Legal & Security

01 August 2015

Ashley Madison attack prompts spam link deluge BBC News

The hack attack on the Ashley Madison site has prompted spammers to capitalise on interest in data stolen from the infidelity site.

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31 July 2015 Makers of expensive bags, clothes and watches are fighting fakery in the courts. But the battle seems to be getting tougher The Economist

The grand golden doors of 500 Pearl Street, in Manhattan, have welcomed such glamorous names as Hermès, Tiffany & Co and Kering, a French conglomerate whose treasures include Gucci and Bottega Veneta. The building is not a posh hotel or department store. It is the federal court for the Southern District of New York, a favoured battleground for the decidedly unglamorous war against counterfeit goods.

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29 July 2015

Cybercrime-as-a-service on the rise says Australian government report Computerworld

'Cybercrime as a service is likely' to increase as criminals continue to find it easier to purchase malware rather than developing their own, according to the first report of the Australian Cyber Security Centre.

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27 July 2015

Global Cyberspace Is Safer than You Think: Real Trends in Cybercrime Centre for International Governance Innovation

What are the real trends in cybercrime? Recent media coverage has been rife with stories of large-scale data breaches, hacks and online financial crime. IT security firms publish yearly reports that generally show the security of cyberspace to be poor and often getting worse, but, as argued in this paper, the level of security in cyberspace is actually far better than the picture we're given. Currently, numbers on the occurrence of cybercrime are almost always depicted in either absolute numbers or year-over-year terms. To get a more accurate picture of the security of cyberspace, cybercrime statistics -- including mobile vulnerabilities, malicious web domains, zero-day exploits and web-based attacks, among others -- need to be expressed as a proportion of the growing size of the Internet.

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Why cracking down on hackers would be bad for innovation Washington Post

Every week seems to bring a new hacking story - the massive hacking attack on the U.S. government's databases and the attacks on the U.S. health care system are just two of the bigger stories -- so it's perhaps no surprise that the knee-jerk reaction is to take the fight directly to the hackers. By making the penalties tougher, by expanding the scope of federal anti-hacking statutes and making it easier to prosecute wrongdoers, it'll convince hackers that it's just not worth the risk, right?

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How security experts protect themselves online Washington Post

With news of a big hack almost every week, the Internet can be a scary place. So how's an Internet user supposed to stay safe?

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26 July 2015

Make Your Password Exponentially More Secure Center for Democracy and Technology

If you've used the internet, you've probably created a password. There's a lot of advice out there about creating passwords: use uppercase! use lowercase! Use numbers! Symbols! Don't use a dictionary word! Use many dictionary words in a passphrase! Don't write it down! Store it in a password manager! There is so much advice, and so much of it is conflicting, and often it comes without any explanation. In this blog post, I'll detail what a good password is (and why), give you some tools to help remember your password, and give a few other simple ways to help protect your account.

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25 July 2015

The Web-Connected Car Is Cool, Until Hackers Cut Your Brakes New York Times

When the history of the connected car is written, this week may go down as a pivotal moment for consumers worried about security.

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24 July 2015

Smartwatches open to cyberattack says HP BBC News

The best-selling smartwatches on the market all have security problems, according to US tech giant Hewlett-Packard.

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19 July 2015

In the nascent "internet of things", security is the last thing on people's minds The Economist

Barbie has come a long way since Mattel, a big American toy firm, launched the plastic doll in 1959. If children wanted to give the original version a voice, they had to provide it themselves. The latest Barbie, unveiled at the New York Toy Fair in February, can do better. A built-in chip lets the doll listen as children address her. A wireless connection then sends what has been said off to other, beefier computers in a data centre somewhere, whose job is to interpret it and come up with an apt rejoinder. "Welcome to New York, Barbie," says a Mattel employee in a demonstration video. "I love New York, don't you?" responds the doll. "What's your favourite part about the city? The food, the fashion, the sights or the brothels?"

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14 July 2015

Facebook calls for end to Flash as Firefox blocks it over hacking holes The Guardian

The mob is turning against Flash. Mozilla has blocked every version of Adobe's Flash plugin from running within its Firefox browser, while Facebook's head of security has called for Adobe to kill it off.

