COMPUTERS/INTERNET/SECURITY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

COMPUTERS/INTERNET/SECURITY

Feb 24 09:25

Katherine Johnson, NASA mathematician depicted in 'Hidden Figures,' dies at 101

Katherine Johnson, one of the NASA mathematicians depicted in "Hidden Figures," died Monday, the administrator of NASA said. She was 101.

Johnson "was an American hero and her pioneering legacy will never be forgotten," NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine wrote on Twitter.

Feb 22 05:48

NANOTECHNOLOGY: ONE WORLD, ONE BRAIN

BY JON RAPPOPORT
From lexico.com: nanotechnology: “The branch of technology that deals with dimensions and tolerances of less than 100 nanometers, especially the manipulation of individual atoms and molecules.”

The recent arrest of Harvard pioneer in the field of nanotechnology, Charles Lieber—on charges of lying to federal authorities about his business connections to China—has exposed wide-ranging relationships among American and Chinese researchers.

These relationships include, above all, the open sharing of sensitive technologies that, once upon a time, would have been considered closely guarded state secrets. (See my recent piece, “Behind the explosive Charles Lieber scandal.”)

Here are quotes from the journal Nano Today, from a 2019 paper titled: “Nanowire probes could drive high-resolution brain-machine interfaces”. Its authors are Chinese and American:

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The hidden, and current history, of these technology transfers, is chilling in its scope, and implications for the future of this technology.

Feb 21 10:43

Windows 10's new icons are rolling out: This is what you'll see, says Microsoft

Microsoft has started rolling out new icons for Windows 10 from among the 100 new designs it revealed in December.

Microsoft says Windows 10 users in the Windows Insider Release Preview ring – the most stable of its previews – should start seeing the new Mail and Calendar icons today.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

How about skipping facelifts in favor of making Win10 more usable?

Feb 21 09:08

House Subcommittee Requests Data From Amazon Ring On Law Enforcement Partnerships

By Aaron Kesel

Amazon’s Ring is under fire from U.S. senators who want a briefing by the end of the month on how the consumer technology operates, stores data and works with law enforcement.

In a letter to Amazon Feb. 19, Democratic Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi, the chairman of the Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy, requested various documents and policies from Ring, including the most asked question how the company partners with law enforcement agencies. The letter states the subcommittee is examining “traditional constitutional protections against surveilling Americans” and balancing civil liberties with security interests...

Feb 21 06:26

MIKE BLOOMBERG IN 2014: “WE SHOULD HOPE” THE NSA IS “READING EVERY EMAIL”

“Look, if you don’t want it to be in the public domain, don’t take that picture, don’t write it down. In this day and age, you’ve got to be pretty naive to believe that the NSA isn’t listening to everything and reading every email,” Bloomberg said. “And incidentally, given how dangerous the world is, we should hope they are, because this is really serious, what’s going on in the world.”

Feb 21 05:39

VIZIBILEZONE WANTS PEDESTRIANS TO LET DRIVERS TRACK THEIR LOCATION IN REAL-TIME

Have you ever felt unsafe crossing the street? You could look both ways before crossing the street and feel safe, knowing you used common sense to navigate street crossings.

Or, you could download this app which alerts drivers to slow down and/or stop as you approach an intersection allowing you to cross the street safely.

An Israeli start-up company called Viziblezone (VZ) wants pedestrians, bicyclists, people on skateboards, scooters etc., to send their locations to vehicles in real-time.
"Viziblezone has introduced a patent-protected, cutting-edge vehicle integrated “Pedestrian Detector.” The system identifies, tracks and protects pedestrians, even when they go undetected by a fast-approaching driver. The detector is designed to operate in any adverse weather and visibility, whether day or night."
VZ's app could give anyone that that leases their software the ability to know where a person or vehicle is in real-time.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I have one word for this technology, and that word is: terrifying.

Feb 21 05:38

MGM Seeks To Replace 2,000 Workers With Robots By 2020

MGM, one of the major global casino companies, is considering replacing some workers with robots, which will cause some concern for their employees and those in the industry as a whole.

The Las Vegas Culinary Union (LVCU), which represents bartenders, kitchen staff, and wait staff, reached a five-year deal in June 2018 with the MGM.

The agreement guarantees that MGM will not implement any technology that would have a negative impact on employment. However, the news that the MGM is considering replacing some workers with robots could mean that the company is not willing to fulfill this agreement.

Feb 21 05:35

Over 10 Million People Impacted by MGM Resorts 2019 Data Breach

A data breach last summer is estimated to have affected some 10.6 million individuals, including a number of high-profile guests, such as Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, Justin Bieber and various US government officials, according to a new report.

MGM Resorts International confirmed Wednesday that the company fell victim to a data breach last summer and claimed that its has since reached out to individuals who had their information compromised.

Feb 21 05:08

LEAKED TWITTER DEMO SHOWS RED BANNERS TO INDICATE LIES AND DISINFORMATION UNDER TWEETS

A leaked demo has bright red and orange marks on 'harmfully misleading' tweets

"Twitter is experimenting with adding brightly colored labels directly beneath lies and misinformation posted by politicians and public figures," reports Ben Collins at NBC News.

“Twitter tells me it's a possible iteration of something that will roll out on March 5. Possible community moderation coming, too. We've got screenshots.”

From Ben's NBC News reporting:

In this version, disinformation or misleading information posted by public figures will be corrected directly beneath the tweet by fact-checkers and journalists who are verified on the platform, and possibly other users who will participate in a new “community reports” feature, which the demo claims is “like Wikipedia.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

And Twitizens, of course, are forced to "swallow the codswallop" here, that Twitter's alleged "fact checkers" have utterly zero geopolitical agenda here, which is, of course, an absolutely a damned lie.

