News

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Last week, we reported that tens of thousands of fraudulent comments had been filed in favor Ajit Pai’s proposal to roll back net neutrality rules, using text taken from the Center for Individual Freedom (though, according to the CFIF, they aren’t behind the fake comments). We spoke to several people who had comments filed under their names and addresses, as did reporters from other outlets, and several more supposed commenters responded to our emails after publication saying they hadn’t filed comments with the FCC.

But the coverage hasn’t deterred whoever is filing these fake comments, which have ballooned. On Wednesday last week, 128,000 of these particular identical comments, beginning “The unprecedented regulatory power the Obama Administration imposed on the internet…” had been filed.

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A phishing scam that surfaced earlier this week used Google Docs in an attack against at least 1 million Gmail users.

However, that amounted to fewer than 0.1 percent of Gmail users were affected, according to the company.

Google last year put the number of active monthly Gmail users at more than 1 billion.

Google shut down the phishing scam within an hour, it said, through both automatic and manual actions. It removed the fake pages and applications, and it pushed updates through Safe Browsing, Gmail and other anti-abuse systems.

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A new strain of malware targeting Linux systems, dubbed “Linux/Shishiga,” could morph into a dangerous security threat.

Eset on Tuesday disclosed the threat, which represents a new Lua family unrelated to previously seen LuaBot malware.

Linux/Shishiga uses four different protocols — SSH, Telnet, HTTP and BitTorrent — and Lua scripts for modularity, wrote Detection Engineer Michal Malik and the Eset research team in an online post.

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Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales hopes to tackle fake news with a journalism outfit of his own. Wikitribune will be free to access and use crowdfunding to hire experienced reporters. They’ll work alongside volunteers who can sub-edit articles, fact-check stories and suggest new topics for the site to pursue. “This will be the first time that professional and citizen journalists will work side-by-side as equals writing stories as they happen, editing them as they develop, and at all times backed by a community checking and rechecking all of the facts,” Wales said.

Wikitribune’s existence (and success) will depend on donations from people who believe in its mission and the journalism it’s producing. The site will cover traditional news beats, such as UK and international politics, as well as science, technology and specialist subjects chosen by subscribers.

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The Intercontinental Hotels Group (IHG) thought only a handful of Holiday Inns were affected by a data breach that happened last year, but it turned out to be a much bigger deal. In a statement posted on its website, IHG has admitted that it found signs of malware designed to access credit card data used at front desks in a lot more locations. It didn’t mention a specific number, but it linked to a tool where you can look up which Holiday Inns, Intercontinentals and Crowne Plazas were affected.

A Krebs on Security reader did some digging, though, and found 1,175 properties in IHG’s tool. That’s a sizeable chunk of the 5,000 hotels it has worldwide.

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Just as the Shadow Brokers hacker group started crowing about a dump of never-seen-before flaws in Windows, Microsoft announced it already had fixed most of the exploits.

“Today, Microsoft triaged a large release of exploits made publicly available by Shadow Brokers,” Microsoft Principal Security Group Manager Phillip Misner wrote in a Friday post.

“Our engineers have investigated the disclosed exploits, and most of the exploits are already patched,” he added.

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If you’re thinking of stealing smartphones, the tech-centric Coachella festival is probably not the best place to do it. Savvy police teamed with equally savvy concert-goers to nab alleged smartphone thief Ronaldo De Jesus Henao with around 130 stolen smartphones. Police first discovered the rash of thefts at a specific tent by checking on Reddit, and were then aided by attendees that activated Apple’s “Find my iPhone” feature.

With so many fans on Instagram and elsewhere, police kept their eyes on it. “I noticed some chatter on social media about phones disappearing on Reddit,” Indio Police Sergeant Dan Marshall told Gizmodo. “One of the common threads was that they were all losing their phones at the Sahara tent.”

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ur leaders may be determined to make their daily dealings less transparent, but they probably didn’t reckon on bored Steve Ballmer. The former Microsoft CEO has spent more than $10 million on a new project to open up the US government budget. USA Facts, as profiled in the New York Times, is an open, searchable database that tracks where almost all of your federal, state and local tax dollars are spent.

When Ballmer retired from Microsoft in 2014, he initially rejected becoming a philanthropist, believing that the taxes he paid were good enough. But upon wondering where that money was spent, he fell into a data rabbit hole that encouraged him to begin working with the University of Pennsylvania. The result is what is being described as a truly nonpartisan look at revenue and spending across the US.

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Screaming sirens serenaded Dallas residents in the early morning hours Saturday after a cyberattack set off the city’s emergency warning system.

All of the city’s 156 sirens were set off more than a dozen times, The Dallas Morning News reported.

Officials have not yet identified the perpetrator of the attack, the city’s Office of Emergency Management Director Rocky Vaz told the newspaper, but he expressed confidence that it was someone outside the Dallas area.

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For years, Apple and Qualcomm have worked together on technology that’ goes inside your iPhone and iPad. Qualcomm specifically handles a lot of the modem chips that connect devices to cellular or WiFi networks, and are crucial to any mobile hardware. Since Apple needed a lot of chips, Qualcomm supplied them, and everything seemed good — until January when Apple filed a $1 billion lawsuit claiming Qualcomm charged royalties on tech it had nothing to do with, and then followed up with two antitrust lawsuits in China.

Tonight, Qualcomm has responded with a lawsuit of its own (you can grab the 139 page PDF here), claiming that Apple is in the wrong, and has breached its contract with the company.

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