9/25/2006

Microsoft Lures Second Security Guru

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Microsoft has added another high-profile IT threat researcher to its growing security team by luring Jimmy Kuo, a former research fellow at anti-virus software maker McAfee’s AVERT Labs.

According to multiple sources, Kuo, who has been working in McAfee’s Anti-Virus and Vulnerability Emergency Response Team Labs since the outfit was started in 1995, will reportedly serve as an anti-virus guru at large at Microsoft.

Source: eWeek

AOL sued over Web search data release

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

As expected, AOL has been sued over its online release of data on the Internet searches of more than 650,000 members in late July. A lawsuit seeking class action status was filed against AOL on Friday in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

The lawsuit accuses AOL of violating the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and of fraudulent and deceptive business practices, among other claims, and seeks at least $5,000 for every person whose search data was exposed.

Source: News.com

China Attempted To Blind U.S. Satellites With Laser

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

China has fired high-power lasers at U.S. spy satellites flying over its territory in what experts see as a test of Chinese ability to blind the spacecraft, according to sources.

It remains unclear how many times the ground-based laser was tested against U.S. spacecraft or whether it was successful.
But the combination of China’s efforts and advances in Russian satellite jamming capabilities illustrate vulnerabilities to the U.S. space network are at the core of U.S. Air Force plans to develop new space architectures and highly classified systems, according to sources.

Source: DefenseNews.com

Cross-Site Scripting Hits Major Sites

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Dark Reading and SC Magazine covered a story about hackers posting cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerabilies en mass on dozens of high profile websites including Dell, MSN, HP, Apple, Myspace, YouTube, MSN, Cingular, etc. The media coverage drew the hacker’s attention to the publication’s websites where they got a taste first-hand.

On message board wall-of-shame is PC World, MacWorld, Fox News, the Independent, and ZDNet UK. “…not only did we get the “scoop” on the XSS site problems, but we also got the message loud and clear: Don’t assume you’re immune to XSS vulnerabilities. They’re everywhere.” The news comes shortly after Mitre (CVE) released statistics showing XSS has become the most popular exploit. Unfortunately new XSS attacks are growing increasingly severe and scanners are unable to find many of the issues on modern websites.”

Source: slashdot

Computer virus writers plan slow spread

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

In the past, virus writers seeking fame and attention wrote their malicious programs to spread as quickly and broadly as possible, boasting to colleagues when they manage to cripple hundreds of thousands of computers worldwide in a matter of hours.

But now, many writers are driven by money instead. They write code to turn the computers of unsuspecting individuals into “botnets” — networks for spreading junk e-mail or stealing financial data from others.

Security experts find that some are even taking measures to make sure their programs don’t spread too quickly or too broadly, lest they get detected and blocked.

Source: AP

Apple goes after podcasts

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Apple has just sent a cease-and-desist letter to the folks behind the Podcast Ready website, telling them that “Podcast Ready” and “myPodder” infringe Apple’s own trademarks, according to Wired. Predictably, the blogging community is up in arms over the apparent attempt to claim ownership of the word “podcast.”

Source: arstechnica

Dell adds 500 engineering jobs in Texas

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Computer maker Dell Inc. plans to hire another 500 engineers to work in its central Texas product development operations, founder and Chairman Michael Dell announced Monday.

Dell joined Gov. Rick Perry at the Texas Capitol to announce the company would immediately begin hiring new electrical, software and mechanical engineers and program managers.

Dell has 18,000 employees at its Round Rock headquarters and other Austin-area locations.

Source: AP

Spam trail uncovers junk empire

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

An investigation into a seemingly routine series of spam messages has revealed how sophisticated the business of online crime has become.

The story begins with the junk mail messages themselves that were sent during April and May of 2006.

Analysis of the junk mail revealed that many of the junk messages had, hidden within them, text from JRR Tolkien’s classic work The Hobbit.

This text was included, said Mr Peterson, in an attempt to convince spam filters that the messages were genuine and not junk. Many spam messages use excerpts from novels or other works in this way.

Analysis of the net addresses where the e-mail messages originated showed that more than 100,000 hijacked home computers spread across 119 nations had been used to despatch the junk mail.

“We ran the sources of this and found out a massive distribution of countries,” Mr Peterson told the BBC News website, “it’s very much centred in Europe.”

This widespread, sophisticated infrastructure involved more than 1500 web domains that acted as the web shops for the drugs advertised in the junk messages.

Source: BBC

Trend Micro launches anti-botnet service

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Trend Micro announced a new service to help large organizations and Internet service providers (ISPs) fight networks of zombie machines, known as “botnets.”

The new service, dubbed InterCloud, was announced Monday and is intended to help organizations fight botnets, fast-changing networks of rogue computers that are used in denial of service (DOS) attacks, spam campaigns, identity theft, and other malicious acts. The new service uses behavioral analysis technology, developed by Trend, and known as Behavioral Analysis Security Engine (BASE) to spot and isolate bot machines on managed networks

Source: Yahoo

Lenovo investigates Sony battery-run laptop fire

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Lenovo Group Ltd. , the world’s third-largest personal computer maker, said on Monday it is looking into a fire incident on a Lenovo laptop PC equipped with a Sony Corp. battery.

A Lenovo ThinkPad T43 notebook computer overheated and began smoking and sparking on September 16 at Los Angeles International Airport, but no one was injured, a Lenovo spokesman in Tokyo said. It was not yet clear what caused the malfunction.

Source: Reuters

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