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The Military

In North Korea, Hackers Are a Handpicked, Pampered Elite 102 102

HughPickens.com writes: Ju-Min Park and James Pearson report at Reuters that despite its poverty and isolation, North Korea has poured resources into a sophisticated cyber-warfare cell called Bureau 121, staffed by some of the most talented, and rewarded, people in North Korea, handpicked and trained from as young as 17. "They are handpicked," says Kim Heung-kwang, a former computer science professor in North Korea who defected to the South in 2004. "It is a great honor for them. It is a white-collar job there and people have fantasies about it." The hackers in Bureau 121 were among the 100 students who graduate from the University of Automation each year after five years of study. Over 2,500 apply for places at the university, which has a campus in Pyongyang, behind barbed wire.

According to Jang Se-yul, who studied with them at North Korea's military college for computer science, the Bureau 121 unit comprises about 1,800 cyber-warriors, and is considered the elite of the military. As well as having salaries far above the country's average, they are often gifted with good food, luxuries and even apartments. According to John Griasafi, this kind of treatment could be expected for those working in the elite Bureau. "You'd have to be pretty special and well trusted to even be allowed on email in North Korea so I have no doubt that they are treated well too." Pyongyang has active cyber-warfare capabilities, military and software security experts have said. In 2013, tens of thousands of computers were made to malfunction, disrupting work at banks and television broadcasters in South Korea. "In North Korea, it's called the Secret War," says Jang.

Submission + - Kansas drops plan for municipal broadband ban->

Mokurai writes: "Facing public backlash over a Senate bill that would outlaw community broadband services statewide, Sen. Julia Lynn, R-Olathe, announced on Monday the postponement of hearings set to take place this week. Senate Bill 304 would prohibit cities and counties from building public broadband networks."

The bill was reportedly "introduced by John Federico, a cable industry lobbyist."

I didn't see this on SlashDot when it was introduced, but the Internet definitely responded to the threat of damage.

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Comment What to trust (Score 1) 125 125

If spread sheet says 2+2=5 , what do you trust? The spread sheet , which has huge amount of computational mathematics behind it, or your eyes which has, well you , behind it. With the state of mathematics education, I'd trust the spreadsheet. Besides the mathematics may have changed since the last version. What was Edgar Allan Poe's law? Or was it Nathan? Let me ask the computer..

Submission + - Assange Case: US "Does Not Recognise" International Law Re Diplomatic Assylum-> 1 1

TrueSatan writes: Despite previously stating that it would not involve itself in the UK vs Equador dispute regarding Assange the US State Department declared today that the United States does not believe in the concept of ‘diplomatic asylum' as a matter of international law.

Following Equador's action in the Organisation of American States the US issued the following statement, "The United States is not a party to the 1954 OAS Convention on Diplomatic Asylum and does not recognize the concept of diplomatic asylum as a matter of international law," the office of Spokesperson Victoria Nuland said in a Friday statement. "We believe this is a bilateral issue between Ecuador and the United Kingdom and that the OAS has no role to play in this matter."

  This is directly contrary to previous US positions where it has given diplomatic assylum to dissidents of other regimes for instance Cardinal Joseph Mindszenty who was granted refuge in the US embassy in Budapest Oct '56 -May '71.

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Comment Re:yes (Score 1) 1010 1010

Professor Hacker's article is a modest proposal based on Aldous Huxley's Brave New World, and a very good one. The article is apparently written for the celebration of the eightieth anniversary of the publication of the book. It's a trap to get people to discuss the antithesis of his real point. It is beautifully done, and suckered in a lot of people.

Twitter

Submission + - Analyzing Tweets To Identify Psychopaths->

nonprofiteer writes: Researchers presenting at Defcon next week have developed a psychopathy prediction model for Twitter. It analyzes linguistic tells to rate users' levels of narcissism, machiavellianism and other similarities to Patrick Bateman. “The FBI could use this to flag potential wrongdoers, but I think it’s much more compelling for psychologists to use to understand large communities of people,” says Chris Sumner of the Online Privacy Foundation

Some of the Twitter clues: Curse words. Angry responses to other people, including swearing and use of the word “hate.” Using the word “we.” Using periods. Using filler words such as “blah” and “I mean” and “um.”

So, um, yeah.

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Android

Submission + - Nokia Lumia shipments beat iPhone, Samsung Android phones through first Qs-> 1 1

zacharye writes: Nokia (NOK) has hit a bit of a rough patch lately, having just reported its third consecutive billion-dollar quarterly loss earlier this week. Of course, investors saw some promise in Nokia’s earnings report, and it turns out there may be even more cause for optimism than they initially thought. According to market research firm Strategy Analytics, Nokia’s Windows Phone efforts are off to a better start than Apple’s (AAPL) iPhone or Samsung’s (005930KS) Android smartphones at this point in their respective product cycles...
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