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Submission + - 'Calibration error' changes GOP votes to Dem in Illinois (

Okian Warrior writes: Early voting in Illinois got off to a rocky start Monday, as votes being cast for Republican candidates were transformed into votes for Democrats.

Republican state representative candidate Jim Moynihan: “I tried to cast a vote for myself and instead it cast the vote for my opponent,” Moynihan said. “You could imagine my surprise as the same thing happened with a number of races when I tried to vote for a Republican and the machine registered a vote for a Democrat.”

The conservative website Illinois Review reported that “While using a touch screen voting machine in Schaumburg, Moynihan voted for several races on the ballot, only to find that whenever he voted for a Republican candidate, the machine registered the vote for a Democrat in the same race. He notified the election judge at his polling place and demonstrated that it continued to cast a vote for the opposing candidate’s party. Moynihan was eventually allowed to vote for Republican candidates, including his own race.

Submission + - "Most serious" Linux privilege-escalation bug ever is under active exploit (

operator_error writes: Lurking in the kernel for nine years, flaw gives untrusted users unfettered root access.

By Dan Goodin — 10/20/2016

A serious vulnerability that has been present for nine years in virtually all versions of the Linux operating system is under active exploit, according to researchers who are advising users to install a patch as soon as possible.

While CVE-2016-5195, as the bug is cataloged, amounts to a mere privilege-escalation vulnerability rather than a more serious code-execution vulnerability, there are several reasons many researchers are taking it extremely seriously. For one thing, it's not hard to develop exploits that work reliably. For another, the flaw is located in a section of the Linux kernel that's a part of virtually every distribution of the open-source OS released for almost a decade. What's more, researchers have discovered attack code that indicates the vulnerability is being actively and maliciously exploited in the wild.

"It's probably the most serious Linux local privilege escalation ever," Dan Rosenberg, a senior researcher at Azimuth Security, told Ars. "The nature of the vulnerability lends itself to extremely reliable exploitation. This vulnerability has been present for nine years, which is an extremely long period of time."

The underlying bug was patched this week by the maintainers of the official Linux kernel. Downstream distributors are in the process of releasing updates that incorporate the fix. Red Hat has classified the vulnerability as "important."

Submission + - SPAM: Google's Eric Schmidt Working Directly With the Clinton Campaign

An anonymous reader writes: Eric Schmidt, the chief executive of Alphabet, Google’s parent company, is working directly with Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, according to a memo contained within an email released by WikiLeaks.

“Discreet conversations” of forming “working relationships” with companies such as Facebook and Apple were also facilitated as early as October 2014, the memo stated. This is at least six months prior to when Clinton announced her candidacy for president.

The document was attached to an Oct. 26, 2014 email sent from Robby Mook, now Clinton’s campaign manager, to Cheryl Mills, a longtime Clinton aide; David Plouffe, Barack Obama’s previous campaign manager; and John Podesta, Clinton’s current campaign chairman whose email account was compromised.

The email was posted to Wikileaks after hackers believed to be working with the Russian government breached Podesta’s email account.

Link to Original Source

Submission + - Archaeology team uses cosmic muons to discover 2 new rooms in the Great Pyramid (

drdread66 writes: Muography is an established technique that uses the constant global background of muons (the much heavier cousin of the electron, created during interactions between cosmic rays and the Earth's atmosphere) as an illumination source that can penetrate even dense, thick structures. This technique has been used to probe the structure inside the damaged nuclear reactor at Fukushima, image Mt. Vesuvius, and to study other pyramids. Now this technique has yielded evidence of new "voids" inside the Great Pyramid of Giza.

From the article: "Egypt's Great Pyramid of Giza could contain two previously unknown "cavities", scientists using radiography to scan the millennia-old monument said on Saturday. On Thursday, the antiquities ministry cautiously announced finding "two anomalies" in the pyramid built 4,500 years ago under King Khufu, with further tests to determine their function, nature and size."

Submission + - WikiLeaks says Assange's internet link was severed by 'state party' (

retroworks writes: WikiLeaks said Monday that its founder Julian Assange’s internet link was severed by a “state party” and that “appropriate contingency plans” were activated.

