I wish news reports and articles would stop calling Stuxnet the first known cyber weapon. I can understand why they don't count DDoS or website defacements, because those don't cause permanent or physical destruction. Yet, other worms have caused computers to become permanently inoperable, or required computers to be replaced, because their integrity could be no longer be trusted. I suppose those could be excluded, because they didn't cause a bang or create smoke. But, what about the Siberian pipeline explosion in 1982? That infection was not transmitted over the Internet, yet apparently neither was Stuxnet. There must be other examples as well.
In Australia stores accept chip, swipe, and wireless (you wave it over a pad, it doesn't even ask for a pin number). Unless you specifically mention the security level of each during a transaction, the majority of customers prefer the less secure methods - wireless PayPass and swipe. This is because those two are slightly faster, and they can put the card back in their wallet while it processes. They groan and make a fuss at stores where smart chips are set as the mandatory first attempt. Paying with cash is secure AND remains the fastest transaction, but people find carrying notes and coins to be inconvenient. Every time I see the Secret Service working on these cases, I remember Albert Gonzalez from the major TJ Maxx credit card theft incident. He was on the secret service payroll at the time, in a Frank Abagnale type prison-work release.
The Walking Dude writes: Thousands of small satellite dish-based computer systems [VSATs] that transmit often-sensitive data from far flung locations worldwide – oil rigs, ships at sea, banks, and even power grid substations – are at high risk of being hacked, including many in the United States, a new cyber-security report has found.. These vulnerabilities can be exploited through Internet-connected computer networks, as hackers are more commonly envisioned to do, or through electronic warfare methodologies that more directly manipulate the radio waves of uplinks and downlinks.
The Walking Dude writes: The study of cyber warfare in China suffers from the same excess of overlapping terminology as in English documents. This Beijing conference paper proposes that all of them can be broken down into three fundamental branches that are common to both the US and China. The three branches are: Information Operations, Computer Network Operations, and Net Centric Warfare. Key distinctions between them are whether or not they are connected to the Internet, involve hacking, or involve traditional military hardware. Streamlined categorizing can aid the efficiency of research and improve inter-agency structure. Additional benefits include more accurate threat assessment, limiting media and public misunderstanding, and increasing transparency to forward cooperation, understanding, and trust.
The Walking Dude writes: Culture Mandala has posted a lengthy introduction to the topic of satellite hacking that includes lists of known incidents. Colorful examples include hackers using satellites to warn of impending zombie attacks and flipping satellites over [POW] so the solar panels face the earth and the imager gets fried by the sun. While there is no mention of WARMACHINEROX being used as a password, it does appear that dumpster diving outside of NASA facilities can turn up discarded hard drives that contain useful information. The use of drones, internet connectivity, and the reasons for continued vulnerability in relation to satellites are also discussed.
Link to Original Source
Link to Original Source
The Walking Dude writes: "The International Commission on Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament (ICNND) has released an unclassified report exploring the possibility of cyber terrorists launching nuclear weapons. Ominous exploits include unreliable early warning sensors, unsecure nuclear weapons storage, transportation blunders, breaches in the chain of command, and the use of Windows on nuclear submarines. A traditional large-scale terrorist attack, such as the 2008 Mumbai attacks, could be combined with computer network operations in an attempt to start a nuclear war. Amidst the confusion of the traditional attack, communications could be disrupted, false declarations of war could be issued on both sides, and early warning sensors could be spoofed. Adding to this is the short time frame in which a retaliatory nuclear response must be decided upon, in some cases as little as 15 minutes. The amount of firepower that could be unleashed in these 15 minutes would be equivalent to approximately 100,000 Hiroshima bombs."
Intriguing; I mentioned the Slashdot Subculture page in my front page Digg submission just 10 hours ago. Did you read that, or is it synchronicity? I enjoyed reading 'Slashdot Subculture', and I thought it was well done. It was the only all in one source for that information. When I first joined Slashdot I could tell that I was missing the inside jokes. That article helped me understand what the hell people were talking about, and it showed me that the comments can be an intricate form of art. It improved my appreciation of this site. Here are the the votes for deletion of the Slashdot subculture page found via the Digg comments.