1/31/2006

Congress caught making false entries in Wikipedia

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

We already know, of course, that politicians live primarily for re-election and typically view the truth as an impediment to the higher purpose of unfettered self-aggrandizement.

Still, we can be excused for feeling mildly nauseated when fresh confirmation of this distasteful aspect of modern politicking surfaces.

The latest episode appeared last week in the form of a report that aides to Rep. Marty Meehan, a Massachusetts Democrat, deleted references to his broken term-limits pledge and massive campaign war chest on Wikipedia.

Then the trusty editors at Wikipedia got together and compiled a list of over 1,000 edits made by Internet addresses allocated to the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. The IP address subsequently was blocked and unblocked.

Source: News.com

1/30/2006

180Solutions Drops Lawsuit Against Zone Labs

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Zone Labs, a Check Point company (Nasdaq: CHKP), today announced that online advertising software purveyor 180Solutions has voluntarily dismissed a lawsuit filed in November 2005 against the Internet security company.

The suit sought to force Zone Labs to alter the way its ZoneAlarm software labeled technologies utilized by the Zango and 180Search Assistant programs. 180Solutions did not offer any reason for dismissing the suit in paperwork filed to the court, and there was no negotiated settlement. No changes were made to ZoneAlarm鈥檚 software, its log ranking of the Global Windows Hook or the OSFirewall alert language as a result of the suit or specifically with regards to 180Solutions software.

鈥淔rom the inception of the suit, we believed it had no merit,鈥? said John Slavitt, general counsel for Check Point Software Technologies, parent company of Zone Labs. 鈥淶oneAlarm alerts are triggered by the behavior of a program, not its name. If the 180Solutions software exhibits suspicious behavior, we alert our customers accordingly. We did not make any concessions or reach a settlement after the suit was filed.鈥?

Hackers lurk in AMD Web site

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Users of Advanced Micro Devices Inc.’s (AMD’s) microprocessors may want to think twice before looking for technical support on the company’s Web site. Customer support discussion forums on the forums.amd.com site have been compromised and are being used in an attempt to infect visitors with malicious software, an AMD spokesman confirmed Monday.

Because AMD had just learned of the problem, Prairie could give few details on how the site was compromised or on when AMD expected to have the issue resolved. “It’s being worked on and corrected,” he said.

According to F-Secure’s Hypponen, attackers are exploiting a widely reported flaw in the way the Windows operating system renders images that use the WMF (Windows Metafile) graphics format. This flaw was patched on Jan. 5, so users who are running versions of Windows that have the latest patches installed are not at risk, he said.

Ironically, AMD Web site visitors who are using chips that support the new DEP (Data Execution Prevention) feature, which prevents software from running where it doesn’t belong, are probably protected from the WMF malware, Hypponen said. “If you are running an AMD processor with DEP enabled, it likely protects you from the vulnerability that hit you from the AMD site.

Source: infoworld

Google publisher ads expanding?

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

As part of a limited AdSense beta test, Google is offering new types of graphical and interactive advertisements to publishers, according to Jennifer Slegg, the Google AdSense forum moderator at Search Engine Watch.

AdSense is experimenting with interstitials, the full-page ads that come up when you click on a Web page, expanding ads that can be enlarged with a click or mouse-over, and floating ads that drift onto the screen from the side of the page

Source: News.com

ICANN releases new dotcom contract

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Internet overseeing body ICANN has released a revised contract for all dotcoms which it hopes will finally end a huge legal fight at the heart of the Internet.

Significant changes have been made to the deal - which will hand control of all dotcom domains to current owner VeriSign until 2012 - following widespread criticism from the Internet industry.

The new agreement - that was hailed back in October as bringing in a “new era” for the Internet by ICANN head Paul Twomey - contains several important alterations.

