Privacy, Security Archive

Media Gone Mad – “Windows XP Kills Dog, Steals Toaster”

Columnist Tim Mullen from SecurityFocus wrote an interesting editorial about how the media are overeacting on some thought exploits/holes found on Windows 2k/XP, while in his opinion, other platforms/apps are also as vulnerable but they don't get as agressive reporting: "This kind of thing damages overall security. It clouds the issue, and rains on the wrong parade. The media should give its readers all the information-- not slant it in an effort to make Microsoft look like the bad guy every time."

Book Review of Maximum Wireless Security

"Wireless networks are replacing wired networks very rapidly. More and more people want to stay connected on the road. What this transition brings is - more security problems. While wired networks have been around for ages and have had the time to make good security defences, wireless networks and new in comparison and still have a long way to go. This book aims to give you the knowledge you need to bring maximum security to your network, by teaching you how that security can and will be broken." Read the review at Help Net Security.

Are Spy Chips Set to Go Commercial?

"Could we be constantly tracked through our clothes, shoes or even our cash in the future? I'm not talking about having a microchip surgically implanted beneath your skin, which is what Applied Digital Systems of Palm Beach, Fla., would like to do. Nor am I talking about John Poindexter's creepy Total Information Awareness spy-veillance system, which I wrote about last week. Instead, in the future, we could be tracked because we'll be wearing, eating and carrying objects that are carefully designed to do so." Read the interesting editorial at ZDNews.

2002 Year in Security

TechTV published a look at security issues in the past year, and they found that worms, viruses, spam, and other security scourges are on the rise, and are affecting common computer users as well as big data centers: If 2001 was the year of corporate headaches, 2002 saw average PC users under attack.

A Lesson in Cyber-Security

"Reid Ellison is a 15-year-old high school hacker who, for a time, had complete control over his school's computer system. A hack attack from a smart kid is just about any school's worst nightmare. But Ellison got a pat on the back for his exploits, rather than a slap on the wrist. This is actually a good news story about a kid who used his hacking talents for good rather than evil." Read the full story at ABC News.

NSA Backdoor Key Into All MS OSes Since WIN95 OSR1

This is old news, but still, everyone should be aware of it. And on a theoretical basis, the co-creator of UNIX, Ken Thompson wrote a paper on which he explains that it is possible to add a backdoor to a closed source compiler and when you first compile any other compiler (e.g. GCC), any concequent compiles from this new compiler, would include the backdoor by default. Pessimistic thought of the day: nothing is safe. Neither Windows or Unix. I wonder how "safe" the Security-Enhanced Linux from NSA is. It might secure you from others, but does it secure you from NSA itself? ;P Update: More info here (Ms reply on the issue) and here.

Microsoft Slammed for Palladium ‘Lies’

Critics have slated a Microsoft document on its upcoming Palladium digital rights software as containing several outright "lies". The 1,500-word frequently asked questions (FAQs) paper gives some details about how Palladium will work and how it relates to digital rights management and the Trusted Computing Platform Alliance. Read the rest at VNUnet. Update: Another article about Palladium, here.