Home Tags Scotland

Tag: Scotland

Scottish firm, Drummond Miller, selects Eclipse’s Proclaim Practice Management system in...

Heavyweight Scottish firm, Drummond Miller, has selected the Proclaim Practice Management system from Eclipse Legal Systems, the sole Law Society Endorsed legal software provider. With offices in 6 locations throughout Scotland, and over 100 staff, Dru...

Natural Power selected for turbine servicing for Rothes and Paul©#8217;s Hill...

Following the continued successful partnership with Fred. Olsen Renewables (FOR), Natural Power has been selected to deliver the turbine servicing at both Rothes Wind Farm and Paulrsquo;s Hill Wind Farm which are located to the South West of Elgin in the north of Scotland.

Anders Falkfjell, Operations Manager at Fred.Olsen Renewables, said: “This move marks a another step forward in our transition to independent service provision for our fleet, and I have high expectations of... Source: RealWire

Calnex Ships Industry©#8217;s First 100GbE Jitter Measurement Solution to enable Deployment...

EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND, May 12, 2017 – Calnex Solutions Ltd today shipped the industryrsquo;s first ever 100GbE Synchronous Ethernet (SyncE) Jitter measurement solution to a major North American equipment manufacturer. Providing 100GbE Jitter Generation and Jitter Tolerance measurement capability, the Paragon-100G enables the jitter performance of SyncE network equipment to be fully stressed and validated.The ITU-T standard for SyncE (G.8262) has strict limits for both Jitter Tolerance and Jitter Generation.
Itrsquo;s vital that network equipment can... Source: RealWire

Sopra Steria sponsoring fifth Scotland Top Talent Leadership Programme

Edinburgh – Sopra Steria, the European leader in digital transformation, is pleased to announce its sponsorship of the Scotland Top Talent Leadership Programme, now in its fifth year.

This programme is run by the Society of Information Technology Managers (SOCITM) Leadership Academy in partnership with Sopra Steria, and in association with Scottish Government and Brightsolid, the data centre and cloud hosting specialists.
In five years over which the programme has been run, over 100 students... Source: RealWire

Natural Power adds to Heat Network Consultant status

Natural Power’s Senior Renewable Heat Engineer, Guy Milligan, has joined the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) Certification Register of Heat Network Consultants following his training and exam success. He joins his colleague, Steve Smith, who was officially accepted as the first Scottish-based CIBSE registered Heat Network Consultant last year.

Guy said: “We expect Scotland to increase its involvement in district heating networks as a key area of focus to help meet Government targets.... Source: RealWire

Royal Navy’s newest ship formally named in Glasgow yard

HMS Forth, like the bridge The Royal Navy’s newest warship, offshore patrol vessel HMS Forth, has been formally named in a ceremony held in Scotland.…

Shocking crime surge – THE TRUTH: England, Wales stats now include...

'More realistic picture' we're told Crime stats for England and Wales have shown a huge year-on-year increase.

Don't panic, though: it's due to the inclusion of fraud and computer misuse offences for the first time. In a report published this week, the UK Office for National Statistics (ONS) reckoned there were 6.2 million reported incidents of crime in the 12 months to September 2016 in England and Wales, and that this figure is virtually unchanged from the previous year. Crucially, the beancounters have now thrown fraud and hacking crimes into the mix. When the criteria for what's included in the stats were drawn up decades ago, "fraud was not considered a significant threat and the internet had yet to be invented," said the ONS's John Flatley. Obviously, that's no longer the case. When you include 3.6 million cases of fraud and 2 million computer misuse offences, that 6.2 million figure jumps to 11.8 million.

That's a 90 per cent surge in illegal activity. Of course, adding a positive integer to another positive integer results in a bigger positive integer (barring an arithmetic overflow). No surprise there. However, the fact that computer crime and fraud are now being included may make people and organisations more aware of the threat, according to Huntsman Security. Piers Wilson, head of product management at Huntsman, told us: “Including cybercrime in regular crime figures might lead to a dramatic increase this year, but over time it can only be a good thing. We will get a much more realistic picture of the extent of such crimes, leading to a greater understanding of how to identify, prioritise and address them.” ONS crime reports have been produced every year for the past 35 years.

