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Wireless Networking

Report Rips Government Wireless Network Effort 54

Posted by Soulskill
from the effort-is-kind-of-a-strong-word-for-it dept.
coondoggie writes with this excerpt from NetworkWorld: "Like a bunch of children in a sandbox unable and perhaps unwilling to share their toys, multiple key government agencies cannot or will not cooperate to build a collaborative wireless network. The Government Accountability Office report (PDF) issued today took aim at the Departments of Justice, Homeland Security, and the Treasury which had intended what's known as The Integrated Wireless Network (IWN) to be a joint radio communications system to improve communication among law enforcement agencies. However IWN, which has already cost millions of dollars, is no longer being pursued as a joint development project, the GAO said. By abandoning collaboration on a joint implementation, the departments risk duplication of effort and inefficient use of resources as they continue to invest significant resources in independent solutions. Further, these efforts will not ensure the interoperability needed to serve day-to-day law enforcement operations or a coordinated response to terrorist or other events, the GAO said."
Mars

Mars Rover Spirit Still Alive 185

Posted by timothy
from the brief-flower's-bloom dept.
Toren Altair writes with this excerpt from a story at The Space Fellowship: "NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit communicated via the Mars Odyssey orbiter today right at the time when ground controllers had told it to, prompting shouts of 'She's talking!' among the rover team at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. 'This means Spirit has not gone into a fault condition and is still being controlled by sequences we send from the ground,' said John Callas of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., project manager for Spirit and its twin, Opportunity."
Security

The Trap Set By the FBI For Half Life 2 Hacker 637

Posted by timothy
from the well-deserved-shadenfreude dept.
eldavojohn writes "You might remember the tiny news that Half Life 2 source code was leaked in 2003 ... it is the 6th most visited Slashdot story with over one kilocomment. Well, did anything happen to the source of the leak, the German hacker Axel 'Ago' Gembe? Wired is reporting he was offered a job interview so that Valve could get him into the US and bag him for charges. It's not the first time the FBI tried this trick: 'The same Seattle FBI office had successfully used an identical gambit in 2001, when they created a fake startup company called Invita, and lured two known Russian hackers to the US for a job interview, where they were arrested.'"
Security

Obama, McCain Campaigns Both Hacked, Files Compromised 255

Posted by timothy
from the nogoodniks-abound dept.
dunezone writes "As the election ends, news is coming out from both campaigns on what happened behind closed doors. During the summer, the Obama campaign had their systems hacked, but so did McCain — and not by each other, but by a third party. '... both the FBI and the Secret Service came to the campaign with an ominous warning: "You have a problem way bigger than what you understand," an agent told Obama's team. "You have been compromised, and a serious amount of files have been loaded off your system." The following day, Obama campaign chief David Plouffe heard from White House chief of staff Josh Bolten, to the same effect: "You have a real problem ... and you have to deal with it." The Feds told Obama's aides in late August that the McCain campaign's computer system had been similarly compromised.'" Also from the article: "Officials at the FBI and the White House told the Obama campaign that they believed a foreign entity or organization sought to gather information on the evolution of both camps' policy positions — information that might be useful in negotiations with a future administration."
The Internet

AT&T Begins a Trial To Cap, Meter Internet Usage 421

Posted by kdawson
from the unlimited-is-just-a-word dept.
An anonymous reader writes "On the heels of Comcast's decision to implement a 250-GB monthly cap, and Time Warner Cable's exploration of caps and overage fees, DSL Reports notes that AT&T is launching a metered billing trial of their own in Reno, Nevada. According to a filing with the FCC (PDF), AT&T's existing tiers, which range from 768 kbps to 6 Mbps, would see caps ranging from 20 GB to 150 GB per month. Users who exceed those caps would pay an additional $1 per gigabyte, per month."
It's funny.  Laugh.

XKCD Improving the Internet ... Yet Again 204

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the oh-oh-monroe dept.
netbuzz writes "Comic creator Randall Monroe suggested in a recent xkcd strip that YouTube comments would be better — or, more precisely, less idiotic — if only those posting them were forced to hear their words read aloud first. Well, YouTube has gone and made this "audio preview" a reality, albeit an optional one. And, it's not the first time that xkcd has contributed to the betterment of the Internet, as those who are familiar with last year's "Internet census" and its use of a Hilbert curve may remember."
Education

Industry Group Sponsors College Course To Create Fake Blog 124

Posted by kdawson
from the paid-me-to-do-it dept.
Scott Jaschik writes "At Hunter College, professors are debating the ethics of a course in which an industry group paid for a class to develop a fake student who would write a fake blog to discourage other students from buying knockoff products. The controversy involves both commercial interference with academic freedom and the ethics of 'guerilla marketing.'"
Censorship

