Facebook has to reveal the names, email and IP addresses of those said to be behind the malicious messages on the site
Archive for 2012/06/11
Budget internet provider TalkTalk has this week joined Sky Broadband, Orange UK (Everything Everywhere), O2 UK (BE Broadband) and Virgin Media in preventing their customers from being able to view The Pirate Bay website over internet copyright infringement (piracy) abuse. BT is expected to follow.
Meanwhile the government, ISPs and Rights Holders are still believed to be developing a Voluntary Code for tackling the problem more directly by cutting out the expensive court process.
Pirate Bay Website Has Now Dropped 30 Positions Down The Popularity List After Month Of Partial Website Blocking In UK
Pirate Bay Website Has Now Dropped 30 Positions Down The Popularity List In The Netherlands After Only Partially Implemented Website Blocking
No longer ‘mere conduits’
The European Telecommunications Network Operators Association (ETNO) has called for a controversial change to the International Telecommunications Regulations (ITR) that could make it easier for broadband ISPs to discriminate against internet content providers (e.g. Skype, Google, Netflix etc.), unless they pay for privileged access that is.
The TV guide comes free with the weekend edition of the newspaper. The broadcasting associations want De Telegraaf to stop publishing the free TV guide and went to the court.
The government did not seize any of the Megaupload-leased servers. Instead, pursuant to the warrants, the government copied certain data from the serversPosted: 2012/06/11 in Copyright, Education / Awareness, Enforcement, Illegal File Sharing, Litigation, Public Policy, Stats / reports
While the search warrants were being executed, servers belonging to Carpathia and leased by Megaupload were taken offline so that they could be properly forensically imaged.
Because of the large number of servers leased by Megaupload, not all of the servers were imaged by the government (based on estimates provided by Megaupload, imaging all 1,103 servers would have taken approximately 22,000 person-hours)
The Bank of Italy authorized the suspension of payments by Bank Network Investments SpA (BNI) without communicating anything to the depositorsPosted: 2012/06/11 in Education / Awareness, Stats / reports
BNI depositors unable to make withdrawals / payments, payments of utility bills, mortgage payments, taxes
Original Italian language article:
Getting published, it turns out, is a lousy way to stay published. Back in the day my stuff at the original BYTE.com was lost, years later the same thing happened to my stuff at InfoWorld.com. With all due respect to this venue I will be pleasantly surprised if the URL at which you are reading this is alive in 2020.
What I do, therefore, for writing that’s published elsewhere than on my own blog, is migrate it to my own personal cloud when the publisher loses interest. They’re my lifebits, after all. Publishers may have a temporary interest in them, but they’ll always matter to me. Unfortunately I didn’t always realize this, and didn’t always do a good job of archiving my stuff for later use. That’s why I had to dig that 2003 InfoWorld column out of the Wayback Machine. I’ve got a complete record of the blog I wrote for InfoWorld, but just links to the articles I wrote for the magazine. Many still work, some don’t, I should haul all that stuff back into my personal cloud, but I haven’t gotten around to it yet.
I wish things worked the other way around. Everything would be published canonically to my personal cloud. Items used by publishers would syndicate to their sites. If used on exclusive terms I might need to tell my personal cloud not to display them. But when the publisher later drops my bits on the floor, I’d open up access again to the canonical items.
Even that arrangement wouldn’t be ideal, though. When a publisher abandons an article of mine, it also abandons links to it from any page that referred to the article. In the scientific and academic realms, digital object identifiers (DOIs) are used to mint namespaces that can transcend the lifetimes (or attention spans) of individual publishers. That technology hasn’t yet trickled down to the rest of us, but I’d love to have my personal cloud implement such a scheme and be the resolver of last resort for my published work.