The stats covers England and Wales – and not Scotland and Northern Ireland because the latter two maintain separate judicial and policing regimes. ® Sponsored: Next gen cybersecurity.
Visit The Register's security hub

Assange weasels out of pledge to surrender if Manning received clemency

EnlargeCarl Court, Getty Images reader comments 61 Share this story Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks founder, backed out of his pledge Wednesday that he would surrender to US authorities if President Barack Obama granted clemency to Chelsea Manning. Manning, a whistleblower serving a 35-year-sentence for leaking classified material to WikiLeaks as an army private, had her sentence commuted by President Barack Obama on Tuesday.
Instead of being released in 2045, Obama said Manning could leave military detention May 17. But just days before the commutation, WikiLeaks tweeted that Assange—who is living in a self-imposed exile in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London amid fears he could be charged in the US for exposing the secrets Manning leaked—tweeted, "If Obama grants Manning clemency Assange will agree to US extradition despite clear unconstitutionality of DoJ case." As recently as Tuesday, WikiLeaks said that Assange "stands" by the promise. But on Wednesday, Assange's lawyer blinked and said no dice—that Assange would not honor his statement.

The lawyer announced a new caveat that was not stated in WikiLeaks' original statement, leading many to speculate that Assange's offer wasn't genuine. "Mr.

Assange welcomes the announcement that Ms. Manning's sentence will be reduced and she will be released in May, but this is well short of what he sought," Barry Pollack, Assange’s U.S.-based attorney, told The Hill. "Mr.

Assange had called for Chelsea Manning to receive clemency and be released immediately," Pollack added. On Wednesday, meanwhile, Obama said he did not take into consideration Assange's original pledge when deciding to grant clemency to Manning, who has been imprisoned since 2010. "I don't pay much attention to Mr.

Assange's tweets, so that wasn't a consideration," the president said in his last televised news conference before president-elect Donald Trump is sworn in Friday to become the 45th president. Obama also reiterated what his spokesman said the day before: that Manning was shown mercy because "justice has been served." "The notion that the average person who was thinking about disclosing vital, classified information would think that it goes unpunished, I don't think would get that impression from the sentence that Chelsea Manning has served," Obama said. On Tuesday, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said you also couldn't compare NSA leaker Edward Snowden's case to Manning's. Many have called for Obama to show mercy to Snowden, who is living in Russia. "Chelsea Manning is somebody who went through the military criminal justice process, was exposed to due process, was found guilty, was sentenced for her crimes, and she acknowledged wrongdoing," Earnest said. "Mr.
Snowden fled into the arms of an adversary and has sought refuge in a country that most recently made a concerted effort to undermine confidence in our democracy." The 29-year-old Army private Manning was court-martialed in 2013 for forwarding a cache of classified documents to WikiLeaks.

After being convicted of leaking more than 700,000 documents and video, Manning—then known as Bradley—announced that she is transgender and would be going by the name Chelsea. Manning said in a clemency petition to Obama that she "did not intend to harm the interests of the United States or harm any service members." She said an early release, not a pardon, was needed so she could continue her medical treatment. Assange has also skipped bail after a European arrest warrant was issued in late 2010 by Scotland Yard on behalf of Swedish officials who sought the extradition of the 45-year-old Australian in connection to sexual assault allegations.

Assange “stands by” US extradition “deal,” Swedes still want to quiz...

EnlargeBen Stansall/AFP via Getty Images reader comments 19 Share this story Julian Assange's lawyer has insisted that the WikiLeaks founder, who is wanted for questioning in Sweden over an allegation of rape, is "standing by" his promise to—as he characterises it—"agree to US extradition" in light of president Obama's decision to free whistleblower Chelsea Manning. However, no such US extradition ruling against Assange currently exists.

