Our latest edition of WIG is filled with news link goodness covering topics such as the password hack of web-hosting service DreamHost, the attempted blackmailing of Facebook users by a bot (trojan), the $9.5 million worth of source code stolen from the NY Federal Reserve Bank, and more.
Weekly News Links
- Google cancels Picnik and closes a few other businesses
In its continuing effort to bring focus to its operations, Google said it will shutter a half-dozen businesses–including Picnik, the photo-editing service that the company acquired less than two years ago.
- Getting Gmail? Now you get Google+, too
It is fairly likely that if you’re signing up for a new Google account these days, it is because you would like a Gmail account. Or perhaps you just want to keep track of favorite videos and subscriptions on YouTube.
- Mozilla demos MediaStream Processing, audio mixing in Firefox
- Canonical backtracks on deleting Oracle’s Sun Java
Canonical has announced that it has decided not to push empty versions of the Oracle’s Sun Java JDK packages into their partner repositories for Ubuntu 10.04 LTS, 10.10 and 11.04.
- Is the Linux Desktop actually growing?
No, the Linux desktop will never knock off Windows, but it may actually be a bigger player on traditional desktops than usually believed.
- Microsoft mandating Secure Boot on ARM, making Linux installs difficult
With Windows 8 coming out later this year, there has already been controversy about whether computers that ship with Windows 8 will have the ability to run Linux, either as a replacement for Windows or in a dual-boot setup.
- Securely booting Linux a “difficult” proposition
Matthew Garrett, the Red Hat engineer who originally raised the issue of UEFI Secure Boot and Linux, points out in a new posting titled “Why UEFI secure boot is difficult for Linux” that, despite Microsoft’s recent changes to its UEFI Secure Boot requirements, there are some major challenges left if users want secure-booted Linux.
- Millions sign Google’s anti-SOPA petition
Over the course of the day, millions of people signed onto Google’s petition. “The last number we released was at 4:30pm ET (Wednesday),” said Google spokesperson Christine Chen. “At that point we were at 4.5 million signatories and counting.”
- OpenStreetMap claims map vandalism traced to Google IP range – Update
Google has released a statement in which it says there were “two people who made these changes” and they “were contractors acting on their own behalf” while using the Google network. The two people are “no longer working on Google projects” says Google.
- Bot blackmails Facebook users
Security specialists at Trusteer have discovered a variant of the Carberp trojan that pretends to suspend a user’s Facebook account. The malware hooks into the victim’s browser and intercepts requests that are sent to Facebook’s servers.
- McAfee to plug ‘spammer’ hole this week
McAfee will release a fix this week for a bug in its SaaS for Total Protection anti-malware service that scammers were using to distribute spam, the company said this past Wednesday.
- Web-hosting service DreamHost warns users of password hack
DreamHost customers should change their passwords asap. That’s the word from the Web-hosting service and domain name registrar, which sent an e-mail to customers this past Friday night saying that their FTP passwords may have been accessed by hackers.
- Zappos customer data accessed in security breach
Zappos is urging its customers to change their passwords after an intruder gained unauthorized access to the online shoe retailer’s servers.
- T-Mobile USA hacked
A group of hackers that goes by the name “TeaMp0isoN” claims to have obtained access credentials belonging to staff at US Deutsche Telekom subsidiary T-Mobile USA. To back up their claim, the hackers posted data to the Pastebin anonymous text hosting service.
- Data stolen from Japanese space agency
The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has confirmed that sensitive data has been stolen from a staff computer. The agency said that a virus infection was detected on an employee’s terminal on 6 January.
- Report: “several dozen” new threats to Mac OS X in 2011
Security specialist F-Secure says that it discovered “several dozen new Mac threats” last year. According to a report from the company’s Threat Research team, there were almost 60 new threats to Mac OS X from April to December 2011.
- Symantec admits to more exposed code
Symantec has, according to a Reuters report, added Norton Internet Security, Norton Utilities, Norton GoBack and pcAnywhere to the list of products it now believes have been exposed.
- Phishing Your Employees 101
A new open source toolkit makes it ridiculously simple to set up phishing Web sites and lures. The software was designed to help companies test the phishing awareness of their employees, but as with most security tools, this one could be abused by miscreants to launch malicious attacks.
