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Submission + - Thai police: we'll get you for online social media criticism (

wired_parrot writes: After a leading protester of the recent military coup in Thailand made several critical posts in Facebook criticizing the military takeover, Thailand's Technology Crime Suppression Division tracked his location through his IP address and promptly arrested him.. The arrested was meant to send a message to Thailand's online community. Said the police: "I want to tell any offenders on social media that police will come get you".

Submission + - How Much is Your Gmail Account Worth to Crooks? ( 1

tsu doh nimh writes: If you use Gmail and have ever wondered how much your account might be worth to cyber thieves, have a look at Cloudsweeper, a new OAuth service launching this week that tries to price the value of your Gmail address based on the number of retail accounts you have tied to it and the current resale value of those accounts in the underground. From KrebsOnSecurity: "The brainchild of researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago, Cloudsweeperâ(TM)s account theft audit tool scans your inbox and presents a breakdown of how many accounts connected to that address an attacker could seize if he gained access to your Gmail. Cloudsweeper then tries to put an aggregate price tag on your inbox, a figure thatâ(TM)s computed by totaling the resale value of other account credentials that crooks can steal if they hijack your email."

Submission + - Washington Post: We Were Also Hacked by the Chinese (

tsu doh nimh writes: A sophisticated cyberattack targeted The Washington Post in an operation that resembled intrusions against other major American news organizations and that company officials suspect was the work of Chinese hackers, the publication acknowledged on Friday. The disclosure came just hours after a former Post employee shared information about the break-in with ex-Postie reporter Brian Krebs, and caps a week marked by similar stories from The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. Krebs cites a former Post tech worker saying that the publication gave one of its hacked servers to the National Security Agency for analysis, a claim that the Post's leadership denies. The story also notes that the Post relied on software from Symantec, the same security software that failed to detect intrusions at The New York Times for many months.

Submission + - Ask Slashdot : Best Headphones, Earbuds, Earphones...etc? 1

alexbgreat writes: Given that the users of Slashdot are by far some of the best-qualified most discerning opinion-givers I've ever seen, what do YOU think is the best set of head-mounted loudspeakers for the money, with a cost of less than $50? Some features of these that would be stupendous to have (descending order of importance) : Noise Isolation (Not cancellation), flat/near flat response (I need to be able to hear bass, but I don't need my eardrums blown. I'm looking at you, Beats by Dr. Dre), Long-term comfort (Earbuds usually hurt for me), Durability. Over-ear is preferred to anything on- or in-ear. Boom mics are permissible, as it could very well see time as a broadcast intercom headset.

Submission + - Brainput boosts your brain power by offloading multitasking to a computer (

MrSeb writes: "A group of American researchers from MIT, Indiana University, and Tufts University, led by Erin Treacy Solovey, have developed Brainput — pronounced brain-put, not bra-input — a system that can detect when your brain is trying to multitask, and offload some of that workload to a computer. Using functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS), which is basically a portable, poor man’s version of fMRI, Brainput measures the activity of your brain. This data is analyzed, and if Brainput detects that you’re multitasking, the software kicks in and helps you out. In the case of the Brainput research paper, Solovey and her team set up a maze with two remotely controlled robots. The operator, equipped with fNIRS headgear, has to navigate both robots through the maze simultaneously, constantly switching back and forth between them. When Brainput detects that the driver is multitasking, it tells the robots to use their own sensors to help with navigation. Overall, with Brainput turned on, operator performance improved — and yet they didn’t generally notice that the robots were partially autonomous. Moving forward, Solovey now wants to investigate other cognitive states that can be reliably detected using fNIRS. Imagine a computer that increases the size of buttons and text when you’re tired, or a video game that slows down when you’re stressed. Your Xbox might detect that you’re in the mood for fighting games, and change its splash screen accordingly. Eventually, computer interfaces might completely remold themselves to your mental state."