For Assange to be extradited to the US, it would have to be signed off by authorities in Sweden and the UK, but no such request has been made. Assange has been holed up in cramped conditions at the Ecuadorian embassy in London since June 2012. He skipped bail after a European Arrest Warrant was issued in late 2010 by Scotland Yard cops on behalf of Swedish officials who sought the extradition of the 45-year-old Australian. Assange lawyer @themtchair on Assange-Manning extradition 'deal': "Everything that he has said he's standing by." — WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) January 18, 2017 On Tuesday, Obama—in one of his final acts as president—commuted the sentence of Manning.

The US army private was originally sentenced to serve a 35-year term for leaking a cache of classified military documents to WikiLeaks, but she will now be released in May. Last September, WikiLeaks tweeted: "If Obama grants Manning clemency, Assange will agree to US prison in exchange—despite its clear unlawfulness." On January 12, a similar tweet appeared.
It said: "If Obama grants Manning clemency Assange will agree to US extradition despite clear unconstitutionality of DoJ [Department of Justice] case." Following Manning's commutation of sentence, Assange was mocked on Twitter, with many calling on him to pack his bags and leave Flat 3B, No. 3, Hans Crescent—the Ecuadorian embassy's address in Knightsbridge, London. However, because the WikiLeaks chief breached his bail conditions back in 2012, it's highly likely that Assange will be arrested by Met police if and when he steps outside the embassy. In 2015, Scotland Yard said that it was ending round-the-clock "physical presence" of officers camped outside the embassy, but added that the Met would "make every effort to arrest" Assange.
In September last year, a Swedish court upheld an earlier decision to maintain its European Arrest Warrant against him. Assange, who has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing, initially sought political asylum nearly five years ago, after he was wanted for questioning over rape, coercion, and two counts of sexual molestation accusations brought against him by two women in Sweden.

The allegations surfaced after Assange visited the country in August 2010 to give a lecture. Swedish officials confirmed in 2015 that they would no longer be seeking answers from Assange over allegations of sexual molestation and coercion, due to a law of limitation that requires the cops to charge a suspect within a certain timeframe.

But the more serious allegation of rape remains in place until 2020. Assange has claimed that he would be extradited to the US to face espionage charges if he does leave the Ecuadorian embassy in London. On Wednesday, Assange's lawyer Barry Pollock said: Whistleblowers like Chelsea Manning serve the public interest.
She should never have been prosecuted and sentenced to decades in prison.
She should be released immediately. Likewise, publishers of truthful information serve the public interest, promote democracy, and should not be prosecuted. The war on whistleblowers should end now and should not be continued in the new administration [under Donald Trump].

For many months, I have asked the DoJ to clarify Assange's status.
I hope it will soon.

The department of justice should not pursue any charges against Mr Assange based on his publication of truthful information and should close its criminal investigation of him immediately. WikiLeaks also appeared to infer that Assange will receive better treatment from Trump.
It tweeted: "Assange is confident of winning any fair trial in the US. Obama's DoJ prevented public interest defence & fair jury." Ars sought comment from the Met on whether Assange would be re-arrested under section 7 of the Bail Act for breaching the terms of his bail, if he does indeed leave the embassy.

A spokesperson at Scotland Yard said: "We couldn't possibly speculate." This post originated on Ars Technica UK

Amazon workers sleep in tents near firm’s Scottish depot to avoid...

EnlargePeter Macdiarmid/Getty Images reader comments 36 Share this story Amazon workers employed at a major warehouse in Scotland to help out during the Christmas rush have reportedly been camping out nearby. According to an investigation by local newspaper The Courier, "at least three" tents have been spotted in the "bitterly cold" wilderness near Amazon's huge fulfilment centre near the town of Dunfermline in Fife. One worker, who did not wish to be named, described Amazon as a "poor employer," while local activists have described conditions in which employees are forced to work 60 hours a week with minimal breaks for just a shade over the minimum wage. What's worse, warehouse staff, most of whom are working on a temporary basis to help cover the yearly glut of Christmas orders, are forced by the agency they work for to allegedly pay £10 per day to take specially arranged buses to work—costing them roughly one seventh of their daily after-tax pay, effectively bringing it below the UK's minimum wage of £7.20 per hour. "Amazon should be ashamed that they pay their workers so little that they have to camp out in the dead of winter to make ends meet," Scotland's Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie told the Courier. Amazon need to take a long, hard look at themselves and change their ways.