Feb 20 19:42

YouTube Bans Christian Broadcaster TruNews For 'Hate Speech'

Christian pastor Rick Wiles' channel TruNews was permanently banned from Google-owned YouTube on Thursday for "hate speech."

Feb 20 16:11

REVEALED: Saudi Arabia infiltrated Twitter 'by using two corrupt moles working for the site to exploit security flaws, spy on dissidents and hack thousands of users' data'

Saudi Arabian officials' campaign to lure Twitter workers to spy on social media users in return for cash and gifts began with a simple request to verify an account in 2014, a criminal complaint lodge by the FBI has revealed.

Ahmad Abouammo, 41, and Ali Alzabarah, 35, were cultivated by the country's government to hand over information on users who criticized the Saudi royals.

The personal data accessed would have allowed users to be tracked down in real life, a source told BuzzFeed News.

Colleagues of Abouammo have alleged that other staff members were pressed for information by the US and foreign governments and given little training to deal with it.

Abouammo, a US citizen, and Alzabarah, a Saudi living in California, were reported by The Washington Post have been directed by Bader al-Asaker, a Saudi official. Prosecutors said al-Asaker worked for man named as 'Royal Family Member-1,' reported to be Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS).

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Color me completely unsurprised by these revelations.

Feb 20 14:06

Chinese Regime Deploys 1,600 Online Trolls To Suppress Information On Coronavirus

Authored by Cathy He and Eva Fu via The Epoch Times,

The propaganda department in virus-stricken Hubei Province has engaged over 1,600 censors to scrub the internet of “sensitive” information relating to the coronavirus outbreak, according to an internal document obtained by The Epoch Times.

The internal report, dated Feb. 15, detailed the agency’s efforts to ramp up censorship measures. It was drafted after a speech given by Chinese leader Xi Jinping via video link on Feb. 10 to “frontline responders” of the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, the capital of Hubei, where the virus first broke out.

The revelations come as the Chinese regime tightens information controls over the worsening outbreak, as netizens have increasingly turned to the internet to vent their frustrations about the authorities’ response, or document what is happening on the ground.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Holy crud, are you flipping kidding me?!?

This... is worse than horrific, folks!!

Feb 20 10:01

Ayatollah Tweets "Wealthy Zionists" Control America Amid Push To Get Him Banned From Twitter

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei has marked the latest national event commemorating the death of IRGC Quds Force commander Qasem Soleimani by tweeting a deeply provocative statement asserting that “wealthy Zionists” control America.

The United States has reached the “peak of arrogance,” and is controlled by “wealthy Zionists and their corporate owners,” which makes it a “manifestation of oppression, abhorred by the world,” he said further, as reported in The Jerusalem Post.

The statement comes after the Islamic Republic's top cleric and head of the regime previously slammed Trump's Mideast peace plan “Deal of the Century” as “satanic” because it ultimately represents the “Jewishization” of Jerusalem and the suppression of Islamic identity.

“To the dismay of US politicians, the satanic, evil US policy about Palestine — the so-called Deal Of The Century— will never bear fruit, by the grace of God,” Khamenei wrote on his official Twitter account in late January.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I am respectfully requesting that Twitter does not ban either this man, nor other of his Iranian contemporaries, no matter how much hawkish Republicans want to see these statements banned.

And folks, one of two things will happen here; either these charges will wither in the light of logic, or they will not.

What concerns me so deeply about Twitter, and these Neocons, is that they don't believe that thinking Americans have the ability to think critically about what they see coming from Iran, and do a reality test.

It appears that both Twitter and these Neocons have already made the decision that Americans are pathologically incapable of deciding for themselves what the truth of a situation may be, so need to be "protected" from these kinds of statements from members of the Iranian leadership by censoring them, before they get to the American people; but is this really the truth?!?

So I have to ask; what are Twitter and these Neocons afraid of, if these statements are absolutely lies, on the part of Iranian leadership?!?

The short answer is, absolutely nothing, which is why such statements should not be censored, period, end of discussion.

Feb 20 09:34

Exclusive: Details of 10.6 million MGM hotel guests posted on a hacking forum

The personal details of more than 10.6 million users who stayed at MGM Resorts hotels have been published on a hacking forum this week.

Besides details for regular tourists and travelers, included in the leaked files are also personal and contact details for celebrities, tech CEOs, reporters, government officials, and employees at some of the world's largest tech companies.

ZDNet verified the authenticity of the data today, together with a security researcher from Under the Breach, a soon-to-be-launched data breach monitoring service.

Feb 20 08:14

Vizibilezone Wants Pedestrians To Let Drivers Track Their Locations In Real-Time

By MassPrivateI

Have you ever felt unsafe crossing the street? You could look both ways before crossing the street and feel safe knowing you used common sense to navigate street crossings.

Or, you could download this app which alerts drivers to slow down and/or stop as you approach an intersection allowing you to cross the street safely.

An Israeli start-up company called Viziblezone (VZ) wants pedestrians, bicyclists, people on skateboards, scooters etc., to send their locations to vehicles in real-time...

Feb 20 03:26

Pentagon to Adopt Detailed Principles for Using AI

The Defense Department will soon adopt a detailed set of rules to govern how it develops and uses artificial intelligence, officials familiar with the matter told Defense One.

