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Security

+ - 153 ATM Skimming Ring Compromised 6,000 Bank Accounts->

Submitted by
Orome1
Orome1 writes "U.S. federal authorities have announced the filing of an indictment against two alleged leaders of an international scheme to steal customer bank account information using “skimming” technology that secretly recorded the data of customers who used ATMs at banks in New York, New Jersey, Illinois, and Wisconsin. The ring targeted J.P. Morgan Chase (“Chase”), and Capital One, N.A. banks. Throughout the course of the scheme, they engaged in over 50 skimming incidents that resulted in the compromise of over approximately 6,000 individual bank accounts, from which the defendants made and attempted to make over approximately $3 million in unauthorized withdrawals."
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+ - 109 Indie dev says that she can't afford to stay indie.->

Submitted by
Gallefray
Gallefray writes "Sophie houlden recently posted on her blog that she can't afford to stay indie, and released swift*stitch for free, stating that:
"Leaper, and a commissioned game (that I can’t talk about yet) may be my last games as a full time indie."
and
"I just can’t afford to keep going like this, I haven’t been able to afford the past three years really. Sales have paid for food but I’ve just racked up debt when it comes to everything else. It has gotten to the point where I try to spend time working on short projects as an attempt to make enough money to pay for the stuff I really care about making, but it doesn’t work and it’s making my games worse as a result."

Below is a link to her shop, where you can give support by buying her games:"

Link to Original Source
Security

+ - 139 New Adobe Reader zero day used in phishing attacks-> 1

Submitted by mask.of.sanity
mask.of.sanity (1228908) writes "Zero day holes found in Adobe Reader are being exploited by attackers in phishing campaigns.

The attack drops two dll files: One opens a PDF to distract users while the other opens a backdoor.

Adobe confirmed the latest versions of Reader and Acrobat (10.1.5, and 11.0.1) are affected."

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Government

+ - 211 Obama Signs Executive Order on Cybersecurity->

Submitted by wiredmikey
wiredmikey (1824622) writes "President Barack Obama signed an executive order on Tuesday designed to better protect critical infrastructure from computer hackers.

Obama, in his annual State of the Union speech to a joint session of the US Congress, said his executive order would "strengthen our cyber defenses by increasing information sharing, and developing standards to protect our national security, our jobs and our privacy." The president also urged Congress to pass legislation "to give our government a greater capacity to secure our networks and deter attacks." The executive order (PDF) calls for voluntary reporting of threats to US infrastructure, such as power grids, pipelines and water systems. The directive, which follows two failed attempts in Congress to pass cybersecurity legislation, allows the government to lead an information-sharing network but stops short of making mandatory the reporting of cyber threats.

House Homeland Security Chairman Michael McCaul said he was "concerned that the order could open the door to increased regulations that would stifle innovation, burden businesses and fail to keep pace with evolving cyber threats."

Leslie Harris of the Center for Democracy & Technology welcomed the directive, arguing it "says that privacy must be built into the government's cybersecurity plans and activities, not as an afterthought but rather as part of the design."

White House officials noted that the measure would not apply to consumer-based services or information systems that do not meet the standard of "critical infrastructure." But the director of George Mason University's Technology Policy Program Jerry Brito said in a tweet that "top-down regulation is the last thing that will improve cybersecurity.""

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United Kingdom

+ - 230 Britain Could Switch Off Airport Radar And Release Spectrum->

Submitted by
judgecorp
judgecorp writes "Britain is considering switching off air traffic control radar systems and using "passive radar" instead. A two year feasibility study will consider using a network of ground stations which monitor broadcast TV signals and measure echoes from aircraft to determine their location and velocity. The system is not a new idea — early radar experiments used BBC shortwave transmitters as a signal source before antenna technology produced a transceiver suitable for radar — but could now be better than conventional radar thanks to new antenna designs and signal processing techniques. It will also save money and energy by eliminating transmitters — and release spectrum for 5G services."
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Software

+ - 260 Retail copies of Office 2013 are tied to a single computer forever -> 1

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "With the launch of Office 2013 Microsoft has seen fit to upgrade the terms of the license agreement, and it’s not in favor of the end user. It seems installing a copy of the latest version of Microsoft’s Office suite of apps ties it to a single machine. For life.

