Studios Sue Samsung Over Hack-Friendly DVD Player

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Disney, Paramount, Twentieth Century Fox, Time Warner and and Universal Studios are suing Samsung over a DVD player which was not only a retail failure, but had the additional misfortune of being 鈥渉acker-friendly.鈥? In an article in The Korea Times, a Samsung spokesman (who had not yet seen the text of the complaint) speculated it was regarding the DVD-HD841, which Samsung had sold in the United States between June and October 2004.

This player had the ability, through an undocumented code, to allow the user to bypass region-encoding. As far as studios are concerned, worse is the similar ability of the player to bypass HDCP. Apparently, the same hacks appear in other Samsung players.

Source: realtechnews

Malware moves up, goes commercial

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Engineers at Panda Software, while in the process of researching a new trojan, uncovered evidence this week that led them to a web site touting custom-built viruses for sale. For the low, low price of only US$990, a user gets his or her own pet trojan horse, complete with tech support. If the file is discovered鈥攁s this current model was鈥攖he designer provides a guarantee to alter it so that it may continue to avoid detection in the face of updated antivirus software.

The trojan goes by the moniker Trj/Briz.A, and scans the user’s hard drive for information that could be used for financial and identity data. It then sends that information to an attacker working behind the scenes. Additional features include the ability to gather IP addresses and in some cases, the physical location of infected computers. It can also modify the machine to prevent access to web sites devoted to antivirus products.

The file that causes the Trj/Briz.A infection is called “iexplore.exe” It uses this name to pass itself off as Internet Explorer. When it is run, it downloads different files and stops and deactivates Windows Security Center services and Shared Internet Access. It also collects information on programs like Outlook, Eudora and The Bat, which it sends to the attacker.

Source: arstechnica

Sony Debut New High Definition Digital Photo Album

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Sony Electronics is transforming static, digital images into a rich audio visual experience with the world’s first dedicated photo storage unit with high-definition output.

Featuring eight slideshow styles with image transitions synchronized to pre-installed background music and high-definition video output, the new HDPS-L1 hard drive photo storage unit offers an interactive way to view and share high-resolution photos from holidays, reunions and birthday parties on a home theatre system.

“We expect all sorts of people will take advantage of this new photo storage device to rescue treasured memories buried in their computers and on memory cards, and bring them to life with its built-in slideshow feature,” said Jim Leahey, general manager of peripherals and enhancements at Sony Electronics. “It finally gives high-resolution still pictures the visual realism usually reserved for motion-pictures.”

The HDPS-L1 hard drive photo storage unit eliminates the effort required to organize printed photos, as it automatically sorts picture files by their creation date. It also provides the option to group images by type, such as travels and holidays.
About half the size of a typical DVD player, the device is easily incorporated into a home theatre system with standard audio and video cables that connect to a television. A wireless remote control helps “surf” through years of photos by theme or date, select slide show styles, and adjust the volume for background music.

The HDPS-L1 hard drive photo storage unit supports seven types of flash media cards — Memory Stick, Memory Stick PRO, Memory Stick Duo, Memory Stick PRO Duo, CompactFlash, Multi Media Card, Microdrive, SD Card and xD Picture Card slots.

Justice Dept. Rejects Google’s Concerns

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Concerns by Google Inc. that a Bush administration demand to examine millions of its users’ Internet search requests would violate privacy rights are unwarranted, the Justice Department said in a court filing.

The 18-page brief filed Friday argues that because the information provided would not identify or be traceable to specific users, privacy rights would not be violated.

The brief was the Justice Department’s reply to strident arguments filed by Google last week as a rebuff the government’s demand to review its search requests during a random week.

The department believes the information will help revive an online child protection law that has been blocked by the U.S. Supreme Court. By showing the wide variety of Web sites that people find through search engines, the government hopes to prove Internet filters are not strong enough to prevent children from viewing pornography and other inappropriate material online.

The Justice Department submitted a declaration by Philip B. Stark, a researcher who rejected the privacy concerns, noting that the government specifically requested that Google remove any identifying information from the search requests.

Source: AP

Judge delays BlackBerry cutoff decision

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

A U.S. judge on Friday stopped short of ordering the shutdown of millions of BlackBerry devices but made blunt observations about the case that could nudge manufacturer Research In Motion Ltd. and patent holder NTP Inc. toward settlement.

U.S. District Judge James Spencer reminded RIM that a jury had already found it to be infringing NTP’s patents and said the parties should have settled out of court.

“The simple truth, the reality of the jury verdict has not changed,” Spencer said after nearly four hours of a hearing on whether to grant NTP an injunction halting BlackBerry service.

“This case should have been settled but it hasn’t, so I have to deal with that reality,” said Spencer. “I’m surprised you have left this decision to the court.”

Spencer said he would issue a decision on an injunction “as soon as reasonably possible” but gave no indication of when.

The delay sent RIM shares soaring, but the judge expressed skepticism about RIM’s argument that a shutdown of the portable e-mail devices would hobble critical public services.

Source: Reuters

Chipset For AMD’s ‘AM2′ Processors Announced

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

This week Silicon Integrated Systems announced that its SiS761GX chipset, which supports the upcoming AMD “AM2″ pinout, will be used in motherboards from PC Chips and others.

The PC Chips A33G motherboard is expected to be in mass production by the end of March, 2006, the company said.

Advanced Micro Devices has not formally announced the new AM2 pinout, which is expected to use a different array of 940 pins, making the new socket incompatible with previous versions. The new socket will support new AMD Athlon64 X2s, among others.

Source: extremetech

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