8/7/2005

Large Spyware theft ring uncovered

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Researchers from a small security software company which goes by the name of Sunbelt Software are said to have uncovered an identity theft ring of epic proportions. Alex Eckelberry, one of Sunbelt’s employees, stated that during the course of one of their investigations into a spyware application named CoolWebSearch, have discovered that users infected with the program are unknowingly having their personal information get recorded and uploaded to a server.

The thieves have a large list of stolen information which includes bank account information, website passwords, eBay accounts, and supposedly more.

Sunbelt has contacted the FBI, and has received a response. Together they are currently working on apprehending the thieves.

Source: Neowin.net

Google urged to drop reactor images

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

THE head of Australia’s nuclear energy agency has called on the owners of an internet satellite program to censor images of the country’s only nuclear reactor.
Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation executive director Ian Smith said he would ask internet search engine Google to remove the Lucas Heights reactor from its Google Earth program. The online program combines satellite images with aerial photographs and maps to let users zoom in on almost any building in the world.

While Google Earth “censors” the White House with blocks of colour over the roof and the nearby Treasury Department and Executive Office buildings, anyone with a computer and web connection can use the free program to see aerial shots of sensitive Australian sites such as the Lucas Heights reactor, the secret US spy base at Pine Gap, outside Alice Springs, and Parliament House in Canberra.

A Google spokeswoman defended the technology, noting the images were six to 18 months old and not detailed enough to zoom in on people. “The same information is available to anyone who flies over or drives by a piece of property,” she said.

Source: news.com.au

Microsoft Unwraps HoneyMonkey Detection Project

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Microsoft has officially lifted the wraps off its Strider HoneyMonkey research project, designed to trawl the dark side of the Internet looking for Web sites hosting malicious code.

Microsoft Corp. released a technical report, available here as a PDF, to introduce the concept of an Automated Web Patrol that uses multiple Windows XP machines, some unpatched and some fully updated, to streamline the process of finding zero-day Web-based exploits.

Yi-Min Wang, group manager of the Cybersecurity and Systems Management group in Microsoft Research, said a total of 752 unique URLs, hosted on 287 sites, were identified within the first month of launching the HoneyMonkey project.

From those URLs, the system was able to confirm that active exploits were infecting Windows XP machines, including one for a fully patched system running the company’s newly hardened XP SP2 (Service Pack 2).

Source: eWeek

Tip: Synchronizing Images and Files

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Increasingly, computer users are using different folders, drives, and even different computers (such as a laptop and a desktop) to store and retrieve files. There are new sources of files coming from every direction: digital cameras, e-mail, cell phones, portable media players, camcorders, PDAs, and laptops. Yet managing hundreds or thousands of files is still largely a manual operation. In some cases it is necessary to move files from one place to another; in other cases there is a need to keep two storage locations exactly in sync. Some users manage files manually, dragging and dropping from one place to another and keeping a mental card catalog in their heads. Others use one or more applications of one sort or another to provide this functionality for them.

Now there is an easier way. SyncToy is a free PowerToy for Microsoft Windows XP that provides is an easy to use, highly customizable program that helps users to do the heavy lifting involved with the copying, moving, and synchronization of different directories. Most common operations can be performed with just a few clicks of the mouse, and additional customization is available without adding complexity. SyncToy can manage multiple sets of directories at the same time; it can combine files from two folders in one case, and mimic renames and deletes in another. Unlike other applications, SyncToy keeps track of renames to files and will make sure those changes get carried over to the synchronized folder.

Download: SyncToy

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