On previous versions of Office it was a different story. The suite was associated with a “Licensed Device” and could only be used on a single device. But there was nothing to stop you uninstalling Office and installing it on another machine perfectly legally. With that option removed, Office 2013 effectively becomes a much more expensive proposition for many."

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Software

+ - 140 Ancient Languages Reconstructed by Computers->

Submitted by
halls-of-valhalla
halls-of-valhalla writes "Researchers have developed a new software which can be used to reconstruct dead, ancient languages using probabilistic models of sound change.

This new software was tested by taking 637 Austronesian languages currently spoken in Asia and the Pacific, and attempting to reconstruct the ancient languages they're based on. The system was found to have provided a relatively accurate, large-scale automatic reconstruction of the protolanguages. A language believed to be roughtly seven thousand years old was reconstructed using a database of 142,000 words.

When compared to the results of linguists specializing in Austronesian languages, more 85% of the system's reconstructions were found to be within one character of the manual reconstruction. These are very promising results, however a linguist is still able to produce a higher accuracy, so this will be likely to become a tool used by linguists rather than a replacement for them."

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Biotech

+ - 136 Living cells turned into computers-> 2

Submitted by ananyo
ananyo (2519492) writes "Synthetic biologists have developed DNA modules that perform logic operations in bacteria. These ‘genetic circuits’ could, for example, be used by scientists to track key moments in a cell’s life or, in biotechnology, to turn on production of a drug at the flick of a chemical switch. The researchers have encoded 16 logic gates in modules of DNA and stored the results of logical operations. The different logic gates can be assembled into a wide variety of circuits."
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Google

+ - 121 Oracle vs Google legal war begins a new chapter->

Submitted by Dupple
Dupple (1016592) writes "Oracle says a U.S. judge erred when he threw out its billion-dollar copyright claim against Google over parts of the Java programming language that Google incorporated into the Android mobile platform, according to a court filing.

Oracle's intellectual property battle against Google has attracted intense interest from software developers, many of whom believe the structure of a programming language should not be subject to copyright protection.

In an appeals brief filed on Monday at the Federal U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, Oracle said Google's use of Java structure was "decidedly unfair."

"Copyright protects a short poem or even a Chinese menu or jingle," Oracle wrote. "But the copied works here were vastly more original, creative, and labor-intensive.""

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Open Source

+ - 114 Opera officially announces gradual transition from Presto to WebKit and Chromium->

Submitted by jeditobe
jeditobe (2701857) writes "...To provide a leading browser on Android and iOS, this year Opera will make a gradual transition to the WebKit engine, as well as Chromium, for most of its upcoming versions of browsers for smartphones and computers...

Please sjgn the petition to force Oera Software commit Presto engine to opensource. https://t.co/l2FNSL3E"

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Android

+ - 108 Mobile Phone Sales Decline Despite Smartphone Boom->

Submitted by
DavidGilbert99
DavidGilbert99 writes "Everyone is buying a mobile phone these days right? Even people in third world countries are getting connected and some people in developed countries have multiple handsets for work and personal use. So sales must be going through the roof?

Not so according to Gartner, whose latest figures suggest mobile phone sales declined by 1.7% in 2012. This was despite the smartphone market booming — up almost 40% in the final quarter of 2012 — and was down to "tough economic conditions, shifting consumer preferences and intense market competition" according to Gartner's principle research analyst Anshul Gupta."

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+ - 189 Obama Administration Asks Supreme Court To Not Hear Jammie Thomas Case->

Submitted by Jane Q. Public
Jane Q. Public (1010737) writes "The Jammie Thomas-Rasset case has been in the news for years now. As of the last court ruling, she has been ordered to pay $222,000 for sharing 24 songs. Her attorney argues that you can buy the same songs on iTunes for $24, and imposing a penalty of almost 10,000 times as much is "excessive and oppressive". The case has been appealed to the Supreme Court.

The Obama Administration has asked the Supreme Court to not review the case. Is this another example of this administration pandering to the copyright tro... I mean corporations, rather than The People they are supposed to represent?"

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Chrome

+ - 93 Opera switching to WebKit rendering engine->

Submitted by Z80xxc!
Z80xxc! (1111479) writes "The creators of Opera announced today that the browser now has over 300 million users — and will therefore be switching to webkit.

To provide a leading browser on Android and iOS, this year Opera will make a gradual transition to the WebKit engine, as well as Chromium, for most of its upcoming versions of browsers for smartphones and computers.