- Koobface C&C goes silent after alleged controllers exposed
The Koobface network is apparently down, according to Facebook. Ryan McGeehan, Facebook security official, told Reuters that the company’s decision to expose the five men alleged to be behind the malware had had an effect within 24 hours:
- Man charged with stealing NY Fed Reserve Bank source code
Authorities arrested a computer programmer this past Wednesday and charged him with stealing source code worth $9.5 million from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
Random TinyHacker Links
Photo by Marcelo Alves.
- Malware or Virus or Spyware or…Confused? Read This!
A guide for the average user that explains the difference between malware, virus, rootkits, spyware, worm and trojans.
- Have You Considered Using Comodo Internet Security?
Comodo is famous for their free security products. If you considered using them, check out this review to learn more about their effectiveness.
- Do you remember dxdiag?
Old-school geeks surely remember the DirectX Diagnostic Tool and how useful it was in the days of old Windows versions (98, 2000, XP). It turns out the tool still exists in Windows 7 and has useful functionality.
- Networking Goodness in a Book
Looking for a good Networking book you can learn from? This reviewer believes she found it: Head First Networking.
- Great Tools to Help You Form New Habits Easily
Struggling to form a new habit? Check out these cool tools that will aid you in forming new habits quickly.
- Sign Petition Against SOPA and PIPA
The war against SOPA and PIPA is ongoing and if you haven’t yet signed a petition, do it now using the Google’s take action page.
- Infographic: Windows Phone in 2011
An infographic that takes a retrospective look back at the Windows Phone during 2011.
- Infographic: Bill Gates is Better Than Batman
An infographic that compares Bill Gates and Batman.
Super User Questions
- Is it safe to run computers for long periods of time in very cold environments?
- Does an antivirus also scan for viruses targeting other OSes other than the one it runs on?
- How is the computer able to save things before it crashes?
- Can I load Windows 7 Professional over Home Premium?
- Why wouldn’t cd
How-To Geek Weekly Article Recap
- Desktop Fun: Views of Earth Wallpaper Collection [Bonus Size]
- How To Fix Shockwave Flash Crashes in Google Chrome
- 10 of the Best Articles for Learning More About Photography
- From the Tips Box: DIY iPad Styluses, Easy Cable Organizing, and Dirt Cheap Wi-Fi Antennas
- Stupid Photoshop Tricks: Create An Optical Illusion Double Portrait
- What Do I Need To Know Before Buying A New Lens For My Camera?
- Set the Navigation Pane Tree to Automatically Expand in Windows 7
- 5 Tips and Tricks to Get the Most Out of Pidgin
- 15 Ideas to Buy or Build Your Perfect Standing Desk
- Ask The Readers: How And Why Do You Jailbreak/Root Your Devices?
Geeky Goodness from the ETC Side
- Twitter – Circa 1991 [Humorous Comic]
- Your Android Phone Can Do Double Duty As a Geiger Counter
- What Happens to IT Staff When the Network Goes Down [Humorous Video]
- Indulge in Classic Operating System Fun with Restartpage.com
- Manual Photography Cheat Sheet Is a Crash Course in Manual Camera Settings
- DIY Glow Sticks Offer Homebrewed Illumination and Science Experiment Fun
- What Harry Potter’s iPhone Screen Would Look Like [Funny Image]
- Roll Your Own Radar Gun With This Low-Cost Coffee Can Build
- Fotoshop – The Ultimate Beauty Treatment from Adobe [Video]
- Communication Fail – Every Presentation Ever [Humorous Video]
One Year Ago on How-To Geek
- How To Boot 10 Different Live CDs From 1 USB Flash Drive
- How to Combine Rescue Disks to Create the Ultimate Windows Repair Disk
- The 50 Best Ways to Disable Built-in Windows Features You Don’t Want
- How to Control the Order of Startup Programs in Windows
- How to Upgrade Windows 7 Easily (And Understand Whether You Should)
How-To Geek Comics Weekly Roundup
- She is not a Touchpad
- The First Time
- He was a Visionary
- Been a Computer Geek too Long
- Weapons of Mass Destruction
- The Bad Anniversary Gift
- Time to Leave!
How-To Geek Weekly Trivia Roundup
- Published 01/22/12