WikiLeaks Under Fire 282

Posted by Soulskill
from the also-possibly-on-fire dept.
kan0r writes "The transparency group WikiLeaks.org currently seems to be under heavy fire. The main WikiLeaks.org DNS entry is unavailable, reportedly due to a restraining order relating to a series of articles and documents released by WikiLeaks about off-shore trust structures in the Cayman Islands. The WikiLeaks whistle blower, allegedly former vice president of the Cayman Islands branch of swiss bank Julius Baer, states in the WikiLeaks documents that the bank supported tax evasion and money laundering by its clients from around the world. WikiLeaks alternate names remained available until Saturday, when there seems to have been a heavy DDoS attack and a fire at the ISP. The documents in question are still available on other WikiLeaks sites, such as wikileaks.be, and are also mirrored on Cryptome. Details of the court documents have also been made available."
The Internet

Comcast Defends Role As Internet Traffic Cop 425

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the this-is-going-to-get-worse-before-we-lose dept.
RCTrucker7 writes "Comcast said yesterday that it purposely slows down some traffic on its network, including some music and movie downloads, an admission that sparked more controversy in the debate over how much control network operators should have over the Internet. In a filing with the Federal Communications Commission, Comcast said such measures — which can slow the transfer of music or video between subscribers sharing files, for example — are necessary to ensure better flow of traffic over its network. In defending its actions, Comcast stepped into one of the technology industry's most divisive battles. Comcast argues that it should be able to direct traffic so networks don't get clogged; consumer groups and some Internet companies argue that the networks should not be permitted to block or slow users' access to the Web."
Security

Adobe PDF Exploits In the Wild 150

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the junkbusters-are-better-than-virus-scanners dept.
mambosauce writes "Brian Krebs, via the security fix blog is reporting that the recent PDF vulnerabilities which were patched only for Adobe Reader 8 and not 7 are being exploited via banner ads. As if there haven't been enough banner ad attacks this year now we have another one targeting one of the most popular applications in the world this weekend. At this rate there won't be many safe applications left to use."
Censorship

Muslim Groups Attempt to Censor Wikipedia 1730

Posted by Zonk
from the where-free-speech-meets-the-road dept.
Nom du Keyboard writes "The New York Times is reporting that Muslim groups are attempting to censor Wikipedia because of images of Muhammad contained in the article about him. 'A Frequently Asked Questions page explains the site's polite but firm refusal to remove the images: "Since Wikipedia is an encyclopedia with the goal of representing all topics from a neutral point of view, Wikipedia is not censored for the benefit of any particular group." The notes left on [online petitions against the page] come from all over the world. "It's totally unacceptable to print the Prophet's picture," Saadia Bukhari from Pakistan wrote in a message. "It shows insensitivity towards Muslim feelings and should be removed immediately."'"
The Courts

Pirate Bay Gets a 4,000-Page Complaint 643

Posted by kdawson
from the ianal-but-that's-a-lot dept.
I Don't Believe in Imaginary Property writes "Swedish prosecutors appear to be close to finally pressing charges against The Pirate Bay, having served them with 4,000 pages of legal papers. While this might appear bad, the administrators have already moved some of the servers out of the country, so Swedish prosecutors can't shut it down, even if they want to. Moreover, the people of Sweden are decidedly on their side, with the Pirate Party, which is sympathetic to TPB's cause, being one of the top ten political parties in the country. Still, this looks like a dirty trick on the part of the prosecutors — like they're dumping all of this on the defendants in the hope that they won't have enough time to sort through it and defend themselves. For comparison, the second-biggest murder case in Sweden required only 1,500 pages."
Privacy

RCMP Won't Go After Personal Filesharers 405

Posted by kdawson
from the sigh-of-relief-eh dept.
mlauzon writes "The RCMP announced that it will stop targeting people who download copyrighted material for personal use (Google translation). Their priority will be to focus on organized crime and copyright theft that affects the health and safety of consumers, such as copyright violations related to medicine and electrical appliances, instead of the cash flow of large corporations. Around the same time that the CRIA successfully took Demonoid offline, the RCMP made clear that Demonoid's users don't have to worry about getting prosecuted, at least not in Canada. 'Piracy for personal use is no longer targeted,' Noël St-Hilaire, head of copyright theft investigations of the RCMP, said in an interview. 'It is too easy to copy these days and we do not know how to stop it.'"
Privacy

US Consumers Clueless About Online Tracking 228

Posted by kdawson
from the just-pretend-nobody's-watching dept.
Arashtamere writes "A study on consumer perceptions about online privacy, undertaken by the Samuelson Clinic at the University of California and the Annenberg Public Policy Center, found that the average American consumer is largely unaware that every move they make online can be, and often is, tracked by online marketers and advertising networks. Those surveyed showed little knowledge on the extent to which online tracking is happening or how the information obtained can be used. More than half of those surveyed — about 55 percent — falsely assumed that a company's privacy polices prohibited it from sharing their addresses and purchases with affiliated companies. Nearly four out of 10 online shoppers falsely believed that a company's privacy policy prohibits it from using information to analyze an individuals' activities online. And a similar number assumed that an online privacy policy meant that a company they're doing business with wouldn't collect data on their online activities and combine it with other information to create a behavioral profile."

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