... allegedly causes high speed chase/crash: http://www.autoblog.com/2013/02/22/hyundai-elantras-alleged-unintended-acceleration-sends-teen-po/#continued
Jeremy Epstein got me thinking with his blog item—the title says it all: https://freedom-to-tinker.com/blog/jeremyepstein/how-much-does-a-botnet-cost-and-the-impact-on-internet-voting Then a colleague pointed out that a really easy botnet attack would be DDoS, and expressed some skepticism that any US elections org would be able to deal with it. I agreed on the latter point—I can think of only a handful of county IT operations with that degree of maturity in IT security technology, and of course just having the technology doesn't mean that it always works right. :-| And on the DoS threat too—of course this easy, as many know including i-voting pioneers in the government of Estonia, whose i-gov systems were notoriously DDoSed. So, yes, if the US ever did serious i-voting, there would be foreign adversaries could well be motivated simply to destabilize the US gov't by hosing an online election. But as Jeremy pointed out, there are also classes of adversary whose motivation would be have a very stable election with an outcome shifted by an undetected successful cyber-operation. When the target is only a few thousand votes in a single populous state, then it becomes very attractive to spend millions of dimes each to own a computer that might be casting a target vote. (10 cents per bot is the going rate, apparently.) NOTE TO SELF—When we see botnet operators offering premiums on geo-location of available nodes, then get *even more worried*. And, yes, I am not kidding - not kidding at all - this is just one of those cute national security side-effects of IT security research ... in this case some DHS funded cyber-homeland-security work to physically map the Internet. The bad guys will certainly use the results to financial advantage. Looking to steal a couple thousand i-votes in a US election? Sure! You want to pay a dime each for 10 million nodes in North America, or a dollar each for 100,000 nodes in Florida? Scary. John Sebes, Open Source Digital Voting Foundation
At about 12.00 noon today Yahoo Mail suffered a major crash of its mail services when a member of staff apparently invoked a process of de-activating thousands (if not millions) of accounts. Subscribers suddenly discovered that their respective accounts had suddenly become de-activated. They were asked to re-activate them to regain access. On entering the required capcha everyone then discovered that Yahoo had deleted ALL e-mails and folders in those accounts - thousands (millions?) losing e-mails dating back over 10-15 years. One member described this as a disaster for his business in tracking online orders and sales; others opined that it was a breach of trust in Yahoo systems - after all Yahoo advertise that e-mails can be 'kept forever.' This issue brings into disrepute the concept of cloud storage - that is storing important documents, e-mails and files on distant servers. When those servers crash or go corrupt or a member of staff issues a 'delete' or de-activate command then all can be lost. C.J.Brady Once a Yahoo Classic Mail user now on Gmail
Many thousands of long term users of Yahoo Mail have had their entire set of folders and e-mails deleted due to an upgrading snafu on Friday / Saturday March 1 / 2. This includes even paying Plus members. It appears that during the upgrade Yahoo technicians decided to upgrade all Classic users to the (largely disliked) New e-mail system. Naturally most declined this upgrade and so Yahoo deleted their entire accounts including all folders, e-mails going back 10 to 20 years, and contact lists. I lost 13 years of folders and e-mails - many from long dead friends. Many others report losing important documents, files and correspondence from business and personal contacts. One used his account to track online orders for running a delivery business. All have now been lost. Naturally Yahoo is not contactable via anything other than a pro-forma. Naturally the pro-forma for restoring deleted e-mails fails to cater for this emergency. Many members have requested restoration of their folders and e-mails. But they only have 24-48 hours to do so. Then all is lost anyway. I requested a complete restoration immediately. And like others we received the following auto-response: Mail - Messages disappeared, unknown reason [Incident: -deleted-] Sunday, 3 March, 2013 19:37 From: This sender is Domain Keys verified "Yahoo! Customer Care" <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: [-deleted-]@yahoo.com Response **This is an automated response** We have attempted to restore your mailbox using the information that you provided. If some of the e-mails were not restored, it is because they were not available in the snapshot used. After we received your request, we looked for a copy of what your Yahoo! Mail account looked like at a specific point in time just prior to your requested restore time. Your entire mailbox (including your Inbox and other folders) will look exactly like it did at the time the snapshot was taken. Since we are only able to restore your entire mailbox, there are some limitations to what we are able to do when restoring: - We cannot restore any specific message(s) or folder(s). - We cannot restore any message(s) lost while composing. - We cannot undo this restoration or restore messages lost because of this restoration. - E-Mails received after the recovery date will no longer be available. **Please do not reply to this e-mail, as no one will receive your message.** YET NO FOLDERS NOR E-MAILS WERE RESTORED - ALL HAS BEEN LOST - 13 YEAR'S WORTH FOR ME, UP TO 20 YEAR'S WORTH FOR OTHERS. This is utterly unacceptable. Yahoo has remained silent. Meanwhile it has been opined by some that Yahoo technicians are staging a protest against their CEO demanding that they commute to Yahoo HQ to work and not to work at home. Certainly there are co-incidences of timing. If members do not request a restoration withing the 24-48 hour gap then restorations cannot be carried out - period. Apparently Yahoo's backups do not last longer than 48 hours. And the major snafu occurred on Saturday morning (UK-time). As far as I am concerned - and I hear rumours of others' - there will be many abandoning Yahoo Mail (and its other services) in the next few months. Certainly for many this is the final nail in the coffin of using Yahoo Mail. C.J.Brady London, UK.
