Alterslash

the unofficial Slashdot digest

Symantec: Hacking Group Black Vine Behind Anthem Breach

Posted by samzenpusView
itwbennett writes: Symantec said in a report that the hacking group Black Vine, which has been active since 2012 and has gone after other businesses that deal with sensitive and critical data, including organizations in the aerospace, technology and finance industries, is behind the hack against Anthem. The Black Vine malware Mivast was used in the Anthem breach, according to Symantec.

Sharp Announces Sales of DC Powered Air Conditioner, Other Products To Follow

Posted by samzenpusView
AmiMoJo writes: Sharp has announced that sales of DC powered air conditioners will begin by the end of the year. Most appliances use the standard AC electricity supply in homes, but as solar panels become more common switching to DC can save on conversion losses. Solar panels produce DC, which is then typically converted to AC before being fed into the house's wiring, and then converted back to DC again by appliances. Sharp has announced that it intends to produce a range of DC powered appliances for home use.

Re:DC power?

By K. S. Kyosuke • Score: 5, Funny • Thread
Let's attach him to a DC generator, then. He can make himself useful once again. ;)

Why not both?

By aaaaaaargh! • Score: 3 • Thread

Wouldn't it be possible to have both in the same appliance?

Re:DC power?

By fuzzyfuzzyfungus • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Did he have anything against DC period, or just take the position that it wasn't so hot for transmission systems, especially since high efficiency DC-DC converters weren't exactly off the shelf items at the time?

Sun Tzu 2.0: The Future of Cyberwarfare

Posted by samzenpusView
An anonymous reader writes: Cyberwar and its ramifications have been debated for some time and the issue has been wrought with controversy. Few would argue that cyber-attacks are not prevalent in cyberspace. However, does it amount to a type of warfare? Let's break this down by drawing parallels from a treatise by 6th century military general, Sun Tzu, who authored one of the most definitive handbooks on warfare, "The Art of War." His writings have been studied throughout the ages by professional militaries and can be used to not only answer the question of whether or not we are in a cyberwar, but how one can fight a cyber-battle.

If it is some kind of war

By Lennie • Score: 3 • Thread

I wouldn't be surprised if it's closest to a guerrilla war.

It's hard to recognize the attackers before and after the battle, they are part of the crowd.

With Anonymous and these other groups from for example Russia or Arabic countries, they might have no (direct) affiliation with any state. Just the 'cause'.

Poppycock!

By Lurks • Score: 3 • Thread

This really is a load of crap. Extract a bunch of fairly obvious stratagems from a received text, an English translation of generally dubious worth, and apply it to cyber warfare.... unsurprisingly it fails to stack up particularly well. Sunzi was almost exclusively fixed on the idea that armies were controlled by single entities and that virtually all actions under taken by them had cost, and thus could be factored in a set of trade-offs, or expert application of game theory, before game theory was a thing. It was insightful at the time, to say the least, it can still be useful to state the more obvious strategems of any conflict but to claim relevance today where the agents existiing in dramatically different contexts is weak sauce indeed. Sunzi, in particular, would be horrified that any engagement would essentially exist in perpetuity, if the sunzi bingfa (art of war) was indeed written by one person, then he would be horrified by the layout of modern cyber warfare, and would certainly be quite unable to add anything to the idea that one may have to defend against any number of actors, each of which potentially using different strategies at virtually no cost..

Re:Poppycock!

By The Evil Atheist • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
Where do you get the idea that Sunzi was fixated on the idea of armies controlled by a single entity? He explicitly states, in one instance, that the generals on the field can disobey a prince. Sunzi's idea of war was about coordination of multiple entities each doing their own thing to win a war.

