Posts tagged "United States"

U.S. Army Base Runs Unlicensed Windows 7 Computers

A few weeks ago the U.S. Government paid a $50 million settlement for pirating military logistics software, which was used to  protect soldiers and shipments in critical missions. Following this news, a soldier stationed in Qatar told TorrentFreak that several computers at his base run unlicensed copies of Windows 7, which he backs up with photo evidence.  “I feel the army should be kept honest and accountable for what they do,” the soldier says.

microsoft-pirateThe United States is known for its aggressive stance when it comes to copyright infringements.

It therefore came as quite a surprise that the U.S. military had been using unlicensed logistics software for years, a case the Obama administration settled for $50 million last month.

However, a signal soldier serving in Qatar informs TorrentFreak that this incident may not be as unique as it sounds. According to the soldier, who we will name Mark, the soldiers’ education center at his base has 18 computers which all run unlicensed copies of Windows 7.

“All of the computers in this computer lab show that the operating system is not a genuine copy,” Mark says.

The picture below shows several of the computers in the education center of Camp As Sayliyah. The facility is open to all active and reserve military personnel as well as DOD civilians.

center

 

The computers have been running in this state for quite a while according to the soldier, and he is unaware of any attempts to properly license the software.

invalid

 

The picture below again shows a Windows 7 copy that hasn’t been activated. The product-ID displayed is a generic OEM one, which is often used on Dell machines.

workgroup

 

The desktop of the machines also shows a clear reminder that the Windows copy is not genuine. In addition, users also get the occasional popup warning that they “may be a victim of software counterfeiting.”

screen

 

Mark informs us that this is the first time he has seen a military base openly run unlicensed Windows systems. He brought up the issue with his direct superiors a few weeks ago, but that hasn’t changed anything.

“I am not anti-government in any way, but I have been in the army a long time and I feel the army should be kept honest and accountable for what they do, especially when it is so public and a hot button issue in these times,” Mark told us.

From the information we received it is unclear why the computers are not licensed. Perhaps the legitimate keys were lost, perhaps there are no valid keys available, or maybe the Army has fallen victim to the consumer unfriendliness of DRM.

What we do know is that the Department of Defense has a long-standing relationship with Microsoft. Earlier this year both parties signed a $617 million licensing deal to bring Windows 8 to the Army, Air Force, and Defense Information Systems Agency.

Considering this new deal, Microsoft will probably forgive the U.S. for running a few computers without a license.

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Posted by plates55 - December 25, 2013 at 1:51 pm

Categories: Microsoft   Tags: , , , , , , ,

NSA infiltrates links to Yahoo, Google data centers worldwide, Snowden documents say

In this slide from a National Security Agency presentation on “Google Cloud Exploitation,” a sketch shows where the “Public Internet” meets the internal “Google Cloud” where user data resides. Two engineers with close ties to Google exploded in profanity when they saw the drawing.

By Barton Gellman and Ashkan Soltani, Published: October 30 E-mail the writer

The National Security Agency has secretly broken into the main communications links that connect Yahoo and Google data centers around the world, according to documents obtained from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden and interviews with knowledgeable officials.

By tapping those links, the agency has positioned itself to collect at will from hundreds of millions of user accounts, many of them belonging to Americans. The NSA does not keep everything it collects, but it keeps a lot.

According to a top-secret accounting dated Jan. 9, 2013, the NSA’s acquisitions directorate sends millions of records every day from internal Yahoo and Google networks to data warehouses at the agency’s headquarters at Fort Meade, Md. In the preceding 30 days, the report said, field collectors had processed and sent back 181,280,466 new records — including  “metadata,” which would indicate who sent or received e-mails and when, as well as content such as text, audio and video.

The NSA’s principal tool to exploit the data links is a project called MUSCULAR, operated jointly with the agency’s British counterpart, the Government Communications Headquarters . From undisclosed interception points, the NSA and the GCHQ are copying entire data flows across fiber-optic cables that carry information among the data centers of the Silicon Valley giants.

