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Give NSA unlimited access to digital data, says federal judge

The U.S. National Security Agency should have an unlimited ability to collect digital information in the name of protecting the country against terrorism and other threats, an influential federal judge said during a debate on privacy.
“I think privacy…

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Comcast Forgets To Delete Revealing Note From Blog Post

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Earlier today, Comcast published a blog post to criticize the newly announced coalition opposing its merger with Time Warner Cable and to cheer about the FCC’s decision to restart the “shot clock” on that deal. But someone at Kabletown is probably getting a stern talking-to right now, after an accidental nugget of honesty made its way into that post.

Comcast posted to their corporate blog today about the merger review process, reminding everyone why they think it will be so awesome and pointing to the pro-merger comments that have come in to the FCC.

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Inside the “wiper” malware that brought Sony Pictures to its knees

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Details of malware that may have been associated with the attack on Sony Pictures were disseminated in an FBI “Flash” earlier this week. A copy of the memorandum obtained by Ars Technica details “a destructive malware used by unknown computer network exploitation (CNE) operators” that can destroy all the data on Windows computers it infects and spread itself over network file shares to attack Windows servers.

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‘Secret’ patent review system raises innovation concerns

Patents have long been a valuable tool for tech companies, providing protection for innovations and extracting royalties. But a new report charges that the US Patent and Trademark Office has a secret program it uses to delay patents it views as controv…

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Blueprint: Building an IT Security Road Map to Avoid Cyber Attacks

Will you be the subject of a headline? The victim of a damaging cyber attack or intrusion? If you’ve avoided it, count yourself lucky. But if you’ve already been victimized, you aren’t alone.

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Hacking PayPal Accounts With CSRF

The computer security industry has made many positive changes since the early days of computing. One thing that seems to be catching on with bigger tech companies is bug bounty programs. PayPal offers such a program and [Yasser] decided to throw his hat in the ring and see if he could find any juicy vulnerabilities. His curiosity paid off big time.

Paypal is a huge player in the payment processing world, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t without their flaws. Sometimes the bigger the target, the more difficult it is to find problems. [Yasser] wanted to experiment with a cross-site …read more

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Sony Pictures MEGAHACK: Securobods pull out probes, analyse badness

Experts start dissecting HDD-busting nasty

Security experts have been able to obtain and analyse samples of the malware linked to the Sony Pictures breach.…

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[Amazing Science’s] Simple Electric Train

Making an electromagnet is as simple as wrapping some wire around a nail and taping the wire to both ends of a battery. When you’re done, you can pick up some paper clips – it demonstrates the concept well, but it could use some more oomph. [Amazing Science] has done just that, making an “electric train” (YouTube link). All that’s needed is some coiled copper wire, a battery and magnets thin enough to fit through the coils. The magnets snap onto both ends of the battery. Put the battery inside the coil and watch the fun! The electromagnetic force generated …read more

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Akamai: Surge in hackers using complex crimeware to drain money from online bank accounts

There is an increase in use of complex crimeware that gathers the passwords of online customers at specific banks and automatically transfer funds out of their accounts, according to Akamai’s security group. The surge is being aided by a tool called Yu…

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Flash Memory Endurance Testing

[Gene] has a project that writes a lot of settings to a PIC microcontroller’s Flash memory. Flash has limited read/erase cycles, and although the obvious problem can be mitigated with error correction codes, it’s a good idea to figure out how Flash fails before picking a certain ECC. This now became a problem of banging on PICs until they puked, and mapping out the failure pattern of the Flash memory in these chips.

The chip on the chopping block for this experiment was a PIC32MX150, with 128K of NOR Flash and 3K of extra Flash for a bootloader. There’s hardware …read more

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Gaming