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subjectSecurity
authorArs Technica

An edited collection of advanced computing news from Communications of the ACM, ACM TechNews, other ACM resources, and news sites around the Web.


Undocumented Backdoor That Covertly Takes Snapshots Found in Kids' Smartwatch
From ACM TechNews

Undocumented Backdoor That Covertly Takes Snapshots Found in Kids' Smartwatch

Researchers at Norwegian security company Mnemonic found an undocumented backdoor in the X4 smartwatch marketed by children's watch vendor Xplora.

FBI/DHS: Government Systems Face Threat From Zerologon Exploits
From ACM TechNews

FBI/DHS: Government Systems Face Threat From Zerologon Exploits

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation and Department of Homeland Security have detected attackers exploiting a Windows vulnerability against state and local...

One of This Year's Most Severe Windows Bugs Is Now Under Active Exploit
From ACM TechNews

One of This Year's Most Severe Windows Bugs Is Now Under Active Exploit

Microsoft warns a high-impact vulnerability that allows hackers to instantly take control of Windows' Active Directory is being actively exploited by malicious...

This Device Keeps Voice Assistants From Snooping on You
From ACM TechNews

This Device Keeps Voice Assistants From Snooping on You

An international team of researchers  has developed a Raspberry Pi-based device that eventually may be able to warn users when Amazon's Alexa and other voice assistants...

Machine Learning Clusters in Azure Hijacked to Mine Cryptocurrency
From ACM TechNews

Machine Learning Clusters in Azure Hijacked to Mine Cryptocurrency

Microsoft's Azure Security Center reported a cryptojacking scheme in which attackers hijacked machine learning clusters inside the Azure cloud computing service...

Apple Fixes Bug That Could Have Given Hackers Full Access to User Accounts
From ACM TechNews

Apple Fixes Bug That Could Have Given Hackers Full Access to User Accounts

The Sign in with Apple tool has fixed a bug that could enable attackers to gain access to email accounts.

Supply-Chain Attack Hits RubyGems Repository with 725 Malicious Packages
From ACM TechNews

Supply-Chain Attack Hits RubyGems Repository with 725 Malicious Packages

ReversingLabs researchers found more than 725 malicious packages in RubyGems, the official channel for distributing programs and code libraries for the Ruby programming...

Attackers Can Bypass Fingerprint Authentication with an ~80% Success Rate
From ACM News

Attackers Can Bypass Fingerprint Authentication with an ~80% Success Rate

Fingerprint-based authentication is fine for most people, but it's hardly foolproof.

Windows Code-Execution Zero-day Is Under Active Exploit, Microsoft Warns
From ACM TechNews

Windows Code-Execution Zero-day Is Under Active Exploit, Microsoft Warns

Microsoft has issued a warning that a Windows zero-day vulnerability is being exploited in "limited targeted attacks" to execute malicious code on fully updated...

Intel SGX is Vulnerable to an Unfixable Flaw That Can Steal Crypto Keys and More
From ACM TechNews

Intel SGX is Vulnerable to an Unfixable Flaw That Can Steal Crypto Keys and More

A team of international researchers disclosed a previously undiscovered vulnerability that steals information from Intel's Software Guard eXtensions.

Flaw in Billions of Wi-Fi Devices Left Communications Open to Eavesdropping
From ACM TechNews

Flaw in Billions of Wi-Fi Devices Left Communications Open to Eavesdropping

Researchers at Slovakian Internet security company ESET discovered that billions of devices are affected by a Wi-Fi vulnerability that allows nearby attackers to...

Bug in Python Script May Have Affected Hundreds of Studies
From ACM TechNews

Bug in Python Script May Have Affected Hundreds of Studies

A coding error in a set of Python scripts often used for computational analysis of chemistry data yielded significantly different outcomes, depending on which operating...

Ransomware Forces Hospitals to Turn Away All but Most Critical Patients
From ACM TechNews

Ransomware Forces Hospitals to Turn Away All but Most Critical Patients

Ransomware has crippled hospitals in Alabama and Australia, blocking admission for all but the most critical new patients.

Microsoft Warns Wormable Windows Bug Could Lead to Another WannaCry
From ACM TechNews

Microsoft Warns Wormable Windows Bug Could Lead to Another WannaCry

Microsoft warns a serious vulnerability in Windows Remote Desktop Services could be exploited to launch a WannaCry-level attack against Internet-connected computers...

'RobbinHood' Ransomware Takes Down Baltimore City Government Networks
From ACM TechNews

'RobbinHood' Ransomware Takes Down Baltimore City Government Networks

A "RobbinHood" ransomware attack earlier this week crippled networks used by Baltimore's city government.

Serious Flaws Leave WPA3 Vulnerable to Hacks that Steal Wi-Fi Passwords
From ACM TechNews

Serious Flaws Leave WPA3 Vulnerable to Hacks that Steal Wi-Fi Passwords

Security researchers has found several serious design flaws in the Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA3) protocol.

They Didn't Buy the DLC: Feature that Could've Prevented 737 Crashes Was Sold As an Option
From ACM News

They Didn't Buy the DLC: Feature that Could've Prevented 737 Crashes Was Sold As an Option

The crashed Lion Air 737 MAX and the Ethiopian Airlines 737 MAX aircraft had more in common than aircraft design and the apparently malfunctioning flight system...

­ber Escapes Criminal Charges for 2018 Self-Driving Death in Arizona
From ACM News

­ber Escapes Criminal Charges for 2018 Self-Driving Death in Arizona

A prosecutor in Arizona has decided not to press charges against Uber in the March 2018 death of Elaine Herzberg. One of Uber's self-driving cars crashed into Herzberg...

Researchers, Scared by Their Own Work, Hold Back 'Deepfakes for Text' AI
From ACM News

Researchers, Scared by Their Own Work, Hold Back 'Deepfakes for Text' AI

OpenAI, a non-profit research company investigating "the path to safe artificial intelligence," has developed a machine learning system called Generative Pre-trained...

How the Government Shutdown Is Flushing Away Federal Cyber-Talent
From ACM Careers

How the Government Shutdown Is Flushing Away Federal Cyber-Talent

The US Federal government is in the midst of the longest gap in funding for many of its agencies in history. As the "shutdown" extends into a second month, the...
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