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United States

U.S. Bars Lab From Testing E-Voting Machines 123

Posted by kdawson
from the watching-the-watchers dept.
joshdick writes to point out a NYTimes story on the decertification of Ciber Inc. from testing electronic voting systems. It will come as a surprise to no-one here on Slashdot that experts say the deficiencies of the laboratory suggest that crucial features like the vote-counting software and security against hacking may not have been thoroughly tested on many machines now in use. From the article: "A laboratory that has tested most of the nation's electronic voting systems has been temporarily barred from approving new machines after federal officials found that it was not following its quality-control procedures and could not document that it was conducting all the required tests... The federal Election Assistance Commission made this decision last summer, but the problem was not disclosed then... Ciber... says it is fixing its problems and expects to gain certification soon."

+ - Venus's Surface May be 1 Billion Years Old

Submitted by
dptalia writes "For a while scientists have believed that Venus's surface is fairly young, having recently been covered by lava from 1 to 3 kilometers deep. However, more study into photos sent back by Magellan seems to show that the cataclismic volcano theory is wrong. Now scientists are postulating that Venus's surface may be a billion years old and could be probed to determine the history of the planet."

+ - Google Threatening TV

Submitted by
aussie_a writes "The BBC has a report on how Google's revenue is climbing to overcome commercial television. Although this isn't good news for television stations that rely on ad revenue, as they are finding companies are turning towards Google instead. One of the main attractions of Google over traditional television is that Google is able to better tracking in the effectiveness of their ads. It is becoming apparent in the UK that television needs to evolve, however no-one is sure how it can."

China - We Don't Censor the Internet 554

Posted by Zonk
from the alternate-reality-china dept.
kaufmanmoore writes "A Chinese government official at a United Nations summit in Athens on internet governance has claimed that no Net censorship exists at all in China. The article includes an exchange by a Chinese government official and a BBC reporter over the blocking of the BBC in China." From the article: "I don't think we should be using different standards to judge China. In China, we don't have software blocking Internet sites. Sometimes we have trouble accessing them. But that's a different problem. I know that some colleagues listen to the BBC in their offices from the Webcast. And I've heard people say that the BBC is not available in China or that it's blocked. I'm sure I don't know why people say this kind of thing. We do not have restrictions at all."

+ - Hubble repair mission is go!

Submitted by
An anonymous reader writes "Just finished listening to the announcement by the NASA administrator and Sen. Mikulski and the Hubble repair mission is a go. Current plan is to fly Discovery, in May '08"
It's funny.  Laugh.

+ - Amazon customers tagging DRM'd products

Submitted by DRMisGreat
DRMisGreat (666) writes "Amazon customers are using the sites own tools to tag products that impose DRM as "defective". From iPods and Zunes to Blu-rays and HD-DVDs. At last count more than 530 products had been tagged by 150 customers. How long will Amazon let that stand, especially given the fact that customers are tagging Amazon's own Unbox movie downloads?"

+ - Use Jajah to hear anyones Cingular voice messages

Submitted by
toships writes "I think everyone knows about Jajah (, but I was amazed to discover that you can hear any Cingular users voice message. This is what you do:
1. Go to
2. In "(1) My Phone Number:" Enter the phone number of the Cingular customer, say XYZ
3. In "(2) My Friend's Phone Number:" Enter your phone number
4. Then "(3) press Call"
5. Now hope that XYZ does not pick up the phone (Otherwise, you will have XYZ talking to you at the other end)
6. After a while you will get a call (this will show up as a call from XYZ)
7. Pick up the call and listen to the unheared voice message of XYZ

Step 5 is crutial one.
We have tried this for T-mobile and its secure. If XYZ is a t-mobile customer then all you will hear is the regular voice message menu, so you can leave a voice message. XYZ will see a missed call from his number and your voice message.
Very scary indeed .. :)
Ack: AU_Brn405"

+ - Dutch goverment rejects Sdu NewVote voting machine

Submitted by
An anonymous reader writes "The dutch ministry of interior affairs released a letter to parlement in which is states that the NewVote voting machines emit electronic signals that cen be received within "tens of meters". This signals can be used to determined on what party the vote was cast.
Because the dutch national elections are only 4 weeks away (November 22nd) 35 cities will revert to voting with paper ballots and a red pencil.
There is a strong opposition to electronic voting by a group of people that includes Rop Gonggrijp a a Dutch hacker and one of the founders of internet service provider XS4ALL. This groep is called We do Not Trust Voting Computers "

+ - MacIntel 10.4.8 Nasty Little Rounding Bug

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Apparently Apple has introduced a rounding bug in some applications dependent on Rosetta. Actually it would appear that the int() causes a rounding up error on PPC applications running on Intel hardware on 10.4.8. While Apple has been relatively quiet about it, stories about about have been trickling out here, here, here (scroll down to known issues), here, and here. While it would appear to only affect only 4D derived applications, there is concern that it might be more widespread."

+ - A Security Guide For Non-Technical Users?

Submitted by
kin_korn_karn writes "Like many of you, I am the family IT department. I cannot convince my parents to follow proper PC security procedures. I'm not talking about enterprise-level things such as card swipes and fingerprint scanners, just simple measures like logging off of the PC when it's not in use. They, like many people of their generation, seem to be willing to sacrifice security for convenience, as long as their real data isn't being impacted. I can't seem to get it through to them that it's only a matter of time until they are.

Since my own arguments aren't working, I need documented proof to back it up.

Does anyone know of a guide to IT security that:

a) Is written for a non-technical audience, but is neither condescending nor overly "soft."

b) Defines the various terminology (trojan, virus, zombie, etc.) clearly

c) Explains what threats each security measure protects the user from

d) Uses cases and examples to demonstrate the before and after scenarios. i.e. "Jane's credit card number was intercepted via a non-encrypted connection. She started looking for the padlock symbol on her browser's status bar. Now, her credit card number looks like this: @*#(!@($)." (That's just an example, by the way.)

This can be either an online document or a print book.


"What is wanted is not the will to believe, but the will to find out, which is the exact opposite." -- Bertrand Russell, _Sceptical_Essays_, 1928