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Man accused of jamming passengers’ cell phones on Chicago subway

Undercover officers have arrested a 63-year-old Chicago man on accusations that he used a handheld jamming device to disrupt mobile phone service on the subway. Enlarge / Photo from Reddit of the alleged cell phone jammer. The lawyer for the financial analyst at the University of Illinois Hospital & Health Sciences System said his client just wanted peace and quiet on his commute. "He's disturbed by people talking around him," Chicago attorney Charles Lauer said of defendant Dennis Nicholl. "He might have been selfish in thinking about himself, but he didn't have any malicious intent." The Chicago Tribune also said that a local judge, when setting $10,000 bail after the Tuesday arrest, dubbed the defendant "the cellphone police." Lauer did not immediately respond to Ars' request for comment. Chicago Transit Authority commuters have been complaining for months that their mobile devices were suddenly losing connectivity while riding Chicago's subway and elevated train lines. Pictures of the alleged culprit had been circulating on social media and even on Reddit.

An undercover operation, police said, led to the man's arrest on a felony charge of signal jamming, which carries a maximum penalty of a year in prison. In a statement, Chicago police said: Dennis Nicholl was arrested after he was identified as the man utilizing a signal jamming device on the CTA Redline.

CTA Authorities have been investigating complaints by passengers about cell phone reception. With the help of an anonymous 911 call, the Chicago Police Department and CTA Authorities were able to identify the suspect. Nicholl was observed utilizing the jamming device on the Redline by covert officers in a joint operation with CPD, CTA and the FCC. Nicholl entered the CTA Redline at the Loyola stop on the morning of March 8th , 2016 and utilized the interference device between the Loyola and Granville stops. He was arrested without incident on the Granville CTA Platform. A photo of the defendant on a recent Reddit post shows what appears to be Nicholl in a rail car with a soda can in between his legs. He's holding the bulky handheld jammer, which can be purchased online.

The jammer has five antennae or prongs jutting from it and looks like a walkie-talkie. The Chicago Tribune said the defendant pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of jamming mobile phones in 2009. His equipment was confiscated, and he was sentenced to a year of probation, the paper reported.

Tenable Helps Customers Comply With NIST Cybersecurity Framework

Fresh off a $250M round of funding, Tenable CEO Ron Gula discusses how his company's technology is evolving and adding new options to its platform. Tenable CEO Ron Gula is in an enviable position.

The company raised an unprecedented $250 million in Nov...

Google says it won’t Google jurors in upcoming Oracle API copyright...

Shawn Collins It was just days ago when the federal judge presiding over the upcoming Oracle v.

Google API copyright trial said he was concerned that the tech giants were already preparing for a mistrial—despite the fact that the San Francisco jury hasn't even been picked yet. US District Judge William Alsup said he was suspicious that, during the trial, the two might perform intensive Internet searches on the chosen jurors in hopes of finding some "lie" or "omission" that could be used in a mistrial bid. To placate the judge's fears, Google said (PDF) it won't do Internet research on jurors after a panel is picked for the closely watched trial, set to begin on May 9."The Court stated that it is considering imposing on both sides a ban on any and all Internet research on the jury members prior to verdict. Provided the ban applies equally to both parties, Google has no objection to imposition of such a ban in this case," Google attorney Robert Van Nest wrote to the judge in a Tuesday filing. Enlarge Peter Kaminski Google was referring solely to Internet searches of the jury once jurors were picked. Oracle didn't go so far in its response Tuesday and said the dueling companies should be able to investigate jurors both before and after they are chosen. "...the parties should be permitted to conduct passive Internet searches for public information, including searches for publicly available demographic information, blogs, biographies, articles, announcements, public Twitter and other social media posts, and other such public information," Oracle attorney Peter Bicks wrote (PDF) Alsup on Tuesday. However, Oracle was concerned that Google might tap its vast database of "proprietary" information connected to jurors' Google accounts and said such research should be off-limits. "Neither party should access any proprietary databases, services, or other such sources of information, including by way of example information related to jurors', prospective jurors', or their acquaintances' use of Google accounts, Google search history information, or any information regarding jurors' or prospective jurors' Gmail accounts, browsing history, or viewing of Google served ads..." Oracle wrote. Google has never suggested it would violate its customers' privacy in such a way. Oracle is seeking $1 billion in damages after successfully suing the search giant for infringing Oracle's Java APIs that were once used in the Android operating system.