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10 July 2015

Cyber-bogeymen are out there, but we should be just as worried about ourselves ABC News

The threat of cybersecurity attacks from malicious outsiders is very real. But when things go unexpectedly wrong and networks go down, we should first look for the human error.

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05 July 2015

Humans are the weakest link when it comes to encryption The Observer

"Encryption works," said Edward Snowden in June 2013, in reply to a question from a Guardian reader about how he could protect his communications from NSA/GCHQ surveillance. "Properly implemented strong crypto systems are one of the few things that you can rely on." Mr Snowden is a smart and thoughtful guy and he chooses his words with care. So note the qualifications in that sentence: "strong crypto" and "properly implemented".

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03 July 2015

European Police to Target Islamist Radicals on Social Media Accounts New York Times

Europol, the European police agency based in The Hague, will create a new unit next month to discover and dismantle social media accounts used by Islamist radicals to spread their message and recruit foreigners, the agency announced on Wednesday.

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02 July 2015

Facebook Wins a Round in Austrian Court Case New York Times

A court in Vienna has rejected a class-action suit against Facebook that centered on how the social network collected and used data on its 1.4 billion users.

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01 July 2015

VPNs may not protect your information as well as you think Endgadget

VPNs (virtual private networks) are a popular choice for sidestepping censorship and geographic restrictions on services like Netflix with more than 20 percent of Europeans using them. However, researchers at the Queen Mary, University of London recently examined 14 of the region's most popular VPN providers and found nearly all of them leaked information about their users to some degree. These leaks ranged from minor, ie what site you visited, to major infractions including the actual content of your communications.

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US Ruling That Apple Led E-Book Pricing Conspiracy Is Upheld New York Times

A federal appeals court on Tuesday upheld a ruling that determined Apple to be the leader of an industrywide conspiracy among book publishers to raise prices of digital books.

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22 June 2015

Islamic State web accounts to be blocked by new police team BBC News

A Europe-wide police team is being formed to track and block social media accounts linked to Islamic State.

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In China, Illegal Drugs Are Sold Online in an Unbridled Market New York Times

Ordering illegal drugs from China is as easy as typing on a keyboard.

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20 June 2015

Estonian News Site Can Be Held Liable for Defamatory Comments, Court Rules New York Times

One of Europe's top courts has ruled that an Estonian news organization can be held liable for defamatory comments posted on its website.

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18 June 2015

Shock European court decision: Websites are liable for users' comments Ars Technica

In a surprise decision, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in Strasbourg has ruled that the Estonian news site Delfi may be held responsible for anonymous and allegedly defamatory comments from its readers. As the digital rights organization Access notes, this goes against the European Union's e-commerce directive, which "guarantees liability protection for intermediaries that implement notice-and-takedown mechanisms on third-party comments." As such, Peter Micek, Senior Policy Counsel at Access, says the ECHR judgment has "dramatically shifted the internet away from the free expression and privacy protections that created the internet as we know it."

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17 June 2015

Bing Moving to Encrypt Search Traffic by Default Bing Blog

At Microsoft, we're committed to helping users keep their data safe and secure.

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15 June 2015

Cyber attacks: More than 3,500 breaches in April and threats set to increase, Australian police say ABC News

More than 3,500 cyber attacks on Australia from foreign countries and criminals were reported in April, the Australian Federal Police says.

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Global cybercrime has infected the very soul of capitalism with evil The Guardian

As we lug our heavy satchels on to the stage, there is a moment of mutual recognition. A cop, a security specialist, a man in the electronic-payments business and a journalist: we've all learned that you don't check your laptop into a cloakroom, no matter how swish the venue.

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12 June 2015

Virus Hunter Kaspersky Becomes the Hunted Der Spiegel

The Russian IT security firm Kaspersky Lab has discovered a new, powerful cyber weapon, apparently a successor to the notorious Duqu software. But this time the virus hunter itself is a target. Now experts are scrambling to identify who's behind it.

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