Submission + - WHOI Researchers, Collaborators Receive $1.4 Million Grant to Study Life in Ocea (

fishmike writes: "A team of scientists from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), University of Hawaii, Whitman College and international colleagues will conduct the first systematic study of life in the deepest marine habitat on Earth-ocean trenches, which are regions of the sea floor ranging from 19,685 to 36,089 feet (6,000 to 11,000 meters)."

Submission + - Researchers Take Down 110k Strong Khelios P2P Botnet (

tsu doh nimh writes: Experts from across the security industry collaborated this week to quarantine more than 110,000 Microsoft Windows PCs that were infected with the Khelios worm, a contagion that forces infected PCs to blast out junk email advertising rogue Internet pharmacies. But within hours of the takedown, miscreants launched Khelios.C, a new version that appears to be spreading via Facebook links.

Submission + - MacControl Trojan Being Used in Targeted Attacks Against OS X Users (

Trailrunner7 writes: Welcome to the age of targeted attacks, Mac users. Perhaps having grown tired of owning Windows machines around the world for the last few years, attackers in China now have taken up the challenge of going after Macs with the same kind of targeted attack tactics that have served them so well in the Windows world.

Researchers have found a new attack that employs two separate pieces of malware, a malicious Word document and some techniques for maintaining persistence on compromised machines, and the campaign is specifically targeted at Mac users. The command-and-control domain involved in the attack is located in China and the attack exploits a three-year-old vulnerability in the way that Office for Mac handles certain Word files, according to researchers at AlienVault, who discovered and analyzed the attacks.


Submission + - Microsoft: Former Antivirus Firm Employe Behind Ke (

tsu doh nimh writes: Microsoft told a U.S. district court in Virginia on Monday that it believes a Russian man named Andrey N. Sabelnikov is the operator of the spam botnet Kelihos, a cousin of the Waledac botnet. Microsoft said Sabelnikov was a former project manager at a company that provides firewall and antivirus software, but didn't name the firm. Brian Krebs has a story that indicates Sabelnikov was a project manager at Agnitum, an antivirus firm in St. Petersburg, and that Microsoft was tipped off to his alleged role after a researcher discovered links back to Sabelnikov's personal web site that was embedded in the Kelihos source code.

Submission + - Smart Power Grids To Treat Energy Like Data (

itwbennett writes: "A Japanese consortium plans to develop large-scale energy grids that will handle power the way the Internet handles data. 'This is a mechanism that will allow electricity to be sent out, or transferred back in any direction as required. This is something that doesn't exist in current smart grids, which are only really used to monitor electricity,' said Rikiya Abe, a Tokyo University professor who serves as representative director of the consortium. The group will build experimental systems next year, and aims to launch large grid services to try out the concept after three years."

Submission + - Giant asteroid crash altered Mercury's spin (

An anonymous reader writes: Mercury may once have orbited the Sun in a synchronous rotation, according to new calculations that suggest a collision with a large asteroid may have knocked Mercury into its unusual orbit.

Submission + - Goodbye Textbooks, Hello iPad (

PolygamousRanchKid writes: Students and teachers in grade school through higher education are using the iPad to augment their lessons or to replace textbooks. Jennifer Kohn’s third grade class at Millstone Elementary School in Millstone, New Jersey, mastered the iPad with minimal training. For the most part, the students didn’t need to be taught how to use their apps, Kohn says.

College students are also turning to the iPad to do what they do instinctively well: saving themselves money. Marianne Petit, a New York University staff member, recently began taking credits in pursuit of another certification, and uses her iPad in place of textbooks. “The price of the iPad pays for itself after a single semester,” Petit said. “iPad books cost so much lessIt’s a legal alternative for students who are using BitTorent [to pirate books].”

Like the PC before it, Kohn noted that the iPad isn’t a panacea for educators: It has its appropriate time and place. “I don’t use them with every lesson or even day. It’s not always appropriate to lesson or objective of what I’m trying to teach,” Kohn noted.

The iPad is less than two years old, and it’s already proving to be a disruptive technology in education. Despite years of talking about going digital, PCs never were a suitable substitution for paper. The iPad and other smart devices just work better. The long reign of the traditional textbook could finally be coming to an end.

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