A federal appeals court has ruled that the "declaring code and the structure, sequence, and organization of the API packages are entitled to copyright protection." The decision reversed the outcome of the first Oracle-Google federal trial before Alsup in 2012.

APIs are essential and allow different programs to work with one another. The new jury will be tasked with deciding solely whether Google has a rightful fair-use defense to that infringement.

Encryption project issues 1 million free digital certificates in three months

Let's Encrypt, an organization set up to encourage broader use of encryption on the Web, has distributed 1 million free digital certificates in just three months. The digital certificates cover 2.5 million domains, most of which had never implemented SSL/TLS (Secure Sockets Layer/Transport Layer Security), which encrypts content exchanged between a system and a user.

An encrypted connection is signified in most browsers by "https" and a padlock appearing in the URL bar. "Much more work remains to be done before the Internet is free from insecure protocols, but this is substantial and rapid progress," according to a blog post by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, one of Let's Encrypt's supporters. The organization is run by the ISRG (Internet Security Research Group) and is backed by Mozilla, Cisco, Akamai, Facebook and others. There's been a push in recent years to encourage websites to implement SSL/TLS, driven in part by a rise in cybercrime, data breaches and government surveillance. Google, Yahoo, and Facebook have all taken steps to secure their services. SSL/TLS certificates are sold by major players such as Verisign and Comodo, with certain types of certificates costing hundreds of dollars and needing periodic renewal.

Critics contend the cost puts off some website operators, which is in part why Let's Encrypt launched a free project. "It is clear that the cost and bureaucracy of obtaining certificates was forcing many websites to continue with the insecure HTTP protocol, long after we've known that HTTPS needs to be the default," the EFF wrote.

NEDA Telecommunications Appoints SpeedCast to Build New Network for the Government...

SpeedCast to provide the Government of Afghanistan with secured and efficient connectivityDubai, United Arab Emirates, March 9, 2016 - SpeedCast International Limited (ASX: SDA), a leading global satellite communications and network service provider, today announced that it has been appointed by NEDA Telecommunications (“NEDA”), the first licensed Internet Service Provider in Afghanistan, to build a satellite connected secured private network for one of the ministry offices of the Government of Afghanistan (“End User”). Under this multi-year service agreement, SpeedCast will build a new satellite-based private network with over 50 sites to deliver required connectivity and service levels to the End User.

The new private network aims to provide reliable and secured connection that allows improved efficiency and productivity by extending connection coverage for the End User. “We are happy to work with SpeedCast,” said Ahmad Ihsan, CEO of NEDA Communications. “SpeedCast has been our main backbone network provider for the past few years.

Their experience with the Afghanistan market and their expertise in satellite communications is instrumental to our success.

This new network will open the door to a new market opportunity for us.” “SpeedCast has been serving the service providers and the private sectors in Afghanistan over the last decade, by providing connectivity and value added services to the region,” commented Pierre Jean Beylier, CEO of SpeedCast. “We are excited to work with NEDA, a truly pioneering service provider in Afghanistan and it is our pleasure to work with the NEDA team who are dedicated to bring in new technology to connect Afghanistan to the rest of the world.” “We are happy to witness the success of NEDA and support their growth, by providing our expertise and bringing in the latest technology to the region. We will continue to work hand in hand with NEDA to expand our footprints in the market and connect users in the region to the rest of the world,” added Mr.

Beylier. ENDS About NEDA CommunicationsFounded in 2003 as the first licensed ISP in Afghanistan, starting with dial-up and moving swiftly into wireless broadband services. Neda Telecommunications quickly established itself as the leading Internet Service Provider in Afghanistan with a presence in most major cities and plans to roll out still further.

