Friday, September 02, 2016

Not time to replace all those new chip cards, yet.  But that day is coming. 
Crooks are selling a skimmer that works on all chip card readers
   Researchers have spotted a website setting EMV skimmers -- at, if it hasn't already been taken down -- that claims to sell "the most advanced EMV chip data collector in the world."
And it's a scary piece of equipment.

According to the seller, it's powered by the point of sale terminal, and can hold information on up to 5,000 credit cards in its memory.  It can also be used on machines made by Ingenico and Verifone, as well as terminals on gas station pumps, ticket purchase stations, and on small ATMs, specifically those manufactured by Triton.  
The primary market for this device is Latin America, according to Andrei Barysevich, director of Eastern European research and analysis at Flashpoint.
The reason is that Latin America, an early adopter of EMV, is still heavily reliant on static data authentication chips, which allow the criminal using it to create usable new chip cards with the data it catches.
The rest of the world uses dynamic data authentication, where the codes sent to the terminal change with every transaction.  The criminals can still get the data, but can only use it to create magnetic stripe cards.
   "This technology can be used in any point of sale device," he said.  "It literally takes less than 10 seconds to install, and once installed, it stays there forever.

Pay attention!  This may be us in November!
Hong Kong Authorities 'Attacked by Chinese Hackers'
The attack occurred in August, in the run-up to parliamentary elections Sunday, as fear of Beijing's tightening grip on semi-autonomous Hong Kong creates unprecedented social and political divides.
California-based security firm FireEye said Friday a China-based group they have been tracking since 2011 attacked at least two Hong Kong government agencies early last month.

A quick heads-up for my students.
Samsung to Recall Galaxy Note 7 Smartphone Over Reports of Fires

Update.  “We still don’t know what happened?”
Massive Data Breach Puts French Sub Maker in Crosshairs
Officials in France and India have launched investigations of a massive data breach involving thousands of documents belonging to defense industry contractor DCNS, which was scheduled to deliver six Scorpene-class submarines to the Indian navy later this year.
   Indian government officials took up the incident with the director general of armament of the French government.  They asked for an investigation and for the findings to be shared with the Indian government.
The Indian government also is conducting an internal investigation to rule out any security compromise.  However, the leak appears to have taken place outside of India, according to defense officials.
The evidence so far has led some to suspect a link to state-sponsored activity or even organized crime, noted Pierluigi Paganini, chief information security officer at Bit4id.

Tilting at windmills?
ACLU urges FCC to crack down on cell phone trackers
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), a digital rights group, filed an FCC complaint Thursday in which they attempt to illustrate the danger of cell phone tracking technology used by police.
   “The extreme secrecy surrounding use of cell site simulators has stymied effective oversight and left Americans’ cellular communications without sufficient protections against interference,” the filing reads.  “We are aware only of a handful of jurisdictions where lawmakers and the public have been presented with any information about cell site simulators prior to purchase or use.”
   The ACLU said it has found, “66 state and local law enforcement agencies in 23 states and the District of Columbia that own cell-site simulators,” noting that stingrays in these departments were often used “with frequency.”

Sure they are…
How Tech Giants Are Devising Real Ethics for Artificial Intelligence
   Now five of the world’s largest tech companies are trying to create a standard of ethics around the creation of artificial intelligence.  While science fiction has focused on the existential threat of A.I. to humans, researchers at Google’s parent company, Alphabet, and those from Amazon, Facebook, IBM and Microsoft have been meeting to discuss more tangible issues, such as the impact of A.I. on jobs, transportation and even warfare.
   The importance of the industry effort is underscored in a report issued on Thursday by a Stanford University group funded by Eric Horvitz, a Microsoft researcher who is one of the executives in the industry discussions. The Stanford project, called the One Hundred Year Study on Artificial Intelligence, lays out a plan to produce a detailed report on the impact of A.I. on society every five years for the next century.

I try to keep up.  Silly me.
How Instagram Opened a Ruthless New Chapter in the Teen Photo Wars
Exactly one month ago, Instagram pilfered a major feature from Snapchat, and the teen photo wars entered a new and more ruthless chapter.
   While a 24-hour Snapchat story lasts much longer than a 10-second disappearing Snapchat message, a 24-hour Instagram story perishes faster than an Instagram post, which is never automatically deleted.  In other words, Snapchat invented stories to promote permanence, but Instagram adopted them to encourage ephemerality.

Perhaps I could use this to start my book on “Academic Research by Drone.”
Open Source Guide to Drone Journalism
by Sabrina I. Pacifici on Sep 1, 2016
Via Poynter: “…a pair of….early adopters have teamed up to create a user-friendly (and open-source) guide to the burgeoning field of drone journalism.  With funding from The Knight Foundation, Matt Waite, a professor at the University of Nebraska, and Ben Kreimer, a beta fellow with BuzzFeed’s Open Lab for Journalism, Technology and the Arts, have put together the Drone Journalism Lab Operations Manual, a 23-page explainer on everything drone…”

You would never know this from talking to my students!
Pew – Book Reading 2016
by Sabrina I. Pacifici on Sep 1, 2016
“A growing share of Americans are reading e-books on tablets and smartphones rather than dedicated e-readers, but print books remain much more popular than books in digital formats.  Americans today have an enormous variety of content available to them at any time of day, and this material is available in a number of formats and through a range of digitally connected devices.  Yet even as the number of ways people spend their time has expanded, a Pew Research Center survey finds that the share of Americans who have read a book in the last 12 months (73%) has remained largely unchanged since 2012.  And when people reach for a book, it is much more likely to be a traditional print book than a digital product.  Fully 65% of Americans have read a print book in the last year, more than double the share that has read an e-book (28%) and more than four times the share that has consumed book content via audio book (14%).”

How do I learn something new in the modern age?  Simple.  I assigned my students the task of explaining BlockChain to me.  I either learn or I get to fail a bunch of students.  Win-Win! 
Original Satoshi Nakamoto Bitcoin White Paper

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