And I contest that contexts are dramatically different. The contexts for tactics may be different, but overall strategies are still the same. Identify weak spots while hide or disguise your own. Borrow your enemies resources to attack them. Usage of spies. etc etc. The main reason why Sunzi was opposed to protracted warfare was the cost to the citizens. If what you say is true, that costs in cyberwarfare are negligible, then that concern of Sunzi doesn't apply. However, given how much money has to be spent on something like the NSA and still be completely ineffective, then your critique is wrong and the concern of protracted warfare does apply and the strategies to suit.

San Francisco's Public Works Agency Tests Paint That Repels Urine

Posted by samzenpusView
monkeyzoo writes: San Francisco is testing an ultra-water-repellant paint on wallls in areas fraught with public urination problems. The paint is designed to repel the urine and soil the offender's pants. "It's supposed to, when people urinate, bounce back and hit them on the pants and get them wet. Hopefully that will discourage them. We will put a sign to give them a heads up," said Mohammad Nuru, director of the San Francisco public works. A Florida company named Ultra-Tech produces the super-hydrophobic oleophobic nano-coating that was also recently used with success on walls in Hamburg, Germany [video] to discourage public urination. Signs posted there warn, "Do not pee here! We pee back!"

sigh

By DNS-and-BIND • Score: 3, Insightful • Thread
This is a technical solution to a social problem. I learned this on Slashdot. The problem isn't urine, it's the fact that filthy people - sorry, MEN - are pissing all over the city. All the paint in the world won't fix that. Installing clean, publically accessible bathrooms would fix the problem permanently. Men who already piss everywhere aren't too worried about a little splashback.

Simples

By maroberts • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Pee at an angle to the wall.

Night-time pop-up urinals

By Trevelyan • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Why don't they just install night-time pop up urinals, like other cities have done.
I know them from London, Paris and Amsterdam, but here's a video for one in Watford

Fairly straight forward solution, and no more stinky city.

you are all missing the wall ... er, point!

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Main improvement is not that wall pisses back; that is just a comical twist. The important part is that the wall doesn't get soaked in smelly urine. Street washing trucks and machines will take care of the pavement.

Solutions?

By GeekWithAKnife • Score: 3 • Thread

As I see it the problem is deterrent. People drink too much, cannot hold it in and need to pee. Given their drunken state they no longer care about how it looks or what others may think and they just piss anywhere.

IF fines were high and CCTV footage or pictures were published to name and shame I'm pretty sure we'll have far less people doing this!

How Developers Can Fight Creeping Mediocrity

Posted by samzenpusView
Nerval's Lobster writes: As the Slashdot community well knows, chasing features has never worked out for any software company. "Once management decides that's where the company is going to live, it's pretty simple to start counting down to the moment that company will eventually die," software engineer Zachary Forrest y Salazar writes in a new posting. But how does any developer overcome the management and deadlines that drive a lot of development straight into mediocrity, if not outright ruination? He suggests a damn-the-torpedoes approach: "It's taking the code into your own hands, building or applying tools to help you ship faster, and prototyping ideas," whether or not you really have the internal support. But given the management issues and bureaucracy confronting many companies, is this approach feasible?

Bravo

By lucm • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

When I found out I couldn’t commit CSS without headaches, I rewrote the entire front-end.

Says the guy who bitches about unrealistic deadlines.

Re:Cycle of life

By rtb61 • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

For companies is it not quite the same. Reliable older company treats it's staff and customers well. Along comes the psychopath vulture capitalist who works out they can buy the company for more than it is worth and the dress it up for sale by trading on trust while delivering cheap crap, getting rid of expensive stuff, wiping out after sales service and support and voila big profits for a few quarters until it all goes boom but then it has been sold by then.

Reality is companies pretty much keep going until the slick psychopaths take over all full of charm and bullshit and try to fill their own pockets for as long as possible until the company goes belly up as a result of their total incompetence beyond their skill and getting employed. They of course focus all their efforts on blaming everyone else for the problems created by the psychopaths.

Want to keep companies going longer, really easy answer, start testing for psychopathy before letting new executives in the door.

