Tag Archives: hacking

The War in Cyber Space



Symantec's report on a recent wave of cyberattacks includes the geographic breakdown of computers used in the attacks.

What do these four articles have in common.

They are all signs that cyber espionage is growing as a threat in today’s increasingly interconnected world. Not only for the U.S but for other countries and groups around the world. Many believe that most attacks are coming out of China and Russia. Countries like the U.S., Israel also use cyber espionage when it is to their advantage. The use of infected machines by hackers often makes it difficult to know where the attacks actually originate from.  Attacks maybe either done by nation-states, private groups or individuals and telling the difference is very difficult. Some hackers may try to attack defense targets, but most target businesses and involve attempts to steal intellectual property, including design documents, formulas and various manufacturing processes. How many attacks occur yearly is unknown, since many companies do not report such attacks publicly.

The critical importance of the fight against cyber espionage was underscored by retired four star Marine Corps general James Cartwright, in an interview with Reuters. He believes that we should be more public when it comes what general deterrents we have and are willing to use. He said “You can’t have something that’s a secret be a deterrent. Because if you don’t know it’s there, it doesn’t scare you. Many experts believe that a deterrents policy needs to be created to indicate the threat of possible action without being too specific. For now U.S officials are silent on the type of deterrents that the US has, however it is assumed that it has both defensive and offense ones it can use.

The Obama administration is currently crafting rules of engagement in cyber space after releasing its general policy earlier this year. Many see cyber space as the fifth pillar of defense, which had been land, sea, air and space. The one thing that is clear cyber espionage is only going to increase in sophistication and intensity as cloud computing becomes more popular.


GNC #697 Police State?



Meetup in Albuquerque is on for next week if you want to attend please email me ASAP. We are also collecting prizes for show #700 if you would like to donate a product or service drop me a line. This show gets very serious almost out of the gate we all need to make sure we protect our freedoms.

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Space Hotel.
1994 Tablet.

Show Links:
Canada Police State?
HP #1
HP #2
HP #3
HP #4
Reid Hoffman Interview.
Juice-Jacking.
TextBook P2P.
Chegg for College Students.
$*(* AT&T
Scoble on Google+
Yankee’s Bashing or Trademark Violation.
FBI_Surveillance_VAN?
S&P Retaliation.
Cut your Headphone jack in Half and Patent it.
DHS Scanning us on the Streets?
Darpa we found it.
AES Cracked?
NASA Space Weather Video.
NASA says Aliens to destroy us over Environment?
iPhone for T-Mobile?
Lion Updated.
Microsoft App Store.
70/30 AT&T & Verizon Iphone.
Music Publisher says Uncle.
Redbox Coupons and Tricks.
Netgear SetTop Box.
MafiaaFire Plugin.
uTorrent 100 Million Active Users!
Follow the BitTorrent Money.
CTRL-F “Find”
Energize Me!
Fox ask those cut off to cry!
Vid.ly = Very Expensive.
Netflix vs Amazon Video.
Nomad.
Cover some P2P Tracks.
1 Million Dollar Vacation to Space.
HDHomerun.
Skitch.
Foursquare adds Events.
Firefox 7 Beta.


How To Hack Mobile Phone Voicemail



As the fall-out from the News of the World scandal continues, many sources continue to inaccurately refer to “mobile phone hacking”. The truth (as far as is known) was that it was the voicemail of the mobile phone that was hacked rather than the phone itself. There are two ways to do this – the first is to simply guess the PIN of the voicemail and the second is to use Caller ID spoofing.

In the mid-2000s, most mobile phone voicemail systems were poorly protected as they typically came with a default PIN which was often easily guessed and only varied  according to the mobile phone company. Most users didn’t bother to change the PIN. Say the phone was on Orange, then the default PIN was 1234. If it was Vodafone, then 0000.  Typically, the villain then makes two simultaneous calls to the victim. One will be picked up, the other will go to voicemail.   By then pressing “*” or “#” while listening to the voicemail prompts, the individual can gain access to the voicemail system using the default PIN. Computeractive has article covering this scenario and how, in theory, it would be harder (but not impossible) to take this approach today.

