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Submission + - Investigation Finds Inmates Built Computers, Hid Them In Prison Ceiling (cbs6albany.com)

An anonymous reader writes: The discovery of two working computers hidden in a ceiling at the Marion Correctional Institution prompted an investigation by the state into how inmates got access. In late July, 2015 staff at the prison discovered the computers hidden on a plywood board in the ceiling above a training room closet. The computers were also connected to the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction's network. Authorities say they were first tipped off to a possible problem in July, when their computer network support team got an alert that a computer "exceeded a daily internet usage threshold." When they checked the login being used, they discovered an employee's credentials were being used on days he wasn't scheduled to work. That's when they tracked down where the connection was coming from and alerted Marion Correctional Institution of a possible problem. Investigators say there was lax supervision at the prison, which gave inmates the ability to build computers from parts, get them through security checks, and hide them in the ceiling. The inmates were also able to run cabling, connecting the computers to the prison's network.

Submission + - Google Ruins the Assistant's Shopping List, Turns It Into a Google Express Ad (arstechnica.com)

An anonymous reader writes: The Google Assistant, Google's voice assistant that powers the Google app on Android phones, tablets, and Google Home, has just gotten a major downgrade. In a move reminiscent of all the forced and user-hostile Google+ integrations, Google has gutted the Google Assistant's shopping list functionality in order to turn it into a big advertisement for Google's shopping site, Google Express. The shopping list has been a major feature of the Google Assistant. You can say "Add milk to my shopping list," and the Google Assistant would dutifully store this information somewhere. The shopping list used to live in Google Keep. Keep is Google's primary note-taking app, making it a natural home for the shopping list with lots of useful tools and management options. Now the shopping list lives in Google Express. Express is an online shopping site, and it has no business becoming a dedicated place to store a shopping list that probably has nothing to do with Google's online marketplace. Since Google Express is an online shopping site (and, again, has no business having a note-taking app grafted onto it), the move from Keep to Google Express means the Assistant's shopping list functionality loses the following features: Being able to reorder items with drag and drop.
Reminders; Adding images to the shopping list; Adding voice recordings to the shopping list; Real time collaboration with other users (Express has sharing, but you can't see other people as they type—you have to refresh.); Android Wear integration; Desktop keyboard shortcuts; Checkbox management: deleting all checked items, unchecking all items, hiding checkboxes. Alternatively, the move from Keep to Google Express means the Assistant shopping list gains the following features: Google Express advertising next to every list item; Google Express advertising at the bottom of the page.

Submission + - The Kodi development team wants to be legitimate and bring DRM to the platform. (torrentfreak.com)

pecosdave writes: The XBMC/ Kodi development team has taken a lot of heat over the years, mostly due to third party developers introducing piracy plugins to the platform, then in many cases cheap Android computers are often sold with these plugins pre-installed with the Kodi or XBMC name attached to them. The Kodi team is not happy about this, and has taken the fight to the sellers. The Kodi team is now trying to work with rights holders to introduce DRM and legitimate plugins to the platform. Is this the first step towards creating a true one-stop do it yourself Linux entertainment system?

Submission + - How Google Book Search Got Lost (backchannel.com)

mirandakatz writes: When Google started its Book Search project nearly 15 years ago, it seemed impossibly ambitious: An upstart tech company that had just tamed and organized the vast informational jungle of the web would now extend the reach of its search box into the offline world. It was the company's first real moonshot, aspiring to make all the world's books digitally accessible—and in doing so, somehow produce a phase-shift in human awareness. But between legal battles and a slowly dwindling sense of ambition, Google Books never achieved those great heights, and today, it's settled into a quiet middle age of sourcing quotes and serving up snippets of text from the 25 million-plus tomes in its database. At Backchannel, Scott Rosenberg chronicles the project's rise and fall, writing that "Google employees maintain this is all they ever intended to achieve. Maybe so. But they sure got everyone else’s hopes up."