A draft of the rules was released by the Defense Innovation Board, or DIB, in October as “Recommendations on the Ethical Use of Artificial Intelligence.” Sources indicated that the Department’s policy will follow the draft closely.

Feb 19 10:17

Bug in WordPress plugin can let hackers wipe up to 200,000 sites

WordPress site owners who use commercial themes provided by ThemeGrill are advised to update one of the plugins that come installed with these themes in order to patch a critical bug that can let attackers wipe their sites.

The vulnerability resides in ThemeGrill Demo Importer, a plugin that ships with themes sold by ThemeGrill, a web development company that sells commercial WordPress themes.

The plugin, which is installed on more than 200,000 sites, allows site owners to import demo content inside their ThemeGrill themes so they'll have examples and a starting point on which they can build their own sites.

However, in a report published yesterday, WordPress security firm WebARX says that older versions of the ThemeGrill Demo Importer are vulnerable to remote attacks from unauthenticated attackers.

Feb 19 10:08

New tool “De-Mainstream” allows YouTube users to blacklist mainstream media for a more authentic experience

Over the last year, YouTube has made several sweeping changes to its algorithms to promote legacy media outlets at the expense of the independent creators.

Many of these changes involve classifying certain legacy media outlets as “authoritative sources” and then boosting them in search, Trending, and recommendations.

Now, a recently released browser extension, De-Mainstream YouTube, is allowing users to reverse some of this artificial boosting of mainstream media outlets and put the focus back on independent YouTube creators.

The extension works on desktop Chrome and Firefox by blocking certain mainstream media outlets from YouTube search results and recommendations while also giving users “a truly unbiased Youtube Trending section” which shows the most popular videos from the last 24 hours based on view counts.

Feb 19 10:00

Driver stranded after connected rental car can’t call home

Over the weekend, a trip to the Californian boonies by Guardian journalist Kari Paul turned into a cautionary tale about the perils of the connected car and the Internet of Things. Paul had rented a car through a local car-sharing service called GIG Car Share, which offers a fleet of hybrid Toyota Priuses and electric Chevrolet Bolt EVs in the Bay Area and Sacramento, with plans to spend the weekend in a more rural part of the state about three hours north of Oakland. But on Sunday, she was left stranded on an unpaved road when the car's telematics system lost its cell signal. Without being able to call home, the rented Prius refused to move.

Feb 19 09:51

US natural gas operator shuts down for 2 days after being infected by ransomware

A US-based natural gas facility shut down operations for two days after sustaining a ransomware infection that prevented personnel from receiving crucial real-time operational data from control and communication equipment, the Department of Homeland Security said on Tuesday.

Tuesday’s advisory from the DHS’ Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, or CISA, didn’t identify the site except to say that it was a natural gas-compression facility. Such sites typically use turbines, motors, and engines to compress natural gas so it can be safely moved through pipelines.

The attack started with a malicious link in a phishing email that allowed attackers to pivot from the facility’s IT network to the facility’s OT network, which is the operational technology hub of servers that control and monitor physical processes of the facility. With that, both the IT and OT networks were infected with what the advisory described as “commodity ransomware.”

Feb 19 07:52

Hackers trick Tesla into breaking speed limit by 50mph using two inches of tape

Researchers at cybersecurity firm McAfee have shown that two inches can make all the difference, fooling two types of Tesla car into speeding up by 50mph (80.5kph).

Using a small, almost imperceptible sticker on a speed limit sign, the McAfee scientists were able to trick the cars’ MobilEye EyeQ3 camera system into thinking the sign read ‘85’ and not ‘35,’ confirming that autonomous driving systems and the machine learning algorithms that power them still have a long way to go.

Feb 19 06:40

Ring and Nest helped normalize American surveillance and turned us into a nation of voyeurs

Amazon's Ring, Google's Nest and other Internet-connected cameras - some selling for as little as $59 - have given Americans the tools they need to become a personal security force, and millions of people now seeing what's happening around their home every second - what Ring calls the "new neighborhood watch." (Amazon founder Jeff Bezos owns The Washington Post.)

Feb 18 12:58

Why the US is losing its war against Huawei

According to a Chinese analyst, Huawei might drop the price of its chipsets by 30% in a price war with the Americans, driving them out of the whole of the Asian market. In that case, the analyst said, Nvidia would run out of cash in 18 months and Qualcomm would run out in 24 months, forcing them to shut down research and development. That would mark the end of American importance in the semiconductor industry that the US created.

Feb 18 06:31

Massive Israeli Data Leak Is Treasure Trove for Iran Intel. It Can Jeopardize Mossad and Special Ops

The leaks of personal information of 6.5 million Israelis three weeks before the election is one of the worst security screw-ups in the country in the last few years.

Both the first breach, which was reported about a week ago, and the more serious second one, reported Sunday, stem from criminal negligence by Elector Software – a small and hitherto barely known company that developed the mobile election software being used by Likud and other parties.

Feb 18 06:16

The Hillary Minions Behind The Iowa App Disaster

For the first time ever, the Iowa caucuses failed to yield any kind of tally the day they occurred, as the app that was used to count the results failed due to a “coding issue.” The Iowa Democratic Party (IDP) allegedly found “inconsistencies” in the three sets of results it had promised to deliver, and then announced that it needed time to conduct “quality control.” Iowa Democrats refused an offer from the Department of Homeland Security to test the app and ensure its security before the caucuses, even after they were warned by local officials last week that there were “serious problems with the app.”

