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Submission + - Popular WiFi thermostat full of security holes (threatpost.com)

cybergibbons writes: Heatmiser, a U.K.-based manufacturer of digital thermostats, is contacting its customers today about a series of security issues that could expose a Wi-Fi-connected version of its product to takeover.

Andrew Tierney, a “reverse-engineer by night,” whose specialty is digging up bugs in embedded systems wrote on his blog cybergibbons.com, that he initially read about vulnerabilities in another one of the company’s products, NetMonitor, and decided to poke around its product line further.

This led him to discover a slew of issues in the company’s Wi-Fi-enabled thermostats running firmware version 1.2. The issues range from simple security missteps to critical oversights.

Submission + - Snowden's Leaks Didn't Help Terrorists 1

HughPickens.com writes: The Interecept reports that contrary to lurid claims made by U.S. officials, a new independent analysis of Edward Snowden’s revelations on NSA surveillance that examined the frequency of releases and updates of encryption software by jihadi groups has found no correlation in either measure to Snowden’s leaks about the NSA’s surveillance techniques. According to the report "well prior to Edward Snowden, online jihadists were already aware that law enforcement and intelligence agencies were attempting to monitor them (PDF).” In fact, concerns about terrorists' use of sophisticated encryption technology predates even 9/11.

Earlier this month former NSA head Michael Hayden stated, “The changed communications practices and patterns of terrorist groups following the Snowden revelations have impacted our ability to track and monitor these groups”, while Matthew Olsen of the National Counterterrorism Centre would add “Following the disclosure of the stolen NSA documents, terrorists are changing how they communicate to avoid surveillance.” Snowden’s critics have previously accused his actions of contributing from everything from the rise of ISIS to Russia’s invasion of the Ukraine. "This most recent study is the most comprehensive repudiation of these charges to date," says Murtaza Hussain. "Contrary to lurid claims to the contrary, the facts demonstrate that terrorist organizations have not benefited from the NSA revelations, nor have they substantially altered their behavior in response to them."

Submission + - FCC May Raise Broadband Speed Requirements for Subsidies to ISPs 1

An anonymous reader writes: On Wednesday at a hearing in front of the US House Committee on Small Business, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler stated that for ISPs to be eligible for government broadband subsidies, they would have to deliver speeds of at least 10 Mbps. Said Wheeler: "What we are saying is we can't make the mistake of spending the people's money, which is what Universal Service is, to continue to subsidize something that's subpar." He further indicated that he would remedy the situation by the end of 2014. The broadband subsidies are collected through bill surcharges paid for by phone customers.

Submission + - Scientists Twist Radio Beams to Send Data at 32 Gigabits p/s, Faster Than LTE (ibtimes.co.uk) 1

concertina226 writes: Scientists from three international universities have succeeded in twisting radio beams in order to transfer data at the speed of 32 gigabits per second, which is 30 times faster than 4G LTE wireless technology in use today.

The researchers, led by Alan Willner, an electrical engineering professor with the University of Southern California Viterbi School of Engineering, successfully demonstrated data transmission rates of 32 gigabits per second across 2.5m of free space in a basement laboratory.

Millimetre waves occupy the 30GHz to 300GHz frequency bands. They are found in the spectrum between microwaves, which take up the 1GHz to 30GHz bands, and infrared waves, which are sometimes known as extremely high frequency (EHF).

Submission + - Artificial sweeteners may contribute to diabetes (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: When it comes to the sweet stuff, science often turns sour. Almost every study that has linked sugar to problems such as tooth decay, diabetes, obesity, or even childhood violence has come under heavy fire. Nonetheless, the World Health Organization released draft guidelines earlier this year that halved the recommended maximum sugar intake. Now, new research is suggesting that synthetic sweeteners like saccharin might not be a great alternative. They could have a negative effect on gut microbes and thus lead to a higher risk of diabetes, researchers say.

Submission + - Chimpanzees have evolved to kill each other (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: A major new study of warfare in chimpanzees finds that lethal aggression can be evolutionarily beneficial in that species, rewarding the winners with food, mates, and the opportunity to pass along their genes. The findings run contrary to recent claims that chimps fight only if they are stressed by the impact of nearby human activity—and could help explain the origins of human conflict as well.

Submission + - How To Talk Infosec With Kids

An anonymous reader writes: If you’re a parent, chances are you’re concerned about your kids using the Internet. Many of those working in tech don’t talk about the dangers they see on their screens at work back at home with their kids. Instead, their strategy is a mixture of hope and worry. They hope something bad doesn’t happen to their kids – they don’t click on a bad link – and then they restrict their kids screen time. Often they say their kids won't understand since it’s hard enough to explain tech jobs to most adults. It’s never too early to talk infosec with kids: you simply need the right story.