The infiltration is especially striking because the NSA, under a separate program known as PRISM, has front-door access to Google and Yahoo user accounts through a court-approved process.

The MUSCULAR project appears to be an unusually aggressive use of NSA tradecraft against flagship American companies. The agency is built for high-tech spying, with a wide range of digital tools, but it has not been known to use them routinely against U.S. companies.

In a statement, the NSA said it is “focused on discovering and developing intelligence about valid foreign intelligence targets only.”

“NSA applies Attorney General-approved processes to protect the privacy of U.S. persons — minimizing the likelihood of their information in our targeting, collection, processing, exploitation, retention, and dissemination,” it said.

In a statement, Google’s chief legal officer, David Drummond, said the company has “long been concerned about the possibility of this kind of snooping” and has not provided the government with access to its systems.

“We are outraged at the lengths to which the government seems to have gone to intercept data from our private fiber networks, and it underscores the need for urgent reform,” he said.

A Yahoo spokeswoman said, “We have strict controls in place to protect the security of our data centers, and we have not given access to our data centers to the NSA or to any other government agency.”

Under PRISM, the NSA gathers huge volumes of online communications records by legally compelling U.S. technology companies, including Yahoo and Google, to turn over any data that match court-approved search terms. That program, which was first disclosed by The Washington Post and the Guardian newspaper in Britain, is authorized under Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act  and overseen by the Foreign ­Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC).

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Posted by plates55 - October 31, 2013 at 4:39 pm

Categories: Google   Tags: , , , , , , ,

Are Hollywood’s Artificial Release Delays Driving Piracy?

Is Hollywood partly to blame for the high piracy rates of some movies? A newly launched website suggests that this may be the case, as it shows that the most pirated movies are not available to stream, buy or rent legally. While the movie industry has built its business on release delays, people’s viewing demands are changing rapidly up to the point where and Hollywood may want to reconsider its model.

hollywood-piratesEvery day millions of people download the latest Hollywood blockbusters though unauthorized sources.

The movie industry is not happy with the ever-increasing piracy rates and has called out Google and other stakeholders to “do more” to help. At the same time, Hollywood keeps emphasizing the many legal options that are available to the public.

A few months ago the MPAA launched the website WhereToWatch.org which provides an overview of dozens of legal video outlets that are available in the United States.

“Audiences want seamless access to film and TV shows. Our industry has listened, and we are now delivering more choices than ever before,” MPAA boss Senator Dodd said at the time.

“There have never been more ways to access movies and television legitimately online, and those platforms continue to grow and develop thanks in large part to a copyright system that encourages innovation, risk and growth,” Dodd added.

While this sounds great, the WhereToWatch site doesn’t change the fact that many of the newer releases are simply not available online due to artificial release lags. After a movie’s box office premiere it usually takes months before people can access it online.

This mismatch prompted public policy researchers at George Mason University’s Mercatus Center to take a close look at the online availability of some of the most pirated movies. On the newly launched Piracydata.org the researchers use TorrentFreak’s weekly lists of most pirated movies combined with information from CanIStreamIt to come up with an overview of the availability of these titles.

The results from this week are listed below, and it’s clear that half of the movie titles don’t have any legal options at all, while none are available for streaming.

avail
 

TorrentFreak talked to Jerry Brito, director of Mercatus Center’s Technology Policy Program and one of the people behind the PiracyData website. Brito tells us that the MPAA and RIAA complaints that Google is placing pirate search results above legal alternatives was one of the motivations to look into the legal availability.

“We are compiling a dataset to help answer the question: Are the most-pirated movies available legally online? With only three weeks of data, the answer seems to be that very few are available legally. We’ll get a clearer picture in the months ahead as the dataset grows,” Brito says.

The lack of legal alternatives they have found so far means that Google sometimes has no other choice than to place pirate sites high in the search results, as there simply are no authorized options available.