This right here is the truth

By melted • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

As a developer, you're typically not in a position of power. In large companies as long as you're obviously not going to leave, you're pretty much universally perceived as a cog. Sometimes as an expensive cog, but a cog nevertheless. The most power you can have is when you vote with your feet and go work elsewhere.

To a company this means they'll have to replace you with an unknown dude, who is difficult as heck to hire, and they'll likely have to pay quite a bit more money as well. So some tactical effort will likely be made to keep you (assuming you're valuable). This never leads to any kind of long term improvement though, so whatever irked you before this tactical last-ditch thing will continue to irk you in the future, and you should leave anyway.

Re:Why Fight It?

By AmiMoJo • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

I get the impression that this is the prevailing attitude in the US. The company is just something that you use to get what you want, and the company treats you the same way.

My experience in Japan and Europe is that the better companies look after their staff and you end up feeling invested in them. You want them to do well so you make an effort to fix and improve things. Not all companies are like that, but some are.

My advice to the OP is to state their concerns clearly to management, along with solutions. Explain how things can be done differently and how it will benefit the company.

Re:Who knows best?

By Todd Knarr • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Counter-argument: Obviously management knew much better than the engineers how to run the Space Shuttle program, so they were entirely right to ignore the engineers' warnings about how freezing temperatures would affect the SRB sealing rings on Challenger and how ice strikes would affect the leading edges of the wings on Columbia.

Researchers Demonstrate the World's First White Lasers

Posted by samzenpusView
An anonymous reader writes: Scientists and engineers at Arizona State University, in Tempe, have created the first lasers that can shine light over the full spectrum of visible colors. The device's inventors suggest the laser could find use in video displays, solid-state lighting, and a laser-based version of Wi-Fi. Although previous research has created red, blue, green and other lasers, each of these lasers usually only emitted one color of light. Creating a monolithic structure capable of emitting red, green, and blue all at once has proven difficult because it requires combining very different semiconductors. Growing such mismatched crystals right next to each other often results in fatal defects throughout each of these materials. But now scientists say they've overcome that problem. The heart of the new device is a sheet only nanometers thick made of a semiconducting alloy of zinc, cadmium, sulfur, and selenium. The sheet is divided into different segments. When excited with a pulse of light, the segments rich in cadmium and selenium gave off red light; those rich in cadmium and sulfur emitted green light; and those rich in zinc and sulfur glowed blue.

WRONG

By Khyber • Score: 3, Informative • Thread

This is not the first WLL. Those have been available for at least half a decade.

This is the first SOLID STATE WLL.

What's unique is that they figured out a way to grow three different crystals next to each other on the same substrate without having fatal flaws.

Holy fuck can the editors even be bothered to fact-check?

Oh, yea, what editors?

Not white

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 3, Informative • Thread

So it's not white, it's tri-colour.

Just what the world needed

By SuperKendall • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

A racist laser, literally white power.

Summary is inaccurate

By Geoffrey.landis • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

The summary is inaccurate, or at least confusing. The summary says "lasers that can shine light over the full spectrum of visible colors", but the article says that this is three monochromatic spikes, red, green, blue, which together appear white. It also says that the choice of colors is tunable... but tunable lasers aren't new.

The summary also implies that it is "a" laser, but the article makes it clear that what they did is make three separate lasers on the same substrate (specifically "three parallel segments, each supporting laser action in one of three elementary colors.")

This would look really cool

By Michael Woodhams • Score: 3 • Thread

If you've ever played with a normal monochrome laser in a dark room, you'll have seen how laser illumination makes things look speckly. Illuminating with this "white" laser will make superimposed speckly in three colours, with the locations of the speckles not coinciding, so it would be iridescent speckly.

