British appeal for hackers

15/06/2007 Written by Alberto Redi (halfmoon)

 Next week-​end the pres­ti­gious Alexan­dra Palace in Lon­don, will host hun­dreds of web devel­op­ers who are gath­er­ing in the British Cap­i­tal to join an Hack­day orga­nized by the BBC and Yahoo.

The event is actu­ally an occa­sion to show web devel­op­ers how to get more out of the data feeds and inter­faces the two organ­i­sa­tions make avail­able, the BBC reports.

Sem­i­nars and lab­o­ra­to­ries will be held by devel­op­ers from both the BBC and Yahoo.

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3bay, mnsn or Googl? Attention to typo-squatting!

08/06/2007 Written by Roberto Preatoni (SyS64738)

 One of the newest expres­sions of cyber crime is based on typo-​squatting. “3bay​.com”, “eba6y​.it”, “googl​.com”, “mnsn​.com” , “tya​hoo​.com” are com­mon mis­takes we all com­mit while key­ing in a website’s domain, and usu­ally a mes­sage of error follows.

But now people’s typ­ing mis­takes could become a weapons used by crack­ers to per­pe­trate all sorts of cyber crimes: in few words, attack­ers are reg­is­ter­ing domain names which are very close to those of very pop­u­lar web­sites, in order to inter­cept part of their traffic.

It was assessed that over one thou­sand domain names has been recently reg­is­tered on this purpose.

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Weak data-security at the FBI network

30/05/2007 Written by Martin Arnsteiner

 A new report con­cern­ing the state of secu­rity at the FBI net­work was cre­ated in April and released yes­ter­day. US inde­pen­dent audit office (Gov­ern­ment Account­abil­ity Office –GAO) accuses heavy lacks in the con­fig­u­ra­tion of the inter­nal police net­work FBI.

The FBI has closed com­puter net­works, in which infor­ma­tion about all aspects of the police work is exchanged. The GAO found out with its exam­i­na­tion that the inter­nal data secu­rity pro­grams are incom­plete and insuf­fi­cient. The audit office stated that the net­work and the devices are not con­fig­ured cor­rectly to pre­vent unau­tho­rized data access. In some places the FBI missed to restrict access checks and to grad­u­ate the access autho­riza­tions to safety level of the users. Because of this, user data could have been accessed although they were not allowed to do so.

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To be or not to be? Ask Google!

27/05/2007 Written by Alberto Redi (halfmoon)

 Google’s plans to increase the cus­tomiza­tion of its infor­ma­tion ser­vices could turn out to be a double-​edged weapon, pri­vacy cam­paign­ers warned.

Actu­ally last dec­la­ra­tions by Google Chief Exec­u­tive Eric Schmidt revealed that the main ambi­tion of the com­pany is to col­lect a num­ber of data about users which ‘d be enough to allow the search engine to pro­vide really effec­tive and com­pletely per­son­al­ized answer to the thou­sands of queries man­aged every day by Google. Accord­ing to Mr. Schmidt, the desired level of per­son­al­iza­tion will be reached when Google will be able to answer ques­tions such as ‘What should I do today?’ or ‘What job should I take?’.

And he added: “You can imag­ine in 10 years, Google will say, ‘Good morn­ing Eric! You’re late already, but, Eric, you’re always late.’ ”

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Spam-Symposium 2007 in Wien

25/05/2007 Written by Martin Arnsteiner

He was the night­mare of each Internet-​Service-​Provider: “Spam­mer X” earned up to 350.000 Dol­lar a year with send­ing spam. From 17 to 22 he worked 14 hours a day as spam­mer. Now, he vis­ited the “Spam Sym­po­sium 2007″ in Wien and talked about his new book “Inside the Spam Car­tel” offer­ing an insight-​view of Spam­mers’ world.

We man­aged in mak­ing an inter­view with him, and dur­ing our meet­ing he told us lots of things, includ­ing the rea­son why he stopped spam­ming: “I didn’t want to be an aso­cial ele­ment any longer,” he declared.

If you met this young guy, intro­duc­ing him­self as “Spam­mer X”, on the street or in a coffee-​shop, you would never think that he was a mem­ber of – what him­self describes as– an aso­cial group. His blond short hair hid­den under a cap and his friendly smile def­i­nitely are not those of an “aso­cial person” .

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