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Comment Re:Just like the Unabomber (Score 2) 427

David's wife recognized the writing; only after an FBI profiler and a scientist in the budding field did all the grunt work and learned to tie all the bits of evidence together, letters, etc.; then decided to publish the manifesto. They knew who it was through the same techniques, they only needed a name.

Submission + - DNA as Malware: a Fascinating Demonstration (

omaha393 writes: Researchers at the University of Washington demonstrated for the first time that">a synthetic strand of DNA can encode malware when sequenced and read out on sequencing software. Due to DNA being made up of bases (A, T, G and C), the unique sequence could be translated into an executable malware program when sequenced. While this threat is not readily relevant, it could be a security flaw that could compromise medical, consumer, and forensic databases. From the Atlantic: 'âoeThe present-day threat is very small, and people donâ(TM)t need to lose sleep immediately,â says Tadayoshi Kohno, a computer security expert who led the team.'

Submission + - Trump Data Firm Worked On Kenyan Election Flooded With Fake News (

tedlistens writes: As Kenya's tense election wrapped up, the opposition leader Raila Odinga called the results “a complete fraud,” claiming the voting system had been hacked to manipulate the outcome. (Hackers used a password taken from a leading election technology official who was found tortured to death last week, he claimed.) Amid concerns about the rampant spread of “fake news”—more than any other election in history, according to one study—and fearful memories of scores of deaths during the 2007 election, it was another seismic development in a fraught election.

Last weekend, staffers at Aristotle, an American data firm working for the opposition party, were deported from the country after what a spokesperson described as an aggressive detention. Among the other foreign companies working on the election is Cambridge Analytica, the data firm behind Donald Trump’s victory, which the ruling party's campaign hired to do polling and data analytics. Their involvement has raised concerns about the safety of personal data after the election, and worries that viral rumors could ignite powder kegs of violence in a country where politics is tied up in ethnic identities.

Submission + - Scientists create DNA-based exploit of a computer system. (

Archeron writes: It seems that scientists at UW-Seattle have managed to encode malware into genomic data allowing them to gain full access to a computer being used to analyze the data. While this may be a highly contrived attack scenario, it does ask the question whether we pay sufficient attention to data-driven exploits, especially where the data is instrument-derived. What other systems could be vulnerable to a tampered raw data source? Perhaps audio and RF analysis systems?

Comment Re:Elon is right. (Score 1) 318

Facebook realized their AI chatbots had created a new language, and right away understood this is not something humans should want AI to do, so they built in a requirement that the AI chatbots only use English.

The problem with AI is not responsible scientists, but greedy mo-fos who are going to eventually use it as they please, the rest of the world be damned. This is the nature of humanity.

Submission + - Roomba's Next Big Step Is Selling Maps of Your Home to the Highest Bidder (

AmiMoJo writes: The Roomba is generally regarded as a cute little robot friend that no one would consider to be a potential menace. But for the last couple of years, the robovacs have been quietly mapping homes to maximize efficiency. Now, the device’s makers plan to sell that data to smart home device manufacturers, turning the friendly robot into a creeping, creepy little spy. While it may seem like the information that a Roomba could gather is minimal, there’s a lot to be gleaned from the maps it’s constantly updating. It knows the floor plan of your home, the basic shape of everything on your floor, what areas require the most maintenance, and how often you require cleaning cycles, along with many other data points.

According to the EULA, sharing with some third parties is optional, unless they are the government or Roomba sells itself or part of itself or reorganizes or goes bankrupt.

Submission + - Stolen laptops lead to potential BitCoin scam

david.emery writes: Washington Post has a story where a laptop stolen from his girlfriend leads police to discover the thief is also involved in a MalWare BitCoin scam. But the story also quotes investigators as wondering why someone with several $M of BitCoins has to steal laptops and pawn inexpensive jewelry.

Submission + - Fourth Ethereum Platform Hacked This Month: Hacker Steals $8.4M From Veritaseum (

An anonymous reader writes: Veritaseum has confirmed today that a hacker stole $8.4 million from the platform's ICO on Sunday, July 23. This is the second ICO hack in the last week and the fourth hack of an Ethereum platform this month. An ICO (Initial Coin Offering) is similar to a classic IPO (Initial Public Offering), but instead of stocks in a company, buyers get tokens in an online platform. Users can keep tokens until the issuing company decides to buy them back, or they can sell the tokens to other users for Ethereum. Veritaseum was holding its ICO over the weekend, allowing users to buy VERI tokens for a product the company was preparing to launch in the realm of financial services.

The hacker breached its systems, stole VERI tokens and immediately dumped them on the market due to the high-demand. The hacker made $8.4 million from the token sale, which he immediately started to launder. In a post-mortem announcement, Middleton posted online today, the Veritaseum CEO said "the amount stolen was miniscule (less than 00.07%) although the dollar amount was quite material." The CEO also suspects that "at least one corporate partner that may have dropped the ball and [might] be liable." Previous Ethereum services hacks include Parity, CoinDash, and Classic Ether Wallet.

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