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The Internet

When Your Backhoe Cuts "Black" Fiber 385

bernieS writes "The Washington Post describes what happens when a construction backhoe accidentally cuts buried fiber so secret that it doesn't appear on public maps — and what happens when the Men in Black SUVs appear out of nowhere. Apparently, the numerous secret fiber and utility lines used by government intelligence agencies are being dug up with increasing frequency with all the increased construction projects in the DC area. It's amazing how quickly they get repaired!"

Cancer Patient Held At Airport For Missing Fingerprints Screenshot-sm 323

A 62-year-old man visiting his relatives in the US was held for four hours by immigration officials after they could not detect his fingerprints because of a cancer drug he was taking. The man was prescribed capecitabine, a drug used to treat cancers in the head, neck, breast, and stomach. Some of the drug's side-effects include chronic inflammation of the palms or soles of the feet, which can cause the skin to peel or bleed. "This can give rise to eradication of fingerprints with time," explained Tan Eng Huat, senior consultant in the medical oncology department at Singapore's National Cancer Center. "Theoretically, if you stop the drug, it will grow back, but details are scanty. No one knows the frequency of this occurrence among patients taking this drug and nobody knows how long a person must be on this drug before the loss of fingerprints," he added.

Data Breach Exposes RAF Staff To Blackmail 153

Yehuda writes "Wired reports, 'Yet another breach of sensitive, unencrypted data is making news in the United Kingdom. This time the breach puts Royal Air Force staff at serious risk of being targeted for blackmail by foreign intelligence services or others. The breach involves audio recordings with high-ranking air force officers who were being interviewed in-depth for a security clearance. In the interviews, the officers disclosed information about extra-marital affairs, drug abuse, visits to prostitutes, medical conditions, criminal convictions and debt histories — information the military needed to determine their security risk. The recordings were stored on three unencrypted hard drives that disappeared last year.'"

Hard Drive With Clinton-Era Data Missing From Nat'l Archives 180

CWmike writes "An external hard drive that's believed to contain nearly 1TB of data from the Clinton Administration is missing from the US National Archives and Recording Administration (NARA). The drive includes more than 100,000 Social Security numbers and home addresses of people who visited or worked at the White House. Among those whose information is on the list is one of then-Vice President Al Gore's three daughters. The drive also contained details on the security procedures used by the Secret Service at the White House, as well as event logs, social gathering logs, political records and other information from the Clinton administration. Rep. Darrell Issa, (R-Calif.) said the Archives was in the process of converting information from the drive to a digital records system when it apparently disappeared. The hard drive was apparently removed from a secure storage area to a workplace where at least 100 'badge-holders' had access to it, Issa noted."

Man Arrested For Taking Photo of Open ATM 1232

net_shaman writes in with word of a Seattle man who was arrested for taking a photo of an ATM being serviced. "Today I was shopping at the downtown Seattle REI. I was about to buy a Thule hitch mount bike rack. They were out of the piece that locks the bike rack into the hitch. So I was in the customer service line to special order one. It was a long line and while I was waiting, I saw two of guys (employees of Loomis, as I later learned) refilling the ATM. I walked over and took a picture with my iPhone of them and more interestingly of the open ATM. I took the picture because I'm fascinated by the insides of things that we don't normally get to see. ... That was when Officer GE Abed (#6270) spun me around and put handcuffs on me."

Warrantless GPS Tracking Is Legal, Says WI Court 594

PL/SQL Guy writes "A Wisconsin appeals court ruled Thursday that police can attach GPS trackers to cars to secretly track anybody's movements without obtaining search warrants. As the law currently stands, the court said police can mount GPS on cars to track people without violating their constitutional rights — even if the drivers aren't suspects. Officers do not need to get warrants beforehand because GPS tracking does not involve a search or a seizure, wrote Madison Judge Paul Lundsten."

The Secret History of the FBI's Classified Spyware 133

An anonymous reader writes "A sophisticated FBI-produced spyware program has played a crucial behind-the-scenes role in federal investigations into extortion plots, terrorist threats and hacker attacks in cases stretching back at least seven years, according to newly declassified documents obtained by The so-called 'computer and internet protocol address verifier,' or CIPAV, is delivered through links to websites controlled by the FBI, and it silently reports back to a government server in Virginia. Among other cases, the FBI used it to track a Swedish hacker responsible for cracking thousands of computers at national labs and NASA's JPL in 2005."

