The Linkielist

Linking ideas with the world

Bad news: ‘Unblockable’ web trackers emerge. Good news: Firefox with uBlock Origin can stop it. Chrome, not so much

Developers working on open-source ad-blocker uBlock Origin have uncovered a mechanism for tracking web browsers around the internet that defies today’s blocking techniques. A method to block this so-called unblockable tracker has been developed by the team, though it only works in Firefox, leaving Chrome and possibly other browsers susceptible. This fix is now available Read more about Bad news: ‘Unblockable’ web trackers emerge. Good news: Firefox with uBlock Origin can stop it. Chrome, not so much[…]

Extraterrestrial ribose and other sugars found in primitive meteorites

Ribose is an essential sugar for present life as a building block of RNA, which could have both stored information and catalyzed reactions in primitive life on Earth. Meteorites contain a number of organic compounds including components of proteins and nucleic acids. Among the constituent molecular classes of proteins and nucleic acids (i.e., amino acids, Read more about Extraterrestrial ribose and other sugars found in primitive meteorites[…]

1.2 Billion Records Found Exposed Online in a Single Server, contain social media profiles

In October, dark web researcher Vinny Troia found one such trove sitting exposed and easily accessible on an unsecured server, comprising 4 terabytes of personal information—about 1.2 billion records in all. While the collection is impressive for its sheer volume, the data doesn’t include sensitive information like passwords, credit card numbers, or Social Security numbers. Read more about 1.2 Billion Records Found Exposed Online in a Single Server, contain social media profiles[…]

Sacha Baron Cohen gave the greatest speech on why social networks need to be kept in check, biggest propaganda machines in history

Cohen gave the speech yesterday, at an awards gala for the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), where he was the recipient of ADL’s International Leadership Award. While accepting his award, Cohen touched on the role companies like Facebook, Google, and Twitter have played in spreading lies and hate speech online, calling the sites “the greatest propaganda machine Read more about Sacha Baron Cohen gave the greatest speech on why social networks need to be kept in check, biggest propaganda machines in history[…]

Monero Wallet downloads compromised for 35 minutes

Some users noticed the hash of the binaries they downloaded did not match the expected one: https://github.com/monero-project/monero/issues/6151 It appears the box has been indeed compromised and different CLI binaries served for 35 minutes. Downloads are now served from a safe fallback source. Always check the integrity of the binaries you download! If you downloaded binaries Read more about Monero Wallet downloads compromised for 35 minutes[…]

Police can keep Amazon Ring camera video forever, and share with whomever they’d like, company tells senator

More than 600 police forces across the country have entered into partnerships with the camera giant allowing them to quickly request and download video captured by Ring’s motion-detecting, internet-connected cameras inside and around Americans’ homes. The company says the videos can be a critical tool in helping law enforcement investigate crimes such as trespassing, burglary Read more about Police can keep Amazon Ring camera video forever, and share with whomever they’d like, company tells senator[…]

Why tech companies need to hire philosophers

I have spent the better half of the last two years trying to convince companies like Google, Facebook, Microsoft, DeepMind, and OpenAI that they need to hire philosophers. My colleagues and I—a small collective of academics that make up a program called Transformations of the Human at the Los Angeles-based think tank called the Berggruen Read more about Why tech companies need to hire philosophers[…]

Android Users: Check Now to See If a Rogue App Can Control Your Phone’s Camera

According to an investigation by Checkmarx security researchers, some Android devices may have an unpatched security flaw that an app could use to record you without your knowledge using your device’s camera and mic. No attacks that exploit the bug have been reported so far, thankfully. Still, the Checkmarx researchers were able to successfully create Read more about Android Users: Check Now to See If a Rogue App Can Control Your Phone’s Camera[…]

Shopped online at Macy’s last month? Might want to toss, or at least check, that card