Feb 18 02:35

Doctors raise alarm over Britain’s treatment of ailing Julian Assange

More than 100 medical professionals have accused Britain of denying proper health care to jailed WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and continuing to allow treatment that a U.N. envoy said amounted to torture.

The doctors urged Britain to end the “psychological torture and medical neglect of Julian Assange … before it’s too late.”

“Should Assange die in a UK prison, as the U.N. special rapporteur on torture has warned, he will have effectively been tortured to death,” the Doctors for Assange group said in a letter to medical journal The Lancet.

“Much of that torture will have taken place in a prison medical ward, on doctors’ watch,” they said.

“The medical profession cannot afford to stand silently by, on the wrong side of torture and the wrong side of history, while such a travesty unfolds.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I would politely suggest to British prosecutors, that making Assange a martyr will definitely inspire others to take up where he left off, and let's please remember one critical fact about this case; in any of the info appearing at Wikileaks, none of it was ever proven wrong.

Feb 17 17:34

Alexa IS listening to you: Former Amazon Executive reveals he switches OFF his smart speaker whenever he wants a 'private moment'

A former Amazon Executive revealed he switches off his Alexa smart speaker whenever he wants a 'private moment' as he doesn't want it listening in.

Robert Frederick, a former manager at Amazon Web Services, told BBC Panorama he always turns it off during personal and particularly sensitive conversations.

Feb 17 16:52

How Amazon Convinced Millions of People to Welcome “Listening Devices” Into Their Homes

From the start, Amazon has marketed Alexa as a virtual assistant who helps make navigating daily life easier, more efficient and entertaining for people and families.

But as the new FRONTLINE documentary Amazon Empire: The Rise and Reign of Jeff Bezos reports, the multi-billion-dollar company’s increasingly ubiquitous Alexa technology — which is now compatible with more than 100,000 products — doesn’t just serve the customer. It also serves a key strategic objective for Amazon itself.

“Alexa is one more way for Amazon to gather extremely valuable data,” Meredith Whittaker, co-director of the A.I. Now Institute at NYU, tells FRONTLINE in the above excerpt. “And this data collection is extremely important to this business model. It’s extremely hard to do … convincing people to just deploy something like this in their home is— it’s a brilliant trick.”

Feb 17 16:49

Google pulls 500 malicious Chrome extensions after researcher tip-off

Google has abruptly pulled over 500 Chrome extensions from its Web Store that researchers discovered were stealing browsing data and executing click fraud and malvertising after installing themselves on the computers of millions of users.

Depending on which way you look at it, that’s either a good result because they’re no longer free to infect users, or an example of how easy it is for malicious extensions to sneak on the Web Store and stay there for years without Google noticing.

Feb 17 16:47

YouTube: coronavirus videos will be automatically demonetized until further notice

Coronavirus has claimed its latest, albeit unexpected victim: the revenues of those YouTube creators who publish content about the disease.

Even by YouTube's many and “creative” demonetization standards, this latest one stands out.

The announcement was made almost in passing on Creator Insider, a channel run by YouTube employees.

The giant is updating its guidelines, the host said, “to reflect” – i.e., reclassify – the coronavirus outbreak as a sensitive event.

And that means all videos focusing on the subject have been demonetized.

The decision will remain in force until further notice, the host remarked – and moved on to other topics.

Feb 17 11:57

China's Xi Threatens More Crackdowns As Scientists Say Coronavirus May Have Originated From Wuhan Labs

By Aaron Kesel

China’s President Xi Jinping has called for tightened control over online discussion and increased policing to ensure “positive energy” and social stability according to state media, Bloomberg reported. This is being pushed as Chinese scientists in South Beijing have said the virus’ origin was the long-suspected Wuhan Virology lab or another Wuhan Center for Disease Control lab.

The government must “strengthen the management and control of online media,” and “crack down on those who seize the opportunity to create rumors” on the internet, Xi said...

Feb 17 10:48

Google keeps a scary amount of data on you. Here's how to find and delete it

Everything you do online when you're signed into Google, and even some stuff when you aren't, becomes a part of your Google profile, but you can wipe the slate clean with these steps.

Feb 17 10:39

Windows 10’s latest update fail could be its most serious yet

Windows 10’s seemingly never-ending run of faulty updates is continuing to impact users, with reports emerging that Windows 10 KB4532693 is deleting files on some people’s PCs.

We’ve previously reported that KB4532693 was causing some serious issues for Windows 10 users, with people's Start menus and desktops reverting to their default states.

However, it seems that issue is even more serious than first thought, as it appears that it is deleting any files saved on the desktop as well.

Some people have been able to restore their files – it appears the update is renaming and moving their user profile – but it seems that many people have found they are unable to restore the files that were deleted.

While changing the user profile back to its default settings is annoying, if an update is faulty enough that it’s actually deleting users’ files, then this is very serious indeed.

Feb 17 07:45

Report: Mark Zuckerberg Requests Government Rules On 'What Discourse Should Be Allowed'

Have you ever heard of this thing called the "First Amendment," Mr Zuckerberg?

Feb 17 06:28

WHAT HAPPENS TO PRIVACY WHEN CHINA HAS PERSONAL DATA AND THE SOCIAL GRAPH OF NEARLY EVERYONE IN THE US?

The speech by US Attorney General William P. Barr hardly seems earth-shattering. But buried within its business-like announcement of the indictment of four Chinese military hackers, there is the following statement, which has huge implications for privacy:

For years, we have witnessed China’s voracious appetite for the personal data of Americans, including the theft of personnel records from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, the intrusion into Marriott hotels, and Anthem health insurance company, and now the wholesale theft of credit and other information from Equifax.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

YIKES!! Double plus ungood!!

