Sunday 27 December 2009

Hackers Steal South Korean War Plans


 Christo [PCD]    27 Dec : 15:54
 None    Misc

Unknown attacker hacks into a laptop containing classified intelligence

Unknown attacker hacks into a laptop containing classified intelligence

While South Korea has faced many cyberwarfare attacks in the past, the most recent attack has been successful in extracting classified intelligence.

South Korea announced on December 18 that it was investigating a hacking attack that netted secret defense plans with the United States and may have been carried out by North Korea.

The suspected hacking occurred late last month when a South Korean officer failed to remove a USB device when he switched a military computer from a restricted-access intranet to the Internet.

The plans are said to include an out­line of Seoul’s and Washington’s strat­egy in the event of war on the Korean Peninsula housed in an 11-page document called OPLAN 5027 used to brief military officials.

This doc­u­ment included details of mil­i­tary oper­a­tions involv­ing South Korean and U.S. troops should North Korea con­duct a pre-emptive strike or attempt to invade South Korea. One source stated that the doc­u­ment included details about the 700,000 US troops that would be used in the event of a full-scale war. It is also thought to include a list of tar­gets in North Korea.

"Eleven pages of Powerpoint slides explaining the war plan for visiting military officers have been hacked, not the whole content of the contingency plan," a South Korean military official was quoted as saying.

Sources close to the event say that the sys­tems secu­rity soft­ware should have issued a warn­ing mes­sage if an exter­nal mem­ory device is inserted into a mil­i­tary com­puter, but hack­ers may have been able to steal the mil­i­tary secrets because a mil­i­tary offi­cer neglected these warn­ing mes­sages and broke regulations.


[Submitted by Christo [PCD]]

1 1261921966 Hacker

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OLPC Updates Netbook Roadmap, Shows Tablet Concept, Drops AMD for VIA


 Christo [PCD]    27 Dec : 15:53
 None    Misc

Even poor kids need faster computing

Even poor kids need faster computing

Over the last five years, the OLPC (One Laptop Per Child) project has sought to develop and distribute a low-cost and rugged computer to children around the world in a bid to raise global standards of living. The non-profit organization successfully developed the XO-1, and has distributed over 1.4 million of the netbooks for less than $200 each.

“The first version of OLPC’s child-centric laptop, the XO, is a revolution in low-cost, low-power computing. The XO has been distributed to more than 1.4 million children in 35 countries and in 25 languages,??? said Nicholas Negroponte, the founder and Chairman of One Laptop per Child.

Mass production of the XO-1 first started in November 2007. Computer technology has made significant advances over the last two years, and the XO-1 is getting long in the tooth. The XO-1 features an AMD Geode CPU running at 433MHz, 256MB of DDR DRAM, and 1GB of SLC NAND flash memory for storage. A 7.5-inch screen with a 1200x900 resolution is used. Wireless networking is enabled by a chip from Marvell, while a built-in camera, microphone, and speakers add functionality. A variety of battery choices are available. The XO-1 only uses 2W to run.

The OLPC project will introduce a new XO-1.5 in January 2010 using the same basic design. However, it will drop AMD in favor of a VIA C7-M Ultra Low Voltage CPU which will double operating speed. DRAM will be increased to 1GB, while 4GB of flash memory will be the standard, with an option for 8GB. It will be capable of running Windows and Linux, and is targeted for a $200 price.

Two other designs have been added to the OLPC roadmap. The XO-1.75 is currently targeted for the $150 mark and an early 2011 launch. The design will be updated, with rubber-bumpers on the outside for added shock protection. A new 8.9-inch touch-sensitive display will be used. The project is working with Marvell on integrating a new ARM processor that will double speeds while cutting power consumption by 75%. This ARM-based system will complement the x86-based XO-1.5, which will continue to remain in production to give deployments a choice of processor platform.

The XO-3.0 is being developed for 2012 at a target price of less than $100. It will feature a new tablet design using a single sheet of flexible plastic, and will supposedly be unbreakable. The XO 3.0 will leapfrog the XO-2.0, a concept approach that the OLPC project decide not to pursue.

“To fulfill our mission of reaching 500 million children in all remote corners of the planet, OLPC will continue to innovate in design and performance. Because we are a non-profit, we hope that industry will copy us,??? Negroponte added.