For centuries, students have shared textbooks with each other, but a new patent aims to stop this “infringing” habitPosted: 2012/06/11 in Copyright, Education / Awareness, New Business Models, Stats / reports
The Indian government is stepping up its cyber security capabilities with plans to protect critical national infrastructure from a Stuxnet-like attack and to authorise two agencies to carry out state-sponsored attacks if necessaryPosted: 2012/06/11 in Cybercrime, Education / Awareness, Enforcement, Public Policy, Stats / reports
If you want your digital trail to vanish, you should be able to assert this right. After all, the data belongs to you, and nobody elsePosted: 2012/06/11 in Education / Awareness, Google, New Business Models, Privacy / Data Protection, Stats / reports, Tech Evolution
This is how Silicon Valley operates. It invariably attempts to recast a bug or an omission as a wonderful new feature. You can view much of the past 15 years of utopian internet hype as an attempt to persuade us that temporary “features” of today’s (very young) internet are immutably fixed, forever. Magazines such as WiReD are devotely entirely to this propaganda cause. And one of these “features” is the permanence of data. We’re just going to have to suck it all up.
But if you think about it, that’s a complete nonsense. What’s missing is the primacy of the individual, as the sovereign owner of the data, on our digital networks. In real life, things have clear ownership, even if their usage is assigned to the public. If digital networks are to mirror the richness and flexibility of real life, then digital things will acquire aspects of ownership too. It’s hard to envisage an internet that fails to grow and respect the individual becoming anything other than an annoying background noise.
And this is of great value to us. If you want your digital trail to vanish, you should be able to do assert this right. After all, the data belongs to you, and nobody else. This is called habeas data. The name was coined to describe privacy legislation enacted in Latin America in the 1990s – there’s a short history here. It’s also recognised in European privacy law. Recent proposals made it quite explicit, calling it ‘the right to be forgotten’ (the draft, in PDF, here).
But it isn’t going to be welcomed by everyone. The forces fighting the individual and individual rights today are the intermediaries and middlemen. Lacking both courage and commercial imagination, our biggest internet companies obsessively hoard our data trails, regarding them as their own. But as people increasingly assert their rights, these Googles and Facebooks will have to grow up too, and perhaps practise what they preach for everyone else: the need to adjust to radical change. There are worse places to be: these companies are wealthy and magnets for talented and imaginative engineers, so they’re well placed to start innovating and adding value with the data they use, but can no longer assume is their own, forever.
Much of the time, internet giants obfuscate this, suggesting that ownership belongs to some amorphous, unnamed entity. But when cornered, they will grudgingly concede this point; they have to, as they can’t seriously argue anything else. They’re particularly terrified of the “right to be forgotten” – according to Google it breaks the internet. Of course, it doesn’t, “breaking the internet” is Googlespeak for “minor inconvenience to Google”.
US tech-loving bank Silicon Valley has opened its first branch in the UK to offer cash and services to Britain’s IT startupsPosted: 2012/06/11 in Education / Awareness, New Business Models, Public Policy, Stats / reports
Silicon Valley Bank has $20bn in assets and will be targeting the tech, life science, private equity and venture capital industries in the UK.
Chancellor George Osborne reckoned the bank’s move was “yet more proof that the UK is fast becoming the technology centre of Europe”.
“The knowledge, expertise and dedication that Silicon Valley Bank brings to the ecosystem is another important step toward our objective to make the UK the best place to start and grow the great technology companies of the future”
The European Data Protection Supervisor has warned that smart meters are a significant privacy threat and wants limits on the retention and use of customer data before it’s too latePosted: 2012/06/11 in Education / Awareness, Privacy / Data Protection, Public Policy, Stats / reports, Tech Evolution
The Netherlands remained the country most targeted for phishing attacks in May, with one in 196.2 emails identified as phishingPosted: 2012/06/11 in Cybercrime, Education / Awareness, Privacy / Data Protection, Stats / reports
Phishing levels for the US reached one in 1,702 and one in 493.1 for Canada. In Germany phishing levels were one in 884.3, one in 930.9 in Denmark. In Australia, phishing activity accounted for one in 867.8 emails and one in 2,310 in Hong Kong; for Japan it was one in 5,525 and one in 2,072 for Singapore. In Brazil one in 1,502 emails was blocked as phishing.