For today, NEDA is the preferred ISP for most of the Banks and Ministries in Kabul. More information about NEDA can be found at http://neda.af. About SpeedCast International LimitedSpeedCast International Limited (ASX: SDA) is a leading global satellite communications and network service provider, offering high-quality managed network services in over 90 countries and a global maritime network serving customers worldwide. With a worldwide network of 33 sales and support offices and 31 teleport operations, SpeedCast has a unique infrastructure to serve the requirements of customers globally. With over 5,000 links on land and at sea supporting mission critical applications, SpeedCast has distinguished itself with a strong operational expertise and a highly efficient support organization.

For more information, visit www.speedcast.com. Social Media: Twitter | LinkedIn SpeedCast® are trademark and registered trademark of SpeedCast International Limited in Hong Kong and other countries.

All other brand names, product names, or trademarks belong to their respective owners. © 2016 SpeedCast International Limited.

All rights reserved. For more information, please contact:Media Contact Information:Clara So,Head of MarketingSpeedCast International Limited+852 3919 6894clara.so@speedcast.com Investor Contact Information:Ian Baldwin,Chief Financial OfficerSpeedCast International Limited+61 (0) 2 9086 2785ian.baldwin@speedcast.com

Will The Internet Of Things Enable Your Kettle To Steal Your...

Barry Mattacott, marketing director at security specialist Wick Hill Group, looks at the security risks of linking more and more smart devices to our networks.

Are we just creating ever more vulnerable endpoints in today’s world of the Internet of Things?Back in the good old days, we nailed the front door up tight with a firewall and we knew, that with good security on our gateway, our network was safe from the nasties of the outside world.

But those pesky kids in their bedrooms, not to mention state sponsored cybercriminals, worked out that they could circumnavigate our state-of- the-art firewall by looking for a way in at the opposite end of our network - the endpoint. Barry Mattacott, marketing director Wick Hill So now we all agree that securing the endpoint is essential, but just where is it and what does it look like?Since those early days, there has been a massive proliferation of endpoints and security issues have grown alongside them. You can't go anywhere or do anything without risking an infection. A recent survey found that almost two thirds of USB sticks that were lost/found on public transport were infected with malware.
I guess this raises several issues.

Definitely, don't plug any old USB stick you find into your computer - that's how Stuxnet got its start in life after all.

The survey also begs the question, of why so many of these USB sticks are infected.

Could it be that people are deliberately infecting USBs and "losing" them? Infected USBs can today be considered a fairly traditional attack vector, along with code attached to downloaded files and drive-bys leaping out of infected websites to get you.

The security industry has made a pile of cash developing products to protect us and it's all fairly much in hand. But now we have a game changer because endpoints aren’t the same as they were.

Firstly, we had the revolution that was the mobile endpoint. Mobile phones and tablets are now huge players on our networks.

They have effectively put network endpoints in our pockets and allowed us to take them down the pub and lose them. The technology to protect them has been available for some time, but the adoption has been woefully slow. You would have thought US Federal Agencies would be right on top of it, but a 2015 survey found 61 percent of agencies do not apply their network security policies to mobile devices! So what does the future hold for the endpoint? Without doubt, the Internet of Things (IoT) means they are going to be everywhere! Network attached security systems that give you video pictures of your front door and allow callers to leave recorded messages, are essentially connecting your door bell to your main processor (home PC). Your Hive controlled heating system is connecting you to the Internet. Despite these being serious systems, many have arrived on our networks and in our homes with gaping holes in their security.

British Gas took a thrashing in the national press when their control system was found to be a burglar's dream, easily allowing access to the heating schedule, which could tell them if the owner was at home, or even if they were away for an extended period of time. Even cars have become endpoints. Until recently they were fairly much self-contained. Yes, they communicated with the Internet and manufacturers’ control networks and as such they were hackable. We saw hackers demonstrate that they could take control of a Jeep and run it off the road.

This triggered a recall of 1.4 million cars by Chrysler in order to patch the operating system.

But they were somebody else's problem in that they didn't communicate with your network, so were not one of your endpoints. But car manufacturers, including Ford, are developing on-board systems to allow you to carry out vital activities like turning on your smart kettle whilst on the road.