The website’s announcement came hours after it published three cryptic tweets. The messages referenced Ecuador, Secretary of State John Kerry and the United Kingdom’s Foreign Commonwealth Office. Each tweet was matched with a string of numbers. Rumors on Reddit and Twitter said that the numbers triggered a so-called “dead man’s switch,” which could be enacted in case Assange did die. Gizmodo reported that such switches do exist,

Submission + - Outsourced IT workers ask Sen. Feinstein for help, get form letter in return (

dcblogs writes: A University of California IT employee whose job is being outsourced to India recently wrote Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) for help. Feinstein's office sent back a letter addressing manufacturing job losses, not IT, and offered the worker no assistance. "I am being asked to do knowledge transfer to a foreigner so they can take over my job in February of 2017," the employee, wrote in part. The employee is part of a group of 50 IT workers and another 30 contractors facing layoffs after the university hired an offshore outsourcing firm. The firm, India-based HCL, won a contract to manage infrastructure services. Since the layoffs became public, the school has posted Labor Condition Applications (LCA) notices — as required by federal law when H-1B workers are being placed. UCSF employees have seen these notices and made some available to Computerworld. They show that the jobs posted are for programmer analyst II and network administrator IV. For the existing UCSF employees, the notices were disheartening. "Many of us can easily fill the job. We are training them to replace us," said one employee who requested anonymity because he is still employed by the university.

Submission + - SPAM: Children inherit their intelligence from their mother not their father

schwit1 writes: A mother's genetics determines how clever her children are, according to researchers, and the father makes no difference.

Women are more likely to transmit intelligence genes to their children because they are carried on the X chromosome and women have two of these, while men only have one.

But in addition to this, scientists now believe genes for advanced cognitive functions which are inherited from the father may be automatically deactivated.

A category of genes known as “conditioned genes” are thought to work only if they come from the mother in some cases and the father in other cases. Intelligence is believed to be among the conditioned genes that have to come from the mother.

Link to Original Source

Submission + - SPAM: Mass. Natnal Guard, State Police raid 81-year-old's home, seize single Pot Plant

schwit1 writes: All that remains of the solitary marijuana plant an 81-year-old grandmother had been growing behind her South Amherst home is a stump and a ragged hole in the ground.

Margaret Holcomb said she was growing the plant as medicine, a way to ease arthritis and glaucoma and help her sleep at night. Tucked away in a raspberry patch and separated by a fence from any neighbors, the plant was nearly ready for harvest when a military-style helicopter and police descended on Sept. 21.

Link to Original Source

Submission + - FBI agreed to destroy laptops of Clinton aides with immunity deal (

An anonymous reader writes: Immunity deals for two top Hillary Clinton aides included a side arrangement obliging the FBI to destroy their laptops after reviewing the devices, House Judiciary Committee sources told Fox News on Monday

Sources said the arrangement with former Clinton chief of staff Cheryl Mills and ex-campaign staffer Heather Samuelson also limited the search to no later than Jan. 31, 2015. This meant investigators could not review documents for the period after the email server became public — in turn preventing the bureau from discovering if there was any evidence of obstruction of justice, sources said.

The Republican-led House Judiciary Committee fired off a letter Monday to Attorney General Loretta Lynch asking why the DOJ and FBI agreed to the restrictive terms, including that the FBI would destroy the laptops after finishing the search.

Submission + - Feds ask local police to scan license plates of cars parked at gun shows (

SonicSpike writes: Federal agents have persuaded police officers to scan license plates to gather information about gun-show customers, government emails show, raising questions about how officials monitor constitutionally protected activity.

Emails reviewed by The Wall Street Journal show agents with the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency crafted a plan in 2010 to use license-plate readers—devices that record the plate numbers of all passing cars—at gun shows in Southern California, including one in Del Mar, not far from the Mexican border.

Agents then compared that information to cars that crossed the border, hoping to find gun smugglers, according to the documents and interviews with law-enforcement officials with knowledge of the operation.

The investigative tactic concerns privacy and guns-rights advocates, who call it an invasion of privacy. The law-enforcement officials say it is an important and legal tool for pursuing dangerous, hard-to-track illegal activity.

