March 12, 2013 |
BEIJING - For a 25-year-old computer whiz enlisted in a People's Liberation Army hacking unit, life was all about low pay, drudgery and social isolation. Nothing at all like the unkempt hackers of popular imagination, the young man wore a military uniform at work in Shanghai. He lived in a dorm where meals often consisted of instant ramen noodles. The workday ran from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., although hackers were often required to work late into the evening. With no money and little free time, he found solace on the Internet.
January 31, 2013 |
More than 30 journalists and executives at western news organizations in China, including the New York Times, have had their computers hacked, according to Mandiant, a security firm that monitors such attacks. Over the last four months, the hackers managed to infiltrate the Times' computers, the newspaper reported Thursday. In a lengthy piece, the newspaper said the hackers had penetrated its computers and obtained passwords for reporters and other employees. The hackers have been blocked and security tightened to prevent another attack, which followed an investigation by the paper into finances of relatives of Wen Jiabao, China's premier.
December 31, 2012 |
Microsoft has released a temporary fix for its Internet Explorer browser, which the company says has a security hole that could allow hackers to take over a computer. The security hole, which Microsoft confirmed over the weekend, affects Internet Explorer versions 6, 7 and 8, and could allow malicious code, placed on some unsuspecting websites, to be embedded in a computer system after the browser visited the site. “An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could gain the same user rights as the current user,” Microsoft wrote in a security advisory released Saturday.
December 4, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - As head of the FBI's cyber crimes division, Shawn Henry often had to deal with exasperated company executives after his agents informed them that their networks had been hacked and their secrets pilfered. "By whom?" the company officials would ask. "What have they taken? Where did it go?" "Sorry," Henry's agents had to reply, "that's classified. " Even though the FBI in many cases had evidence the attacker had been backed by a foreign intelligence agency, agents couldn't disclose it because the U.S. government believed doing so could compromise top-secret sources and methods.
July 31, 2012
The first line of defense against cybercriminals is to have the companies and individuals who connect to the Internet hew to industry standards for minimizing risks. Many of them have so far failed to do so, however, enabling hackers to steal trade secrets, knock sites offline and vacuum up credit card numbers. Sadly, a new Senate bill aimed at improving cybersecurity wouldn't address those security gaps as forcefully as its sponsors originally proposed. But at least it's better than the alternative that passed the House.
April 24, 2012 |
WASHINGTON -- Activists and lawmakers are geared up for a final push against the latest Internet security legislation, calling on Congress to reject or dial back the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (PDF) because of the considerable power it would give government to examine Americans' online activities. A number of amendments already have been made to the bill as its supporters have tried to secure passage - - a vote is likely on Friday - - by clearing up ambiguities regarding what the law would allow the government to do. CISPA's supporters portray it as a bill focused on opening up communication between the government and private entities for the purposes of sharing information about imminent or emerging cyber security threats, with particular emphasis on those that threaten national security from foreign sources.