The Public Sector remained the most targeted by phishing activity in May, with one in 96.4 emails comprising a phishing attack. Phishing levels for the Chemical & Pharmaceutical sector reached one in 1,326 and one in 1,170 for the IT Services sector, one in 990.1 for Retail, one in 232.3 for Education and one in 631.8 for Finance.
Google defends its search algorithms, reminding Internet users that if they don’t like Google’s results, they can always try a different search enginePosted: 2012/06/11 in Education / Awareness, Google, Stats / reports
Company X loses millions of passwords and personal data to Hackers Y. Company X says change all your passwords. End-users Z ignore or dutifully update and repeat a new password on all their sites. Law enforcement investigates but goes for donuts when the short Internet attention span sees another shiny object to fawn overPosted: 2012/06/11 in Cybercrime, Education / Awareness, Enforcement, Network Security, Privacy / Data Protection, Public Policy, Stats / reports
Hackers Y pop up again six months later with phishing scams, or worse yet, attacks on business accounts using a combination of your stolen name, password, and the last four digits of your credit card number.
It’s not the passwords, folks. The infrastructure is broken. What’s that phrase about insanity and trying the same thing over and over?
We hang our cleverly crafted (not!) passwords all over the Internet, trusting virtual entities offering 10% off our next purchase and a promise our data won’t be shared willingly – but without mentioning the sieve that is their circa 1980s security defenses.
Is there a fix? Right now, no. Is there something in the works? Yes. Will it solve (or drastically minimize) the threat? Time will tell.
Flame computer virus that smoldered undetected for years in Middle Eastern energy facilities has gotten orders to vanish, leaving no tracePosted: 2012/06/11 in Cybercrime, Education / Awareness, Network Security, Privacy / Data Protection, Stats / reports
The former head of the Vatican Bank has become the Papacy’s Enemy Number One, after police discovered a trove of documents exposing financial misdeeds in the Holy See. The banker now reportedly fears for his life.
Earlier this week police conducted a dawn raid on the house and office of Ettore Gotti Tedeschi. Investigators say they were looking for evidence in a graft case against defense and aerospace firm Finmeccanica, which was formerly run by a close friend of Gotti Tedeschi.
Instead, as it turns out, police stumbled upon an entirely different find.
They discovered 47 binders containing private communication exposing the opaque inner workings of the secretive Holy See. They included financial documents, details of money transfers and confidential internal reports – all prepared by Gotti Tedeschi to build a convincing expose of corruption in the Vatican.
A renowned economics professor and head of the Italian branch of the giant Bank of Santander Gotti Tedeschi took what turned out to be a poisoned chalice of a job in 2009, when he became the President of the Institute for Works of Religion, the formal name for the Bank of Vatican. His brief was formidable – to introduce transparency to a lucrative enterprise that had become a byword for money-laundering and corruption.
After a tumultuous three years marked by in-fighting and public scandals, Gotti Tedeschi was unanimously dismissed from his post by a board of Vatican officials in May.
“I have paid for my transparency” the indignant banker said to the media, as he stormed off even before his dismissal hearing was over.
The confidential minutes of the stormy meeting obtained by Reuters showed the banker accused of “progressively erratic personal behavior” and “exhibiting lack of prudence and accuracy in comments regarding the Institute”.
But there may have been other reasons.
Aware that his crusade against corruption was failing, Gotti Tedeschi probably began to leak important documents to the media.
The drip-drip of damaging revelations (alongside more personal ones presumably passed onto the media by the Pope’s own butler) has been dubbed ‘Vatileaks’, and has captivated Italy in recent months.
At the hearing, the board that dismissed the banker also indirectly accused Gotti Tedeschi of being behind some of the leaks, pointing to his “Failure to provide any formal explanation for the dissemination of documents last known to be in the president’s possession.”
While the leaks were a weapon with which to attack his enemies, Gotti Tedeschi was also preparing a last resort option if the battle was lost – a ‘suicide belt’ that would blow the lid off Vatican.
