Week in Geek: Facebook Users are Revealing more Information than Realized Through ‘Likes’

By Akemi Iwaya on March 17th, 2013

This week’s edition of WIG is filled with news link coverage on topics such as Dropbox has bought popular e-mail app Mailbox, most PC security problems are a result of unpatched third-party Windows apps, Google Now has started arriving in Chrome-Chrome OS, and more.

Weekly News Links

Security News

  • Facebook users unwittingly revealing intimate secrets, study finds
    Facebook users are unwittingly revealing intimate secrets – including their sexual orientation, drug use and political beliefs – using only public “like” updates, according to a study of online privacy.
  • Fake Facebook pages promise free gifts in exchange for ‘Likes’
    Promotions purporting to be from Apple and Beats Electronics offer “unsealed” hardware in exchange for “Likes” in an apparent scam to build fan page numbers.
  • ‘NotCompatible’ Android malware now being spread through spam
    Security firm Lookout reports that it has a seen a staggering increase in the number of NotCompatible detections this week. While not a new threat (it first appeared last May), the remote proxy malware has moved on from infecting Android devices through hacked websites and is now spreading via email spam.
  • US-CERT warns of HP LaserJet printer backdoor
    A number of HP LaserJet printers can be accessed through the network and unencrypted data can be read from them without authentication. The US-CERT has issued an advisory that warns users of these printers and is calling on them to update the printer’s firmware with a fixed version.
  • Help Keep Threats at Bay With ‘Click-to-Play’
    Muzzling buggy and insecure Web browser plugins like Java and Flash goes a long way toward blocking attacks from drive-by downloads and hacked or malicious Web sites. But leaving them entirely unplugged from the browser is not always practical, particularly with Flash, which is used on a majority of sites. Fortunately for many users, there is a relatively simple and effective alternative: Click-to-Play.
  • Most PC security problems come from unpatched third-party Windows apps
    In its annual review of software vulnerabilities, security software firm Secunia found that 86 percent of vulnerabilities discovered on systems scanned by its software in the 50 most popular Windows software packages in 2012 were attributable to third-party developers and not to Microsoft’s Windows operating system or applications. And for most of these vulnerabilities, a patch was already available at the time they were discovered.
  • Huawei 3G/4G USB sticks put users’ security at risk
    At the Black Hat Europe conference that is currently in progress, Russian security expert Nikita Tarakanov has presented the results of his analysis of the driver software that Huawei ships with its 3G/4G USB sticks. According to the researcher, the various components – drivers, configuration software, update mechanisms – are all of insufficient quality.
  • Credit Reports Sold for Cheap in the Underweb
    Following the online publication of Social Security numbers and other sensitive data on high-profile Americans, the three major credit reporting bureaus say they’ve uncovered cases where hackers gained access to users’ information, Bloomberg reports. The disclosure, while probably discomforting for many, offers but a glimpse of the sensitive data available to denizens of the cybercrime underworld, which hosts several storefronts that sell cheap, illegal access to consumer credit reports.
  • Spy agencies to be granted access to US citizen finances
    The financial data of American citizens is set to be open season for spy agencies as the fight against terrorism and cybercrime continues.
  • Two new attacks on SSL decrypt authentication cookies
    Researchers have devised two new attacks on the Transport Layer Security and Secure Sockets Layer protocols, the widely used encryption schemes used to secure e-commerce transactions and other sensitive traffic on the Internet.
  • Researchers highlight potential security risk to iOS users
    Though Apple’s mobile OS is often thought of as impervious to malware, hackers could potentially control a device using a malicious iOS profile, says Skycure Security.
  • Hacker swarm attacks dummy critical infrastructure honeypot
    Fake industrial control systems set up test the vulnerability of internet connected critical national infrastructure came under sustained attack, with the majority of attacks originating in China.
  • Meet the men who spy on women through their webcams
    The Remote Administration Tool is the revolver of the Internet’s Wild West.
  • Lost+Found: A get-out-of-jail-free card, a free book & Facebook hacking
    Too small for news, but too good to lose, Lost+Found is a compilation of the other stories that have been on The H’s radar this week: a hacking legend’s business card, Facebook signing up hackers, a free book on Xbox hacking, news from Black Hat Europe and an SMB sniffing Wireshark extension.
  • Google Glass: Expect widespread usage bans over privacy concerns
    Google is about to unleash a rash of concerns generated by Google Glasses’ ability to take clandestine photos and videos.

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Akemi Iwaya is a devoted Mozilla Firefox user who enjoys working with multiple browsers and occasionally dabbling with Linux. She also loves reading fantasy and sci-fi stories as well as playing "old school" role-playing games. You can visit her on Twitter and .

  • Published 03/17/13
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