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Submission + - Google Plus Locks Out Firefox Users, Then Pretends It Didn't Happen (pixelstech.net)

Whuffo writes: People using the latest Firefox releases were presented with a "Your browser is no longer supported" screen when they tried to visit Google Plus on the 10th and 11th of August. The Google Plus support board lit up with hundreds of complaints — which were met with such helpful tips as "use Chrome". It's accessible again as of August 12, but every Google Plus posting concerning this problem has been hidden from view.

Boneheaded coding mistakes happen, even to the giants. But failing to properly test the code and rolling it out on Friday night isn't very smart. What's much worse is their concerted effort to purge the net of any and every bit of information concerning the events of the weekend. Rewrite history, put the "wrong" version into the memory hole.

Submission + - Snowden Comments on Lavabit Incident (slashdot.org)

Nerval's Lobster writes: Government whistleblower Edward Snowden has some choice things to say about the recent controversy surrounding Lavabit. In a statement to The Guardian , he applauded Lavabit’s decision to shut down in response to a government lawsuit while condemning the tech titans’ refusal to do more to lock down users’ data. “America cannot succeed as a country where individuals like Mr. Levison have to relocate their businesses abroad to be successful," he wrote. "Employees and leaders at Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Yahoo, Apple, and the rest of our internet titans must ask themselves why they aren’t fighting for our interests the same way small businesses are. The defense they have offered to this point is that they were compelled by laws they do not agree with, but one day of downtime for the coalition of their services could achieve what a hundred Lavabits could not.” The question now is whether individuals and businesses will stop using cloud-based services they view as vulnerable to surveillance by third parties such as the NSA and FBI. If that becomes the case, it could seriously affect the business models of Google, Microsoft, and other IT firms that have wholeheartedly embraced the cloud in recent years. It also remains to be seen whether more encrypted-services companies follow in Lavabit’s footsteps and shut down.

Submission + - NSA Firing 90% of it's Sysadmins (rt.com)

sl4shd0rk writes: Director of the NSA, Keith Alexander, has decided that the best way to
prevent illegal activity, or rather be witness to it, is to reduce the number of ears and eyes involved. During a monolog at a cybersecurity conference in New York this week, Alexander revealed his plans to cut 90% of the System Administration workforce at the NSA. "What we're in the process of doing — not fast enough — is reducing our system administrators by about 90 percent," he said. Alluding to an issue of mistrust, Alexander further clarified: "At the end of the day it's about people and trust...if they misuse that trust they can cause huge damage.". Apparently, breaking the law and lying about it leaves one without a sense of irony when speaking in public.

Submission + - Lavabit shuts down citing legal interference 2

guises writes: Lavabit, originally envisioned as a privacy-conscious alternative to Gmail, has shuttered. Ladar Levison, the company owner, offers this explanation:

I have been forced to make a difficult decision: to become complicit in crimes against the American people or walk away from nearly ten years of hard work by shutting down Lavabit. After significant soul searching, I have decided to suspend operations. I wish that I could legally share with you the events that led to my decision. I cannot. I feel you deserve to know what’s going on--the first amendment is supposed to guarantee me the freedom to speak out in situations like this. Unfortunately, Congress has passed laws that say otherwise.

Submission + - MS: Windows Phone 8 WiFi Vulnerable, Cannot Be Patched

Freshly Exhumed writes: Microsoft advises that a cryptographic problem in the PEAP-MS-CHAPv2 protocol used in Windows Phone 8 to provide WPA2 authentication allows a victim’s encrypted domain credentials to be collected by an attacker posing as a typical WiFi access point. Redmond further states that this problem cannot be patched, although a set of manually entered configuration changes involving root certificates on all WP8 phones and on WiFi access points will apparently address the issue. WP7.8 phones are likewise vulnerable.

Submission + - LinkedIn Bans Ads with Female Engineers, Says to Show Male Engineers Only (toptal.com)

An anonymous reader writes: LinkedIn asked developer site Toptal.com to take down ads containing real female developers as depicted in the blog post due to user complaints. The story has since been picked up by the Huffington Post, PandoDaily, News.com.au, The India Times and many other international sources causing a furious debate. The ads have since been reinstated, though the furious debate continues on Twitter and blogs. What are your thoughts?