With Opera moving to webkit, there will now be only three major web rendering engines: IE's Trident, Mozilla's Gecko, and WebKit — used by Google Chrome and Apple Safari already. What will this mean for the future of compatibility and web standards?"
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Opera

+ - 121 Opera picks up Webkit Engine-> 1

Submitted by nthitz
nthitz (840462) writes "Opera has announced that they will be dropping their rendering ending Presto, in favor of Webkit. This knocks the number of major rendering engines down to three. Opera will also be adopting the Chromium V8 Javascript engine. The news coincides with their announcement of 300 million users. "300 million marks the first lap, but the race goes on," says Lars Boilesen, CEO of Opera Software. "On the final stretch up to 300 million users, we have experienced the fastest acceleration in user growth we have ever seen. Now, we are shifting into the next gear to claim a bigger piece of the pie in the smartphone market.""
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+ - 185 Ask Slashdot: What is your favorite monitor for programming?

Submitted by BadassFractal
BadassFractal (2736365) writes "I'm in the market for a new large desktop monitor (or two) which I intend to use almost exclusively for programming and all sorts of software development-related work. I'm trying to keep the cost down reasonable, and I do enjoy as large of a resolution as possible. What do people "in the know" out there use these days for that purpose? I'm thinking a 1920x1200 24" would be good, unless there's an affordable 2560xFoo option out there. I keep hearing about nameless Korean 27" screens, any thoughts on that one?

Thanks!"
Security

+ - 136 How Lockheed Martin's 'Kill Chain' Stopped SecurID Attack->

Submitted by
CowboyRobot
CowboyRobot writes "A few months after RSA's SecurID database was hacked, defense contractor Lockheed Martin discovered an intruder using valid credentials of one of their business partners, including the user's SecurID token. But the user soon began tripping alarms, including pulling data in stages and trying to access unrelated data. So Lockheed launched its homegrown Cyber Kill Chain framework, which tracks an intruder's movements and blocks each attempt to siphon data. But the Cyber Kill Chain framework isn't for everyone, according to Steve Adegbite, director of cybersecurity for Lockheed Martin, "We have a multimillion-dollar investment in this technology." And that only makes sense for organizations at risk for advanced persistent threat attacks."
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China

+ - 128 China Claimed Millions of Computers Hacked by U.S.-based Servers->

Submitted by hackingbear
hackingbear (988354) writes "While we have heard reports of computers being hacked from China almost every other day, China's National Computer Network Emergency Response Centre identified 7.8 million computers in China had been hacked in the first six months of last year, with the most common location of the attackers being in the US (pay wall). According to CNCERT, 73,286 overseas IPs were involved in hacking China’s 14.19 million IPs, among which 10.5 million received attacks from US-based servers, 780,000 from South Korea and 778,000 from Germany. Apparently, as neither side can prove their claims or disprove the other's claims with absolutely indisputable evidences, the war of words will keep going."
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NASA

+ - 154 NASA's Garver Insists that American Commitment to Space Exploration Undiminished->

Submitted by
MarkWhittington
MarkWhittington writes "Space.com reports that NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver, at a space-entrepreneurship forum organized by Stanford University's Institute for Economic Policy Research, insisted that the space agency's commitment to space exploration is undiminished. To support her contention, Garver cited overall spending for NASA as compared to that of space agencies of other countries. But other data, from the money spent on the space agency's space exploration and planetary science accounts to a scathing report from the National Research Council tells a different story."
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Earth

+ - 194 Obama Proposes 'Meaningful Action' on Climate Change->

Submitted by
astroengine
astroengine writes "President Barack Obama called for "meaningful progress" on tackling climate change in his State of the Union speech in Washington, DC on Tuesday night. While acknowledging that "no single event makes a trend," the President noted that the United States had been buffeted by extreme weather events that in many cases encapsulated the predictions of climate scientists. "But the fact is, the 12 hottest years on record have all come in the last 15. Heat waves, droughts, wildfires, and floods — all are now more frequent and intense. We can choose to believe that Superstorm Sandy, and the most severe drought in decades, and the worst wildfires some states have ever seen were all just a freak coincidence. Or we can choose to believe in the overwhelming judgment of science — and act before it’s too late," Obama added."
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