Slashdot Mentioned In Virginia Terrorism Report 779

megamerican alerted us to a leaked document (PDF) from a Virginia Fusion Center titled "2009 Virginia Terrorism Threat Assessment." The document is marked as "Law Enforcement Sensitive," not to be shown to public. Citizens for Legitimate Government has a write-up. Slashdot gets a mention on page 45 — not as a terrorist organization itself, but as one of the places that members of Anonymous may hang out: "A 'loose coalition of Internet denizens,' Anonymous consists largely of users from multiple internet sites such as 4chan, 711chan, 420chan, Something Awful, Fark, Encyclopedia Dramatica, Slashdot, IRC channels, and YouTube. Other social networking sites are also utilized to mobilize physical protests. ... Anonymous is of interest not only because of the sentiments expressed by affiliates and their potential for physical protest, but because they have innovated the use of e-protests and mobilization. Given the lack of a unifying creed, this movement has the potential to inspire lone wolf behavior in the cyber realms." According to the report, cell phones and digital music players have been used to transfer plans related to criminal activity, and therefore presumably could be grounds for suspicion. Podcasting is also suspicious.

UK Gov't May Track All Facebook Traffic 204

Jack Spine writes "The UK government, which is becoming increasingly Orwellian, has said that it is considering snooping on all social networking traffic including Facebook, MySpace, and bebo. This supposedly anti-terrorist measure may be proposed as part of the Intercept Modernisation Programme according to minister Vernon Coaker, and is exactly the sort of deep packet inspection web inventor Sir Tim Berners-Lee warned about last week. The measure would get around the inconvenience for the government of not being able to snoop on all UK web traffic."

UK Gov. Clueless About Own Internet Blacklist 203

spge writes "Computer Shopper magazine has interviewed the UK Home Office about its relationship with the Internet Watch Foundation and discovered that the government doesn't actually know what the IWF does, although it still plans to force UK ISPs to subscribe to the IWF's blacklist. The main story makes for interesting reading, but the best bit is the full transcript of the interview. Short version: the IWF investigates suspected child porn websites and adds any it finds to a list that ISPs can use to block these sites; wants ISPs to use this list; however, the IWF is not an official government organization, does not appear to have legal permission to view child pornography, and quite possibly is breaking the law by doing so."

Clear Public Satellite Imagery Tantamount to Yelling Fire 230

TechDirt pointed out a recent bit of foolishness as a followup to California Assemblyman Joel Anderson's push to force Google and other online mapping/satellite companies to blur out schools, churches, and government buildings. When pushed, apparently his justification was that leaving these buildings un-obscured is the same as shouting fire. " ran an interview with Anderson, where he attempts to defend his proposed legislation as a matter of public safety. He claims that there is no good reason why anyone would need to clearly see these buildings online, and that it can only be used for bad purposes. [...] Apparently, Anderson is the final determiner of what good people do and what bad people do with online maps."

UK To Mull High Video Game Taxes — To Fight Knife Crime 615

chareverie writes "The Prime Minister of the UK is being urged to impose high taxes on violent video games in an effort to reduce the number of knife-related crime. The request comes from Richard Taylor, who argues that young people 'feel that the law has no control over them. They just feel that they can go on the streets and do whatever they like.' He doesn't have a definitive number on how much to tax on the offensive video games, but says that they should be 'very high.' Rap music is also voiced to be a concern due to the alleged negativity and language. Taylor's son, Damilola Taylor, was killed in November 2000 at the age of 10 by knife stabbing."

UK School Introduces Facial Recognition 214

Penguin_me writes "A UK school has quietly introduced new facial recognition systems for registering students in and out of school: 'HIGH-TECH facial recognition technology has swept aside the old-fashioned signing of the register at a school. Sixth-formers will now have their faces scanned as they arrive in the morning at the City of Ely Community College. It is one of the first schools in the UK to trial the new technology with its students. Face Register uses the latest high-tech gadgets to register students in and out of school in just 1.5 seconds.'"

Calif. Politican Thinks Blurred Online Maps Would Deter Terrorists 597

Hugh Pickens writes "California Assemblyman Joel Anderson plans to introduce a bill to force Google Earth and similar services to blur images of so-called 'soft targets' like schools, hospitals, churches and government buildings to protect them from terrorists. 'All I'm trying to do is stop terrorists,' said Anderson. 'I don't want California to be helping map out future targets for terrorists.' Concerns that detailed satellite imagery and photographs available on Web services could help terrorists plan attacks are not new, with reports that terrorists have used such imagery to carry out attacks in Iraq and Israel, and an Indian court is considering a ban on Google Earth following reports that its imagery played a part in the Mumbai terrorist attacks."

A Surveillance Camera On Every Chicago Street Corner? 311

Mike writes "Chicago Mayor Daley has stated that if his Olympic dreams come true, by 2016 there will be a surveillance camera on 'every street corner in Chicago.' Just like in London, elected officials all over America appear to be happily advancing a 'surveillance society' without regard for civil rights or privacy concerns. Ray Orozco, executive director of Chicago's Office of Emergency Management and Communications is quoted as saying, 'We're going to grow the system until we eventually cover one end of the city to the other.'" Chicago has been developing its surveillance network for some time, but it seems they plan to continue increasing the scale.

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