mail list of customers or readers and want to know more about each such as their full name, friends, gender, age, interests, location, job and education level? Facebook has just the free feature you're looking for, thanks to its recent privacy changes. The hack, first publicized by blogger Max Klein, repurposes a Facebook feature that lets people find their friends on Facebook by scanning through e-mail addresses in their contact list.

Using a simple scraping tool, a marketer could then turn a list of e-mail addresses into a rich, full-fledged set of marketing profiles, with names, pictures, ages, locations, interests, photos, wall posts, affiliations and names of your friends, depending on how users have their profiles set.

 

(Source: CNN)

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CNN

Thursday, January 07, 2010 11:19:31 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, January 04, 2010

Last year, the Internet began to be seen as a basic human right and some countries have instituted legal means of guaranteeing that the vast majority of their citizens have access to a quality Internet connection. Other countries, though, are going the other way, hindering their citizen's web use and in some cases moving to disconnect them altogether. In France, the heavily criticized and disputed, so-called "three strikes" law has come into effect starting January 1st. Its backers are quick to boast the laws unabridged effectiveness, but common sense points the other way.

How exactly the agency will determine users' email addresses, or even harder, the address they are actively using remains to be seen.

 

(Source: Softpedia)

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Softpedia

Monday, January 04, 2010 1:53:50 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Chinese authorities caught nearly 5,400 suspects last year in a crackdown on online pornography and have vowed to strengthen Internet policing.

Beijing's pervasive policing of cyberspace and attempts to block the Internet are already among the world's most stringent. In a statement late Thursday, the Ministry of Public Security said the "purification of the Internet" and fighting of online crime are closely tied to the country's stability. "Lewd and pornographic content seriously pollutes the online environment, depraves social morals and poisons the physical and psychological health of the masses of young people," the statement said. "It must be firmly controlled."

 

(Source: AP)

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AP

Monday, January 04, 2010 1:31:30 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Thanks to efforts from Microsoft Research, criminals involved in child-exploitation will have less places to hide, especially when it comes down to the nooks and crannies of the Internet. Ernie Allen, president and CEO of National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) notes that while the Internet has created new opportunities for pedophiles to access content in the privacy of their own homes, and to expose themselves less to the risks associated with their illegal activities, work has been done to identify them and bring them to justice. At the same time, PhotoDNA is designed to help stop the distribution of child-exploitation images across the web.

NCMEC will be using a technology donated by Microsoft in order to produce blueprints of known images of children abuse.

 

(Source: Softpedia)

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Softpedia

Monday, January 04, 2010 11:41:13 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, December 17, 2009

A court in east China has handed down jail sentences of up to three years to 11 people for their roles in online gaming scams that netted them around 140,000 dollars, state media said. Lu Yizhong and Zeng Yifu wrote malicious Trojan horse viruses to steal 5.3 million user names and passwords from online gamers, which were then used for "illegal gains", the Xinhua news agency reported late Wednesday. Defendants Yan Renhai, his girlfriend Chen Huiting and other accomplices sold or used the viruses to steal online credits, the Gulou District People's Court in Jiangsu province found, according to Xinhua.

The number of Internet gamers in China reached 217 million at the end of June, or 64.2 percent of the nation's total online population.

 

(Source: AFP)

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AFP

Thursday, December 17, 2009 10:33:59 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Internet users are being warned to watch out for a computer virus targeting popular social networking sites in the run up to Christmas.

Security experts say the new virus is "particularly nasty" and compels its victims to participate manually in creating a new Facebook account to help spread the worm. "The more people who use an application such as Facebook, or any other means of social networking, the more likely they are to be targeted by bad guys to send out malicious threats such as Koobface." The internet security company recommends that users do not reply to or follow links included in unsolicited Facebook messages and users should always carefully check that the URL they are entering is really that of the site they want to access.

 

(Source: FOX News)

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FOX News

Wednesday, December 16, 2009 6:08:53 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Thirty percent of 17-year-olds with cell phones have received sexting photos or videos, while eight percent have sent them, according to a new report from the Pew Research Center. What's more, four percent of 12- to 17-year-olds admit they have texted sexually suggestive nude or nearly nude images of themselves to someone else. Another 15 percent said they have received such images.

Meanwhile, laws and law-enforcement practices have emerged around sexting. The Pew report notes that some law-enforcement officers and district attorneys have begun prosecuting teens who create and share such images under laws generally reserved for producers and distributors of child pornography.

 

(Source: News Factor)

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News Factor

Wednesday, December 16, 2009 2:25:19 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Australia said Tuesday it would push ahead with a mandatory China-style plan to filter the Internet, despite widespread criticism that it will strangle free speech and is doomed to fail.

Communications Minister Stephen Conroy said new laws would be introduced to ban access to "refused classification" (RC) sites featuring criminal content such as child sex abuse, bestiality, rape and detailed drug use. Blacklisted sites would be determined by an independent classification body via a "public complaint" process, said Conroy, admitting there was "no silver bullet solution to cyber-safety".

 

(Source: AFP)

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AFP

Tuesday, December 15, 2009 3:23:43 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

They're the scourge of the Internet right now and the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation says they've also raked in more than $150 million for scammers. Security experts call them rogue antivirus programs.

The FBI's Internet Crime Complaint Center issued a warning over this fake antivirus software Friday, saying that Web surfers should be wary of sudden pop-up windows that report security problems on their computers. This software can appear almost anywhere on the Web. Typically, the scam starts with an aggressive pop-up advertisement that looks like some sort of virus scan. Often it's nearly impossible to get rid of the pop-up windows.

 

(Source: ComputerWorld)

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ComputerWorld

Tuesday, December 15, 2009 10:19:24 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, December 14, 2009

ISO will develop a technical report (TR) to help emerging and developing countries implement a solid and internationally harmonized health informatics system. The report will present information in an accessible way to guide and facilitate the adoption of relevant International Standards by countries with limited resources and infrastructure.

International Standards can help by providing globally harmonized specifications for establishing the architectural framework used to design eHealth systems, plan implementation, make build-or-buy decisions, decide on acquisitions and undertake related activities.

 

(Source: ISO)

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ISO 

Monday, December 14, 2009 6:22:08 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

In the EU27, 65% of households 1 had access to the internet during the first quarter of 2009, compared with 60% during the first quarter of 2008, and 56% had a broadband internet connection in 2009, compared with 49% in 2008.

The se data 2 published by Eurostat, the Statistical Office of the European Communities , represent only a small part of the results of a survey on Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) usage in households and by individuals in the EU27 Member States, the candidate countries, Norway , Iceland and Serbia . As well as internet use and broadband connections, the survey also covers other indicators such as e-shopping, e-government and advanced communication and content related services.

 

(Source: Euro Stat)

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European Commission

Monday, December 14, 2009 6:00:21 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     |