“One implication may be that when movies are unavailable, illegal sources are the most relevant search results, so search engines like Google are just telling it like it is. That is their job, after all,” Brito says.

While the current dataset is limited to three weeks, it’s quite telling that of all movies listed none was available for streaming, while only 20% could be rented.

piracystats
 

Brito notes that the data doesn’t prove a causal effect between availability and piracy, but that it’s clear that Hollywood can “do more” to increase access to popular movies themselves.

“While there is no way to draw causality between the fact that these movies are not available legally and that they are the most pirated, it does highlight that while the MPAA is asking Google to take voluntary action to change search results, it may well be within the movie studio’s power to change those results by taking voluntary action themselves.”

“They could make more movies available online and sooner, perhaps by collapsing the theatrical release window. Now, their business model is their prerogative, and it’s none of my business to tell them how to operate, but by the same token I don’t see how they can expect search engines and Congress to bend over backwards to protect the business model they choose,” Brito adds.

Whether Hollywood will take up this suggestion has yet to be seen. Some movie studios have experimented a bit with shorter release delays, but unlike the TV and music industry it is still the core of its business model.

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Posted by plates55 - October 24, 2013 at 1:05 pm

Categories: Piracy   Tags: , , , , , , ,

Breaking Bad Finale Clocks 500,000 Pirated Downloads

The season finale of Breaking Bad has resulted in a record number of pirated downloads for the popular TV-series. Just 12 hours after the first copy appeared online more than 500,000 people had already downloaded the show via various torrent sites. Most downloaders come from Australia, followed by the United States and the UK, where thousands of file-sharers prefer unauthorized copies over legal alternatives.

bbOne of the main motivations for people to download and stream TV-shows from unauthorized sources is availability.

If fans can’t get a show through legal channels they often turn to pirated alternatives.

However, the series finale of Breaking Bad shows that there are more factors at play. Despite the availability of legal options, in many countries there are those who still prefer to download a copy from unauthorized sources.

Data gathered by TorrentFreak shows that 12 hours after the first copy of the episode appeared online, more than half a million people has grabbed a copy through one of many torrent sites. Never before have so many people downloaded a Breaking Bad episode, making it a strong contender for a top spot in our most-pirated TV-shows of the year chart.

So where are all these pirates coming from, and why aren’t they going for the legal options?

Based on a sample of more than 10,000 people who shared the site via a BitTorrent client, we see that Australia is once again in the lead with 18 percent of the total. This means that a large group of Aussies prefer to torrent the episode instead of watching it on the pay TV network Foxtel.

In the U.S. and the U.K the legal availability on Netflix couldn’t prevent people from pirating the final Breaking Bad episode either. With 14.5 and 9.3 percent these countries are second and third respectively. India and Canada complete the top five with 5.7 and 5.1 percent of the total.

Looking at the list of countries below it’s clear that piracy is still rampant, even in countries where people do have the option to watch the show legally.

One of the explanations for this defiant behavior is that these downloaders simply prefer to torrent the show out of habit. As reported earlier, even among those who have a Netflix subscription, many prefer to grab a copy via torrent sites as they find it more convenient.

In other cases people may find a pay TV subscription too expensive, or they simply prefer to watch the show at their own leisure instead of following rigid TV-schedules

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Posted by plates55 - October 2, 2013 at 7:39 pm

Categories: Bittorrent   Tags: , , , , , , ,

PC Locked by FBI Moneypak Virus? FBI Virus Scam Removal Guide

Is your computer fully taken over by FBI Moneypak virus now which asks you to pay from $100 to $500 and get computer unblocked? If your computer is locked with copyright infringement virus, don’t fall into this scam. My brothers computer has been infected with the FBI Moneypak Virus ransomware. I have been following steps but it doesn’t seem to be working. Do you know any FBI laptop locked code? It is an infamous ransomware that should be removed as soon as possible.