I've had the exact same experience. Also spent 2 hours on the phone getting nowhere with so-called "customer service". Any update or other advice to share? I'm beyond words to describe the frustration and sadness of this situation.
http://j.mp/15hqeQf (Threatpost via NNSquad) One way to help shore up defenses would be to improve--or replace--the existing certificate authority infrastructure, the panelists said. The recent spate of attacks on CAs such as Comodo, DigiNotar and others has shown the inherent weaknesses in that system and there needs to be some serious work done on what can be done to fix it, they said. Some of us having been arguing for ages that the existing PKI needs to be replaced with a different model, but cryptography per se will still be increasingly important.
Roger A. Grimes, InfoWorld, 05 Mar 2013 Thieves and predators constantly search Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ for telltale information. Think before you post! https://www.infoworld.com/d/security/are-you-leaking-too-much-of-your-real-life-online-213835 I live in Key Largo, Fla., a fishing and diving destination. One of my friends recently posted a picture of his custom, handcrafted fishing poles on Facebook for all his friends to see. He even included a great picture of the new hanging racks in his garage where he stored them. They were stolen later that night while he slept upstairs. [...]
Crowdsource your inbox and let complete strangers read your e-mail... summary article here: http://news.stanford.edu/news/2013/march/boost-email-productivity-030413.html Research here: http://hci.stanford.edu/publications/2013/EmailValet/EmailValet-CSCW2013.pdf [Privacy, schmivacy! I think the young folks today have NO IDEA of the long-term implications of what they are doing, but it is perhaps indirectly likely that they may wind up radically compromising what the privacy communities have been trying to achieve in the past many decades with respect to privacy rights. The long-term losses of privacy—and of privacy protections—are likely to be irrevocable. PGN
http://j.mp/WmeThq (ZDNET via NNSquad) "In Understanding the Robustness of SSDs under Power Fault, researchers Mai Zheng and Feng Qin of Ohio State and Mark Lillibridge and Joseph Tucek of HP Labs look at how power faults affect flash-based SSDs. Short answer: it's not pretty."
Ted Samson, InfoWorld, 01 Mar 2013 New study finds 13 of 15 flash-based solid-state drives suffer data loss or worse when they lose power http://www.infoworld.com/t/solid-state-drives/test-your-ssds-or-risk-massive-data-loss-researchers-warn-213715
It seems to me that rental computers are virtual petri dishes for identity theft. However, I don't expect them to spy on me! Joe Mandak, Associated Press, Pittsburgh, 27 Feb 2013 Spyware installed on computers leased from furniture renter Aaron's Inc. secretly sent 185,000 e-mails containing sensitive information -- including pictures of nude children and people having sex—back to the company's corporate computers, according to court documents filed Wednesday in a class-action lawsuit. According to the filings, some of the spyware e-mails contained pictures secretly taken by the rental computers' webcams or other sensitive information including Social Security numbers, social media and e-mail passwords, and customer keystrokes, the Federal Trade Commission determined last year. The attorneys also claimed Atlanta-based Aaron's hasn't properly notified at least 800 customers allegedly targeted by spyware made by DesignerWare, a company located in North East PA. http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/wireStory/ap-185k-spyware-images-aarons-computers-18610800
http://j.mp/12jDMgf (SlashGear via NNSquad) "Cloud notetaking service Evernote has been hacked, the company has revealed today, with an unidentified attacker compromising servers and extracting usernames, e-mail addresses, and encrypted passwords. The attack has forced a mandatory password reset, meaning all users must change their password before they can log back into their account, but Evernote says there is no evidence of either notes being viewed by a third-party, or payment details of Evernote Premium or Business users being accessed."
Lucian Constantin, InfoWorld, 4 Mar 2013 The company broke out of its regular patching cycle for the second time this year to fix an actively exploited flaw https://www.infoworld.com/d/security/oracle-releases-emergency-fix-java-zero-day-exploit-213839
Woody Leonhard, InfoWorld, 05 Mar 2013 A new tongue-in-cheek tracker site drives home the point: As fast as Oracle can fix the current bugs, more are cropping up to take their place http://www.infoworld.com/t/java-programming/java-zero-day-holes-appearing-the-rate-of-one-day-213898
Lucian Constantin, InfoWorld, 4 Mar 2013 The remote access malware used in both cases is connected to the same control server, Symantec researchers say http://www.infoworld.com/d/security/researchers-link-latest-java-zero-day-exploit-bit9-hack-213798
10 teams compete to break into a server. What a great idea! http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/dy/national/T130223003395.htm
Lucian Constantin, InfoWorld The vulnerability could have allowed attackers to steal OAuth tokens and access Facebook account, a researcher says http://www.infoworld.com/d/security/facebook-said-fix-oauth-based-account-hijacking-flaw-213312
Lucian Constantin, InfoWorld Home, 21 Feb 2013 http://www.infoworld.com/d/security/many-companies-likely-affected-hack-of-popular-ios-developer-forum-213191 iPhoneDevSDK confirms the site was compromised and hosted a zero-day exploit that was likely used to launch attacks against Twitter, Facebook, and Apple a nasty bit: Ian Sefferman, one of the iPhoneDevSDK administrators confirmed Wednesday that the website had been compromised, but said that he learned about it from the press and not the affected companies. "We were alerted through the press, via an AllThingsD article, which cited Facebook," he said in a message posted on the forum. "Prior to this article, we had no knowledge of this breach and hadn't been contacted by Facebook, any other company, or any law enforcement about the potential breach."