Submission + - An Independent Scotland Could Grant Edward Snowden Asylum (ibtimes.co.uk)

EwanPalmer writes: A petition which urged Scotland to grant Edward Snowden political asylum will be considered again if the country votes for independence.

The historic 18 September vote could mean Scotland cuts its ties from the rest of the UK and longer claim to be a part of the "special relationship" it shares with the US.

The campaign to allow Snowden asylum into Scotland was discussed in front of Scottish politicians, adding the whislteblower actions were of significance to "every single citizen in Scotland".

Supports also said granting Snowden asylum would signal a "clean break against the intrusiveness of the UK security state".

Submission + - Torvalds says he has no strong opinions on systemd (itwire.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Linux creator Linus Torvalds is well-known for his strong opinions on many technical things. But when it comes to systemd, the init system that has caused a fair degree of angst in the Linux world, Torvalds is neutral.

"When it comes to systemd, you may expect me to have lots of colourful opinions, and I just don't," Torvalds says. "I don't personally mind systemd, and in fact my main desktop and laptop both run it."

Submission + - Rebooting the Full Disclosure List

An anonymous reader writes: Hi Folks. This is a one-time email to everyone who posted to Full Disclosure since the start of 2013. As an F-D subscriber and occasional poster myself, I was as shocked as you all last week when John Cartwright threw in the towel and shuttered the list (http://seclists.org/fulldisclosure/2014/Mar/332).

Now I don't blame him one bit. He performed a thankless job admirably for 12 years and deserves some time off. But I, for one, already miss Full Disclosure. So I decided to make a new list today which is a successor in name and spirit. Like the old one, it uses Mailman and is being archived by my Seclists.org site as well as numerous other archives around the world.

This list is a fresh start, so the old userbase won't automatically transfer over. And I haven't added any of you either, because it is your choice. But IF YOU WANT TO JOIN THE NEW LIST, you can do so here:

http://nmap.org/mailman/listin...

The list launched just 7 hours ago and we already have 904 members subscribed. I hope you'll join us and resume posting your security info and advisories. If not now, then someday :).

Cheers,
Fyodor

Submission + - Discrete Log Problem Breakthrough Threatens Crypto

tbonefrog writes: Cryptographic ground truth is changing fast. In February Antoine Joux produced a new record subexponential discrete logarithm algorithm running at L(1/4) speed and beating the long-standing L(1/3) mark. On June 20 a quasipolynomial algorithm was announced at the Workshop on Number-Theoretic Algorithms for Asymmetric Cryptology in France, and explained by Stephen Galbraith

Discrete logarithm and factoring are different problems but progress on one tends to lead to progress in the other. Get a paper bank statement mailed to you each month, order some paper checks, and buy stamps and envelopes for paying your bills via snail mail.

Submission + - Harlan: A language that simplifies GPU programming released (paritynews.com) 1

hypnosec writes: Harlan – a declarative programming language that simplifies development of applications running on GPU has been released by a researcher at Indian University. Erik Holk released his work publicly after working on it for two years. Harlan’s syntax is based on Scheme – a dialect of LISP programming language. The language aims to help developers make productive and efficient use of GPUs by enabling them to carry out their actual work while it takes care of the routine GPU programming tasks. The language has been designed to support GPU programming and it works much closer to the hardware.
Linux

Submission + - RIP Compiz (techrepublic.com)

vst writes: From the article: "This is not 100% confirmed, but the news that Fedora is dropping Compiz from release 17 can only mean one thing — Compiz is dead. Gentoo, openSUSE, GNOME, and a list of others had already dropped Compiz, leaving only one distribution holding onto the compositing software — Ubuntu."
Earth

Submission + - Alaskan tests to use waste CO2 to flush out natura (nature.com)

ananyo writes: This month, scientists will test a new way to extract methane from beneath the frozen soil of Alaska: they will use waste carbon dioxide from conventional wells to force out the desired natural gas.

The pilot experiment will explore the possibility of ‘mining’ from gas hydrates: cages of water ice that hold molecules of methane. Such hydrates exist under the sea floor and in sandstone deep beneath the Arctic tundra, holding potentially vast reserves of natural gas. But getting the gas out is tricky and expensive.

The test is to be run by the US Department of Energy (DOE), in conjunction with ConocoPhillips, an oil company based in Houston, Texas, and the Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation. The researchers will pump CO2 down a well in Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, into a hydrate deposit. If all goes as planned, the CO2 molecules will exchange with the methane in the hydrates, leaving the water crystals intact and freeing the methane to flow up the well.

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