Research: Industrial Networks Are Vulnerable To Devastating Cyberattacks

Posted by samzenpusView
Patrick O'Neill writes: New research into Industrial Ethernet Switches reveals a wide host of vulnerabilities that leave critical infrastructure facilities open to attackers. Many of the vulnerabilities reveal fundamental weaknesses: Widespread use of default passwords, hardcoded encryption keys, a lack of proper authentication for firmware updates, a lack of encrypted connections, and more. Combined with a lack of network monitoring, researchers say the situation showcases "a massive lack of security awareness in the industrial control systems community."

Why didn't someone tell us this earlier?

By Jumunquo • Score: 3 • Thread

-- Iran nuclear program

Industrial network

By hunter44102 • Score: 3, Interesting • Thread
I work in a multiple plant system with geographic separation. Each plant operates independently. But its the geniuses on top that believe we need to some day run all plants from one location. (They also want to be able to see all the plants from anywhere). So we can very secure by keeping each industrial network separated and completely disconnected from each other and the outside world, OR we can make all plants vulnerable by interconnecting them and allowing big shots to see the plant operation from their phone.

Obligatory "why" post

By mattventura • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
Every time some industrial networking vulnerability gets posted, people ask: "why are these connected to the internet to begin with?", so I'll get it out of the way: Why are these connected to the internet again? If you do need some sort of external access to them, it should be through some sort of application-level gateway so that access can be carefully controlled.

Robotic Surgeons?

By PopeRatzo • Score: 3 • Thread

Does it make anyone else uncomfortable that this story about industrial networks being vulnerable to cyberattacks follows immediately after a story about robotic surgeons?

obvious solution:

By Gravis Zero • Score: 3 • Thread

look, none of this is a problem as long as nobody asks about the worst case scenarios.

Beyond Safety: Is Robotic Surgery Sustainable?

Posted by samzenpusView
Hallie Siegel writes: The release last week of the study on adverse events in robotic surgery led to much discussion on the safety and effectiveness of robotic surgical procedures. MIT Sloane's Matt Beane argues that while the hope is that this dialogue will mean safer and more effective robotic procedures in the future, the intense focus on safety and effectiveness has compromised training opportunities for new robotic surgeons, who require many hours of 'live' surgical practice time to develop their skills. Beane says that robotic surgery will likely continue to expand in proportion to other methods, given that it allows fewer surgeons to perform surgery with less trauma to the patient, but no matter how safe we make robotic surgical procedures, they will become a luxury available to a very few if we fail to address the sustainability of the practice.

Possible solution.

By jklovanc • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

The issue seems to be that while conventional surgery requires help from students robotic surgery does not. It becomes very difficult for a student to do part of the surgery and thereby learn by doing. A possible solution would be better simulations so that a student can learn by doing. I think it is a very different than working on a cadaver or simulated patient using conventional methods. The main one being that there is already a separation from the patient by the machine. Every image and feedback that the doctor gets through the robotic surgery device can be simulated by software. It can be programmed to simulate problems so the doctor has to deal with more realistic issues. In effect a flight simulator for surgery.

Re:Animals

By demonlapin • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
I'm not sure how this got modded up, but that was standard practice in the 1920s... not today. We have standardized procedures for damned near everything you can think of.

I'm an anesthesiologist. I put people to sleep for cardiac surgery. My hospital does around 400-500 hearts a year... and we don't kill any dogs.

Personal Expreience

By sycodon • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

Complete Adrenalectomy.

Done at 7AM on Monday went home noon on Tuesday afternoon. Nothing but Tylonel, pain free by Wed morning. Dr. said less than a cup of blood was lost.

Now I have 5 cool looking, little holes that I tell people were gunshot wounds.

He used a Da Vinci robot.

Alternative was open surgery, complete with a 6 inch incision and a week in the hospital.

Obama's New Executive Order Says the US Must Build an Exascale Supercomputer

Posted by samzenpusView
Jason Koebler writes: President Obama has signed an executive order authorizing a new supercomputing research initiative with the goal of creating the fastest supercomputers ever devised. The National Strategic Computing Initiative, or NSCI, will attempt to build the first ever exascale computer, 30 times faster than today's fastest supercomputer. Motherboard reports: "The initiative will primarily be a partnership between the Department of Energy, Department of Defense, and National Science Foundation, which will be designing supercomputers primarily for use by NASA, the FBI, the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Homeland Security, and NOAA. Each of those agencies will be allowed to provide input during the early stages of the development of these new computers."