They pay a small amount of tax and received millions of the pounds from the SNP government so the least they should do is pay the proper living wage. The fares the company charge for transport swallow up a lot of the weekly wage which is forcing people to seek ever more desperate ways of making work pay. The online retailer's general manager at the Fife facility, Paul Ashraf, told the newspaper that Amazon "associates" have a "very intense time" doing peak shopping days. He used Black Friday as a recent example, adding: "We had DJs on every floor on Black Friday, we had tombolas, we had raffles that people get free entry into—it’s all about keeping associates safe and having fun." Amazon's giant Scottish depot has been dogged by persistent rumours of poor conditions, and in a separate investigation, an undercover reporter sent by the Sunday Times to do a few shifts at the Dunfermline site uncovered a miserable working environment. The reporter—who was told to sign a form opting her out of the European Union working time directive if she wanted a job covering more than 48 hours per week—was paid £7.35 per hour as a "temporary warehouse operative." A figure that is just a few pennies above the national minimum wage, but does not account for the high daily cost of the bus, which is considerably more than the price of a local weekly bus pass. Amazon, however, insisted to Ars that "we pay competitive wages," adding that the it rises from £7.35 to "£11 an hour and above for overtime." The company also claimed it provided a "safe and positive workplace with competitive pay and benefits from day one," adding: As with nearly all companies we expect a certain level of performance from our associates. Productivity targets are set objectively, based on previous performance levels achieved by our workforce. We support people who are not performing to the levels expected with dedicated coaching to help them improve. The Times reporter, who worked for PMP Recruitment, one of two agencies contracted by Amazon to provide staff for its facility, walked more than 10 miles per day while retrieving items across several floors of the enormous warehouse.
She was afforded the statutory minimum of 30 minutes unpaid at lunch, and two paid 15-minute breaks.

Despite the enormous distances pickers are expected to travel, the water dispensers "were regularly empty." Amazon, when quizzed by Ars, claimed that "water is readily available to our people while performing their duties." It added that any associate working a 10-hour shift is given "one hour of breaks." Amazon also said in response to the intensive working conditions: "Some roles involve walking a number of miles each day, a fact we make clear during the recruitment process." Workers who called in sick accumulated points, at a rate of one per day, even if they had a note from a doctor, according to the Times.
Its undercover reporter was told that more than one point would result in a talking-to, and between four and six could result in disciplinary meetings or even the sack; being 30 seconds late earned a half-point penalty.

Failing to hit exacting productivity targets, or making too many errors, could also result in accruing these penalty points. The retail giant didn't rebuff its strict policy, however, saying simply: "We support people who are not performing to the levels expected with dedicated coaching to help them improve." Amazon has a poor worldwide reputation for staff relations, and its US warehouse network has repeatedly been the subject of investigations into terrible conditions and low pay over the years during its run-up to busy Christmas periods. Rennie said that the latest coverage "chimes with the feedback I have received from local people over a long period of time." He added: "It confirms that Amazon have created intolerable working conditions for many." This post originated on Ars Technica UK

Gone in 70 seconds: Linux can be owned by holding Enter...

Bad LUKS strikes Pengiunistas Attackers with a little more than a minute to spare can compromise Linux boxes by holding down the Enter key for 70 seconds, an act that gifts them a root initramfs shell . The simple exploit exists due to a bug in the Linux Unified Key Setup (LUKS) used in popular variations of Linux. With access to the shell, an attacker could then decrypt Linux machines.

The attack also works on virtual Linux boxen in clouds. Debian, Fedora and are confirmed as suffering from this problem. The problem was identified by Hector Marco, alecturer of the Univeristy West of Scotland, together with Polytechnic University of Valencia assistant professor Ismael Ripoll.

The pair say the problem does not require particular system configuration and offer the following analysis of the flaw: This vulnerability allows to obtain a root initramfs shell on affected systems.

The vulnerability is very reliable because it doesn't depend on specific systems or configurations. Attackers can copy, modify or destroy the hard disc as well as set up the network to exfiltrate data.