Feb 17 05:56

POWER-DRUNK YOUTUBE CENSORS FLOOR SPEECH OF SEN RAND PAUL FOR NAMING ALLEGED 'WHISTLEBLOWER'

The decision appears to have come just two days after President Trump praised the Big Tech giants as "MAGA."

A chilling and disturbing day in America when giant web companies such as @YouTube decide to censor speech. Protected speech, such as that of a senator on the Sen floor, can be blocked from getting to the people. This is dangerous & politically biased. https://t.co/LnbkZJOYgS

— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) February 13, 2020

Nowhere in my speech did I accuse anyone of being a whistleblower, nor do I know the whistleblower’s identity. YouTube has taken it upon itself to decide what questions can even be asked in the public debate, including on the Senate floor. This is wrong! https://t.co/Czm8XobiLI

— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) February 15, 2020

From The Hill:

Webmaster's Commentary: 

At the moment, You-Tube needs to be "deplatfomed" by its users, with other platforms being "migrated to", so the concept of expression still exists, but without the censorship, which the leadership of YouTube believes it has its Divine Right (or Government-approved) ability to censure speech.

Congrats, YouTube, for having become the 4th tentacle of this government; you have now become the US Government arm of surveillance and censure, great job, you!!

Feb 17 05:09

Skynet Does Theme Parks: Meet Disney's Dystopian Flying Superhero Robots

While we're certain many in government are scheming on how to use robotics to fight wars of the future and/or control the human race as a whole, Disney appears to showing us that the robotics future may not be all doom and gloom. At least for now...

The Disney Company is now using robotics to create "Superheroes" at Disneyland. The robots, obviously capable of doing things that humans can't, look to have supernatural abilities. And that's because they do.

Feb 16 03:58

BINNEY: I Told Pompeo There Was No Russia Hack Two Years Later, He Still Hasn’t Told Trump

Why has former CIA Mike Pompeo refused to acknowledge expert forensic evidence disproving "Russia Gate"?

Feb 15 18:04

De-Mainstream YouTube

Give the power back to Independent YouTube Creators

Feb 15 12:39

400 Million Indian Users to Be De-Anonymized; UK Launches Social Media Monitoring Program With Ofcom

By Aaron Kesel

All over the world governments are now threatening to monitor social media users’ posts online. Now, India is joining the effort with a new law expected to go into effect later this month that threatens Indian users’ privacy by completely de-anonymizing them and tracking the origin of content deemed to be dangerous within 72 hours of a request ...

Feb 15 10:52

Microsoft Confirms Windows 10 KB4524244 Issues and Pulls the Update

Microsoft pulled the standalone KB4524244 security update today, February 15, 2019, from Windows Update after confirming user reports about freezes, boot problems, and installation issues since it was released on February 11.

Feb 15 10:40

New Mars Curiosity Rover Pictures

We follow the Curiosity Rover on Mars as it climbs up a Martian mountain named Mount Sharp. We have selected only the clearest footage from Mars to give you a sense of actually being there alongside Curiosity. All the places that NASA has explored have been given nicknames, which you will see in the video. Some of the images have been 'white balanced' by NASA to give geologists a clearer view of the rocks.

A quick summary of the Journey:

Feb 14 15:32

Hacker creates a $9,000 'keyless repeater' device that can wirelessly unlock any luxury car by creating an extended bridge connection to the owner's fob without their knowledge

A pseudonymous hacker going by the name ‘EvanConnect’ is selling a device that will let users break into any luxury car that uses a wireless key fob system.

EvanConnect demonstrated the device, called a keyless repeater, with a video released this week.

The video shows him approaching an unattended Jeep in a parking lot and using the small handheld device with an antenna to unlock the driver’s side door of the Jeep and start the engine

He says the car in the video belonged to a friend who gave him permission to use it, so no crime was actually committed, but he admits there's no guarantees as to how his customers might use the device.

Feb 14 11:16

Computer scientists develop an AI system that automatically rewrites outdated sentences in Wikipedia articles while 'maintaining a human tone'

A computer system has been developed that scans through a Wikipedia article and locates, checks, and corrects any factual errors automatically.

This AI-powered system can keep sentences up to date and save human editors the hassle, while maintaining a human tone in the writing.

Feb 14 11:13

MIT researchers find voting app used in West Virginia's 2018 midterm election is 'riddled with security risks' allowing hackers to easily alter, stop or expose how an individual voted

West Virginia allowed residents to cast their vote in the 2018 midterm election using the smartphone app Voatz and thousands are expected to use the technology in this year’s election.

However, researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology say the app 'is so riddled with security issues that no one should be using it.'

The vulnerabilities hidden in the technology give hackers the ability to alter, stop or expose how an individual users has voted.

Researchers also uncovered that Voatz's use of a third-party vendor for voter identification and verification poses potential privacy issues for users.

Feb 14 10:52

YouTube Bans Popular Conservative Commentator Nick Fuentes For 'Hate Speech'

Popular Catholic conservative commentator Nick Fuentes, a fiery critic of the GOP establishment, was purged on Friday from Google-owned YouTube for unspecified "hate speech."

Feb 14 10:17

A Primer on Domestic Spying

"The Framers ... conferred, as against the Government, the right to be let alone — the most comprehensive of rights, and the right most valued by civilized men." — Justice Louis Brandeis (1856-1941)

While we were all consumed by impeachment, a pernicious piece of legislation was slowly and silently making its way through Congress. It is a renewal of Section 215 of the Patriot Act.