Exascale? We don't need that.

By the_humeister • Score: 3 • Thread

640 petaflops ought to be enough for anybody.

Re:Likely a new gift for the NSA

By TigerPlish • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

Weather guys want this after NSA's done.

We'll take a side of phased-array weather radar to go with that, too.

The next executive order

By ChrisMaple • Score: 3 • Thread
Synthesize the unicorn genome, to provide fuel for transportation and buy the votes of little girls.

This order is worthless without funding

By acoustix • Score: 3, Interesting • Thread

He can attempt to mandate all he wants. Congress approves the budgets. And since we all know how well Obama has been submitting his budgets....

Re:Likely a new gift for the NSA

By Orp • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Weather guys want this after NSA's done.

I'm a weather guy - running cloud model code on Blue Waters, the fastest petascale machine for research in the U.S. I don't think we've managed to get any weather code run much more than 1 PF sustained - if even that. So it's not like you can compile WRF and run it with 10 million MPI ranks and call it a day. Ensembles? Well that's another story.

Exascale machines are going to have to be a lot different than petascale machines (which aren't all that different topologically than terascale machines) in order to be useful to scientists and in order to no require their own nuclear power plant to run. And I don't think we know what that topology will look like yet. A thousand cores per node? That should be fun; sounds like a GPU. Regardless, legacy weather code will need to be rewritten or more likely new models will need to be written from scratch in order to do more intelligent multithreading as opposed to mostly-MPI which is what we have today.

When asked at the Blue Waters Symposium this May to prognosticate on the future coding paradigm for exascale machines, Steven Scott (Senior VP and CTO of Cray) said we'll probably still be using MPI + OpenMP. If that's the case we're gonna have to be a hell of a lot more creative with OpenMP.

Nokia Announces OZO 360-Degree Camera For Filming Virtual Reality

Posted by samzenpusView
New submitter Sepa Blackforesta writes: Nokia has unveiled Ozo, a next-generation camera for capturing audio and video in 360 degrees. It is built for professional content creators and the company hopes the camera will become the leading device for shooting virtual-reality experiences for Hollywood. A formal launch and price announcement is planned for the fall. A Nokia press release reads in part: "OZO captures stereoscopic 3D video through eight (8) synchronized global shutter sensors and spatial audio through eight (8) integrated microphones. Software built for OZO enables real-time 3D viewing, with an innovative playback solution that removes the need to pre-assemble a panoramic image - a time-consuming process with solutions currently in the marketplace. OZO's filmed content can be published for commercially available VR viewing hardware such as head mounted displays (HMDs), with immersive, full 360-degree imaging and spatially accurate original sound. OZO also integrates into existing professional workflows and works with third-party tools, dramatically simplifying content production at all stages."

Genetically Modified Rice Makes More Food, Less Greenhouse Gas

Posted by samzenpusView
Applehu Akbar writes: A team of researchers at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences has engineered a barley gene into rice, producing a variety that yields 50% more grain while producing 90% less of the powerful greenhouse gas methane. The new rice pulls off this trick by putting more of its energy into top growth. In countries which depend on rice as a staple, this would add up to a really large amount of increased rice and foregone methane.

Re: Well, sure, but...

By kheldan • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
Here's the facts of the matter:
1. GMOs are already 'out in the wild' and their altered DNA is already being spread to the rest of the biosphere due to cross-pollination.
2. Because Monsanto and companies like them will pay almost any amount of money to protect the investment in their IP, we'll never know the truth about the long-term health effects of eating GMO foods until if and when a pattern emerges.
3. Fact of the matter is: It's already too late to do anything about the situation, because of #1 and #2; genie is already out of the bottle, there is no going back, and if it ends up causing an extinction-level event in 10, 20, 50, or however many years, then we've only got ourselves to blame for it.

