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Security

Laws Threaten Web Security Researchers 42

ancientribe writes "A new report from a Computer Security Institute (CSI) working group of Web researchers, computer crime law experts, and U.S. Department of Justice agents explores the effects of laws that might hinder Web vulnerability research. The report, which the group will present on Monday at CSI's NetSec conference, has some chilling findings about how fear of prosecution is muzzling some Web researchers from disclosing to Website operators security holes they find. The bad news is the laws may inadvertently hurt the ethical researchers and help the bad guys."
The Courts

TorrentSpy Ordered By Judge to Become MPAA Spy 372

PC Guy writes "TorrentSpy, one of the world's largest BitTorrent sites, has been ordered by a federal judge to monitor its users. They are asked to keep detailed logs of their activities which must then be handed over to the MPAA. Ira Rothken, TorrentSpy's attorney responded to the news by stating: 'It is likely that TorrentSpy would turn off access to the U.S. before tracking its users. If this order were allowed to stand, it would mean that Web sites can be required by discovery judges to track what their users do even if their privacy policy says otherwise.'"
The Courts

Submission + - Decrypting DVDs to be legalized in Finland/EU

Lasse writes: "Finland has one of the hardest implementations of the EUCD copyright directive, and it is now being tested in the Finnish Court. Basically the law currently criminalizes decryption and bypassing of copy protection mechanisms. It also bans the distribution of decryption tools, and even organized debate of copy protection decryption. On the 25th of May the District Court of Helsinki ruled that decrypting the CSS protection, which is used on almost every DVD video disc, is not a criminal act.

The Court had some valid arguments in their decision, as they did not see the CSS as an effective copy protection mechanics, due to the fact that decryption tools are so widely available for the public. This ruling may have some interesting side effects, as Blu-ray and HD-DVD decryption tools become more widely available, then they cant be considered as effective protection mechanisms either?

http://www.bitburners.com/The_News/Lawsuits_and_Le gal_Issues/Decrypting_DVDs_to_be_legalized_in_Finl and%10European_Union?/"
Security

Submission + - Linux Volume Encryption: TrueCrypt vs DM_Crypt

michuk writes: "Encrypting your data is the key to mobile security. PolishLinux.org has a couple of tutorials comparing DM_Crypt with TrueCrypt — two programs that can save your life when your computer gets lost or stolen. Find the differences between these two and encrypt your disk now! Tip: DM_Crypt better integrates with Linux kernel, but TrueCrypt works on Windows as well."
Sony

Submission + - Announcing Sony PSP Java client

DickyDick1969 writes: "Announcing the first PSP Graphic Java client. Ever wanted to play those mobile java games on your Sony PSP, or develop in your favorite OO language on your handheld? Now you can!!, based on the KVM and Java J2ME midp reference implementation I created PeeJay MIDP. With PeeJay you can enjoy mobile games amd other MIDP 2.0 complient J2ME applets (midlets) on your PSP. This first alpha version you can download for free at http://www.pimpware.org/ also home of the famous video PSP streamer PiMPStreamer!"

Feed Best Buy sued over shady intranet site (engadget.com)

Filed under: Misc. Gadgets

Tsk, tsk. Looks like Best Buy will indeed be paying up for the misdeeds involving that dodgy intranet we saw a few months back. Connecticut's attorney general announced a lawsuit against the big box retailer and accused it of "deceiving customers with in-store computer kiosks and overcharging them." Attorney General Richard Blumenthal was quoted as saying that the store "gave consumers the worst deal with a bait-and-switch-plus scheme luring consumers into stores with promised online discounts, only to charge higher in-store prices." The suit seeks "refunds for consumers, civil penalties, court costs, a ban on the practice, and other remedies," and while Best Buy spokespersons are vigorously denying the allegations, Connecticut's consumer protection commissioner even said that there was "certainly an element of deception here." Reportedly, the in-store kiosks were somehow an "alternate way to get information about products," but when that information ends up costing your customers more than they should be paying, we doubt the judge will look kindly upon it.

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Office Depot Featured Gadget: Xbox 360 Platinum System Packs the power to bring games to life!


Media

CSS of DVDs Ruled 'Ineffective' by Finnish Courts 222

An anonymous reader writes "The CSS protection used in DVDs has been ruled "ineffective" by Helsinki District Court. This means that CSS is not covered by the Finnish copyright law amendment of 2005 (based on EU Copyright Directive from 2001), allowing it to be freely circumvented. Quoting the press release: ' The conclusions of the court can be applied all over Europe since the word effective comes directly from the directive ... A protection measure is no longer effective, when there is widely available end-user software implementing a circumvention method. My understanding is that this is not technology-dependent. The decision can therefore be applied to Blu-Ray and HD-DVD as well in the future.'"
Software

Submission + - How "Hot" is Your Code?