As for Caller ID spoofing, this technique makes a call look like it’s coming from a different number than it actually is. It can be used legally to make someone calling from a mobile to actually appear to be coming from a company office, so that the person’s mobile number is not divulged. However, in some instances it has been used to gain access to voicemail boxes as many voicemail systems do not ask for further identification if the system recognises the inbound Caller ID as one of its own. PC Mag and c|net have short articles on how this is done and worryingly, this is still a threat. The Wall Street Journal covered the problem in 2010 before the current scandal broke.

It would appear that the best protection to both these attacks is (a) to change your PIN on your voicemail and (b) require your PIN even when calling from your own mobile phone. That way, even if your Caller ID is spoofed, the caller can’t get in without knowing your PIN.


“News of the World” Phone Hacking Scandal



News International today announced that this Sunday’s edition of the News of the World newspaper would be the last edition and that the newspaper was closing down. Ostensibly the reason is that a phone hacking scandal had a irretrievably stained the name of the newspaper but the suspicion is that there’s far more to the closure.

For non-UK residents, it’s an astonishing story that involves several alleged crimes and some disgraceful behaviour. First of all, News of the World (NOTW) is one of the biggest selling Sunday newspapers with around 40% of the market and 2.8 million readers. It’s been going for 168 years and while considered a tabloid paper, it has been instrumental in revealing other scandals involving politicians and other well-known figures.

The scandal itself is that around six years ago, a private investigator used by the newspaper is alleged to have hacked into the voice mailboxes of over 4,000 people, including royal aides, sports stars, celebrities and politicians. Even worse, it is further alleged that the mailboxes of soldiers killed in Iraq and murder victims were hacked into. In particular, the alleged deletion of messages on Milly Dowler’s phone is suggested to have given hope to her parents that she was still alive when she had been killed.

Rumours of the hacking arose when the newspaper published stories that could only have been discovered from personal messages. The private investigator and the journalist involved were sent to prison back in 2007 and at the time, a police investigation suggested that the two individuals involved acted alone. In 2009, the Guardian newspaper claimed that thousands of mailboxes had been hacked and that the practice was well known and routine. The Metropolitan Police refused to re-open the investigation. It has also now been alleged that NOTW made payments to the police in return for information. The hacking of the mobile phone’s voice mail was not sophisticated. The private investigator simply relied on the fact that most people did not bother changing the default PIN on their voice mailbox.

Over the past week, as the revelations of the alleged hacking continued, public opinion turned against NOTW. Major advertisers in the paper withdrew their contracts, unwilling to be associated with the unfolding scandal. It was perhaps inevitable that the NOTW would have to close but it seems harsh to punish the current staff for the activities of their predecessors.

The intrigue continues as the parent company, News International, is keen to buy out the remaining shares in BSkyB. However, this had raised concerns that one single company would own too much of the UK media – News International owns the The Times too. The suggestion has been made that by closing one newspaper, NOTW, this will reassure the regulatory authorities but there are also now questions about whether News International is fit and proper to take over BSkyB. It is rumoured that News International will launch a Sunday edition of a sister newspaper The Sun. The domains “TheSunOnSunday.co.uk” and “TheSunOnSunday.com” were registered two days ago, though it’s not clear by who registered them

It’s an amazing scandal and totally despicable – some of the stuff you couldn’t make up. If there’s one thing to be learnt from the scandal, it’s make sure you change the default PIN on your mobile phone’s voice mailbox.

 


GNC #678 Do they Want Control?



Geek News Central Podcast Congrats to our winner! I give you all some insight into what has been happening physically with me, I am on the mend hopefully and back to normal activities. I know your going to love the show lots of high charged tech tonight.

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School is back in Court.
Shuttle at the ISS!

Show Notes:
Chromebook Unboxing.
Apple Blinks.
Can he help Internet Television?
IPV6 Overview!
IPV6 Thougths.
Can they tame the wild West?
Microsoft has to pay up.
The Wii U?
NBC Universal Olympics.
Web Video World at CES 2012.
GMediaFinder.
Boxee UK.
Panasonic and AT&T Team Up.
App Forensics!
How did she get Elected?
Groupon Loyalty Cards.
WP7 to beat iPhone?
120,000 Promoted Tweets.
Tweets Decline after Weiner.
Texting on Decline?
Skype + Canada + New Int Rates = Savings!
Anon threatens NATO!
iOS 5 Features you may have missed.
Judges Revenge Saves P2P Victims.
CitiGroup 200k Accounts Hacked.
Chrome New Security.
Chromebook Teardown.
Google Cloud and Trust.
Academic Copyright Lawsuit.
Weird ICE PSA Ads.
NASA needs Cash.
Soyuz Arriving.
Android Market Phone Matrix.
At&T Most Calls Dropped!
Kiddie Porn or Freedom of Speech Domain Seizure?
Reasons to like HTML5.
Windows Phone App Porting made Easy.
Bing Webmaster Tools!
Skype Savings!
Gaming Tower.
Ultimate iPhone Accessory.