..and, naturally, I will now get modded down to (-1, Troll/Flamebait/whatever) for daring to state the truth, by the paid shills, GMO fanbois, rose-colored-glasses wearers, and everyone under the general category of 'what could possibly go wrong?' (aka Murphy invokers). At this point I just cross my fingers and hope that they actually did test the shit thoroughly enough to ensure that we're not going to completely fuck the whole planet and/or the Human race with it, or at the very least that I get to die of non-GMO-related natural causes before a GMO Apocalypse causes an extinction-level event.

Not really

By rsilvergun • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
companies use all sorts of tricks to hide stuff like that. Soup companies use yeast to put MSG in Soup without reporting it (it's a by product of the yeast, which serves no other purpose). Cookie and Donut companies have for years claimed "Zero Grams Trans Fat" on products that are literally made of trans-fat by putting a token amount of wheat in there and adjusting portion sizes. You've got to make these 'warnings' really, really blunt or they just work around it.

As for labels, that's all well and good for the top 10%. What about the other 90%? You know how we found out sodium nitrate causes cancer? It wasn't the FDA. It was a farmer feeding old herring to cows and noticing they kept dying of liver cancer. The food industry doesn't exactly have the best track record....

Re: Well, sure, but...

By aybiss • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

The trouble is, like most anti-GMO people, you have a fundamental lack of understanding of what genes actually do.

They mutate by themselves for one thing. Should we be running around ensuring that no natural mutations occur? No because that would be an insane exercise and would fly in the face of the fact that DNA has been doing shit for a billion years before you came along to worry about it.

Intermingling crops? Are the crops you're talking about native to the area you're in? Are those crops naturally occurring strains of plants or have they been only in human cultivation for a few thousand years?

I'm not gonna say we _can't_ kill the planet by messing with species, but I will say with the utmost confidence that we won't.

Re: Well, sure, but...

By jcr • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

paid shills, GMO fanbois, rose-colored-glasses wearers, ...and people who are none of the above, but just tired of tedious luddites like you. Why don't you go find yourself a cave in the himalayas and go freeze in the dark?

-jcr

And...everyone hates it :(

By Xtifr • Score: 3 • Thread

So, it's a GMO, which means the science-deniers on the left will hate it, and it reduces greenhouse gases, so the science-deniers on the right will hate it.

Basically, this is what we need, and it hasn't got a chance of success.

Replacing Silicon With Gallium Nitride In Chips Could Reduce Energy Use By 20%

Posted by samzenpusView
Mickeycaskill writes: Cambridge Electronics Inc (CEI), formed of researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), claim semiconductors made of gallium nitride (GaN) could reduce the power consumption of data centers and consumer electronics by 20 percent by 2025. CEI has revealed a range of GaN transistors and power electronic circuits that have just one tenth of the resistance of silicon, resulting in much higher energy efficiency. The company claims to have overcome previous barriers to adoption such as safety concerns and expense through new manufacturing techniques. "Basically, we are fabricating our advanced GaN transistors and circuits in conventional silicon foundries, at the cost of silicon. The cost is the same, but the performance of the new devices is 100 times better," Cambridge Electronics researcher Bin Lu said.

What goes around, comes around

By BeerCat • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

I remember back in the 80s that light meters in cameras used to use Silicon (SPD - Silicon Photo Diode), but then they all started using Gallium Arsenide (GASP - Gallium Arsenide Photo Diode), as it reacted faster (presumably because of the lower resistance).

There was even talk back then about making Gallium based semi-conductors, for the same reason.

Good to see it coming to fruition

Other companies doing Gallium Nitride (GaN)

By elgol • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Efficient Power Conversion (EPC)

GaN Systems

Transphorm

Panasonic

Infineon

Disclaimer: I work for one of the listed companies. We welcome new members to the GaN club!