A notice (PDF) posted by the long-operating department store chain said that, between October 7 and October 15 of this year, a Magecart script was running on the checkout page of its retail website. The script was able to capture payment card details in two different ways: as it was being entered through the checkout Read more about Shopped online at Macy’s last month? Might want to toss, or at least check, that card[…]

Half of Oracle E-Business customers open to months-old bank fraud flaw

Security company Onapsis estimates that roughly half of all companies using the Oracle EBS software have not yet patched CVE-2019-2648 and CVE-2019-2633, despite Big Red having pushed out fixes for both bugs back in April. The two vulnerabilities are found in the Thin Client Framework API and are described as reflected SQL injections. An attacker Read more about Half of Oracle E-Business customers open to months-old bank fraud flaw[…]

Elon Musk’s Starlink Satellites Are Already Causing a Headache for Astronomers

Astronomers at a Chilean observatory were rudely interrupted earlier this week when a SpaceX satellite train consisting of 60 Starlink satellites drifted overhead, in what scientists are apparently going to have to accept as the new normal. Launched into orbit on November 11, the Starlink smallsat train took five minutes to pass over the Cerro Read more about Elon Musk’s Starlink Satellites Are Already Causing a Headache for Astronomers[…]

SpaceX Starship Mk1 explodes during cryogenic loading test

SpaceX’s first full-scale Starship prototype – Mk1 – has experienced a failure at its Boca Chica test site in southern Texas. The failure occurred late in the afternoon on Wednesday, midway through a test of the vehicle’s propellant tanks. As of a few weeks ago, the Mk1 Starship – which was shown off to the Read more about SpaceX Starship Mk1 explodes during cryogenic loading test[…]

Windows will go DNS over HTTPS – Take over your DNS queries, grab more of your browsing behaviour

we are making plans to adopt DNS over HTTPS (or DoH) in the Windows DNS client. As a platform, Windows Core Networking seeks to enable users to use whatever protocols they need, so we’re open to having other options such as DNS over TLS (DoT) in the future. For now, we’re prioritizing DoH support as Read more about Windows will go DNS over HTTPS – Take over your DNS queries, grab more of your browsing behaviour[…]

Cayman Bank Targeted By Phineas Fisher Confirms it Was Hacked – 2 TB of data can be searched through now, find the money launderers

On Sunday, Motherboard reported that the hacker or hackers known as Phineas Fisher targeted a bank, stole money and documents, and is offering other hackers $100,000 to carry out politically motivated hacks. Now, the bank Phineas Fisher targeted, Cayman National Bank from the Isle of Man, confirmed it has suffered a data breach. “It is Read more about Cayman Bank Targeted By Phineas Fisher Confirms it Was Hacked – 2 TB of data can be searched through now, find the money launderers[…]

‘Royalty-Free’ Music Supplied By YouTube Audio Library Results in Mass Copyright claims to all YouTube income by Sony – for using a sample from a 1956(!!!!) song

A YouTuber who used a royalty-free track supplied by YouTube itself has had all of his videos copyright claimed by companies including SonyATV and Warner Chappell. According to the music outfits, Matt Lownes’ use the use of the track ‘Dreams’ by Joakim Karud means that they are now entitled to all of his revenue. […] Read more about ‘Royalty-Free’ Music Supplied By YouTube Audio Library Results in Mass Copyright claims to all YouTube income by Sony – for using a sample from a 1956(!!!!) song[…]

China now launches more rockets than anyone in the world: Russia 2nd, US 3rd

In recent weeks, China’s space program has made news by revealing some of its long-term ambitions for spaceflight. These include establishing an Earth-Moon space economic zone by 2050, which, if successful, could allow the country to begin to dictate the rules of behavior for future space exploration. Some have questioned whether China, which has flown six Read more about China now launches more rockets than anyone in the world: Russia 2nd, US 3rd[…]

The USPTO wants to know if artificial intelligence can own the content it creates