This prototype DNA pellet gun can penetrate clothing to tags suspects skin for future tracking and arrest. Posted February 05, 2013 to Hardware http://blogs.cio.com/hardware/17772/dna-gun-tags-rioters-future-arrest
Lucian Constantin, InfoWorld, 27 Feb 2013 Researchers discover new global cyber-espionage campaign A new cyber-espionage campaign dubbed MiniDuke used the recent Adobe Reader zero-day exploit https://www.infoworld.com/d/security/researchers-discover-new-global-cyber-espionage-campaign-213614
Lucian Constantin, InfoWorld, 26 Feb 2013 Researchers say they have found a method to hijack Google accounts using application-specific passwords https://www.infoworld.com/d/security/researchers-find-loophole-in-googles-two-factor-authentication-213496
A comment on electronic medical record (EMR) system failures, from one who worked on 1st- and 2nd-generation EMR decades ago ... Of the flaws reported here: http://www.philly.com/philly/entertainment/20130218_The_flaws_of_electronic_records.html http://www.readingchronicle.co.uk/news/roundup/articles/2013/02/16/86796-hospital-ready-to-ditch-30m-computer-system-/ and elsewhere, many are not about core EMR functions, but rather are additional features that provider organizations have adopted in addition to core EMR. In fact, a big complaint I have about EMR systems (similar to my frequent rants about voting systems) is that they are large monolithic products with clever features designed absent customer input, and often require adopters to change the way that they perform their routine activities. You can actually say "No, I only want to use the most essential core EMR functions; please leave out the auto-Rx feature, the scheduling feature, the ..." and others in addition to those referred to above. What are the core EMR features? Well, access to medical records, to read them during a patient visit, and to append to them thereafter. Not Rx, not scheduling, not lab orders, ... and not lots of other things that might be sensible to also automate (possibly with a separate application) *after* core EMR actually worked. The problem with that "if" is that core EMR adoption is actually quite fraught, and including other stuff makes it worse. Here is the original idea from the dawn of time. .... Today, MDs look at a stack of paper that is part of a patient's record (not all, and maybe not the part important that day for that patient) before and/or during a patient visit. They make some notes. Later, those notes are used by medical-records staff to add to the record. Tomorrow, we will begin the onerous process of digitizing existing records. When enough of them have been digitized enough, then we will give MDs the ability to browse and search digital patient records using a computer, rather than shuffling paper. We will also give the MD a simple tool to record their notes, in the same essentially unstructured manner that they do today. Medical records staff will have to continue to curate MD-generated content, to ensure that an MD's office-visit notes are incorporated into the patient's record properly, but now electronically. Over time, we will add new features to help the MD use tags and templates to reduce the requirement for medical-records staff involvement, reducing the cost-of-ownership of the product, and justifying SW license upgrade fees. The MDs run the show, so we'll have to be careful to make sure these features actually work for the MD. And last but not least, we can expand the product line with additional products that leverage the EMR system, that aren't about the record per se, but some other action that will eventually cause a change to it: referrals, lab orders, Rx, etc. That was a fine idea for back in the day, but the original dot-com bubble scuttled it for quite some time. Years later, that fine idea is not what's happening, for many reasons, but here is the important one: "the MDs run the show" is no longer true—the green-eyeshades crowd does. So the vendors make stuff that appeals to the bean counters, without regard for whether it improves or degrades the MD's provision of services. -- John Sebes, Open Source Digital Voting Foundation email@example.com
Prefer Not to Register? Oh, really! In RISKS-27.17, "Electronic health records: teething problems?", there was an oddity in the link http://www.readingchronicle.co.uk/news/roundup/articles/2013/02/16/86796-hospital-ready-to-ditch-30m-computer-system-/ Care to make a comment? You have the choice of "REGISTERED USERS LOG IN HERE" AND "PREFER NOT TO REGISTER?" The latter section has: Prefer not to register? Screen Name *required E-Mail (not displayed) *required Usernames must be 4 - 20 characters. Registration only takes a few minutes. Registered users can also take part in competitions and other features of the site. So much for not registering. Another weird bit is that the titles of each section are shown in capitals but actually are normally-cased. Using cut-and-paste to quote means that the characters pasted are not those that are actually displayed.
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