Submission + - SPAM: Exploit Revealed For Remote Root Access Vulnerability Affecting Many Routers

Orome1 writes: Back in January 2013, researchers from application security services firm DefenseCode unearthed a remote root access vulnerability in the default installation of some Cisco Linksys (now Belkin) routers. The flaw was actually found in Broadcom’s UPnP implementation used in popular routers, and ultimately the researchers extended the list of vulnerable routers to encompass devices manufactured by the likes of ASUS, D-Link, Zyxel, US Robotics, TP-Link, Netgear, and others. Since there were millions of vulnerable devices out there, the researchers refrained from publishing the exploit they created for the flaw, but now, four years later, they’ve released their full research again, and this time they’ve also revealed the exploit.
Link to Original Source

Submission + - Symantec says CIA hacking tools were used in 40 'Longhorn' cyberattacks (betanews.com)

Mark Wilson writes: The CIA's range of hacking tools revealed as part of WikiLeaks' Vault 7 series of leaks have been used to conduct 40 cyberattacks in 16 countries, says Symantec. The security firm alleges that a group known as Longhorn has been using tools that appear to be the very same ones used by the CIA.

While it would be obvious to jump to the conclusion that the CIA was itself responsible for the attacks — and that Longhorn is just a branch of the CIA — Symantec opts for a rather more conservative evaluation of things: "there can be little doubt that Longhorn's activities and the Vault 7 documents are the work of the same group."

In a post on the Symantec Security Response blog, the company provides what it says is the first evidence that the Vault 7 tools have actually been used in cyberattacks or cyberespionage.

Comment Re:A better question to ask (Score 1) 75

"Chad Rigetti, the startup's founder and CEO -- who declined to say whether the company is actually earning any revenue yet." who would also decline to say whether the company is doing proper quantum computing yet.

If he knew how much revenue he was getting, he wouldn't know whether the revenue growth rate was growing or shrinking. How the fark is he supposed to get Series A funding at a good valuation like that? Naw, man, he did it right - assume a given momentum sufficient to get the next round of funding, and who cares about the company's actual market position?

Comment Congratulations,your PC is now a governance device (Score 3, Insightful) 172

The camera "sees" the user and even knows which user it is seeing. The camera then locks the screen immediately when the user is not present.

How long before the computer "sees" the user and notifies the police that they can pick up their known dissident. I mean, really, given the kind of governance we're about to enter into, this (not to mention Alexa-like audio surveillance "features") are the last thing I'd want on any equipment in my home.

And no, I don't have anything to hide. But conversely, I also don't use the restroom in the middle of 5th Avenue. Privacy is a thing, even in a world full of morons who think it isn't.

Comment Re:Strategically important (Score 1) 20

Yes, quite carried away. Your exposition is quite naive in thinking that people think in the scope you think they do. The failure to respond has been repeated historically quite a number of times.

And I think your timing of off by 50+ years, nothing will happen until people are really starving.

Nothing will likely happen until the 0.1% are starving, by which time it will be too late to do anything. The only reason to even hold out what little hope there is, is that people like the grandparent are at least thinking about, and worrying about, these things. If enough do, then real change can happen. Like the outcry that forced the Republicans to back off (at least for now) gutting the House Ethics committee, when the masses do voice their concern, they are heard. Unfortunately we all feel too weak, and too powerless, to make much noise unless things really hit the fan (by which point it is often too late). This is not an accident, and there are very specific reasons we as citizens are constantly made to feel powerless (hint: it benefits those running the show, on whichever side of the aisle).

Comment Re:Here (Score 1) 303

1) The best chair you can find for desk work

I'm in the market. Aeron seems to be the usual "best" recommendation, anything else?

When I auditioned chairs at a previous job, I greatly preferred the Embody (also by Herman Miller) to the Aeron. I probably sat in it for 4-5 years before changing jobs, and was quite happy with it.

Comment DRM paradise (Score 1) 229

While this request has DRM implications I really don't like (lense to screen encryption) and is no doubt an MPAA wet-dream, I unfortunately have to support this, as the clear and present danger to journalists, and the potential for regimes like the Trump Administration, Putin, et. al. to distort or destroy evidence of wrongdoing, demand something like this. At least with encryption journalists can keep their data safe, and if done properly, we can detect changes to the raw video/audio data. Both of which will be critical if we don't permanently want to live in a so-called "post-truth" reality (which really means "nothing but lies, lies, and more lies" reality).

Comment Why? (Score 3, Interesting) 33

This acquisition doesn't make any sense to me. Broadcom is buying all of Brocade, selling off the pieces poised to grow in the wireless and IP networking segments, and keeping the part that serves the shrinking storage-specific networking market? Can somebody explain this to me?

I hope they don't wreck the IP networking and wireless companies. I really like the Brocade VCS fabric stuff and Ruckus wireless kit..

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