The Patriot Act of 2001 has three sections that are scheduled to expire on March 15. One of those sections is the infamous 215, which authorizes the federal government to capture without a warrant all records of all people in America held by third parties.

Feb 14 06:44

Will Google’s Social Credit System Determine Your Future?

Via: Mercola:

Google is the largest monopoly the world has ever seen, and its data-siphoning tentacles reach deep into our everyday lives, collecting data on every move you make and conversation you have, whether online or in the real world.

According to Fast Company, China’s social credit system is not entirely unique. “A parallel system is developing in the United States, in part as the result of Silicon Valley and technology-industry user policies, and in part by surveillance of social media activity by private companies,” Fast Company writes.

Feb 14 06:38

KABOOM! SWITZERLAND HALTS 5G ROLLOUT OVER HEALTH CONCERNS

SOURCE: TECHNOCRACY.NEWS
It’s a gloomy day for Technocrats in Switzerland, which has imposed a nationwide ban on new 5G installation while demanding a thorough study on the health effects of millimeter waves on humans. Until produced, the ban will not be lifted. ? TN Editor
VIA FT

Switzerland, one of the world’s leaders in the rollout of 5G mobile technology, has placed an indefinite moratorium on the use of its new network because of health concerns.

The move comes as countries elsewhere around Europe race to upgrade their networks to 5G standards amid a furious rearguard diplomatic campaign by the US to stop them using Chinese technology provided by Huawei. Washington says the company, which is fundamental to most European networks’ upgrade plans, presents a grave security risk.

Feb 14 06:36

DATA LEAKS IN THE MEDICAL INDUSTRY: THE PROBLEM CONTINUES

SOURCE: WIZCASE.COM
After our previous report on database leaks from medical websites around the world, WizCase’s security team diligently continued their research. They discovered 3 additional unsecured medical databases with confidential information, including full names, passport numbers, birth dates, addresses, and phone numbers.

These databases were found in the context of performing research to help companies secure their data. They were left unencrypted and required no password to access the sensitive information within.

Every company and their hosting provider has been contacted with the security team’s findings. Our goal is to inform them of the leaks so they can secure the exposed servers, protecting their patients’ private information.

LATEST BREACHES FOUND (JANUARY 2020)
HX Wellness Private Limited (Aermed Online Pharmacy App) — India — Approx. 230,000 records exposed, leaking both patient and doctor information.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

YIKES! And just because this report doesn't contain the names of any health related corporations here in the US, is utterly no guarantee, that it is not happening here.

Feb 14 06:33

JUDICIAL WATCH SUES FBI FOR SETH RICH DOCUMENTS

SOURCE: JUDICIAL WATCH

Judicial Watch announced today it filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against the FBI for all records related to murdered Democratic National Committee (DNC) Voter Expansion Data Director Seth Rich.

Rich, 27, was murdered on July 10, 2016, according to the Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia. The DC police reports that Rich was killed at approximately 4:19 a.m. in the 2100 block of Flagler Place NW, Washington, DC.

No one has been charged in connection with Rich’s death. The case has not been closed, and the DC police are offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Folks, the members, and leadership of Judicial Watch, are some of Mike and my greatest heros, and heroines.

Please watch for further developments; this issue of Rich's death... may be about to get interesting.

Feb 14 05:56

US spied on governments for decades through secret ownership of Swiss encryption firm

The US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and National Security Agency (NSA) have been spying on the encrypted communications of governments all over the world for the past five decades through the CIA’s secret ownership of a global security firm based in Switzerland.

According to a lengthy report in the Washington Post on Tuesday, the CIA-owned company known as Crypto AG sold diplomatic encryption technologies to more than half of the countries in the world for the past half-century, all the while with US intelligence eavesdropping on their communications.

Webmaster's Commentary: 
Feb 13 16:37

Tesla on autopilot had steered driver towards same barrier before fatal crash, NTSB says

The driver who died after his Tesla crashed into a highway barrier while using autopilot had previously complained about the system aiming him towards the same barrier, according to newly released documents from the National Transportation Safety Board.

The March 2018 crash killed an Apple engineer who was on his way to work near Mountain View, California.

The NTSB investigation found that the man had previously complained about his Tesla steering him toward the concrete barrier that eventually became the scene of the fatal crash.

"Many times, when the driver went past the crash location in the left lane, the Tesla would steer left toward the gore point area and he would have to manually take control to stay within the left lane," the NTSB documents stated.

"The family explained that it happened so often that he had told both his brother and his wife about the problem," it added.

Feb 13 16:35

Macs now twice as likely to get infected by adware than PCs, according to research

When calculated in threats per system, Mac-targeted threats outpaced Windows by nearly 2:1 in 2019.

The full report details an over 400 percent rise in overall Mac-related threats, for consumers and businesses, in 2019, and a significant rise in detections per system, from 4.8 in 2018 to 11.0 in 2019. That's double the detections on Windows PCs, which was 5.8 in 2019.

Feb 13 16:33

MIT researchers disclose vulnerabilities in Voatz mobile voting election app

Academics from MIT's computer science laboratory have published a security audit today of Voatz, a mobile app used for online voting during the 2018 US midterm elections and scheduled to be used again in the upcoming 2020 presidential election.

MIT academics claim they identified bugs that could allow hackers to "alter, stop, or expose how an individual user has voted."

"We additionally find that Voatz has a number of privacy issues stemming from their use of third party services for crucial app functionality," the research team said in a technical paper released today.

