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Wed
15
Jun
John Lister's picture

Russia Pays Price for Internet Block

Russia's government has reportedly spent $10 million bypassing its own bans on foreign websites. The country has blocked citizens from accessing more than 1,500 since invading Ukraine. The figures come from Top10VPN, a site that compares the ... features of virtual private networks. These are tools that let users access sites in a way sometimes compared to routing Internet traffic through a tunnel so that nobody can see who has connected to which site. VPNs can get round official blocks on accessing specific sites, particularly when they are policed by Internet providers following local laws. ... (view more)

Tue
07
Jun
John Lister's picture

New 'Pre-Hijacking' a Threat to User Accounts

Nearly half of all leading websites are vulnerable to an audacious hacking method according to a new report. The attacks involve hijacking an account before it has even been created. The scam uses various methods, but usually involves creating an ... account using an email address, then waiting for the actual owner of that email address to attempt to create an account on a specific website. Microsoft's Andrew Paverd and independent researcher Avinash Sudhodanan detailed the problems in a research paper and blog post. (Source: microsoft.com ) They say the "root cause" of the problem is that many ... (view more)

Sat
01
Jan
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LastPass Blunder Causes Security Scare

Users of popular password manager tool LastPass have reported worrying emails that suggest their master passwords have been compromised. LastPass says the emails may have been sent mistakenly and that it has no evidence of any security breach. Like ... most such tools, LastPass let users create a single memorable password, the name coming from the idea it's the "last password" users will ever need to remember. This password is necessary to unlock a private vault of stored encrypted passwords for other sites. One of the big keys to the service is that LastPass itself has no access to the master ... (view more)

Fri
25
Jun
John Lister's picture

US Seizes 30+ 'Terrorist' Iranian News Sites

The US government has seized control of domain names for more than 30 Iranian news sites it accuses of spreading misinformation. The sites themselves are still online but are now much harder to reach. The sites were mostly used by the Iranian ... Islamic Radio and Television Union, which the US Department of Justice says is working on behalf of a Iranian military group the US had formally designated a foreign terrorist organization. It said the sites were posing as news organizations but had actually "targeted the United States with disinformation campaigns and malign influence operations." ( ... (view more)

Thu
10
Jun
John Lister's picture

Major Websites Knocked Offline

Several high-profile websites went offline for around an hour this week thanks to problems with a content delivery network (CDN). The disruption to sites like the New York Times, Amazon and Reddit was a reminder of weak points in the way the ... Internet works today. The problem also affected CNN, the United Kingdom's government sites, online video site Hulu and gaming streaming site Twitch. Not only were the sites unavailable but visitors saw a range of error messages that often weren't much help explaining the problem. (Source: theguardian.com ) The outage is widely believed to be related to ... (view more)

Fri
08
Jan
John Lister's picture

Chrome Defaults to Secure Website Version

Google Chrome will now look for a secure version of a website first by default. It could mean a tiny delay accessing some sites, but should nudge more sites to increase security. The change to the browser involves how it handles cases where users ... simply type in the domain (such as infopackets.com) rather than the full website address (such as http://www.infopackets.com or https://www.infopackets.com ). The browser being able to convert one to the other makes it much quicker to type website addresses and allows browsers to use a single space for users to input both website addresses and search ... (view more)

Tue
29
Dec
John Lister's picture

Online Free Speech Rules Derail Defense Bill

A dispute over Internet law has led to a Presidential veto of a major defense bill. Lawmakers will now decide whether to reject Donald Trump's demands to remove rules on how websites and services handle content posted by users. The bill in question ... authorizes US military spending for the next year. One of the quirks of the US legislative system is that bills can include measures which have little or nothing to do with the main subject of the proposed law. These measures are often the result of negotiation between politicians. In this case, Trump wants the defense bill to include a repeal of ... (view more)

Wed
16
Dec
John Lister's picture

Websites Face Major Fines for 'Illegal Content'

Tech giants such as Facebook could face eye watering fines or even be blocked if they don't do enough to remove "illegal content." The proposals in the United Kingdom highlight the difficultly every government faces in balancing online freedoms and ... responsibilities. The measures, set out in the Online Harms Bill, would affect websites and services around the world. If it becomes law, it raises the question of whether the UK is a significant enough market that websites change their practices worldwide to avoid headaches, similar to the way many US business decided it was better to ... (view more)

Mon
25
May
John Lister's picture

Chrome to Encrypt DNS Lookups: What it Means

Google is increasing privacy on Chrome with a change to the way it connects users to websites. But businesses will be able to disable the move so they can keep tabs on staff. The change is to the way Chrome connects with Domain Name Servers (DNS), ... which act a little like a telephone directory for the Internet. A DNS takes a website address that a user types into their browser and finds the matching IP address, which identifies the specific connection to the device such as a server (or service) that physically stores the website's files. In the past, the connection between Chrome and a DNS was ... (view more)

Mon
30
Mar
John Lister's picture

Hackers Infect Routers; Deploy COVID-19 Malware

A new attack on Internet users combines multiple tactics into a nasty strategy. The scam includes hacking routers, redirecting users to bogus sites, and preying on fear to trick people into installing malware. The first step in the attack involved ... the hackers taking control of home and small business routers, with Linksys and D-Link models targeted. Exactly how they are doing this isn't certain, but it appears to involve a brute force attack through the optional feature that lets users access their router settings from any Internet-connected computer. Brute force is effectively an automated ... (view more)

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