Submission + - Half of TOR Sites Compromised, Including TORMail. (twitlonger.com)

elysiuan writes: "The founder of Freedom Hosting has been arrested in Ireland and is awaiting extradition to USA.

In a crackdown that FBI claims to be about hunting down pedophiles, half of the onion sites in the TOR network has been compromised, including the e-mail counterpart of TOR deep web, TORmail"

The FBI has also embedded a 0-day Javascript attack against Firefox 17 on Freedom Hosting's server. It appears to install a tracking cookie and a payload that phones home to the FBI when the victim resumes non-TOR browsing. Interesting implications for The Silk Road and the value of Bitcoin stemming from this. The attack relies on two extremely unsafe practices when using TOR: Enabled Javascript, and using the same browser for TOR and non-TOR browsing. Any users accessing a Freedom Hosting hosted site since 8/2 with javascript enabled are potentially compromised.

Submission + - Obama administration vetoes ITC import ban for iPhone/iPad (allthingsd.com)

An anonymous reader writes: On saturday the Obama administration vetoed an import ban for the iPhone 4 & iPad 1 +2. Just hours before the deadline. The iPhone 4S, 5 and the iPads 3+4 were not affected by the import ban 'cause they use a different chipset.
In addition the veto states expressively to pay adhere to FRAND conditions. Furthermore the ITC should consider the impact of SEPs more thoroughly and SEPs shall not be used to block competing products. It's the first time since 1987 that a US administration has vetoed a decision of the ITC.

Submission + - Here's why PBS, the most trusted American public institution, won't do Android

bogaboga writes: You might be wondering why this American institution PBS, doesn't have a compelling Android footprint. I was wondering too; until they provided the answer. I have read their missive and I am left wondering whether they didin't find support for various screen sizes on Android developer website. Are their concerns legit? What company has developed Android applications that are a beauty to work with on various screen sizes? How can we debunk this stereotype about Android?

Submission + - UK Security Research Blocked By Injunction (scmagazineuk.com)

An anonymous reader writes: A lecturer from Birmingham's research has received a high court injunction in favour of volkswagen stopping him from publishing vulnerabilities in their immobiliser at this year's Usenix. This is the first time such an injunction has been used to stifle security research, and has far reaching implications for British security researchers.

Submission + - Microsoft's Math-Challenged STEM Education Contest

theodp writes: As noted earlier, Microsoft is tackling the CS education crisis with a popularity contest that will award $100K in donations to five technology education nonprofits that help make kids technically literate. Hopefully, the nonprofits will teach kids that the contest's voting Leader Board is a particularly good example of what-not-to-do technically. In addition to cherry-picking the less-pathetic vote totals to make its Leader Board, Microsoft also uses some dubious rounding code that transforms the original voting data into misleading percentages. Indeed, developer tools reveal that the top five leaders in the Microsoft STEM education contest miraculously account for 130% of the vote. Let's hope the quality control is better for those Microsoft Surface voting machines!

Submission + - Edward Snowden's not the story. The fate of the internet is (guardiannews.com)

An anonymous reader writes: The press has lost the plot over the Snowden revelations. The fact is that the net is finished as a global network and that US firms' cloud services cannot be trusted. The obvious explanations are: incorrigible ignorance; the imperative to personalise stories; or gullibility in swallowing US government spin, which brands Snowden as a spy rather than a whistleblower.

Submission + - UPDATED EDIT: A Circular New York City Subway Map to Straighten Things Out (vice.com)

Daniel_Stuckey writes: The U.K.'s Max Roberts, a mapmaker and critic, has created a map that sees this problem and then solves it by adopting a similar distortion strategy to the MTA map, but to a far greater degree. The map heads in the direction of a diagram and away from a map representing features. It may be the most lucid reinterpretation of the New York City subway map I've seen yet.

Submission + - Oracle takes down Solaris clones, Illumos.org, withcopyright/DMCA (sunhelp.org)

An anonymous reader writes: Oracle has taken on the Solaris clones — Illumos.org is now down per court order because it "violates" Oracle copyrights, citing they are violating the license agreement which prohibits 3rd-party OS support!
Oracle doesn't care that it, or better SUN, gave away the sources under the CDDL copyleftin the first place.

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