Think Information. Think Security.
 
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Last weekend’s announcement that the LulzSec group of jolly hackers was breaking up was met with bemusement after one of the most mysterious, albeit entertaining, chapters of the information wars of 2011.

It’s quite clear that 2011 is unfolding as the Year of the Hack, withelectronics company Sony – which now appears to be the joke of the online security world – major banksthe FBI and even Google’s Gmail service all the subject of serious online attacks.
 
The success of many of these attacks is a reminder to all about the importance of online security. It is our responsibility to protect our customer and staff details by taking basic precautions.


 
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A group of hackers defaced several Fraternal Order of Police websites across Arizona on Thursday evening, posting the user names, passwords and other information of hundreds of officers.

A release by the hackers, plastered across the homepages of the affected websites, claimed they were releasing information on 1,200 officers. This marks the third major release of documents and personal information on Arizona law enforcement officials within the past week.


 
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Unidentified computer hackers have attacked al-Qaida’s Internet presence, shutting down its ability to communicate to the rest of the world through video and text.  A number of their distribution channels have been shut down at the same time, in a sophisticated and well organised attack.

“Al-Qaida’s online communications have been temporarily crippled, and it does not have a single trusted distribution channel available on the Internet,” said Evan Kohlmann of Flashpoint Global Partners, a group which monitors al-Qaida’s online communications.  Kohlmann went on to speak of an attack that was “well coordinated and involved the use of an unusual cocktail of relatively sophisticated techniques.”


 
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A new report of security company Symantec says that global spam is at its lowest levels since 2008. The geographic center of spammed accounts has also shifted from Russia to Saudi Arabia. Worldwide spam is now down to one in every 1.37 emails. In the United States, spam accounts for 73.7% of all emails.

Spam levels are now the lowest they have been since McColo, a California-based ISP spam control center, was taken down in 2008. That is, in part, due to the shutdown of the spam-sending botnet Rustock in March 2011. Spam, phishing, viruses and other types of malware are all still major problems in the Internet ecosystem but it looks like progress is being made against the botnets and those that control them.


 
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Gannett Government Media -- publisher of a dozen websites for the Army Times, Defense News and other government news websites and newspapers -- has had its Web servers hacked.

The company announced the security breach in a notice online on June 7, when the government-serving division of mega-publisher Gannett says it first learned of the hack. But on Tuesday morning, the details of the Web attack were disclosed by the company to its readers in an email:


 
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Citibank today admitted that hackers stole $2.7 million from exposed accounts in May, at a time when similar incidents are prompting worldwide governments to crack down on cyber-crimes.

The New York-based company public acknowledged hackers lifted the millions from 3,400 accounts. The bank promised to reimburse customers in full, adding those affected already have new cards.

Hackers broke into the bank, exposing more than 360,000 accounts and stealing funds from less than one percent of Citi's customer base.


 
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Mastercard's main website was unavailable for a while on Tuesday as WikiLeaks gloated

MasterCard's main website was unavailable for some time on Tuesday as it appeared hackers were again targeting the company for its refusal to process donations for the whistle-blowing site WikiLeaks.

MasterCard along with companies such as Visa, PayPal and the Swiss Bank PostFinance stopped processing payments for WikiLeaks shortly after the site began releasing portions of 250,000 secret U.S. diplomatic cables in November 2010.


 
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This is something that I don't totally agree with. 

While it may be giving the kids an advance knowledge in IT, this process is further taking away their (social) life from them, which is already highly diminished by their interest in gaming and social networking brought about by the advent of computing and the Internet.

Come on guys, give these kids the kind of life they deserve at their age. They are not meant for hacking!

The United States and North Korea are never in agreement with each other.  They are in a dispute about South Korea, Pyongyang's nuclearization and arms proliferation, and many more.  There have been tensions between them in the land, sea, and air, and they might as well take their dispute to the Internet.


 
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What drives the mind of a juvenile cyberdeviant?

New research from the United Statesfound that peer influence and low self-control are associated with juvenile cybercrimes, including computer hacking, online bullying, digital piracy, and viewing online pornography.

The arrest of UK teenager Ryan Cleary for suspicion of hacking major players, like the CIA, Sony, and Facebook, brought to light claimedmental health issues such as autism,attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and agoraphobia.


 
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The Department of Homeland Security will release a new guidance document today intended to make the software that runs the Web less susceptible to malicious hacks.

DHS has teamed with security and technology experts at the SANS Institute and Mitre to create a list of the top 25 programming errors that lead to the most serious hacks, according to The New York Times. The idea is to educate companies and organizations about the channels that criminal hackers use to gain access to confidential information and servers. These are often common software errors that can lead to "zero day" exploits.