"Our findings serve as a concrete illustration of the common wisdom against Internet voting, and of the importance of transparency to the legitimacy of elections," researchers added.

Feb 13 13:06

China rolls out 'close contact detection app' for coronavirus

China has launched an app that aims to reduce the spread of coronavirus by alerting users when they've been in close proximity to someone with the illness. According to a report in Xinhua, China's state-run news agency, the app -- named the Close Contact Detector -- lets users check their status by scanning a QR code using an app such as Alipay, WeChat or QQ. They will then be directed to enter their name and government ID number, and can check the status of three other ID numbers.

Feb 13 09:27

South Korea's government explores move from Windows to Linux desktop

According to the Korean news site Newsis, the South Korean Ministry of Strategy and Planning has announced the government is exploring moving most of its approximately 3.3 million Windows computers to Linux.

The reason for this is simple. It's to reduce software licensing costs and the government's reliance on Windows. As Choi Jang-hyuk, the head of the Ministry of Strategy and Finance, said, "We will resolve our dependency on a single company while reducing the budget by introducing an open-source operating system."

How much? South Korean officials said it would cost 780 billion won (about $655 million) to move government PCs from Windows 7 to Windows 10.

Feb 13 09:25

Developer Finds USB Chargers Have as Much Processing Power as the Apollo 11 Guidance Computers

Instead of plopping in an off the shelf processor, NASA’s engineers designed and built the AGC with somewhere around 5,600 electronic gates that were capable of performing nearly 40,000 simple mathematical calculations every second. While we measure processor speeds in gigahertz these days, the AGC chugged along at 1.024 MHz.

By comparison, the Anker PowerPort Atom PD 2 USB-C charger includes a Cypress CYPD4225 processor running at 48 MHz with the twice the RAM of the AGC, and almost twice the storage space for software instructions. There would be some challenges when it comes to making all of the software powering the Apollo 11 spacecraft work on modern equipment, but on his site, Heller lays out the case for why he believes that just four of Anker’s USB chargers could have potentially helped take astronauts to the moon and back.

Feb 13 08:09

Roger Stone jury foreperson's anti-Trump social media posts surface after she defends DOJ prosecutors

This conviction will be overturned. The prosecutors and the jury forewoman need to be indicted for obstruction of Justice. This really stinks!!!

Former Memphis City Schools Board President Tomeka Hart revealed Wednesday that she was the foreperson of the jury that convicted former Trump adviser Roger Stone on obstruction charges last year -- and soon afterward, her history of Democratic activism and a string of her anti-Trump, left-wing social media posts came to light.

Hart even posted specifically about the Stone case before she voted to convict, as she retweeted an argument mocking those who considered Stone's dramatic arrest in a predawn raid by a federal tactical team to be excessive force. She also suggested President Trump and his supporters are racist and praised the investigation conducted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, which ultimately led to Stone's prosecution.

Feb 13 06:55

UK GOVERNMENT TO GIVE OFFICE OF COMMUNICATIONS POWER TO POLICE INTERNET CONTENT

SOURCE: INDEPENDENT UK

The UK government will give Ofcom new regulatory powers to police what is posted on the internet, it has said. The decision was made as part of a new “online harms“ plan that ministers say will protect people as they use the internet.

However, critics say the addition of new rules and regulations could stifle free speech and give the government unprecedented powers to decide what is posted and available on the internet. Campaign group Big Brother Watch has called the plans “dangerous and wrong” and suggested they are “a direct attack on the fundamental right to freedom of expression”.

Ofcom will have the power to enforce a “duty of care” on companies such as Facebook and Twitter “to protect users from harmful and illegal terrorist and child-abuse content”. It will be able to punish companies that fail in that duty.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

So, "depicting violence", even if it is legitimate news photos or videos of the casualties of war, such as, let's say, Yemeni infants, children, women, and the medically fragile elderly, who are being killed and maimed for life by a US/Saudi military joint alliance, are now forbidden, because it may give Brits the possible notion, that some of their governmental international policies, may possibly be immoral and wrong?!?

I would politely suggest to the current British government, that Orwell's masterpiece "1984" was a cautionary tale; NOT A BLOODY HOW-TO MANUAL!!

Feb 13 06:18

TECHNOCRACY: THE DIGITAL PANOPTICON OF THE WORLD ECONOMIC FORUM

BY JACOB NORDANGÅRD
The World Economic Forum is totally supporting all of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), aka Technocracy. Here is an A to Z analysis of each SDG and what they really mean.Please take time to read through each point, listen to each short video and then share as widely as possible. Also note that this article introduces new TN contributor, Jacob Nordangård, PhD from Sweden. ? TN Editor

A week before World Economic Forum’s 2020 meeting, the report Unlocking Technology for the Global Goals was released by WEF’s Global Future Council Working Group on 4IR for Global Public Goods. The report, written in collaboration with the audit and consulting firm PwC, reviews how the advanced technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) will contribute to meeting the objectives of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is, again, a brave new world, protecting the elites, and the already monied, at the expense of ordinary working people just trying to barely survive; think the brilliant film, "Elysium", and you are quite there.

This is not a world in which I, and probably most of my more intelligent brothers and sisters, will not want to live; and those in power who think they will tether us to technology, to make it impossible to escape, have completely forgotten the power of the human will, when it is focused on survival, and ultimate thriving.

And that... is the monstrously hubristic problem with such a system.