Overview of FBI Moneypak Virus – Scam FBI Blocked PC Until Pay Fine by Money pak

FBI Moneypak Virus, with a tricky appearance and brilliant means, has been doing more and more harm to people in USA. What is it? It’s throughout a scam malware which tries its best to threaten computer users into paying 100 dollars through Moneypak to its master. When computer gets FBI Moneypak scam malware infection, victims receive a pop-up message from a national authority such as the FBI warning that their PC has a virus and is sending out child pornography. FBI Moneypak Virus will tell you that your online activities are violation of the federal laws of the United States of America! You may be stigmatized that your IP address was used to visit websites containing pornography, child pornography, zoophilia and child abuse. Your computer also contains video files with pornographic content, elements of violence and child pornography! Spam-messages with terrorist motives were also sent from your computer. Even the logo on the GUI (interface) is the same as real FBI department. In fact FBI Moneypak has many other versions according to different countries or areas, for example, PCEU virus from United Kingdom, Gema and GVU from Germany, Sacem from France, RCMP from Canada and Buma Stemra from the Netherlands.

All of these scam malware is designed as was issued from local government department just like FBI Moneypak Virus. FBI Moneypak ransomware’s been doing the rounds for some months. There’s been a big increase in the number of cases in the America country. Some people indeed will do something illegal online such as visiting some porn sites. So when they get such warning message, they will believe it deeply. A person in America was so frightened when he received this warning that he paid 100 dollars right away. In his words, he really didn’t want to be jailed. FBI Moneypak Virus just takes advantage of this to swindle money from users. After you pay for it, you will just receive a message telling you that please wait for reply. But your computer won’t be unlocked even if 24 hours later. This virus will require you must pay via Moneypak. Don’t believe all the fake message or pay for the fine, you are not watching a movie. You won’t be prosecuted by FBI. What you have to do is to remove it from your computer before it can bring you more harm.

 

The routes of FBI Moneypak Virus transmission

FBI Moneypak virus may lurk in anywhere on the internet. In most cases, It hides in some unsafe websites or links waiting for your visiting. The chance for its spreading may be one of your unconscious click of some place when you want to download something or open some pages. Most of people even don’t know how they get caught by such virus since they don’t know that any activity they do may has a risk in bringing such virus. The virus may be bounded together with other legal programs or files, as long as you get them, you also get the virus at the same time. So you’d better never visit informal websites. Before you click some links or download something, look before you leap!

My computer says it is locked by the FBI due to pornography viewing, is moneypak fine real?

What do i do when an FBI thing that come up on my computer about watching child pornography?

I have a virus on my computer that’s says its the FBI and i have to pay threw money pack  for $200, how do i get rid of it?

If i throw my computer out of my window will i be hunted down for FBI federal crimes?

It seems that my antivirus is useless to remove FBI Ransomware?

In fact, when you get infected FBI Moneypak ransomware, anti-virus is not just useless, but entirely paralyzed. The reason is that, when the virus accesses into your computer, it will do whatever to capture the computer and after it gets the control authority, it will disable all the legit programs in its way. So the anti-virus will be blocked to militate. Actually, you almost can’t do anything you want if your computer has been attacked by such virus unless you remove it completely.

Symptoms or Harmfulness of FBI Moneypak Scam

? Continually pops up fake alert to threaten you into paying ransom which is really annoying. ? Bring in much more other Trojans or malwares for vicious purpose. These viruses can gradually destroy your computer operating system. ? It can lock your computer and you can’t run normal applications. ? It will steal your personal information for illegal usage, which may bring you great harm both from finance and psychology aspacts. ? When you suffer from economic losses, you makes the cyber cribbers have tasted the sweetness of illegal activities.

Best Way to Remove FBI 100 dollars virus Efficiently

Since your computer is locked by FBI Moneypak virus, you have to delete the virus manually with professional computer knowledge.

