Legal & Security

23 January 2009

US Justices Reject Pornography Law New York Times

The Supreme Court on Wednesday refused to consider attempts to revive a 1998 law intended to protect children from Internet pornography, ending a legal conflict dating to the administration of President Bill Clinton.

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One day, will we all have our own number online? The Guardian

If Silvio Berlusconi gets his way, we might. Italy's conservative prime minister, born in 1936, has a plan to control the web. His interior minister, Roberto Maroni, has hinted it could mean every user having an "identification number".

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21 January 2009

On Facebook, Sicilian Mafia Is a Hot Topic New York Times

Your college roommate is on Facebook. So are your cousins and colleagues and friends. But guess who else may find Facebook a great way to stay in touch?

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US Feds to Shore Up Net Network World

The U.S. federal government is accelerating its efforts to secure the Internet's routing system, with plans this year for the Department of Homeland Security to quadruple its investment in research aimed at adding digital signatures to router communications.

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Windows virus spreads quickly, but may be a dud New Zealand Herald

[AP] A computer virus that may leave Microsoft Windows users vulnerable to digital hijacking is spreading through companies in the U.S., Europe and Asia, already infecting close to nine million machines, according to a private online security firm.

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20 January 2009

Windows worm numbers 'skyrocket' to 9m computers worldwide BBC

Infections of a worm that spreads through low security networks, memory sticks, and PCs without the latest security updates is "skyrocketing".

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19 January 2009

Internet privacy: UK government warns email providers over targeted online advertising Sunday Telegraph

Online services which scan users' email to generate targeted advertising are being "closely scrutinised" by the Government over internet privacy concerns.

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18 January 2009

Tricky Windows Worm Wallops Millions Washington Post

A sneaky computer worm that uses a virtual Swiss army knife of attack techniques has infected millions of Microsoft Windows PCs, and appears to be spreading at a fairly rapid pace, security experts warn.

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17 January 2009

us: Intelligence Court Rules Wiretapping Power Legal New York Times

A federal intelligence court, in a rare public opinion, issued a major ruling validating the power of the president and Congress to wiretap international phone calls and intercept e-mail messages without a specific court order, even when Americans' private communications may be involved.

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us: Advertisers collaborate on privacy principles for behavioural ads OUT-LAW News

Advertisers and agencies in the US have promised to create a code of practice to allay fears about increasingly intrusive forms of online advertising. Four major advertising trade associations said that they will work together on self-regulation.

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16 January 2009

German Chatroom Addict on Trial for Two Murders Der Spiegel

A German man who met around 150 women in Internet chat rooms went on trial in Germany on Wednesday charged with murdering two of them. Dubbed "Germany's First Internet Murderer" in the press, he has confessed to the killings, but denies he's a serial killer.

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Judge Orders Search of Bush Administration Appointees' E-Mails Washington Post

With Bush administration White House aides on their way out the door in coming days, a federal judge this morning ordered the president's executive office to undertake a comprehensive search for millions of senior appointees' e-mails that have been inaccessible and possibly missing since 2005.

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15 January 2009

Gaza crisis spills onto the web BBC

A propaganda war is being waged on the internet between supporters of the Israeli and Palestinian sides in the current conflict in the Gaza Strip.

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NZ Police use Facebook to catch bungling burglar The Times

Police in New Zealand have made their first "Facebook arrest" after placing CCTV footage of a burglar removing his balaclava during the burglary on the social networking site.

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Cyber-thieves plant virus on Paris Hilton's website Daily Telegraph

Paris Hilton, the hotel heiress, has fallen prey to cyber-thieves who hacked into her website and infected it with a virus to steal her fans' identities.

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Genius who wasted $1bn? My son Gary McKinnon was just looking for ET The Times

If you believe the Pentagon and Nasa, Janis Sharp is the mother of an evil genius. Her son is Gary McKinnon, the Briton accused of the biggest hacking operation in US military history, and whose $1 billion wrecking spree through cyberspace - he says it was a quest to uncover evidence of alien life forms - has left his family in their own twilight zone.

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Groups file FTC complaint over cell phone privacy Computerworld

You may not know it yet, but your cell phone is becoming the new battleground in the war between consumer rights groups and the behavioral advertising community.

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Online Privacy Decisions Confront Obama Washington Post

President-elect Barack Obama is about to face his first tests on consumer privacy, with questions about how much personal information Internet companies should be able to collect about consumers, how long they should keep that data, and whether they should use it to serve ads to Web surfers.

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13 January 2009

Nasa hacker Gary McKinnon could be tried in Britain Daily Telegraph

Gary McKinnon, the British hacker accused of breaking into the Pentagon and Nasa computer systems, could be tried in Britain to prevent his extradition to the US.

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12 January 2009

Why Technology Won't Prevent Identity Wall Street Journal

Impersonation isn't new. In 1556, a Frenchman was executed for impersonating Martin Guerre and this week hackers impersonated Barack Obama on Twitter. It's not even unique to humans: mockingbirds, Viceroy butterflies, and the brown octopus all use impersonation as a survival strategy. For people, detecting impersonation is a hard problem for three reasons: we need to verify the identity of people we don't know, we interact with people through "narrow" communications channels like the telephone and Internet, and we want computerized systems to do the verification for us.

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11 January 2009

UK e-mail law 'attack on rights' BBC

Rules forcing internet companies to keep details of every e-mail sent in the UK are a waste of money and an attack on civil liberties, say critics.

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10 January 2009

MI5: Internet phone services a risk to national security Computerworld

Internet telephone services pose a serious threat to Britain's security, the head of MI5 said.

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Canadian model wants Google to ID blogger she says defamed her Canoe

[Canadian Press] A Canadian model is taking Google to court in an attempt identify an anonymous blogger she says has been using the company's Blogger service to defame her.

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09 January 2009

US security braced for 'cybergeddon' The Age

[AFP] Cyber attacks pose the greatest threat to the US after nuclear war and weapons of mass destruction - and they are increasingly hard to prevent, FBI experts said Tuesday.

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Social networks link terrorists Network World

[IDG] A new breed of terrorists are using online forums to recruit people who align themselves with the mission of Al Qaeda, creating global networks of would-be terrorists who pose a growing threat, a senior cyberterrorist researcher warned this week.

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