This requires them to connect via the Internet to your own network. On the one hand, that kettle might be ever so smart in that it carries significantly more processing power than the 64 Kb memory operating at 0.043 MHz in the Apollo guidance system that put man on the moon. On the other hand, it's not smart enough to be fully secured against man-in-the-middle attacks that will allow a hacker to penetrate your network.

And once they are in, will they be able to access your car sitting in the driveway and steal it? It doesn't really matter how secure Ford makes your car, if your kettle is going to leave the door open. Why? Why is it that the Internet of Things is so woefully behind the curve regarding security?To start with, your average kettle manufacturer doesn't have a great pedigree in network security.

They might make an awesomely efficient kettle but in the current climate they will find it difficult to find and employ a suitable security expert.

They are also in a rush.

They have just come up with the world saving idea of adding internet connectivity to your kettle, so obviously they are in a huge rush to get it to market before everyone else thinks of it and beats them to it.

And of course, functionality will always beat security. No one wants to go through multi-factor authentication every time they want a cup of tea. So what can you do about it? Purchase (and attach to your network) with care. When it comes to the Internet of Things, you are putting your trust in the hands of others.

There is little that you personally can do to ensure that your TV, kettle, car, fridge, etc., etc. is secure. One piece of advice is to look out for names that you feel you can trust with security. Manufacturers are starting to come up with solutions for these gaping security holes.

Gemalto, for example, is emerging as a front runner in the field of IoT security.

They have hardware modules, platforms and service solutions that allow you to connect and protect any machine-to-machine or electronic consumer device.

They are currently working with all sorts of OEMs, mobile network operators and industrial manufacturers in various markets. http://www.gemalto.com/iot Barracuda Networks felt the need to bring out a brand new range of products designed to protect the Internet of Things and Machine to Machine connectivity.

Their S Series currently includes Barracuda NextGen Firewall Secure Connector 1 (SC1) and the Barracuda NextGen Secure Access Concentrator (SAC).

These two appliances will make it a lot easier and infinitely more secure for enterprises to benefit from and roll-out largescale deployments of devices like Automated Teller Machines (ATMs), point-of-sale kiosks, wind power stations and networked industrial machines in remote locations. https://www.barracuda.com/products/nextgenfirewall-s Another well-known name in security, Kaspersky Lab, is making a move in the automotive space and is currently in talks with most of the world’s car manufacturers, particularly around the area of securing self-driving cars.

They are looking to secure not only the industrial controls of the production process but also the connected car. Kaspersky Lab is coming at this from a great place as they are already involved in protecting Ferrari.

Aside from the usual endpoint protection they also integrate with existing complex infrastructure, including industrial technologies and mobile devices.
In future, if your car is protected by Kaspersky, then you can probably be pretty sure your kettle can’t steal it! http://www.techworld.com/news/startups/kaspersky-looks-secure-self-driving-cars-factories-theyre-made-in-3615206/ You can also do some research on good old Google.

Thinking about stuffing a EZCast Streamer in your TV’s USB port? A quick check online will find a recent report from Check Point which revealed that the wi-fi network the EZCast sets up, can easily be breached, allowing the attacker access to your main network, where they can wreak havoc or steal confidential data.
So don't be in a rush to buy.

And check it out before you do. http://blog.checkpoint.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/EZCast_Report_Check_Point.pdf One important thing to check is whether the firmware on the product you are buying can be updated. Users of SimpliSafe wireless home alarm systems recently found out that the system is stupidly easy to hack with basic sniffing equipment, allowing its PIN to be grabbed from 30 metres away.

But to really rub salt into the wounds, the hardware apparently cannot be patched or updated to overcome the vulnerability, which leaves owners with no choice but to junk their system. http://thehackernews.com/2016/02/hack-home-security-alarm.html So what’s the best tactic if you don’t want to fall victim to security weaknesses in your clever consumer devices, intelligent cars and machine-to-machine equipment which makeup the Internet of Things? The best advice would be to try and resist the frivolous items like kettles and door bells and stick to things made by reputable manufacturers, preferably ones that have some sort of pedigree in networking. ENDS About the authorBarry Mattacott is marketing director of Wick Hill Group, which is based in Woking, Surrey and Hamburg Germany. Wick Hill Group is part of Rigby Private Equity (RPE), a subsidiary of Rigby Group Investments, an independent company within Rigby Group plc.
Specialist distributor Zycko is also part of RPE, and in co-operation with Zycko, Wick Hill can offer a pan-European service which provides a common proposition and consistent delivery for vendor and reseller partners covering 13 countries. Users of products sourced through Wick Hill include most of the Times Top 1000 companies, in addition to many non-commercial organisations, government departments and SMEs across all business sectors.