GNC #672 Big Day for LinkedIn



Geek News Central Podcast Headed back to Honolulu, I have had a great week here in Texas, much accomplished. Planning a return trip in Mid June followed by a potential east coast trip as well. Lot’s of tech with a political slant tonight kinda weird but seems that at times themes develop in the news reporting.

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Show Notes:
5 Ways to use LinkedIn
Malware on the loose for Mac Users.
Apple App Store Security Threat?
Chrome URL Bar going Bye Bye?
Religious Reaction by Apple Fanboys?
Fetch.IO
More bad news for Sony PSN?
16hr Cell Phone Marathon on Train?
Twitter Changes Rules Again.
Verizon 4G LTE Growing.
Comcast Sensitive to FCC Hire Tweets.
TokBox Group Video Chat!
Social Media Infographic.
Google Search App.
Verizon iPhone 5 Dual Mode.
Data Hungy Apps making BW Impact.
Twitter providing Reporters Intel.
Little Blue Pill Hearing Loss.
Amazon Gadget Trade In.
Intel Open Mouth Insert Foot x2.
iPhone Oximeter.
Verizon Family Data Plans.
Secret Service 2x Screw Ups.
AT&T No App Restrictions.
Wired Teaches Potentially Illegal Activities.
Philly Police and Citizen Gun Holder Incident.
Amazon and State Sales Taxes.
Who owns the Tweets.
4th Amendment under attack!
Artist to get some money after all.
Apple TV Hack.
Homeless Planets.
Don’t Take Space Program Lightly.
Windows Phone 7 comes to Verizon.
Smartphone Tracking Law.
Dark Mater Hunter.
e-books King!
Warrantless Bill backed by RIAA.
One Headset!
Guitar Self Tuner.
20 iPad 2 Apps.
T-Mobile wants You.
P2P Traffic Surge.


GNC-2011-03-17 #656 The Great Experiment Continues!



Your going to love this one, I get on the Soap Box and stay there for a good bit in the show today. Fools and their wasted money is the theme. Plus I place a wager on a specific companies new initiatives failing. I also want to welcome our newest insider, thank you for supporting the show it is greatly appreciated.

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Show Notes:
Burglar Blaster.
Firefox 4 Final Release date 3-22.
Firefox 4 Notes.
* Renegade
It’s not the downloads.
This Mom needs to be a Parent.
14 Months, 40 Million NYT Fools.
NYT Paywall Plans?
Open Canadian Letter to NYT!
Business Cards Dead?
RSA SecurID May Be Hacked.
Hacking your Car.
Matt Cutts – Google Luminary.
Japan Telephone/Network Lines a Wreck.
TSA now cannot do Math.
Netflix to do Original Content?
Webm Plugin for IE9.
President says Do Not Track!
BlueTooth Headset Review.
Soyuz back to Kazakhstan.
Women.Nasa.gov
Women in Space.
Lasers Solution to Space Junk?
More Resources for Japan.
Protecting your company Image.
Time Warner iPad App.
Google Largest Torrent Search Engine.
White House thinks Streaming is Fed Crime.
Sick of Sarah 2205.
Visa goes after Paypal.
Rustock Spam Botnet Brought Down?
Hackers having fun with Electronic Sign.
Sony gets Paypal info on PS3 Case.
Best Sprinkler Yet.
Lexar 128GB SDXC Cards.
Solar Stove.
IPTV Moving Upwards.
IE9 Partners with Hulu.
Free Computer Games.
Gnome 3.0 Beta.
Video Alarm.
OSX Media Conveter.
Google Docs on a roll.
Dutch test 110 old X-Ray machine.
U-Socket Review.
Radiation from Planes and Passengers.