This vulnerability is especially serious in environments like libraries, ATMs, airport machines, labs, etc, where the whole boot process is protect (password in BIOS and GRUB) and we only have a keyboard or/and a mouse. Marco and Ripoll says the "very reliable" exploit has been patched and a workaround developed that shutters the hack. The pair says the vulnerability could have been forged during patch process when other security fixes were developed. ® Sponsored: Customer Identity and Access Management

Cryptsetup Vulnerability Grants Root Shell Access on Some Linux Systems

A vulnerability in cryptsetup, a utility used to set up encrypted filesystems on Linux distributions, could allow an attacker to retrieve a root rescue shell on some systems. From there, an attacker could have the ability to copy, modify, or destroy a hard disk, or use the network to exfiltrate data. Cryptsetup, a utility used to setup disk encryption based on the dm-crypt kernel module, is usually deployed in Debian and Ubuntu. Researchers warned late last week that if anyone uses the tool to encrypt system partitions for the operating systems, they’re likely vulnerable. Two researchers, Hector Marco of the University of the West of Scotland and Ismael Ripoll, of the Polytechnic University of Valencia, in Spain, disclosed the vulnerability on Friday at DeepSec, a security conference held at the Imperial Riding School Renaissance Vienna Hotel in Austria. According to the researchers, the script with the vulnerability (CVE-2016-4484) is in the Debian cryptsetup package 2:1.7.2-3 and earlier. Systems that use Dracut, an infrastructure commonly deployed on Fedora in lieu of initramfs – a simple RAM file system directory, are also vulnerable, according to the researchers. The pair say additional Linux distributions outside of Debian and Ubuntu may be vulnerable, they just haven’t tested them yet. The problem stems from the incorrect handling of a password check when a partition is ciphered with LUKS, or Linux Unified Key Setup, a disk encryption specification that’s standard for Linux. Assuming an attacker has access to the computer’s console, when presented with the LUKS password prompt, they could exploit the vulnerability simply by pressing ‘Enter’ over and over again until a shell appears. The researchers say the exploit could take as few as 70 seconds. After a user exceeds the maximum number of three password tries, the boot sequence continues normally. Another script in the utility doesn’t realize this, and drops a BusyBox shell. After carrying out the exploit, the attacker could obtain a root initramfs, or rescue shell. Since the shell can be executed in the initrd, or initial ram disk, environment, it can lead to a handful of scary outcomes, including elevation of privilege, information disclosure, or denial of service. The researchers warn that the vulnerability is especially dangerous in public situations. “This vulnerability is specially serious in environments like libraries, ATMs, airport machines, labs, etc, where the whole boot process is protect (password in BIOS and GRUB) and we only have a keyboard or/and a mouse,” the vulnerability disclosure reads. All an attacker would need in those instances – assuming the system is running Linux – would be access to the keyboard or mouse, Marco and Ripoll say. Tourist information kiosks or airport check in kiosks could be prime targets, the two write. While an attacker would have to have physical access to carry out the attack in most instances, the two warn that in some cloud environments, like those deployed by Ubuntu, the vulnerability could be exploited without physical access. Users can remedy the vulnerability by fixing the cryptroot script file – /scripts/local-top/cryptroot – directly, suspending execution forever, according to the researchers. It’s unclear when a true fix will make its way to the Linux distributions. Neither Debian or Ubuntu immediately returned a request for comment on the vulnerability Tuesday. Marco and Ripoll claim they reported the issue to Debian two weeks ago and while the distribution fixed it, the researchers claim they don’t fully agree with the way it did it. “This is just one of the problems that the boot sequence has in GNU/Linux. It is too permissive on errors, that is. There is the general idea that if the user has physical access to the computer, then the user IS THE OWNER of the computer (this dates from the very beginning of computing). The IoT will dramatically change this assumption,” Marco and Ripoll told Threatpost. “When Windows detects an error… it just shows the blue screen… which is very bad if you are a developer but it is the best solution for 99.9% of the users. Shall the system be developer/hacker friendly, or user secure?”