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Sean Kalinich

The world is connected now, there is simply no getting around it. We have a multitude of devices that are now connected to the internet. I am not talking about security systems or cameras, I am talking about our TVs, refrigerators, air conditioning systems, lighting and the list goes on. The idea of the connected home used to be the stuff of science fiction, but not anymore.

Saturday, 02 August 2014 16:51

Welcome to Black Hat and DEF CON 2014

We are on the ground in Las Vegas, NV to cover Black Hat and DEF CON 2014. We will be bringing you coverage of the latest in hacks, exploits and the tools that are supposed to protect you from the “bad guys”. We also brought along some fun toys that are perfect to travel security. Granted nothing we brought it going to keep you 100% safe, but in the real world every little bit helps.

In the late-90s the world was shocked when a single collection of code was able to destroy a number of computers through malicious instructions. Named Chernobyl (or CIH and Spacefilter) this virus was able to overwrite data and even the BIOS on systems. It infected around 60 million computers and cuase upwards of $1 billion in damages around the world. Although there were other viruses before this nasty bug hit the scene, CIH was the start of the anti-malware commercial machine. It was not until after CIH that we really saw companies spring from the ground offering protection from future events like CIH.

Following on the heels of the removal of a talk about unmasking users of the TOR network we are now hearing that someone has been attacking the anonymity service for the last 5-6 months in an attempt to ind out who is using the service. The TOR Project has just warned its users about an attack that is trying to expose users.

Hey, remember that very upbeat and positive message that Crytek put out about securing their financial future? Well let’s just say that the happy smiles and positive tone that were in the message might have been hiding some not so good thing. According to new information from Crytek the money to stay afloat has come from selling off an IP that they just purchased not that long ago.

Every now and then you see a game developer/publisher really push the limits when it comes to the goodies they are willing to pack into a game. We have seen everything from personal drones to night vision goggles in some kits. Now the latest Call of Duty will feature some pretty impressive gear including mockups of two of the weapons used in the game.

It is always a bad day when you find out there is a problem. Even if it is as simple as your coffee pot not working (ok bad choice for many). Things are made worse when you find out it is a problem that just cannot easily be fixed or worked around. This is the case in a new Android based vulnerability that was discovered by Blue Box Security (the same guys that found the Master Key issue) a few months ago.

Dating website OkCupid seems to think that Facebook’s manipulation of their subscriber’s news feeds as an emotional experiment is perfectly ok. Their reasoning? “That's how websites work.” Yes you read that right. According to Co-Founder Christian Rudder this type of thing goes on all the time and so it should not be a surprise to anyone and no one should be upset about it.

The rumors are ramping up about the next generation of NVidia GPUs. Although we already know that the next GPUs (second-gen Maxwell) will not have the unified memory architecture or 20nm process size that NVidia (and everyone else hoped) that does not mean you will not be getting a good product. However, possible specs and performance are not what the latest rumor is all about. This time the rumblings are about possible launch times.

For years we have heard about the high cost of internet piracy, but other than some seriously twisted math we have never actually seen where this “cost” was coming from. At least not until very recently. No we are not talking about any real financial impact on the copyright holders. While it is true that there is a small impact to them in terms of box office revenue the overall percentage is around 1-3%. Where things really get expensive for them is in maintaining the massive anti-piracy campaign.