There is no indication the gun-show surveillance led to any arrests or investigative leads, but the officials didn’t rule out that such surveillance may have happened elsewhere. The agency has no written policy on its use of license-plate readers and could engage in similar surveillance in the future, they said.

Jay Stanley, a lawyer at the American Civil Liberties Union, said the gun-show surveillance “highlights the problem with mass collection of data.” He said law enforcement can take two entirely legal activities, like buying guns and crossing the border, “and because those two activities in concert fit somebody’s idea of a crime, a person becomes inherently suspicious.”

John Chigos, CEO of PlateSmart Technologies, Inc., which sells license-plate-reader systems, said the devices help protect the public but he called it “an abuse of the technology’’ to target gun-show shoppers.

Submission + - (Not Quite) Open Source Hardware? 1

Ichijo writes: One hardware project that calls itself "open source" doesn't want to make its hardware design source files publicly available because doing so would, in their words, "make it very trivial for e.g Chinese companies to start producing cheap clones... we’d be getting support requests for hardware we had no idea of the quality of." This answer was in response to a request by a user who wants to use the design in his own projects.

Have any other open source hardware projects run into support issues from people owning cheap "clones"? Have clones been produced even without the hardware design source files?

Submission + - FBI Agent Posing As Journalist To Deliver Malware To Suspect Was Fine, Says DOJ (

An anonymous reader writes: In 2007, an FBI agent impersonated an Associated Press journalist in order to deliver malware to a criminal suspect and find out his location. According to a newly published report from the Department of Justice, the operation was in line with the FBI's undercover policies at the time. Journalistic organizations had expressed concern that the tactic could undermine reporters’ and media institutions’ credibility. The case concerned a Seattle teenager suspected of sending bomb threats against a local school. FBI Special Agent Mason Grant got in touch with the teen over email, pretending to be an AP journalist. After some back and forth, Grant sent the suspect a fake article which, when clicked, grabbed his real IP address. Armed with this information, the FBI identified and arrested the suspect. The Associated Press, the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, and other journalistic organizations condemned the move. They pointed out that an FBI agent posing as a reporter could create distrust between legitimate journalists and sources, and also raised issues with the way the malware was distributed through a fake news story. The new Department of Justice report noted that, today, this activity would require greater authorization, under an interim policy on impersonating members of the media that was adopted by the FBI this June. Now, for the agency to pretend to be a journalist as part of an undercover operation, an application must be made by the head of an FBI field office to the agency's main headquarters, reviewed by the Undercover Review Committee, and then approved by the deputy director, after discussion with the deputy attorney general.

Submission + - Clinton dodges H-1B question, but Trump wants changes

overThruster writes: Computerworld reports: "Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump responded to series of questions about science policy, including two questions on immigration.

What the answers reveal is this: Clinton and Trump are as divided as night and day on H-1B reforms. Trump supports reform and U.S. worker protections; Clinton simply avoided answering the question."

"Clinton didn't answer the H-1B question, which is consistent. The H-1B issue isn't addressed in her platform or in her speeches.

For his part, Trump said that when U.S. workers are pushed out of jobs and replaced by cheaper labor, "something is wrong." He wants the visa used for filling positions that can’t be filled by U.S. citizens and permanent residents."

Submission + - SPAM: EU copyright overhaul sparks cultural 'apocalypse' warnings

schwit1 writes: Is the EU, with Brexit and migration already in its cross-hairs, about to launch war on Europe's digital start-ups and entertainers? The commission, the EU's powerful executive arm, is preparing to unveil a radical overhaul of copyright law in Europe, a leaked draft of which has already attracted the fury of artists and investors who see it as a threat to European culture and innovation.

One of the most divisive proposals is a push to make national broadcasters, such as Sky in the UK or RTL in Germany, to provide online content — including films or sports — Europe-wide, instead of just at home.

Another change would force internet portals such as Google or Reddit to pay newspaper publishers a licence fee when using small extracts or snippets of news content — most notably on Google News or Huffington Post.

In another highly criticised change, the commission is asking that video platforms, such as Youtube or even Facebook, use technology that can track violations of copyright and shut them down.

Link to Original Source

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