security

Thu
18
Jul
Dennis Faas's picture

Microsoft Slams US Gov't, NSA Over Security Gag

Microsoft has flatly denied claims that the National Security Agency (NSA) has direct access to Outlook email accounts. The firm is also criticizing the US government for preventing it from discussing NSA snooping with the public. Last week, several ... sources claimed Microsoft had given the National Security Agency help bypassing the encryption meant to keep its webmail services, such as Outlook.com, confidential. The same reports suggested Microsoft had allowed the NSA to intercept Skype conversations and access files stored through the SkyDrive service. (Source: pcworld.com ) Microsoft's ... (view more)

Fri
12
Jul
Dennis Faas's picture

Google, Mozilla Save Cash with Bug Bounty Programs

Outsourcing has become a popular way for big companies to save money. One example: offering 'bug bounties' that encourage independent researchers to help prevent security nightmares. According to a new study completed by University of California ... Berkeley researchers, it's far cheaper for technology firms to use these freelance security experts than expand an existing in-house security team. The study examined the bug bounty programs (otherwise known as vulnerability reward programs, or VRPs) used by two of the Internet's biggest firms: Google and Mozilla, makers of the Chrome ... (view more)

Tue
09
Jul
Dennis Faas's picture

Android 'Master Key' Puts Smartphones At Risk

It's estimated that up to 99 per cent of all Android smartphones are vulnerable to a new security vulnerability. The bug involves two of the main security measures used on phones running the popular Android operating system from Google. The first ... security measure affected by the bug is the security check used on all applications that run on an Android phone. Every application has a cryptographic signature, which is a code that confirms the application is genuine. The signature directly correlates to the contents of the application itself, meaning that any attempt to tamper with the contents ... (view more)

Tue
25
Jun
Dennis Faas's picture

Find a Windows 8.1 Exploit, Earn $100,000

Microsoft says it's willing to pay security researchers $100,000 for helping them discover and prevent attacks on the firm's upcoming Windows 8.1 (otherwise known as 'Windows Blue' ). The reward is part of a new campaign designed to beef up the ... security defenses of Microsoft products. One part of this new campaign is being called "BlueHat Bonus for Defense," which is based on a 2011 contest where Microsoft rewarded security researchers with a "BlueHat Prize". The new BlueHat Bonus for Defense project will offer up to $50,000 for new security ideas related to Microsoft products. (Source: ... (view more)

Tue
25
Jun
Dennis Faas's picture

Facebook User Data Exposed by Security Bug

Facebook says six million of its users have had their personal data exposed. The issue stems from a security bug that allowed email addresses and phone numbers to be easily accessed by a user's Facebook 'friends'. The problem is associated with ... Facebook's friend recommendation algorithm, which is designed to help users find old friends, family, and contacts and establish new relationships with them. Facebook uses uploaded personal data, including email addresses and contact lists, to find new 'friends'. This system can also be used to invite friends who are not yet Facebook members to join ... (view more)

Thu
13
Jun
Dennis Faas's picture

Been Hacked? Human, System Errors Probably to Blame

There's a tendency to blame hackers for security breaches resulting in critical data being compromised. However, a new study finds that, in many cases, human negligence and system problems are also to blame. Recently, security firm Symantec and the ... Ponemon Institute carried out a study investigating the causes of serious data breaches. The findings were quite astounding: in more than one in three cases human error or negligence was to blame for a hack. Another 29 per cent of breaches were the result of system malfunctions. Human Error, System Fails to Blame for Data Breaches This means that, ... (view more)

Fri
07
Jun
Dennis Faas's picture

Zeus Malware Returns, This Time on Facebook

The Zeus malicious software tool, which is designed to steal bank account information, is reportedly making a resurgence. This time Zeus is being spread through misleading Facebook pages. The Zeus malware, which has been circulating for roughly six ... years, poses as a legitimate file and tricks victims into installing it on their PCs. It then waits until a victim logs into an online banking site before using keylogging tools to capture log-in details. With enough information, the people behind Zeus can empty bank accounts. Malware Targets Bank Accounts, Social Security Numbers To make things ... (view more)

Wed
29
May
Dennis Faas's picture

Iran Poses Greatest Hacking Threat to US: Officials

Iranian hackers pose a greater threat to the U.S. than their Chinese counterparts, a new report suggests. The theory is that China is more interested in spying on the United States while Iran wants to harm vital U.S. systems. The claims come in ... anonymous briefings given by U.S. government and security officials. They follow equally startling warnings by the FBI and Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which encourage U.S. businesses to share details of security threats so that experts can look for common patterns. Previously, U.S. security officials had pointed to the Middle East as a ... (view more)

Thu
23
May
Dennis Faas's picture

Chinese Army Resumes Cyber Attacks on U.S. Targets

After lying low for several months, the Chinese military's hacking division has reportedly resumed attacks on U.S. businesses and government agencies. Earlier this year a US security firm published a report that linked cyber attacks to a ... Shanghai-based residence. Given that the building is known to belong to the Chinese army, it was widely concluded that China's military was directly involved in the operation. Chinese officials denied the claims. However, security experts continued to insist that the Shanghai-based unit was responsible for attacking U.S. government agencies, businesses that ... (view more)

Wed
08
May
Dennis Faas's picture

Windows 8 Vulnerable to Attack, Kaspersky Says

Kaspersky Lab product specialist Wayne Kirby says that the complex design of Microsoft's newest operating system (OS), Windows 8, increases its vulnerability to hackers. Not helping the situation, according to Kirby: the availability of multiple ... versions of Windows 8, including Windows RT. Kirby says that, by offering consumers several different editions of its new OS, Microsoft has increased the number of flaws in the platform. Multiple Operating Systems, Multiple Vulnerabilities Kirby says that the multiple OS approach gives hackers more vulnerabilities to exploit. "Because it contains ... (view more)

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