Category Archives: Tech News
Showcases how large Amazon’s Cloud infrastructure has become.
Read the full article here: http://www.technologyreview.com/news/514846/google-and-nasa-launch-quantum-computing-ai-lab/
The European Space Agency has started a project known as “Swarm” to identify this rapid loss of magnetic field strength. Without the field, life on Earth could not sustain above ground.
Prior to the recent major events surrounding the release of 250k classified documents by Wikileaks on Julian Assange authority, I had browsed Wikileaks and discovered rarely any information that provided anything more than “tabloid style” unverified references as proof of their authenticity.
With the release of these recent government documents, based on the international reaction, it is now clear at least some, if not all of these documents are in fact valid and not tabloids or conspiracy theories after all.
Assange has made many statements regarding his reasons behind releasing these documents, but overall, in my opinion, the manner in which these documents have been released is of malicious intent, and if “free speech” and “free information” was the goal, the information should have been made available in timed released spurts in accordance with government and/or traditional press.
Aside from the implications of the content released, this establishes a dangerous precedence in which other groups of mass whistle-blowers and spies may attempt to leak sensitive information. This is already apparent with the recent launch of a similar site – “Indo Leaks”.
The question that poses itself now is how the government should handle the situation both locally and internationally; not just with the WikiLeaks situation, but also with proposed policies on future international electronic leaks of similar nature.
Ultimately, the way Assange is handled may be the determining factor in these policies, but the procedures that dictate justice in this instance are complex and not necessarily straight forward. I’m sure many minds with legal experience greater than mine will speculate on this, but aside from humanist values to consider, there are also technological factors which should go under careful and thorough investigation to avoid accidentally implementing regulations that could impact technological growth.
As the internet fades the lines between nations there will be many difficulties to face, as a nation and as an individual. With every technology, there is potential misuse and regulation. However, we should use our behavior historically as a civilization to remember that extreme regulation on technology only limits growth.
A recent article I came across from my Security Focus newsletter inspired my latest post regarding the recent Aldi Credit Card fraud that occurred across 31 states. (See entire article below)
To quote the article’s author:
“It looks like this was the work of a network of criminals who went into stores and somehow distracted store personnel long enough to take out PIN pads and swap them out with retrofitted devices…rogue PIN pads allowed the attackers to capture payment card data wirelessly from within the store itself or from a nearby location…tampering likely occurred over a period of several months…driving the trend is the easy and growing availability of sophisticated counterfeit payment terminal kits…rings of fraudsters, largely from Eastern Europe…same types of fraudsters are organized to attack multiple stores in multiple states simultaneously…”
These kind of high level crimes set a dangerous precedence if they increase in popularity. Our current civil authorities simply put do not have the level of sophistication required to stop these types of criminals.
A common police protocol in this type of situation might be to see the video types for individual stores for the last 6 months, however, most stores do not carry footage for this long and unless the devices themselves can be traced back to original manufacturing, not many leads could be extracted without the resources of federal investigative units.
This emphasizes the importance of security corporations and organizations to help and assist these government agencies in any way possible. Federal units are currently highly diversified, and with increased focus on countering violent terrorists, these other acts that are non-violent may get overlooked.
Even with federal and state-wide corporate assistance, their may still be needed political resources. Groups which organized crimes such as the Aldi Stores Fraud may have established rings outside of the country, and fly in trained professionals, either consultants or direct employees, most likely with fake identities, to commit the crimes and then fly back out, etc.
To stop this kind of international crime will require treaties and help of many government and corporate agencies, as this clearly indicates the need for international policy to combat all forms of terrorism, even these non-violent actions.
The defense and security of individual nations can only be a realized with international cooperation.
I’m sure these realizations and concerns are not mine alone, and can only hope this same thought is shared across the right people to truly make a difference.
Jaikumar Vijayan. “Aldi data breach shows payment terminal holes”. Computerworld. http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9189982
October Newsletter. Securityfocus. http://www.securityfocus.com/
Department of Justice Announces New Assistant United States Attorneys and FBI Agents to Combat Intellectual Property Crimes
“As part of the Department of Justice’s ongoing initiative to confront intellectual property (IP) crimes, Acting Deputy Attorney General Gary G. Grindler announced today the appointment of 15 new Assistant U.S. Attorney (AUSA) positions and 20 FBI Special Agents to be dedicated to combating domestic and international IP crimes.
These new positions – announced on the 10th annual World Intellectual Property Day – are part of the department’s continued commitment to combat the growing number of IP crimes here at home, and abroad. The new AUSA positions will be part of the department’s Computer Hacking and Intellectual Property (CHIP) program.”
“…The tablet, lauded by many as the next wave in education technology, has already been rejected by two top universities, George Washington University and Princeton University because of security issues. Cornell University also says it is seeing connectivity problems with the device and is concerned about bandwidth overload….“
“Firm uncovers black market trading in millions of compromised accounts…
…Prices for the accounts depend on how many contacts or friends the user has on the site, and range from $25 (£16.25) per 1,000 accounts with 10 contacts or fewer to $45 (£29) for over 10 contacts, said iDefense.”