The US office responsible for patents and trademarks is trying to figure out how AI might call for changes to copyright law, and it’s asking the public for opinions on the topic. The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) published a notice in the Federal Register last month saying it’s seeking comments, as spotted Read more about The USPTO wants to know if artificial intelligence can own the content it creates[…]

Boffins harnessed the brain power of mice to build AI models that can’t be fooled

researchers recorded the brain activity of mice staring at images and used the data to help make computer vision models more robust against adversarial attacks. Convolutional neural networks (CNNs) used for object recognition in images are all susceptible to adversarial examples. These inputs have been tweaked in some way, whether its adding random noise or Read more about Boffins harnessed the brain power of mice to build AI models that can’t be fooled[…]

White Screen of Death: Admins up in arms after experimental Google emission borks Chrome – yay auto updates

An experimental feature silently rolled out to the stable Chrome release on Tuesday caused chaos for IT admins this week after users complained of facing white, featureless tabs on Google’s massively popular browser. The issue affected thousands of businesses’ terminal servers, with multiple users on the same server experiencing “white screen of death” at the Read more about White Screen of Death: Admins up in arms after experimental Google emission borks Chrome – yay auto updates[…]

Germany forces Apple to allow use of iPhone’s NFC chip to other payment providers, breaks some little part of the monopoly

A new German law passed yesterday requires Apple to allow other mobile payments services access to the iPhone’s NFC chip for payments to allow them to fully compete with Apple Pay. Apple initially completely locked down the NFC chip so that it could be used only by Apple Pay. It later allowed some third-party apps Read more about Germany forces Apple to allow use of iPhone’s NFC chip to other payment providers, breaks some little part of the monopoly[…]

Americans and Privacy: Concerned, Confused and Feeling Lack of Control Over Their Personal Information

A majority of Americans believe their online and offline activities are being tracked and monitored by companies and the government with some regularity. It is such a common condition of modern life that roughly six-in-ten U.S. adults say they do not think it is possible to go through daily life without having data collected about Read more about Americans and Privacy: Concerned, Confused and Feeling Lack of Control Over Their Personal Information[…]

Lessons from the cyberattack on India’s largest nuclear power plant – Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

Indian officials acknowledged on October 30th that a cyberattack occurred at the country’s Kudankulam nuclear power plant. An Indian private cybersecurity researcher had tweeted about the breach three days earlier, prompting Indian authorities to initially deny that it had occurred before admitting that the intrusion had been discovered in early September and that efforts were Read more about Lessons from the cyberattack on India’s largest nuclear power plant – Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists[…]

Ancestry Taps AI To Sift Through Millions of Obituaries

Algorithms identified death notices in old newspaper pages, then another set of algorithms pulled names and other key details into a searchable database. From a report: Ancestry used artificial intelligence to extract obituary details hidden in a half-billion digitized newspaper pages dating back to 1690, data invaluable for customers building their family trees. The family Read more about Ancestry Taps AI To Sift Through Millions of Obituaries[…]

Thousands of hacked Disney+ accounts are already for sale on hacking forums, technical problems, people driven to bittorrenting again.

Hackers didn’t waste any time and have started hijacking Disney+ user accounts hours after the service launched. Many of these accounts are now being offered for free on hacking forums, or available for sale for prices varying from $3 to $11, a ZDNet investigation has discovered. A stream of user complaints The Disney+ video streaming Read more about Thousands of hacked Disney+ accounts are already for sale on hacking forums, technical problems, people driven to bittorrenting again.[…]

Intels’ Trusted Platform Module can’t be trusted. TPM-FAIL

Trusted Platform Module (TPM) serves as a root of trust for the operating system. TPM is supposed to protect our security keys from malicious adversaries like malware and rootkits. Most laptop and desktop computers nowadays come with a dedicated TPM chip, or they use the Intel firmware-based TPM (fTPM) which runs on a separate microprocessor Read more about Intels’ Trusted Platform Module can’t be trusted. TPM-FAIL[…]