Monday, December 08, 2014

A trickle of detail – but not from Sony.
Kaspersky drops deets on Sony hacker malware
Kaspersky bod Kurt Baumgartner has released more details into the Sony-plundering malware and links it to attacks on Saudi Aramco and South Korea.
Research conducted in the wake of the epic Sony breach last month had connected those behind the attack known as the Guardians of Peace (GOP) with the 2012 hacking of Saudi Aramco by 'WhoIs Team' that hit 30,000 computers with the Shamoon malware at a time when tensions were high between Saudi Arabia and Iran.
… Baumgartner's work added further weight to claims the malware used in both attacks and the 2013 Dark Seoul hacks were deployed by the same actors.
"In all three cases: Shamoon, Dark Seoul and Destover, the groups claiming credit for their destructive impact across entire large networks had no history or real identity of their own," Baumgartner (@k_sec) wrote in an analysis piece.

(Related) Kick 'em while they're down!
Sony’s PlayStation Network Hit With Cyber Attack
Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. says it has no information of a loss of data following a cyber-attack on its Internet-based services for PlayStation video-game consoles, the company said on Monday.
“We are still investigating the incident, including possible causes of it, but we haven’t found any trace of any sorts of information leaked out,” the company’s spokesman said.
… The latest PlayStation attack comes hot on the heels of large-scale hacking attacks on Sony Pictures Entertainment, where personal data of Hollywood movie starts were being exposed.
There is no evidence that the two cases are related.

Medical ethics. One reason to anonymize the data? No need to inform those who have the evil genes.
Adam Wernick reports:
If you agree to participate in a genome research study, what happens if the researchers find a risky gene in your sequence? Do they have an obligation to tell you? What if you don’t want to know? And what about your family members, who might share that problematic gene with you? Do they have a right to know?
“We’re in a unique historical movement,” says Dr. Robert Green, a medical geneticist at Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. “I think in five years, or maybe seven or eight years, the cost and the availability of well-interpreted genomes will be so ubiquitous that anyone who’s interested in finding out this information about themselves can readily and easily find out about it.”
But for now, there’s a mess of conflicting demands and limited laws surrounding genetic information.
Read more on PRI.

Nothing sounds good.
Russia’s bleak economic picture
The rouble trouble afflicitng Russia is but one consequence of Vladimir Putin’s dismal charting of Russia’s future. His rambling, incoherent state-of-the-nation speech last week merely confirmed this fact, says international media
The Economist is worried that Putin may be sold on his own flawed rhetoric. “The most worrying thing about Putin’s address is that he may actually believe it,” says its editorial. “Just as the Russian media invented Ukrainian fascists to justify its hybrid war in Ukraine, it is now inventing American aggression to justify its isolation and confrontation with the West.

Mark Zuckerberg Defends Free Facebook
Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg has defended the social network he cooked up in his dorm room at Harvard. In particular, he has defended its status as a free service paid for by advertising, which has been in the firing line of late thanks to newcomers such as Ello.
[A related tweet:
I see you when you are sleeping
I know when you're awake
I know if you've been bad or good
So be good for goodness sake
-Mark Zuckerberg

I want one. (If I can use it on my students...)
How To 3D-Print New Star Wars Lightsaber
You’ve watched the first teaser trailer for Star Wars: A Force Awakens, and you’ve watched the best parodies of the new Star Wars movie, so what’s next on the agenda? Why, 3D-printing your own copy of the new three-pronged lightsaber via Instructables, of course. It may only be plastic, but it’s surely better than nothing.

This is rather slick for anyone just learning about computers. Perhaps I can get my students to make a similar site for Math, Computer Security, etc.
Teach Parents Tech - A Good Way to Send Tech Help
Almost all of us have people in our lives that need help navigating their computers and or the Internet. Teach Parents Tech is a free service from Google that can help you help those people in your life that need some tech guidance.
To send tech support through Teach Parents Tech simply specify a recipient, choose the type of help that your recipient needs, and enter your recipient's email address. Your recipient will receive a set of videos designed to help them with the tasks that are troubling them. As the sender, you can preview the videos before they are sent.

Sometimes, it's hard to believe I'm not an expert on The Cloud.

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