Browsing: Big Brother

‘Parliament has suffered its biggest ever cyber attack as hackers launched a “sustained and determined” attempt to break into MPs email accounts.

The “brute force” assault lasted for more than 12 hours on Friday as unknown hackers repeatedly targeted “weak” passwords of politicians and aides.

Parliamentary officials were forced to lock MPs out of their own email accounts as they scrambled to minimise the damage from the incident.

The network affected is used by every MP including Theresa May, the Prime Minister, and her cabinet ministers for dealing with constituents.’

Read more: Blackmail fears after Parliament hit by ‘sustained and determined’ cyber attack leaving MPs unable to access their emails remotely

Just when you thought air travel couldn’t get any more invasive, authoritarian and downright miserable, the Department of Homeland Security and two U.S. carriers are determined to prove you wrong.

Yesterday, Harrison Rudolph, a law fellow at the Center on Privacy & Technology at Georgetown Law, wrote a very troubling article at Slate titled, DHS Is Starting to Scan Americans’ Faces Before They Get on International Flights. Here’s some of what we learned:’

Read more: Some US Airlines Are Testing Mandatory Facial Recognition Scans On Americans Flying Abroad

‘One of the profound revelations from the data released by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden was that in addition to spying on its own citizens, the NSA engaged in aggressive espionage on some of America’s closest allies, most notably Angela Merkel and her Blackberry. It now turns out that Germany had been returning the favor.

According to Germany’s Spiegel, Germany’s foreign intelligence service had long spied on numerous official and business targets in the United States, including the White House. The magazine said it had seen documents showing that the intelligence service, the BND, had a list of some 4,000 so-called selector keywords for surveillance between 1998 and 2006. These included telephone or fax numbers, as well as email addresses at the White House as well as the US finance and foreign ministries.

Other monitoring targets ranged from military institutions including the US Air Force or the Marine Corps, space agency NASA to civic group Human Rights Watch. Additionally, hundreds of foreign embassies as well as international organisation like the International Monetary Fund were not spared, Spiegel said.’

Read more: It Wasn’t Just The NSA: Germany Spied On The White House For Years

From devices that order our groceries to smart toys that speak to our children, high-tech home gadgets are no longer the stuff of science fiction.

But even as they transform our lives, they put families at risk from criminal hackers taking advantage of security flaws to gain virtual access to homes, a report warns.

A survey of 15 devices by the consumer group Which? found that eight were vulnerable to hacking via the internet, Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connections.

It comes as manufacturers routinely install technology into new household products that allows them to connect to the ‘internet of things’, an umbrella term for devices that can go online.’

Read more: The hackable home: How half of smart household gadgets tested by Which? were vulnerable to attack by criminals via the internet, wi-fi or Bluetooth

‘WikiLeaks’ latest release in its Vault7 series details how the CIA’s alleged ‘Brutal Kangaroo’ program is being used to penetrate the most secure networks in the world.

Brutal Kangaroo, a tool suite for Microsoft Windows, targets closed air gapped networks by using thumb drives, according to WikiLeaks.

Air gapping is a security measure employed on one or more computers to ensure that a secure computer network is physically isolated from unsecured networks.’

Read more: #Vault7: CIA’s secret cyberweapon can infiltrate world’s most secure networks

‘A bill that allows private companies to set up a network of optical license plate readers along highways is moving ahead in Rhode Island. Uninsured drivers would be detected by a national police database and fined automatically.

HB 5531, also known as the Rhode Island Electronic Confirmation and Compliance System Act, passed through the state House Corporations Committee by a 7-2 vote Tuesday.

Sponsored by state Rep. Robert Jacquard (D-Cranston), the measure would authorize private for-profit contractors to build and run a system of automated license plate readers (ALPRs) at the company’s expense. The ALPRs would check the status of the driver’s insurance and registration and penalize those who are not complying.

“It’s no different than a red light camera. It’s just looking for a different violation,” Jacquard told Ars Technica.’

Read more: Rhode Island considers highway surveillance cameras to automatically ticket drivers

‘The NYT’s lead story recently featured a chilling story of the infamous Israeli cyber-security firm, NSO Group, whose Pegasus malware has been illegally utilized by Mexican intelligence agencies to spy on legitimate human rights and anti-corruption activists. NSO negotiates lucrative contracts with foreign governments, which purportedly use the malware to hack and control the cell phones of criminals and terrorists. The FBI used a similar tool to break into the iPhone of Rizwan Farook, the San Bernardino Islamist who murdered 15 of his work colleagues at a Christmas party.

But there’s a wee problem: one person’s human rights advocate is another’s terrorist. In other words, there are many governments in the world who don’t know the difference between the two, nor do they care. Anyone who threatens the established order is a terrorist. Bahrain used a UK malware developer to hack the phone of an exiled human rights activist. Another activist, perhaps aware of the previous episode, suspected a similar phishing attempt and immediately sent his phone to the Citizen’s Lab at the University of Toronto. It discovered yet another piece of malware which would’ve permitted the hacking of his phone had he clicked on the link.’

Read more: Israel’s Cyber Security Firm ‘NSO Group’ Permits Foreign Intelligence Agencies to Spy on Human Rights Activists