I apologize to the ones that I missed.

Multiple uses for the stuff

By TheHawke • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

It's also used in LED's, plus military applications like active phased array radar systems. This breakthrough will make the LED market cost plummet, plus bring the modern radar systems cost down even lower to where other gov't agencies like NOAA and even upper crust civilian markets to own the radar for their own uses.

I doubt it is for *chips* themselves

By PaulBu • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

TFA is a bit light on details, but (having heard of GaN before), it is good at handling large voltages/currents, and they are probably talking about more efficient power supplies (saving 20%, apparently), not replacing Si in logic chips. Or maybe integrating power conversion onto processor die itself, but the latter is still made of good old CMOS. Currently, from what I've heard, a good chunk of pins on your processor are used to supply power -- if you think of it, 30W processor with 3V bias needs to get 10A of current.

Paul B.

Re:Denser chips

By MattskEE • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Gallium Nitride (GaN) isn't going to be used for digital computer, rather it is being targeted towards power conversion circuits such as computer power supplies and motor drives. For these applications gate lengths are typically of the order of 1 micron which is child's play compared to the ultra scaled digital devices.

GaN's circuit size advantage is only partially from the reduced size of the chip, it is the fact that the GaN transistor can operate faster while producing less heat in power conversion circuits. Since the transistor produces less waste heat the heatsink is smaller. Since it can switch faster it means that the inductor and capacitor filter components can be smaller. All of this translates into much higher power per volume.

Microsoft Edge On Windows 10: the Browser That Will Finally Kill IE

Posted by samzenpusView
An anonymous reader writes: Windows 10 launches today and with it comes a whole new browser, Microsoft Edge. You can still use Internet Explorer if you want, but it's not the default. IE turns 20 in less than a month, which is ancient in internet years, so it's not surprising that Microsoft is shoving it aside. Still, leaving behind IE and launching a new browser built from the ground up marks the end of an era for Microsoft. “Knowing that browsing is still one of the very top activities that people do on a PC, we knew there was an opportunity, and really an obligation, to push the web browsing experience and so that’s what we’ve done with Microsoft Edge," Drew DeBruyne, director of program management at Microsoft told VentureBeat.

Any ad blockers for it yet?

By wonkey_monkey • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Hey Cortana, how can I block ads when I'm using Edge?

Re:Um...

By squiggleslash • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

I'm pretty sure Firefox turned around and finished Firefox. *sigh*

Re:Um...

By aristotle-dude • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

And then Chrome turned around and finished Firefox.

Chrome didn't kill Firefix. Mozilla's UX team killed Firefox.

Don't forget the LGBT mafia who chased out one of the founders because he donated a small amount on his own money on his own time several years ago for a cause they disagreed with.

Re:I found this bit quite funny

By thegarbz • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Honestly, search has been here since Vista and was refined in Windows 7. The only time in the past 7 years I've actually dug through a menu was when I forgot what a program was called but I could remember what the icon looked like.

Want to start Handbrake? Tap start > Type "han" > Hit enter.
Want to start Word? Tap start > type "wo" > hit enter.

I can do most of these faster than anyone can even take their hand off the keyboard and move it to the mouse.

We Must Save Internet Explorer 6!!!

By Cito • Score: 3 • Thread

Everyone join

http://www.saveie6.com/

The best browser ever! Don't submit to a post Gates Microsoft!

Tools Coming To Def Con For Hacking RFID Access Doors

Posted by samzenpusView
jfruh writes: Next month's Def Con security conference will feature, among other things, new tools that will help you hack into the RFID readers that secure doors in most office buildings. RFID cards have been built with more safeguards against cloning; these new tools will bypass that protection by simply hacking the readers themselves. ITWorld reports that Francis Brown, a partner at the computer security firm Bishop Fox, says: "...his aim is to make it easier for penetration testers to show how easy it is to clone employee badges, break into buildings and plant network backdoors—without needing an electrical engineering degree to decode the vagaries of near-field communication (NFC) and RFID systems."