Step A: Restart your computer in safe mode. To do this, please press F8 key before the system is started like this:

Step B: Press Ctrl+Alt+Del keys to open the Task manager to stop the progress of this scam malware virus. Because the name will be changed fast, it will be show with different name. Step C: Delete all the files related to this scam ransomware virus

Step D: Delete the ransomware Virus register entries created in computer system.

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\PersonalSS.DocHostUIHandler HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Download “RunInvalidSignatures” = “1? HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet

Step E: Remove malicious files %Documents and Settings%\All Users\Application Data\[random]\ %Documents and Settings%\All Users\Application Data\[random]\[random].exe %Documents and Settings%\All Users\Application Data\[random]\[random].mof

By the way: Manually remove FBI Moneypak Virus is a rather difficult work, if you are not a professional computer expert. We recommend you to get YooCare online service 24/7 in time. This is the real fastest and safe way to remove it.

Video Guide to remove FBI Notice Moneypak Porn Virus

Special tips: Have spent a lot of time removing this FBI Moneypak virus ransomware but with no success? To rescue your computer, please consult with YooCare experts 24/7 online in time to unlock your computer and remove the virus safely and completely.

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Posted by plates55 - September 25, 2013 at 2:51 pm

Categories: VIRUS   Tags: , , , , , , ,

20th Century Fox Sues ‘Impatient’ Homeland Pirates

In Germany several major Hollywood studios are cashing in on BitTorrent pirates, charging hundreds of euros for illegally downloaded movies and TV-shows. While the studios have the right to protect their work, the efforts are double-barreled as they regularly hit the most engaged fans who have no options to watch the content legally. 20th Century Fox’s campaign against “Homeland” downloaders is a prime example.

homelandGerman Internet subscribers can be held liable for almost everything that goes on via their connections, with or without their knowledge.

As a result, copyright holders have started hundreds of thousands of lawsuits against alleged pirates, demanding settlements ranging from a few hundred to thousands of euros.

In Germany these “trolling” ventures have attracted the attention of the major Hollywood studios. 20th Century Fox, Universal Pictures and Warner Bros Entertainment are actively patrolling the Internet for people who download their work without permission.

The studios use similar monitoring tools as they do in the United States, where file-sharers are approached outside of court with a slap on the wrist or a $20 fine. In Germany, however, the stakes are much higher.

For example, 20th Century Fox is sending alleged file-sharers a 726 euro ($980) bill for downloading a single episode of the TV-series Homeland. For several months the Hollywood studio has been tracking unauthorized downloads of Homeland’s second season, which has yet to air in Germany.

20th Century Fox settlements letter

homeland-warning

 

While these downloads are unmistakably unauthorized, it is ironic that these lawsuits target the TV-show’s most engaged fans. These people don’t download because they refuse to pay, but because they have no legal options at their disposal.

In Germany, Homeland’s second season starts airing next week, a full year after the U.S. premiere. It is inevitable that some of the most passionate fans don’t have the patience to wait this long before they can enjoy their favorite show legally.

Still, the Hollywood studios regularly single out these unavailable releases for their legal efforts. According to Christian Solmecke, a German IT lawyer who has defended hundreds of file-sharers, these shows are regularly targeted.

“The sharing of English-speaking TV series is particularly popular in Germany as these releases are often delayed. As a result, warning letters are regularly received for such copyright infringements,” Solmecke told TorrentFreak.

Unlike in the United States, Internet subscribers have no option to protest a copyright holders’ request to hand over their personal details. Paired with the fact that German ISPs can only store IP-address information for a week, this leads to a situation where personal details of accused subscribers are handed over pretty much automatically.

For the letter TorrentFreak received, the court signed off on handing over the subscriber data within a day of the IP-address being tracked. This is a worrying development according to legal experts and privacy advocates. The low retention periods for IP-addresses are meant to protect the privacy of users, but the opposite may be true in this case.