The XO-1 helped to establish that low-cost netbooks could be functional and affordable, and helped push Intel into developing the Atom. Former OLPC CTO Mary Lou Jepsen left the project to form Pixel Qi, a fabless firm which designs and and markets energy-saving screens that are readable in daylight. There is no word yet on which OLPC netbooks will use the technology, but Pixel Qi just entered mass production of its first 10.1 screens for use with new Pine Trail netbooks, and its future screens are rumored to be used in Apple's tablet computer.

Walter Bender's Sugar interface has also been spun off. Originally designed for the OLPC project, it is now being developed by Sugar Labs and is available for free under a GNU General Public License.

The XO-3 tablet concept promises a different vision of computing (Source: OLPC)


[Submitted by Christo [PCD]]

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Thursday 10 December 2009

Facebook's New Privacy Settings: 5 Things You Should Know


 MaTiCa    10 Dec : 19:16
 None    Internet

Facebook has begun rolling out its new privacy settings to all of its 350 million users.

Facebook has begun rolling out its new privacy settings to all of its 350 million users. If you haven't seen it already, you will soon have to go through a wizard that will guide you through the process of confirming your privacy settings.

The new settings are supposed to make it easier and simpler to control your information, but the changes are drawing a mix of criticism and praise from privacy watchdogs such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California (ACLU), and the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC).

The new privacy controls include some great changes, and some not-so-great changes, but here are five privacy issues you should know about as these settings roll out across Facebook.

Search Settings
When I checked my search settings this morning, the option to index my profile by public search engines had been turned on. This is despite the fact that I had explicitly turned off this setting when Facebook launched public search listings two years ago. If you don't want search engines like Google and Bing to index your profile, do yourself a favor and make sure those settings are still set the way you want them to be. To adjust your search privacy settings click on Settings>Privacy Settings>Search. If the "Allow indexing" box is checked then search engines will be able to index your information.

Password Protection Layer: Not So Good
Facebook has added a new layer of protection for changing your privacy settings. Under the new policy you will have to enter your password whenever you want to change your privacy settings. This is a smart move, and quite a common policy with other Web services.

But in my tests, this extra protection did not work very well at all. Once I had chosen to exclude my Facebook profile from public search engines, I left my privacy settings page and returned to my profile (your settings are saved automatically). But when I went back to my privacy settings, the pages were wide open with no password requirement. I tested this out on several browsers and operating systems, I also signed out and back in several times to see if that would change anything. But each time I checked my security settings were wide open. The password protection eventually came back after half an hour or so, but that was far too long. The password requirement should come back automatically or Facebook should be telling you that this setting is set to time out.

PAI Changes
Facebook is also changing what it deems to be publicly available information (PAI), with almost no recourse for the user to control this--a change that does not sit well with the EFF. Information under the PAI umbrella includes your profile picture, friends list (Facebook says the view friends link has been removed from search results), fan pages, gender, geographic region, and networks (school, work, etc.). There is almost no recourse to protect any of this information. To illustrate how important this setting could be, the EFF points out that you may belong to a fan page that supports or condemns gay marriage. Since this is such a controversial issue, that may be a position you are not willing to share with co-workers, fellow church members, or other Facebook friends.

Friends List
Although your friends list is technically under the PAI umbrella, you can still control who sees it. But controls for this information are found on your Facebook profile page -- not your privacy settings. If you want to restrict who sees your friends list within Facebook, click on the pencil icon next to your Friends widget below your profile picture, and uncheck the box that says "Show my friends on my profile."

Other information you can remove from your profile page includes your gender and current city.

Hyper Control
While Facebook is taking away some control over publicly available information, you are getting extreme control over other parts of your Facebook profile. Now you can restrict who sees your shared content on a per-post basis. Don't want certain friends to see your latest update? No problem. Need to keep those photos of you at the bar away from your co-workers? You can do that too.

Facebook's new privacy settings are a mixed bag of better and simpler controls over some information, while loosening the restrictions on others. Of course, if you don't want some of that information to appear, you can always delete it from Facebook (you cannot delete your gender, but you can make it invisible). Facebook's privacy controls may not be perfect, but they will urge users to think even harder about what they're sharing on Facebook, and ultimately that may be a good thing.

SOURCE: PCWorld

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