Re:So?

By xxxJonBoyxxx • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

>> if you're able to access the communication wiring, you probably can just reach in and grab the strike wiring too and supply 24v to it to open the door

Hammer? Check.
3x 9V batteries in series? Check.

However, it's still more work than just tailgating someone with your arms full of lunch and a laptop...

Tools?

By Coren22 • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

I'm sure there will be many tools going to Def Con, what does that have to do with RFID hacking?

Done before

By schitso • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
This was done several years ago by another: see here.
The issue is that, even if you have the most secure, multi-factor biometric and smart card reader, it's still more than likely transmitting that data back to the access control panel via Wiegand, which is offers not even the slightest bit of security against interception, replay, etc. OSDP has been around for a while and offers encryption to at least combat this, but, honestly, nobody freaking cares, and the lack of industry adoption of OSDP reflects this. There's a dozen and a half easier ways to get into a building.

Very much not new

By Change • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Take a look back to Zac Franken's talk at Defcon 15 (August 2007), where he introduced the same types of tools: https://www.defcon.org/images/...
tl;dr you clip into the data lines of an RFID card reader and record the (plaintext) transactions, then you can later play them back directly over the same bus so the access control system sees what it thinks is a card read from the reader.
Mitigation? Keep your access control readers behind an RF-transparent barrier (glass works, as long as it's not metallic-particle tinted).

What Federal Employees Really Need To Worry About After the Chinese Hack

Posted by samzenpusView
HughPickens.com writes: Lisa Rein writes in the Washington Post that a new government review of what the Chinese hack of sensitive security clearance files of 21 million people means for national security is in — and some of the implications are quite grave. According to the Congressional Research Service, covert intelligence officers and their operations could be exposed and high-resolution fingerprints could be copied by criminals. Some suspect that the Chinese government may build a database of U.S. government employees that could help identify U.S. officials and their roles or that could help target individuals to gain access to additional systems or information. National security concerns include whether hackers could have obtained information that could help them identify clandestine and covert officers and operations (PDF).

CRS says that if the fingerprints in the background investigation files are of high enough quality, "depending on whose hands the fingerprints come into, they could be used for criminal or counterintelligence purposes." Fingerprints also could be trafficked on the black market for profit — or used to blow the covers of spies and other covert and clandestine officers, the research service found. And if they're compromised, fingerprints can't be reissued like a new credit card, the report says, making "recovery from the breach more challenging for some."
vivaoporto Also points out that these same hackers are believed to be responsible for hacking United Airlines.

Re:Multi-factor is the only right way

By Ol Olsoc • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

Proper authentication is made up of at least two of the following:

Something you know

I have a big Dick

Something you have

A big Dick

Something you are

A big Dick

Huh - didn't know it would be so easy......

Re:Multi-factor is the only right way

By Required Snark • Score: 4, Funny • Thread
Being a Bid Dick and all, you are a perfect candidate to be in charge of security at OMB. Being a Dick seems to be the only qualification you need.

Double standards

By nrasch • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

So Edward Snowden can't be pardoned because of "all the damage" he did to our security (which is nonsense for the record).

But on the other hand these clowns can allow something orders of magnitude worse to happen that has real, actual consequences for security, and not a damn thing will happen to them.

Re:Top secret data accessable from Internet.

By elistan • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
An ars article seems to give the clearest view of a rather murky subject. Basically, there appears to have been multiple ways in to the data. Including situations like IT contractors hiring database admins located in places like Argentina and China, at which point it doesn't matter what technical security solutions are put in place since people are explicitly given full access to the data. (I guess technically that falls under the "inside job" scenario?)

Re:So where is the rending of garments?

By sjames • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

And meanwhile, Snowden's release had a strong element of public interest to it. There is no public interest in OPM's screw up.