Friday, June 08, 2012
Makes for an interesting Strategy discussion in the Ethical Hacking class. One obvious reason would be that they “own” many computers that we don't yet know about.
The creators of the Flame cyber-espionage threat ordered infected computers still under their control to download and execute a component designed to remove all traces of the malware and prevent forensic analysis, security researchers from Symantec said on Wednesday.
Flame has a built-in feature called SUICIDE that can be used to uninstall the malware from infected computers. However, late last week, Flame's creators decided to distribute a different self-removal module to infected computers that connected to servers still under their control, Symantec's security response team said in a blog post. [Again obvious. If you wanted to study Flame, you would remove the “self-destruct” option. Bob]
Ubiquitous Surveillance. Something for Mom, Dad, and the neighborhood stalker... (and apparently there is a market)
ZenTracker is an application that is compatible with major smartphones. It allows parents to keep a watch on their children’s location through their phone. By defining places on the map, you can also get alerts and notifications by text, e-mail or Twitter messages as your child leaves or enters that defined place.
There are two pricing plans for ZenTracker. The Lite plan is free and supports only up to two mobile devices with no e-mail, SMS or Twitter alerts. However, the Premium package supports up to six mobile devices, with every alert and up to five days of Location history.
God help all mystery writers... If “could they” becomes “they must” who assumes liability for failures?
Could Cops Use Google To Prevent Murder?
At around 3:45 a.m. on March 24, someone in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., used a mobile phone to Google “chemicals to passout a person.” Then the person searched Ask.com for “making people faint.” Then Google again, for “ways to kill people in their sleep,” “how to suffocate someone,” and “how to poison someone.”
The phone belonged to 23-year-old Nicole Okrzesik. Later that morning, police allege, she and her boyfriend strangled 19-year-old Juliana Mensch as she slept on the floor of their apartment. The Google searches, along with incriminating text messages between Okrzesik and her boyfriend, came to light as authorities investigated Mensch’s death. But what if they could have been alerted to the suspicious-sounding searches immediately? Could they have rushed to the apartment and saved the girl’s life?
This was inevitable... I can see a market for video streamed directly to your lawyer's office.
ACLU Phone App Lets You Shoot the Cops
The New York chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union has released an Android application allowing mobile-phone users to easily capture police patdowns on video, which is then automatically uploaded to the rights group’s servers.
The “Stop & Frisk Watch” application, which is soon coming to the iPhone, is in response to the New York Police Department having stopped, frisked and interrogated people at least 685,724 times last year alone. About 87 percent of those stopped were black or Latino, and 90 percent of those stopped were neither ticketed nor arrested.
The app is programmed to work only in New York City
No problem. We just change that to a “definite 99 years.”
Court Halts Law Allowing Indefinite Detention of Americans
A federal judge is blocking legislation authorizing the government to indefinitely detain without trial an “individual who was part of or substantially supported” groups “engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners.”
Tuesday’s decision by a New York federal judge halts a key terror-fighting feature of the 2011 National Defense Authorization Act and is a blow to the Obama administration. The government urged U.S. District Judge Katherine B. Forrest not to adopt a nationwide ban on the measure, saying the move would be “extraordinary” and “unwarranted” (.pdf).
But the judge, ruling in a case brought by journalists and political activists, said the law was too vague and did not provide clear guidance on whom the government could indefinitely detain.
“We use words that don't mean what they mean just as we use laws that aren't really laws and improbable probable cause and uberpoenas rather than subpoenas...”
Attorney General Eric Holder claimed during congressional testimony today that internal Justice Department emails that use the phrase “Fast and Furious” do not refer to the controversial gun-walking operation Fast and Furious.
Under questioning from Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah), who read excerpts of the emails at a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Justice Department oversight, Holder claimed that the phrase “Fast and Furious” did not refer to Fast and Furious but instead referred to another gun-walking operation known as “Wide Receiver.”
However, the emails refer to both programs -- "Fast and Furious" and the "Tucson case," from where Wide Receiver was launched -- and reveal Justice Department officials discussing how to handle media scrutiny when both operations become public
Another technology I get to learn. Isn't that cool?
"As the self-proclaimed 'cloud OS for the datacenter,' OpenStack is fast becoming one of the more intriguing movements in open source — complete with lofty ambitions, community in-fighting, and commercial appeal. But questions remain whether this project can reach its potential of becoming the new Linux. 'The allure of OpenStack is clear: Like Linux, OpenStack aims to provide a kernel around which all kinds of software vendors can build businesses. But with OpenStack, we're talking multiple projects to provide agile cloud management of compute, storage, and networking resources across the data center — plus authentication, self-service, resource monitoring, and a slew of other projects. It's hugely ambitious, perhaps the most far-reaching open source project ever, although still at a very early stage. ... Clearly, the sky-high aspirations of OpenStack both fuel its outrageous momentum and incur the risk of overreach and collapse, as it incites all manner of competition. The promise is big, but the success of OpenStack is by no means assured.'"
Neither Google nor Facebook rules them all...
It's a Googly World: A Map of the Planet's Most Visited Websites by Country
Another way I could consolidate my handouts and links and videos and...
Booktype is an open source program for creating ebooks and preparing them for distribution on Kindle and iBooks. Booktype is designed for collaborative use by a group of writers. You can update your books and redistribute them even after your initial publishing date.
To clarify, Booktype is not a service it's an open source program that you can download and install on your own server. If you have the skills to manage it, Booktype could be a good in-house solution for digital publishing.
My Statistics students will hate me for this...
Attention Nerds: Here's the Census Bureau API You've Been Waiting For
… The old system for accessing Census data was called American FactFinder, which, Buckner says, is fine for an expert, but for a novice, it's just not very intuitive. "People are used to just Googling and getting an immediate answer. They don't want to hunt for it," Buckner says. With the release of the API, the old tools will remain available for people who have figured out how to use them and are comfortable with those formats.