Microsoft: The Kremlin's hackers are already sniffing, probing around America's 2018 elections

Found on The Register on Saturday, 21 July 2018
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Speaking at an event in Aspen, Colorado, earlier this week, Microsoft vice president of security and trust Tom Burt revealed that the FancyBear hacking group has already begun setting up the infrastructure to perform targeted phishing attacks on multiple candidates.

The report notes that the government has created a task force, including multiple agencies and states attorney generals, that will focus on detecting and prosecuting attempts to affect the outcome of the mid-term vote.

It's not like the US is all innocent and would never ever try anything similar. Pretty much every country plays dirty; some just care less if others know about it.

The 5,000% price hike that made Martin Shkreli infamous is no longer paying off

Found on Ars Technica on Friday, 20 July 2018
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As founder and CEO of Turing, Shkreli bought the rights to the cheap, off-patent drug and—without any generic competitors—abruptly raised its price from $13.50 a pill to $750 a pill in the fall of 2015.

Turing, meanwhile changed its name and tried to distance itself from Shkreli—without lowering Daraprim’s price. In light of the dwindling profits, the company is reportedly considering changing its name once again, this time to “Phoenixus.”

There should be a law that should make such price changes flat out illegal and invalid the patent so everybody can freely produce the drug for a fair price.

Hackers Breach Russian Bank and Steal $1 Million Due to Outdated Router

Found on Bleeping Computer on Thursday, 19 July 2018
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"The router had tunnels that allowed the attackers to gain direct access to the bank’s local network," Group-IB experts said. "This technique is a characteristic of MoneyTaker. This scheme has already been used by this group at least three times while attacking banks with regional branch networks."

On July 3, MoneyTaker used this system to transfer funds from PIR Bank's account at the Bank of Russia to 17 accounts they created in advance. Moments after the stolen funds landed in these accounts, money mules withdrew it from ATMs across Russia.

It has to be a quite organized group to pull that off. Looks like people can make a living out of that.

What's in a name? For Cambridge Analytica, about a quid apparently

Found on The Register on Tuesday, 17 July 2018
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The firms – Cambridge Analytica, SCL Elections, SCL Group, SCL Commercial, SCL Social and SCL Analytics – were all too heavily associated with the furore surrounding an app that sucked up information on 87 million Facebook users to continue operating. Similarly, Cambridge Analytica US and SCL US both filed for bankruptcy.

The administrators said that the initial plan was to try and sell off the firm, sending an "email taster" to about 18,000 prospective buyers, along with marketing pushes on social media. Sales details were sent out to 13 parties and four offers were received.

Nobody will buy anything from this massive failure; you'd have to put money on top to make someone take it.

Mastercard goes TITSUP in US, UK: There are some things money can't buy – like uptime

Found on The Register on Thursday, 12 July 2018
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"Couldn’t pay for petrol. It’s a disgrace you can’t trust cards to pay when you need them to work. Doesn’t say much for the resilience of digital payments."

Mastercard customers have been protesting loudly on Twitter that their pieces of plastic are certainly not fantastic.

Last month, Visa suffered a major outage in Europe at a particularly unfortunate time. Millions of Friday night payments were unable to be completed, and settling the bar tab after the traditional Friday night booze up proved problematic.

Now if someone would only invent an alternative that's resistant against downtimes and outages. Maybe, just maybe, it would be possible to use paper and metal to create different units representing a monetary value which can be exchanged between people.

Researchers find that owning an iPhone or iPad is the number-one way to guess if you’re rich or not

Found on Business Insider on Monday, 09 July 2018
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"Across all years in our data, no individual brand is as predictive of being high-income as owning an Apple iPhone in 2016," the researchers wrote.

The iPhone is a luxury product that is usually priced higher than competing smartphones. While some low-end Android phones retail for as little as $100 or less, Apple recently raised the price of its highest-end iPhone to $999 or more.

Maybe they are rich, but they are definatively pitiful if they feel the need to use brands to define and represent themselves.

You Can Bypass Authentication on HPE iLO4 Servers With 29 "A" Characters

Found on Bleeping Computer on Sunday, 08 July 2018
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The vulnerability is an authentication bypass that allows attackers access to HP iLO consoles. Researchers say this access can later be used to extract cleartext passwords, execute malicious code, and even replace iLO firmware.

Because of its simplicity and remote exploitation factor, the vulnerability —tracked as CVE-2017-12542— has received a severity score of 9.8 out of 10.

That's one pretty exploit. Simple and easy.

Facebook patent would turn your mic on to analyze how you watch ads

Found on Ars Technica on Saturday, 30 June 2018
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As Facebook tries to get ahead of public pressure about what the service does and doesn't track about its users, a patent application has emerged which would enable something that the service's detractors have long theorized and feared: silently triggered microphones that keep tabs on Facebook users.

Lo went one further to offer statements of conscience about the filing: that the patent was filed to "prevent aggression from other companies" and that the patent will "never" be implemented in a Facebook product.

Yeah, sure, just like WhatsApp data will never be imported to Facebook, or like they take the privacy of their sheep users seriously.

MoviePass is going to start charging more for popular movies next month

Found on Quartz on Monday, 25 June 2018
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The movie-ticket subscription service, which charges $9.95 per month to see a movie a day in the US, will start surge pricing on popular movies next month, Business Insider reported.

The news comes as MoviePass’s parent company, Helios and Matheson Analystics, revealed in a filing on today, June 21, that it was spending cash quickly and may need more than $1.2 billion in additional capital to keep MoviePass, and its various ventures, afloat.

Someone came up with a really bad business plan. Nobody sane would invest a single cent into such a money grave.

A Next Generation Sequel Could Be Included in Alex Kurtzman's Expansive New Star Trek Deal

Found on Gizmodo on Tuesday, 19 June 2018
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Variety reports that Kurtzman has inked a $25 million deal with CBS as part of a five-year plan to bring more Trek shows to TV in the wake of Discovery’s success. According to the site, five series are currently in early development.

The trade reports that one show in Kurtzman’s new deal could bring back one of Trek’s most beloved characters: Sir Patrick Stewart’s Captain Jean-Luc Picard.

That's quite a lot. Hopefully they plan to make good series instead of just squeezing money out of it. Also, bring back normal looking Klingons.