Feb 12 16:40

Rental cars can be remotely started, tracked, and more after customers return them

In October, Ars chronicled the story of a man who was able to remotely start, stop, lock, unlock, and track a Ford explorer he rented and returned five months earlier. Now, something almost identical has happened again to the same Enterprise Rent-A-Car customer. Four days after returning a Ford Mustang, the FordPass app installed on the phone of Masamba Sinclair continues to give him control of the car.

Like the last time, Sinclair could track the car’s location at any given time. He could start and stop the engine and lock and unlock its doors. Enterprise only removed Sinclair’s access to the car on Wednesday, more than three hours after I informed the rental agency of the error.

Feb 12 16:36

People Are Jailbreaking Used Teslas to Get the Features They Expect

Tesla is getting more aggressive in revoking paid software features on used cars, raising the stakes in a battle over what used Teslas can do that has raged for years.

Feb 12 10:41

'You scone-eating hippie armpit': Hilarious Joe Biden Twitter bot pokes fun at the former VP's bizarre insults after he calls student a 'lying dog-faced pony soldier'

Former Vice President Joe Biden has come under fire this week for calling a voter a 'lying dog-face pony soldier' during a question and answer session in New Hampshire.

The odd line not only insulted 21-year-old Madison Moore, who was on the recipient end of the comment, but has also inspired a new Twitter Bot online.

The team at 'The Daily Show' released the tool today that is specifically designed to deliver personal insults to users who tweet at the bot.

The comments, which sound like they came directly from the former vice president, range from calling users a 'rinky-dinkn' toad licker' to 'a scone-eating hippie armpit'.

Users simply tweet @BidenInsultBot and the tool will reply with a personal insult, such as 'That's some real potato skin, ya potato-peelin' Muppet'

Feb 12 10:37

Rotten Apple: Number of cyber attacks targeting Mac computers has overtaken Windows PC threats for the first time EVER, study claims

Last year the number of recorded Mac cyber threats detected by anti-malware firm Malwarebytes increased a huge 400 per cent from the figure recorded for 2018.

The firm detected an average of 11 threats per Mac endpoint device in 2019 – nearly double the average of 5.8 threats per endpoint on Windows.

Overall detections of malware increased to 50.5 million in 2019, up 1 per cent from the year before.

Feb 11 10:01

Personal Data of All 6.5 Million Israeli Voters Is Exposed

A software flaw exposed the personal data of every eligible voter in Israel — including full names, addresses and identity card numbers for 6.5 million people — raising concerns about identity theft and electoral manipulation, three weeks before the country’s national election.

The security lapse was tied to a mobile app used by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his Likud party to communicate with voters, offering news and information about the March 2 election. Until it was fixed, the flaw made it possible, without advanced technical skills, to view and download the government’s entire voter registry, though it was unclear how many people did so.

Feb 11 10:00

Microsoft ups the ante with fix-fixing patch that leaves some Windows Server 2008 machines unable to boot

Like a needy ex-partner that just won't let go, Microsoft's legacy OSes continue to cling to the Windows behemoth's ankles. Windows Server 2008 and Windows 7 have once again been bashed with the borkage bat.

Users are reporting that the fix to fix the fix that broke the desktop wallpaper in Windows Server 2008 R2 and Windows 7 has left systems unbootable after an apparent boot file deletion.

The fix-fixing fix (KB4539602) was unleashed at the end of last week, and some administrators have kicked off a deployment.

It has not gone well.

One Redditor remarked that 18 2008 R2 servers had fallen victim, while another reported 30 Windows 7 computers were refusing to boot after an install.

Feb 11 08:24

Popular email apps including Edison Mail and Cleanfox are harvesting data from users' inboxes and selling it on to third parties for profit, report claims

Free email apps offered by Edison, Cleanfox and Slice make money by scraping personal information out of emails, according to a JP Morgan document obtained and reported on by Motherboard.

In particular, transaction data in inboxes including receipts and shipping emails help third-party travel, finance and e-commerce companies monitor user behaviour.

Third parties can buy and use the data to make better investment decisions, the report says.

The Edison email app is in the top 100 productivity apps on the Apple app store and has millions of users worldwide.

Feb 10 16:30

Britain's broadband blackout scandal: Almost two-thirds of internet users suffer outages or painfully slow speeds every month, report reveals

Some 41 per cent of those who complained said their broadband supplier handled the case badly. Simply contacting the company often involves negotiating complex automated telephone systems and being kept on hold.

In fact, making a complaint is so difficult that very few people, around one in three ever make one on the issue of poor speeds.

The survey, by price comparison experts comparethemarket.com, found people who work from home are particularly hard hit by the failing broadband system.

At the same time, the current voluntary compensation scheme puts no pressure on firms to improve services.

Feb 10 07:59

Iran is hit by 'largest cyber attack in its history' hours ahead of failed attempt to launch satellite into orbit

Last night, a rocket launch from Imam Khomeini Spaceport was scuppered due to low speeds which stopped it breaking into orbit.

It was a humiliating blow to Tehran, which the United States believes is developing rocket technology to advance nuclear capabilities.

But hours before the failure, Iran's deputy information minister Hamid Fatah had revealed the country's communications network had been hit with 'the most widespread attack in Iranian history'.

He tweeted: 'Hackers today launched the most widespread attack in Iranian history against the country's infrastructure.

'Millions of origin targeted millions of destinations and are seeking worldwide disruption to Iran's Internet network'.

It is unclear if the hack caused the failure of the rocket launch, which happened at Imam Khomeini Spaceport in Iran's Semnan province, some 145 miles southeast of Tehran.

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