“I find it shocking when an IP-address is processed by the court on the same day as the infringement takes place,” Solmecke tells TorrentFreak.

“After all, judges should examine each claim on a case-by-case basis. In practice, however, the process is completely automatic and despite this obligation, it is unlikely that the judges properly scrutinize each individual case.”

The Hollywood movie studios, and dozens of copyright holders with them, are more pleased with how the system works. They are literally cashing in on these BitTorrent pirates to the tune of millions of euros every year.

Previously we pointed out that many major music labels and game publishers including CD Projekt have also been involved in the German settlement scheme. After public outcry, mainly targeted at the questionable reliability of the evidence, the latter retired its legal crusade against pirates.

“We value our fans, our supporters, and our community too highly to take the chance that we might ever falsely accuse even one individual,” CD Projekt’s Marcin Iwinski said at the time.

Whether 20th Century Fox and others respect their ‘fans’ just as much is doubtful.

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Posted by plates55 - September 25, 2013 at 2:47 pm

Categories: Piracy   Tags: , , , , , , ,

Now for something completely different

  • 26 things  I bet you did not know!!!

  • Men can read smaller print than women can; women can hear better.
  • Coca-Cola was originally green.
  • It is impossible to lick your elbow.
  • The State with the Highest percentage of people who walk to work: Alaska
  • The percentage of Africa that is wilderness: 28%
  • The percentage of North America that is wilderness: 38%
  • The cost of raising a medium-size dog to the age of eleven: $ 16,400
  • The average number Of people airborne over the U. S. In any given hour: 61,000
  • Intelligent people Have more zinc and copper in their hair..
  • The first novel ever Written on a typewriter, Tom Sawyer.
  • The San Francisco Cable cars are the only mobile National Monuments.
  • Each king in a deck Of playing cards represents a great king from history: Spades – King David Hearts – Charlemagne Clubs -Alexander, the Great Diamonds – Julius Caesar
  • 111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987, 654,321
  • If a statue in the park of a person on a horse Has both front legs in the air, the person died in battle. If the horse has one front leg in the air, The person died because of wounds received in battle. If the horse has all four legs on the ground, the person died of natural causes
  • Only two people Signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4, John Hancock and Charles Thomson. Most of the rest signed on August 2, but the last signature wasn’t added until 5 years later.
  • Q. Half of all Americans live within 50 miles of what? A. Their birthplace
  • Q. Most boat owners name their boats. What is the most popular boat name requested? A. Obsession
  • Q.. If you were to spell out numbers, How far would you have to go until you Would find the letter ‘A’? A. One thousand
  • Q. What do bulletproof vests, fire escapes, Windshield wipers and laser printers have in common? A. All were invented By women.
  • Q. What is the only Food that doesn’t spoil? A. Honey
  • Q. Which day are there more collect calls Than any other day of the year? A. Father’s Day
  • In Shakespeare’s time, Mattresses were secured on bed frames by ropes. When you pulled on the ropes, the mattress tightened, Making the bed firmer to sleep on. Hence the Phrase…’Goodnight , sleep tight’
  • It was the accepted Practice in Babylon 4,000 years ago that for a month after the wedding, the bride’s father would supply His son-in-law with all the mead he could drink. Mead is a honey beer and because their calendar was lunar based, this period was called the honey month, Which we know today as the honeymoon.
  • In English pubs, ale Is ordered by pints and quarts… So in old England , when Customers got unruly, the bartender would yell at them ‘Mind your pints and quarts, and settle down.’ . . . It’s where we get The phrase ‘mind your P’s and Q’s
  • Many years ago in England , pub frequenters had a whistle baked Into the rim, or handle, of their ceramiccups. When they needed a refill, they used the whistle to get some service. ‘Wet your whistle’ is the phrase inspired by this practice.
  • At least 75% of people who read this will try to lick their elbow!
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Posted by plates55 - September 22, 2012 at 9:59 am

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Why SOPA and free knowledge are necessary.