charpointer writes: ""Computer Science researchers at Virginia Tech have set their sights on determining software "hotness". In 2006, Prof. Kirk W. Cameron, director of the SCAPE Laboratory and an Associate Professor at VT, began a project to determine just how much heat software produces. Prof. Cameron and student Hari K. Pyla designed a software tool called Tempest (for Temperature Estimator) that creates a thermal profile of an application and correlates temperatures obtained from thermal sensors in the system to source code." Tempest can be freely downloaded for non-commercial use at http://scape.cs.vt.edu/?q=node/7 or at http://sourceforge.net./ For more information read http://www.hpcwire.com/hpc/1582393.html or http://www.cs.vt.edu/whatsnews/how_hot_is_your_cod e__2.html
Education

Top 10 Dead (or Dying) Computer Skills 766

Lucas123 writes "Computerworld reporter Mary Brandel spoke with academics and head hunters to compile this list of computer skills that are dying but may not yet have taken their last gasp. The article's message: Obsolescence is a relative — not absolute — term in the world of technology. 'In the early 1990s, it was all the rage to become a Certified NetWare Engineer, especially with Novell Inc. enjoying 90% market share for PC-based servers. "It seems like it happened overnight. Everyone had Novell, and within a two-year period, they'd all switched to NT," says David Hayes, president of HireMinds LLC in Cambridge, Mass.'"
The Internet

The Pirate Bay Finds Permanent Home 103

SlashRating©
8675309
slashdottit! tm
C4st13v4n14 writes "The Pirate Bay finally gets permanent hosting and immunity against foreign copyright holders." No clue how long this latest arrangement will hold out, or if copyright holders will be able to touch them while they are hosted in their new location. I wonder what the deal looked like to get this done. Strange bedfellows indeed.
Microsoft

Microsoft Apologizes for Serving Malware 171

dark_15 writes "Microsoft has apologized for serving malware via its websites and Windows Live Messenger software. APC reader Jackie Murphy reported the problem: 'With Microsoft launching Vista along with their Defender software to protect users from viruses and spyware, it seems therefore to be an oxymoron that they have started to putting paid changing banner advertisements for malware, on the popular MSN groups servers.'"
Security

Auditors Report FBI Fails in Tracking Lost Laptops 76

An anonymous reader writes "The Department of Justice's Office of Inspector General is reporting that the FBI has lackluster performance when it comes to tracking data lost on missing laptops. In a recent 44-month audit (ending in Sept. 2005), the FBI reported 160 lost or stolen machines. Of those, ten were confirmed to have sensitive info. A startling 51 of these machines had unknown information — in other words the FBI never knew what they lost. Some of these machines likely contained some of the most sensitive security information the FBI has, as there were several in the bunch that belonged to members of the Counterintelligence and Counterterrorism Divisions. But the FBI was never able to properly respond to these losses because someone didn't fill out the right paperwork. The OIG has a copy of the audit (pdf) for public consumption."
Windows

Vista Casts A Pall On PC Gaming? 425

simoniker writes "In an opinion piece, casual game publisher WildTangent's CEO Alex St. John (himself a Microsoft veteran and one of the DirectX creators) has sharply criticized some of Windows Vista's features as they related to video game creation, noting: 'We have found many of the security changes planned for Vista alarming and likely to present sweeping challenges for PC gaming, especially for online distributed games. The central change that impacts all downloadable applications in Vista is the introduction of Limited User Accounts. LUA's can already be found in Windows XP, but nobody uses them because of the onerous restrictions they place on usability. In Vista, LUA's are mandatory and inescapable.'" Meanwhile, the word has also come down that games will be on the Zune by Summer of next year.

Looking Beyond Vista To Fiji and Vienna 600

Vinit wrote in with an article that describes Microsoft's strategy for future versions of Windows. It begins: "As we all know that Microsoft Vista was originally scheduled to be released in 2003, after two years of Windows XP, but it got delayed by over five years due to various reasons. Definitely, Vista is very very improved OS over the previous versions, but the delayed in the launch has cost Microsoft, billions of dollars. Now the question at the moment is, what exactly after Vista? Microsoft can't afford to wait another five years for an operating system. People are becoming more aware of the choices they have, and Linux is no longer a hobbyist OS, and that day isn't far away when it becomes simple enough to be a viable alternative to Windows. The competition is fierce. That is why, to stay at the top, Microsoft has planned a 'Vista R2', codenamed 'Fiji' which will be released some time in 2008. And after Fiji, there will be Windows 'Vienna'. Windows Fiji, will not be a totally different OS from Vista; but it will be an add-on. Whereas Vienna will be totally different from Vista."
Privacy

Microsoft Using Personal Data to Target Ads 139

smooth wombat writes "Microsoft is combing personal data with your search habits to produce targeted ads. Users who use Microsoft's Hotmail email service, msn.com news service and other Microsoft-owned sites will see ads specific to their demographic and interests. From the article: 'Microsoft executives say the system works anonymously and they won't pass on people's names or addresses to advertisers. Executives say they want to foster confidence in users to build a long-term business, and one that gives an incentive to not misuse personal details.' "We're in the early days of behavioral targeting but it's an idea whose time has come,' says Simon Andrews, chief digital strategy officer for WPP Group's MindShare, a large buyer of ad time. 'There is a lot of potential to know if people have been looking at specific sites.'"

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