12/26/2005

RIAA Sets Their Sights on Russia

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Conor Turton writes to tell us that the RIAA has set their sights on Russia for their newest push into anti-piracy. A recent bill was sponsored in the Senate to deny Russia’s entrance into the WTO (among other things) if they did not take major action against piracy. From the press release: “The effective protection of American intellectual property has been sorely lacking in Russia. This resolution is significant because it expresses the will of the U.S. Congress that Russia must take effective action against those who would steal America’s knowledge-intensive intellectual property-based goods and services. We must not enter into political arrangements with countries ill-prepared to adequately protect our greatest economic assets.”

Source: Slashdot

New Trojan That Could Steal Online Banking Passwords

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

A new Trojan, Nabload.U, which is distributing itself through Messenger, has appeared a few hours ago. This Trojan downloads another Trojan, called Banker.bsx, which is currently the number one detected piece of malware from Panda’s ActiveScan. Its objective is to obtain the passwords of certain banks that it has stored in its code primarily from Spanish-speaking users.

The most unusual aspect of this Trojan is its ability to capture the information without the use of a traditional key logger. The user will be unaware that this is occurring. Banks that use virtual keyboards to avoid keyloggers won’t be protected from this Trojan.

Once the author has the keys, he can commit banking fraud with the accounts.

According to Luis Corrons, PandaLabs director: “This Trojan is an example of a hybrid virus that mixes different techniques. Once the user clicks on the URL, it is able to download a Trojan and use techniques similar to some spyware and phishing attacks. It is, without a doubt, a Trojan designed to steal data quickly, and without leaving any tracks.”

Mobile phones to announce ‘you’ve been indicted’

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

South Koreans may look at their mobile phones with some trepidation in the new year because prosecutors will start telling people they have been indicted via text messages, an official said Monday.

In a country where about 75 percent of the population carries mobile phones, prosecutors felt it was time to move away from sending legal notices on paper and send them electronically instead, said Lee Young-pyo, an administrative official.

“Most people in South Korea have mobile phones and since the notices don’t reach them immediately by regular mail, this is a more definite way for the individuals to know they have received a legal notice,” Lee said.

The indictments by text messages are not intended to take people by surprise. “People will receive a text message of a legal notice only after they apply for the service,” he said.

Prosecutors expect to save about 160 million won ($158,000) a year by shifting to the service and reducing the number of legal notices it sends through the mail.

Other notices that will be sent by text messages include information on fines and penalties.

The service starts Tuesday but will be fully implemented in 2006.

Source: Reuters

Google Agrees to Limit Resolution of Israel Satellite Photos

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Google, which offers satellite photos of locations across the globe, has agreed to limit the resolution of footage of sensitive military installations and vulnerable sites in Israel.

Google currently offers satellite photos of eight locations in Israel: Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, the Dead Sea, Masada, the Dimona Nuclear Research Center (DNRC), Sdot Micha (listed as a nuclear weapons base), the Kinneret, and the Mizpe Ramon crater.

Photos of Israel will only be available up to a two meter resolution.

Source: Arutz Seva

Apple Moving Away from Macs?

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

A research analyst has predicted that Apple Computer Inc. will continue to transform as a company, and that in 2006 the company likely will move away from its Mac core and build instead on leveraging the success of the iPod.

In his earnings estimate for Apple, Goldman Sachs analyst David Bailey raised his expectations, predicting a strong demand for iPods and anticipating more product announcements in early 2006.

Already, iPods are sold out at many retailers because of the holiday, Bailey noted, and he expects Apple to sell 11.6 million units in its first fiscal quarter of the new year. Previously, the analyst had predicted 10 million would be sold.

Source: News Factor

Video Game Sheds NFL License, Gets Violent

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

In a gritty new video game about a fictional football league, players cripple their opponents, gamble and use performance-enhancing supplements.

“Blitz: The League” is able to feature the graphic violence and adult themes not usually seen in sports video games because it was produced without an NFL license and the restrictions that carries.

Developed by Chicago’s Midway Games, “Blitz” is the first unlicensed football title to hit store shelves since the NFL reach an exclusive agreement a year ago with Electronic Arts Inc., makers of the popular “Madden NFL” franchise. “Madden NFL” and the company’s edgier “NFL Street” series are both rated E for everyone.

“We decided that we wanted to make this a mature-rated game for adults, and that opened up a whole lot of doors,” said Mark Bilder, executive producer for “Blitz.”

Because the game is unlicensed, it can’t feature markings of real teams, NFL stadiums or images of NFL players. The star of this title is New York Nightmare linebacker Quentin Sands, a fictional player voiced by former New York Giants linebacker Lawrence Taylor.

Bilder said “Blitz,” which was released in October and has sold 350,000 units, fictionalizes real behavior that the NFL tries to downplay, such as off-the-field fights and wild parties.

Source: AP

Mamma.com Buys Copernic for $22M

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Copernic, which makes the popular desktop search tool that is also utilized by AOL’s Desktop Search product, has been acquired by metasearch engine Mamma.com in a cash and stock deal valued at just over $22 million. The two companies announced plans to join up last year, but the marriage was fraught with delays, including an investigation into Mamma’s stock by the SEC.

Source: BetaNews

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