What would you say if I told you that life is easier now than it was back in the 1970’s!  If you lived back in the 70’s you would totally agree.  Think back to 1978.  There were no cell phones, their was no internet,  the video game that I grew up with was called pong!  Wow at the time it was so cool..  Calculators cost 600.00 andand college was hard.   Really hard.   Think about writing a term paper for an english class and n ot having wikepedia or Lexus-Nexus to help you.  Instead you had was  World Book Encyclopedias that we outdated as soon as they were published.

Free knowledge is so necessary just to maintain our college graduation rates if nothing else.

I had the privledge of going to college in the late 70’s and then going back again in the 2000’s to

finally graduate, with a BS and also an MS.  It was so much easier in 2007 versus 1979.  Why?

No more all night library sessions to get that paper done.  Now it could all be researched on the internet.

While it is easier to graduate it is also in different ways harder!   Harder to cheat, which is a good thing.

All that information (free) is also available to the professors and while we all have MS Word, the professors have programs to catch plagerism.

Keep SOPA away from internet.

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Posted by plates55 - January 24, 2012 at 8:40 am

Categories: Censorship   Tags: , , , , , , ,

Could Your Car Be Hacked?

As soon as things get smart, something stupid also happens: they become vulnerable to attack. This was the case (though over-hyped, perhaps) of printers that cybersecurity researchers warned could be hijacked and theoretically set on fire. And now, argues Willie D. Jones of IEEE Spectrum, it could be the fate of our latest smart devices: our cars.

Cars are dangerous enough, without the problem of a cyberattack thrown in the mix. But unfortunately, researchers are coming up with several ways cars could be vulnerable to hackers. Wi-Fi, cellular, and Bluetooth connections exist in cars to help us communicate or be entertained as we drive, but a few research groups have already shown how these channels can be hijacked by someone with malicious intent.

One research team at UC San Diego and University of Washington demonstrated it was possible to do an absurd attack that could allow criminals to locate cars’ GPS coordinates, override their security systems, unlock their doors, and start their engines–in other words, a carjacker’s dream come true. A even worse scenario envisioned by one researcher: a hack that would disable your breaks while you’re driving on the highway.

All this doesn’t merely exist in the academic journals of a few university white-hat hackers. Some of this stuff has already happened. Jones points to a September report from McAfee that spoke of an instance where a disgruntled employee at a Texas car dealership was able to shut off the engines of 100 cars at once. A recent blog post from McAfee goes into detail on several other hacks, most of them white-hat, that would seem like the purview of science fiction, were it not for the fact that they’re real. Fiction has already been made fact, per McAfee: “In the movie ‘Live Free or Die Hard,’ actor Justin Long portrays a computer hacker who social-engineers the call center agent into remotely starting the car. That was Hollywood; yet at the recent Black Hat USA conference, security researchers Don Bailey and Mat Solnik expanded on earlier research to locate and attack car telematics systems.”

As in so many things, if Hollywood has imagined it, some clever hacker is already probably making it happen. Says McAfee’s Jimmy Shah: “As devices get smarter and more connected, we’re going to see more attacks targeted at them.” Let’s just hope we get smarter, too–smart enough to guard against these attacks before they happen.

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Posted by plates55 - January 13, 2012 at 10:30 am

Categories: Gadget   Tags: , , , , , , ,

Al Gore: SOPA Is a Threat to the Internet

ss

During a speech at a CareerBuilder event last night Al Gore voiced his concerns about the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA).

Responding to a question from the audience, the former US Vice President said that while content creators have legitimate concerns, SOPA is not the  right answer.

“In our world today there is hardly anything more important […] than to save and protect the vibrancy and freedom of the Internet,” Gore said.

“The Internet is bringing life back to democracy.”

“Anything that would threaten the vibrancy and freedom of the Internet and the future, I’m against.”

 

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Posted by plates55 - January 6, 2012 at 7:11 am

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