Through its channel partners, the company has delivered IT solutions to more than a million users world-wide. Wick Hill currently has offices in Woking, Surrey, with sister offices in Hamburg. ENDS For further press information, please contact Annabelle Brown on 01326 318212, email pr@wickhill.com, Wick Hill https://www.wickhill.com or www.twitter.com/wickhill.

For pic of Barry Mattacott please go to https://www.wickhill.com/company/press/pictures or contact Annabelle Brown.

ThreatTrack Vipre Antivirus 2016

ByNeil J. Rubenking Vipre has been a name to conjure with in the antivirus business for quite some time.

The product has changed over the years, bouncing from company to company and, at one point, incorporating spyware protection from the well-regarded CounterSpy. Perhaps all that moving around wasn't the best for its health.

The current incarnation, ThreatTrack Vipre Antivirus 2016, isn't your best choice for comprehensive protection.
It did improve its antiphishing and malicious URL blocking scores significantly over the tests we ran on last year's edition, but it fared poorly in tests by independent antivirus labs. You have plenty of purchase options with Vipre. You can pick one, three, five, or 10 licenses and subscribe for one, two, three, or four years.

There's a discount for more licenses and longer subscriptions, of course. Protecting a single PC for one year costs $39.99, while a 10-license four-year subscription goes for $269.99, quite a bit less than what you'd pay for 40 single licenses (almost $1,600!). Installation is simple, if not precisely quick. You fire up the installer, copy and paste your license key, and click a button labeled Agree & Continue.

That's it.

The installer checks for program updates, performs the installation, downloads the latest virus definitions, and runs a scan for active malware. You don't have to do a thing, except perhaps get some coffee or a snack.
I found the full installation process took about 10 minutes. Vipre's main window retains the look introduced with the previous edition.

Buttons let you launch or schedule a scan.

A status panel reports on the latest scans and updates.

A couple of links let you manage your account or the program's settings.
It's very slick and simple. So-So Malware BlockingA full system scan with Vipre took 46 minutes, just a little longer than the current average.

Clearly the program performs some kind of optimization during that first scan, as a repeat scan completed in just five minutes.

AVG AntiVirus Free (2016) took 27 minutes for an initial scan on this system and two minutes for a repeat scan.

F-Secure Anti-Virus 2016 cut the time even more, with a 15-minute first scan and just over one minute to repeat the scan. Of course, speed means little unless it's coupled with accuracy. My hands-on malware blocking test starts when I open a folder that contains a few dozen known malware samples.
Vipre immediately leapt into the fray, eliminating 79 percent of the samples on sight. When I launched the surviving samples, it detected a few, but didn't completely prevent installation of executable files.
It managed 86 percent detection and an overall score of 8.1 points in this test. Two products share the top overall score.

Avast Pro Antivirus 2016 detected 100 percent of these same samples, and Bitdefender Antivirus Plus 2016 detected 93 percent.

Because Avast didn't completely prevent installation of malware traces, it earned 9.3 points, the same as Bitdefender.
Vipre's score puts it well below the median for this test. Of necessity, my samples in that hands-on test get used for many months. However, in my malicious URL blocking test the samples (provided by MRG-Effitas) are as new as I can manage, typically no more than a day or two old.

The test is simple enough.
I take the sample URLs and launch each in a browser protected by the product under testing.
I note whether it steers the browser away from the dangerous URL, eliminates the executable payload during download, or sits idly, doing nothing to prevent the download.
I continue until I have data for 100 malware-hosting URLs. When I tested Vipre's previous edition, it blocked just 38 percent, all of them during the download process.

This time around, Vipre's Search Guard and new Edge Protection components stepped up to raise the protection level impressively.

