6/23/2006

Thousands Of H-1B Workers Are Underpaid

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Thousands of foreign nationals hired under the H-1B visa program have been paid less than prevailing wages, congressional auditors reported Thursday. But the percentage of those being underpaid is small.

The Government Accountability Office, the investigative arm of Congress, found that the Labor Department certified 3,229 H-1B visa applications from from January 2002 to September 2005, even though the wage the employer promised to pay on the application was lower than the prevailing salary for that occupation. GAO didn’t specify which occupation.

Source: InformationWeek

Eclipse Upgrades Open-Source Tools

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Ten upgrades are planned, including those for business intelligence and reporting tools, a modeling framework, a Web tools platform, test and performance tools, and integrated development environments.

The Eclipse Foundation next week will announce new releases for 10 open-source projects in an effort to synchronize version compatibilities for each.

On June 30, the foundation plans to make available seven million lines of code as part of the coordinated release for the project, code name “Callisto.” These include upgrades for Eclipse business intelligence and reporting tools, modeling framework, Web tools platform, visual editor, test and performance tools, and C and C ++ integrated development environment tools.

Source: Informationweek

Jail time for payola search engines

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

A South Carolina senator has proposed that search engines which offer pay-to-play deals should face sanctions - including jail time for the company executives.

The latest amendment to this year’s doorstop telecomms legislation, S.2686, was tabled by Jim DeMint (R), and targets search sites which “prioritize or give preferential or discriminatory treatment in the methodology used to determine Internet-search results based on an advertising or other commercial agreement with a third party”.

Violators would face a $5m fine - and executives would be liable for a custodial sentence.

Source: TheRegister

Toshiba’s $499 HD DVD player costs ‘over $700 to make’

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Toshiba is subsidising its HD-A1 HD DVD player by at least $175 in a bid to buy the next-generation optical disc format success. So claims market watcher iSuppli, which took the machine to bits and totted up the cost of all the parts.

Available in the US, the HD-A1 is priced at $499. iSuppli’s assessment of the cost of the players’ components puts the product’s bill of materials at $674 - and that’s before the cost of assembly, packaging, peripherals, distribution, advertising, software development and so on. Oh, and that $499 is the retail price - Toshiba will be charging resellers even less for the player.

Source: TheRegister

France unveils national rival to Google Earth

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

France unveiled a Web site on Friday that allows people to access detailed satellite images of the country and said it offered more detail of its territory than Google Earth.

Google Earth, which allows Internet users to zoom in on locations around the world, caused concern when it was launched last year among governments who feared terrorists might use the service to help plot attacks.

But President Jacques Chirac stressed the need for France to have such a site, which will allow Internet users to view aerial photos and maps, saying the state had to be at the cutting edge of modern technology.

Source: Reuters

‘UFO Hacker’ Tells What He Found

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

The search for proof of the existence of UFOs landed Gary McKinnon in a world of trouble.

After allegedly hacking into NASA websites — where he says he found images of what looked like extraterrestrial spaceships — the 40-year-old Briton faces extradition to the United States from his North London home. If convicted, McKinnon could receive a 70-year prison term and up to $2 million in fines.

Final paperwork in the case is due this week, after which the British home secretary will rule on the extradition request.

McKinnon tells what he found and discusses the motivation behind his online adventures in this exclusive phone interview with Wired News.

Source: Wired

Mobile phone users warned of lightning strike risk

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

People should not use mobile phones outdoors during thunderstorms because of the risk of being struck by lightning, doctors said on Friday.

They reported the case of a 15-year-old girl who was using her phone in a park when she was hit during a storm. Although she was revived, she suffered persistent health problems and was using a wheelchair a year after the accident.

Source: Reuters

IBM Releases Free Security Tools for Java Developers

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

IBM on June 22 released two new free software security tools for Java software developers—one that improves protection of data moving through Java-based network applications and another that automatically embeds data encryption at its origin point.

IBM has made the tools available for free download via AlphaWorks, its developer-oriented Web site that offers free software tools.

The IBM Secure Shell Library for Java automatically encrypts data—including passwords and other information within files—as it moves from device to device, whether it be a desktop, mainframe or handheld computer.

It is built upon the SSH (secure shell) industry reference standard for secure data transmission.

IBM also released Security Workbench Development Environment for Java so developers can configure and validate Java applications that support both Java and the OSGI (Open Services Gateway Initiative) industry security standards, an IBM spokesperson said.

Source: eWeek

Firefox, iTunes, Skype Top Most Dangerous List

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Firefox, iTunes, and Skype were the top 3 applications in a list of 15 with the most security vulnerabilities, a Cambridge, Mass.-based security company said this week.

The list from Bit9 calls out applications frequently downloaded by individuals (and thus perhaps not sanctioned by the enterprise) which have at least one critical vulnerability, and that rely on the end user, not the corporate IT department, to manually patch or upgrade to fix bugs.

Source: InformationWeek

Tech Gurus Say They’ll ‘Switch from Mac’

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Playing on Apple’s past “Switch” ad campaign, which was aimed at getting Windows users to migrate to Apple’s Mac OS X-based computers, a few longtime Mac and open-source gurus are vocally publicizing their switch away from Apple’s platform to more open-source solutions.

Though the practical impact is impossible to gauge, their arguments have been making waves.

The first was Mark Pilgrim, who wrote free software for the Mac in the mid-1990s.

In a post on his blog, Pilgrim wrote that though he has long been impressed by Apple’s hardware and software, he thought that the latter had grown less attractive and more “restrictive,” leading him to seek alternatives.

Source: eWeek

Highly critical vulnerability discovered in Opera Browser

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

If you haven’t updated your opera browser yet, here is a good reason to do that.

A Highly critical vulnerability discovered in Opera browser, which can be exploited by malicious people to compromise a user’s system.

The vulnerability is caused due to the way Opera process JPEG images. This can be exploited to cause a buffer overflow via a specially crafted JPEG image and allows execution of arbitrary code.

This flaw is fixed with Opera 9.

Torrentspy names alleged MPAA hacker

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

A month after accusing the Motion Picture Association of America of conspiring to commit data theft, the operators of a file search engine presented more details regarding the alleged relationship between the MPAA and a man who admits hacking the small company’s network.

Source: News.com

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