Several months ago, he reportedly told his friends that he began collecting an exhaustive dossier “in case something happened to him.”
It is this dossier that the police have now apparently discovered.
Google and Apple are racing to produce aerial maps so detailed they can show up objects just four inches widePosted: 2012/06/11 in Education / Awareness, Google, New Business Models, Privacy / Data Protection, Stats / reports, Tech Evolution
Google admits it has already sent planes over cities while Apple has acquired a firm using spy-in-the-sky technology that has been tested on at least 20 locations, including London.
Apple’s military-grade cameras are understood to be so powerful they could potentially see into homes through skylights and windows. The technology is similar to that used by intelligence agencies in identifying terrorist targets in Afghanistan.
A stark vision of the future for neo-humanity where AI, cybernetics, nanotech and other emerging technologies replace mankindPosted: 2012/06/11 in Education / Awareness, Future Developments?, Stats / reports, Tech Evolution
New rule: every website must disclose their password storage format on the signup page. Scared to disclose?Posted: 2012/06/11 in Education / Awareness, Network Security, Privacy / Data Protection, Stats / reports
A man films a neighbor allegedly abusing his stepson with a belt. Instead of simply handing his footage to authorities, he first posts the video to YouTube and Facebook. Did he need to do that for the alleged abuser to turn himself in?
Over the last year, five major online companies have gone public – Facebook, Zynga, Groupon, Pandora, and LinkedIn. Over that period, just one of them – LinkedIn – has watched its shares rise over its IPO pricePosted: 2012/06/11 in Education / Awareness, New Business Models, Stats / reports
The others have watched their shares fall as much as 40 percent in some cases, according to data from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers
A report projects movie studios will go completely digital in the near future
While Estonia’s prowess in cyberconflict and cyberdefense has grown in recent years, so too has its startup scenePosted: 2012/06/11 in Education / Awareness, New Business Models, Stats / reports, Tech Evolution
After all, Skype was created in Estonia in 2003 and was acquired by Microsoft for $8.5 billion last year.
Its success has inspired a new generation of Estonian startups, often collectively referred to on Twitter as the #estonianmafia, which were pitching themselves at the Latitude 59 conference held last week at Tallinn University of Technology. This university campus is also the location of Küberneetika, the Institute of Cybernetics, a Soviet-founded facility that dates back to the 1970s and became the first home of Skype decades later.
AngelList, a site that aims to link startups with venture capital, currently has 52 Estonian entries, which on a per capita basis, puts it as the number two country after the United States—not bad for a country with just 1.3 million people.
Streaming Flix was a massive “cramming” operation. The company used deceptive tactics to bill people for services through their local phone billsPosted: 2012/06/11 in Cybercrime, Education / Awareness, Enforcement, Stats / reports
There, charges would often go unnoticed for months. This practice, called Local Exchange Carrier (LEC) billing, is legal and can have legitimate uses—but it’s widely known as a vector for cramming schemes.
This one appears to be particularly brazen. According to the feds, a long-time LEC biller named Cindy Landeen was behind Streaming Flix. The company went so far as to bill “internal business lines at AT&T,” “customers who lacked Internet access,” and “at least 16 deceased consumers.”
Complaints rolled down like a mighty flood as outraged customers discovered the charges and demanded their money back. (A whopping 46 percent of all customers billed obtained at least one credit, a shocking stat in a world where credit card companies will cut off merchants with “chargeback rates” above one percent). Verizon refused to accept billings from Streaming Flix in July 2010 as the complaints mounted; AT&T also refused to take new billings from the company.
But the FTC said that middleman between Streaming Flix and the phone company, a “billing aggregator” called Billing Services Group (BSG), kept going. BSG placed new Streaming Flix charges with other phone companies who hadn’t yet cut off the money spigot. According to the feds, BSG didn’t stop working with Streaming Flix until the FBI actually raided Cindy Landeen’s offices in Minneapolis back in late 2010.