Between the two components, Vipre blocked access to 84 percent of the malware-hosting URLs.

Edge Protection did most of the work, though Search Guard (the one place you can still see Vipre's old snake icon) lent a hand. Vipre's 84 percent protection rate is pretty darn good; only five products have done better.

At the top of the heap are McAfee AntiVirus Plus (2016) and Symantec Norton Security Premium, each of which managed 91 percent protection. See How We Test Malware Blocking Improved Phishing Detection Malware-hosting websites are definitely dangerous, but you can also get into serious trouble by voluntarily entering your login credentials on a fraudulent website.
Imagine if a phishing site snagged your Amazon password, or the credentials for your online banking! Last year Vipre tanked this test.

This year's results are much, much better. To start my antiphishing test, I visit a number of sites that track these frauds.
Specifically, I scrape URLs that have been reported as fraudulent but not yet classified and blacklisted.
I open each URL simultaneously in a browser protected by the product under test and by antiphishing veteran Norton.
I also try each URL against the native protection of Chrome, Firefox, and Internet Explorer.

There's a lot of variation in the types of phishing URLs, and in their cleverness, so I report the difference between the detection rate of the various products, rather than hard numbers. Vipre's detection rate was just 6 percentage points behind Norton's, the same score managed by BullGuard Antivirus (2016).
Vipre also handily beat all three browsers. Roughly two-thirds of current products failed to beat at least one of the browsers, and half of those performed worse than all three browsers. See How We Test Antiphishing Sad Lab Results Vipre's scores in my own tests ranged from so-so malware blocking to excellent phishing protection.
It didn't fare as well with the independent testing labs.
ICSA Labs does certify Vipre for malware detection and cleaning, and West Coast Labs certifies it for detection.
It managed VB100 certification in eight of the last 10 tests by Virus Bulletin.

But the scores go downhill from there. In the latest three-part test by AV-Test Institute, Vipre earned 3 points for protection, 3 for performance, and 6 points for usability.

This last figure means that Vipre avoided screwing up by identifying valid apps and URLs as malicious.

But with 6 points possible in the important protection category, a score of 3 points is pretty bad.

Avira Antivirus 2015, Bitdefender, and Kaspersky Anti-Virus (2016) all managed a perfect 18 points in this same test. Vipre's one success with AV-Test involved avoiding false positives, but in tests by AV-Comparatives false positives proved problematic.

This lab tags products with Standard certification as long as they meet all essential capabilities.

Better products can earn Advanced or Advanced+ certification, while those that don't make the grade just rank as Tested.

And whatever the basic rating, enough false positives can drag it down. I follow five tests out of the many performed by this lab.
In latest instances of those tests, Vipre earned Advanced once and Standard twice, but failed the other two tests, both times due to false positives.

That looks especially bad compared with Bitdefender and Kaspersky, which took Advanced+ ratings in all five. See How We Interpret Antivirus Lab Tests Bonus FeaturesThe Email and Privacy settings pages demonstrate that Vipre offers a number of features above and beyond the basics of antivirus.
It checks your incoming and outgoing email for malware, quarantining any problems it finds.

And it quarantines phishing messages—but not spam; antispam is reserved for the Vipre suite.

The email protection works with desktop clients only, not Web-based email, and if your email client uses non-default ports you'll need some technical skills to make it work. Vipre's Social Watch component scans your Facebook page for malicious links. Naturally you have to log in to Facebook in order for it to work. You can stay logged in and set it to scan every so often, or log out for privacy.  When you enable the secure file eraser feature, it adds an item to the right-click menu for files and folders.

After you confirm that you want a particular file or folder gone forever, it overwrites the file's data before deletion, to prevent forensic recovery of sensitive data.
I'm just as happy that it doesn't let you configure this feature, since most users aren't remotely qualified to select between the available algorithms. As you browse the Web and use your computer, you leave behind a trail of clues that a nosy person could use to reconstruct your activities.
If that bothers you, the history cleaner component can help.
It will wipe out browsing traces for many popular browsers, recent file lists for popular applications, and a number of Windows-based traces.