They are:Removal of a transaction fee that would have been charged to all companies selling a dotcom domain, A new direct contribution that VeriSign pays to ICANN direct, Some limits on VeriSign’s price-rising powers, Reduced scope for VeriSign to sell personalised data to third-parties, Marginally increased control over VeriSign’s ability to introduce changes to the existing dotcom business model

Source: The Register

IBM sets DB2 database free

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

IBM on Monday introduced a free version of its DB2 database, a move designed to win software developers over to its products.

DB Express-C is the same database as IBM’s commercial offerings but the company places limits on what kind of hardware it can run on.

It can be deployed on systems with two processor cores or up to two dual-core chips on Advanced Micro Devices- or Intel-based servers. The memory limit is 4GB but there are no limits on the size of database or number of users.

IBM’s decision to add a free database to its lineup follows moves by its largest rivals in the database business, Oracle and Microsoft.

With the release of SQL Server 2005 late last year, Microsoft introduced a free version. Simililarly, Oracle has a free product called Oracle 10g Express Edition.

Source: News.com

MS to omit anti-virus from Vista

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Microsoft will omit anti-virus protection in Vista, the next version of Windows, which it plans to ship late this year. As with previous versions of Windows dating back to Windows 2000 at least, Redmond is promoting Vista as a landmark improvement in Windows security.

Jim Allchin, co-president of Microsoft’s platform products and services division, told reseller magazineCRN that safety and security, improved user experience, and mobility features will be key additions in Vista. But there will be no anti-virus software, the Windows development supremo said during a questions and answers session with CRN. For unspecified business (not technical) reasons, Microsoft will sell anti-virus protection to consumers through its OneCare online backup and security service.

Source: The Register

AJAX Poses Security, Performance Risks

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Web services and service-oriented architecture security software provider Forum Systems issued an alert on Jan. 30 for AJAX-related security threats and performance issues.

Asynchronous JavaScript and XML, or AJAX, enables responsive and interactive Web services; however, the reliance on XML as the content type for requests and response payloads means that applications are exposed to Web services vulnerabilities, Forum officials said. Thus, officials at the Sandy Utah, company recommend that organizations implement XML content filtering, Web services security and XML acceleration capabilities to ensure scalable and secure AJAX applications.

Source: eWeek

Warner Music, Skype team up on ringtones

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Warner Music Group Corp. and Skype Technologies SA, the telephone company, are likely to announce a licensing agreement on Monday that will put ringtones on Internet phone services, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The report said voice-over-Internet telephone company Skype, which is owned by eBay Inc., will sell the song snippets that substitute for traditional telephone rings for $1.50 each.

Source: Reuters

Critical Flaw In Nullsoft Winamp Player

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

A critical flaw was discovered in the popular media player Nullsoft Winamp version 5.12. This flaw is a Zero-Day vulnerability, which means that currently there is no patch available that fixes the problem.

This flaw is due to a buffer overflow error when processing a specially crafted playlist (”.pls” file) containing a malformed “File1″ tag, which could be exploited by remote attackers to execute arbitrary commands and take complete control of an affected system without any user-interaction via a specially crafted web page.

French Security Incident Response Team published a proof of concept of the PLS File Handling Remote Buffer Overflow.

Update: The guys at Winamp put out a quick fix for this flaw. Until a new version of Winamp is out you can use this patch

Google To Open New Research Center In Israel

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

In an interview with TheMarker(Hebrew) at the World Economic Forum in Davos in Switzerland, Sergey Brin, one of Google鈥檚 founders said that Google is in the process of creating a new research and development center in Israel.

Google official said that there is a shortage in hi quality personnel that Google needs to develop tools to analyze and process the vast data stored in the world biggest search engine.

Warner Bros. to start German file-sharing service

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Warner Bros. said on Monday it would soon begin selling movies and television shows in Germany, Austria and Switzerland using a peer-to-peer network, embracing the very technology that has rattled the entertainment industry.

Starting in March, the new service called In2Movies will allow paying consumers to download a limited selection of Warner Bros. films and TV programs, including “Batman Begins” and “The O.C.”, from central servers and from other users who have the desired files.

Source: Reuters

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