There's a checkbox to show only programs that you actually have installed, but in my testing it did not seem to work.
I definitely don't have Safari, Opera, or ICQ in the test system, yet they remained visible even when I checked the box. Some Ups, Some Downs ThreatTrack Vipre Antivirus 2016 performed significantly better than the 2015 edition in some areas.
It scored quite a bit better in my antiphishing and malicious URL blocking tests, probably thanks to the new Edge Protection.
Its score in my hands-on malware-blocking test was so-so, much the same as last year, but if I see top scores from the labs, I give them more weight than my own test. Unfortunately, Vipre's labs scores aren't good at all. Antivirus is a big field, and I've identified a number of Editors' Choice products.

Bitdefender Antivirus Plus and Kaspersky Anti-Virus routinely take top honors from all of the independent labs. McAfee AntiVirus Plus does well in lab tests and my own tests, and one subscription protects all of your Windows, Mac OS, and mobile devices.

And Webroot SecureAnywhere Antivirus remains the tiniest antivirus around, with an especial focus on ransomware.

Any one of these will be a better choice for your system's antivirus protection.

eWEEKchat March 9: Is Data-Centric Security the Future?

This will be a particularly timely eWEEKchat conversation on how security is moving ahead in the nascent IoT age. On Wednesday, March 9, at 11 a.m. PST/2 p.m.

EST/7 p.m.

GMT, @eWEEKNews will host its 41st monthly #eWEEKChat.

The topic will be "Is Data-Centric Security the Future?" It will be moderated by Chris Preimesberger, who serves as eWEEK's editor of features and analysis.Some quick facts:Topic: "Is Data-Centric Security the Future?"Date/time: March 9, 2016 @11 a.m. PST/2 p.m.

EST/7 p.m.

GMT Moderator: Chris Preimesberger: @editingwhiz Tweetchat handle: Use #eWEEKChat to follow/participate, but it's easier and more efficient to use real-time chatroom links.Chatroom real-time links: We have two: http://tweetchat.com/room/eweekchat or http://www.tchat.io/rooms/eweekchat.

Both work well.
Sign in via Twitter and use #eweekchat for the identifier."Is Data-Centric Security the Future?"Data-centric security is designed to protect data at all times while allowing it to flow freely and securely anywhere, without the need for plug-ins, proxies, gateways or changes in user behavior.This defines a large trend in IT in which the primary function is the management and manipulation of data itself, rather than security focused primarily on the application, networking or storage.

This type of security follows the data item or store around wherever it travels—on-premises or off.This is as close to airtight a concept as there can be when it comes to securing the Internet of things, many industry observers say.With the advent of virtualized IT systems, the worldwide explosion in the use of cloud and managed services, and the increasing usage of data storage and big data analytics inside clouds, data is often separated in so-called "chunks" for security purposes and spread in various locations. Later, when the entire file is needed, systems reassemble these chunks—usually with a just-in-time methodology.All this movement has made conventional security a central problem, and data-centric security—centered around government-level encryption—may have come to the rescue as the only way to handle all this travel in a reliable fashion.Some of the leading innovators in this space include Thales Security, which recently bought Vormetric for this purpose; IONU, whose data isolation platform creates a separate and secure zone where data is insulated from the outside world; Dataguise, which specializes in data-centric security for NoSQL server shops; and Vera, which does both file-centric and data-centric security.These are just a few of the data points we'll talk about on March 9. We also will pose questions such as:--What do you personally see as the No. 1 advantage of using data-centric security?--What other companies do you know will become data-centric security players in 2016?--Do you see, or do you not see, data-centric security becoming mainstream in 2016?Join us March 9 at 11 a.m. Pacific/2 p.m.

Eastern/7 p.m.

GMT for an hour.

Chances are good that you'll learn something valuable.

DataVisor Debuts User Analytics for Security

VIDEO: Yinglian Xie, CEO and co-founder of DataVisor, discusses her firm's new technology that makes use of unsupervised analytics to combat online fraud. There is an increasing consensus among security vendors and technology users that organizations c...

Google Patches Android for Stagefright in March Update

Android gets patched for 19 new vulnerabilities in its latest security update. Google is pushing out its March Android security update, providing users with security fixes for 19 vulnerabilities, of which four are rated critical, eight have high severity and two are rated moderate.Among the high-severity issues is CVE-2016-0824, an information-disclosure vulnerability in the much-maligned Android libstagefright (Stagefright) media library.Flaws in Stagefright were first publicly disclosed in July 2015 by Zimperium zLabs Vice President of Platform Research and Exploitation Joshua Drake.

The initial Stagefright flaws have been followed in the months since with a near-continuous stream of subsequent Stagefright flaws patched in Google's monthly update for Android.
In fact, Google only began its monthly updates for Android in response to Stagefright in a bid to help bring patches to users faster.Though Google has already patched multiple Stagefright-related flaws to date, Andrew Blaich, lead security analyst at Bluebox Security, expects users to continue to see patches in Stagefright or related libraries. "These libraries are having a lot of eyes looking at them all of a sudden, and what we're experiencing is a security audit being done in the wild at a global scale," Blaich told eWEEK. Among the related libraries is the core Android mediaserver, which Google is patching this month for six different vulnerabilities.

Two of the issues (CVE-2016-0815 and CVE-2016-0816) are identified as critical vulnerabilities in mediaserver that could lead to a potential remote-code execution.Another two issues (CVE-2016-0826 and CVE-2016-0827) are privilege escalation vulnerabilities in Android that Google rates as high-severity issues.

Google has identified two more high-severity issues (CVE-2016-0828 and CVE-2016-0829) in mediaserver as information-disclosure vulnerabilities.Beyond Stagefright and its related Android media libraries, Google is now also finally getting around to updating Android for flaws that were patched in the upstream Linux kernel in 2015.

Google identified the CVE-2016-0823 issue as a high-severity information disclosure vulnerability in the kernel, while CVE-2016-0821 is a high-severity mitigation bypass vulnerability in the kernel.The fact that there are Linux security vulnerabilities that have already been patched in the upstream kernel, but not in Android, isn't surprising, Blaich said. "There are probably many patches like CVE-2016-0823 and CVE-2016-0821 that have not made it into Android yet that may have equal, if not worse, consequences," Blaich said. "This is par for the course with Android."Updating software takes time, especially when bringing patches from one project into another, Blaich said, adding that there is definitely room for improvement to get patches into Android faster, which then takes even longer to make it into the hands of consumers.

Google makes its monthly patches freely available for supported Nexus device users.Google has publicly issued 123 fixes since it started the monthly Android security bulletin in August, Blaich explained."However, while Nexus devices are receiving these fixes, non-Nexus devices are not getting them in a timely manner, if at all," he said.Of the 123 fixes Google has issued since August, 45 percent have been critical. Blaich commented that this means that all of the unpatched Android devices are at risk of being compromised, exploited and having personal data stolen, sometimes remotely, without the attacker needing access to the device.Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at eWEEK and InternetNews.com.

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Multi-factor authentication goes mainstream

Fingerprints, rather than passwords, are what more than a million financial services customers at USAA use to get online. Part of a trend toward multi-factor authentication (MFA), there is no stored list of passwords for hackers to steal. REUTERS/Fabri...

Facebook patches beta site bug, pays bounty

Password resets could be brute-forced Facebook has slung US$15,000 in the direction of Anand Prakesh for discovering a serious bug on its beta servers. Late in February, Prakesh writes, he discovered that the company's beta sites didn't rate limit the PINs used for password resets. If you request a password reset via a PIN sent to your phone, after 10 or 12 invalid attempts the attacker is blocked. However, he writes, the same didn't apply to beta.facebook.com or mbasics.beta.facebook.com – and that made it trivial to write a script to brute-force the 6-digit PIN. No terms of service were harmed in the making of the attack though, since Prakash attacked his own account, as shown in this video. Youtube Video Here's the vulnerable request Prakash put in his notification to Facebook. POST /recover/as/code/ HTTP/1.1 Host: beta.facebook.com lsd=AVoywo13&n=XXXXX “Brute forcing the "n" successfully allowed me to set [a] new password for any Facebook user”, he writes.

Facebook has now patched the bug. ® Sponsored: DevOps: hidden risks and how to achieve results