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


How to Sabotage Encryption Software (and Not Get Caught)
From ACM News

How to Sabotage Encryption Software (and Not Get Caught)

In the field of cryptography, a secretly planted "backdoor" that allows eavesdropping on communications is usually a subject of paranoia and dread.

Surprise! America Already Has a Manhattan Project For Developing Cyber Attacks
From ACM News

Surprise! America Already Has a Manhattan Project For Developing Cyber Attacks

"What we really need is a Manhattan Project for cybersecurity." It's a sentiment that swells up every few years in the wake of some huge computer intrusion—most...

Spies Can Track You Just By Watching Your Phone's Power ­se
From ACM News

Spies Can Track You Just By Watching Your Phone's Power ­se

Smartphone users might balk at letting a random app like Candy Crush or Shazam track their every move via GPS. But researchers have found that Android phones reveal...

A Crypto Trick That Makes Software Nearly Impossible to Reverse-Engineer
From ACM News

A Crypto Trick That Makes Software Nearly Impossible to Reverse-Engineer

Software reverse engineering, the art of pulling programs apart to figure out how they work, is what makes it possible for sophisticated hackers to scour code for...

DARPA Is Developing a Search Engine For the Dark Web
From ACM TechNews

DARPA Is Developing a Search Engine For the Dark Web

Memex is a search engine under development that is being designed to access the Dark Web to help law enforcement track illegal activity. 

DARPA Is Developing a Search Engine For the Dark Web
From ACM News

DARPA Is Developing a Search Engine For the Dark Web

A new search engine being developed by Darpa aims to shine a light on the dark web and uncover patterns and relationships in online data to help law enforcement...

Nsa Acknowledges What We All Feared: Iran Learns From Us Cyberattacks
From ACM News

Nsa Acknowledges What We All Feared: Iran Learns From Us Cyberattacks

After the Stuxnet digital weapon was discovered on machines in Iran in 2010, many security researchers warned that US adversaries would learn from this and other...

Why the Silk Road Trial Matters
From ACM Opinion

Why the Silk Road Trial Matters

Ross Ulbricht is finally getting his day in court, 15 months after plainclothes FBI agents grabbed him in the science fiction section of a San Francisco library...

The Leap Second Is About to Rattle the Internet. But There's a Plot to Kill It
From ACM News

The Leap Second Is About to Rattle the Internet. But There's a Plot to Kill It

The Qantas Airways computers started crashing just after midnight.

A Cyberattack Has Caused Confirmed Physical Damage For the Second Time Ever
From ACM News

A Cyberattack Has Caused Confirmed Physical Damage For the Second Time Ever

Amid all the noise the Sony hack generated over the holidays, a far more troubling cyber attack was largely lost in the chaos. Unless you follow security news closely...

Bots Now Outnumber Humans on the Web
From ACM TechNews

Bots Now Outnumber Humans on the Web

Automated code or bots currently account for 56 percent of all of website visits, and a recent analysis of 20,000 websites found bot traffic can run as high as...

Bots Now Outnumber Humans on the Web
From ACM News

Bots Now Outnumber Humans on the Web

Diogo Mónica once wrote a short computer script that gave him a secret weapon in the war for San Francisco dinner reservations.

Data From Our Wearables Is Now Courtroom Fodder
From ACM News

Data From Our Wearables Is Now Courtroom Fodder

Courtrooms typically lag in technological innovation.

An Interface For Tracking Botnets That's Fit For a Sci-Fi Starship
From ACM News

An Interface For Tracking Botnets That's Fit For a Sci-Fi Starship

What do you get when you ask a bunch of digital artists to dream up a state-of-the-art tool for fighting cybercrime?

Google Can Now Tell You're Not a Robot With Just One Click
From ACM News

Google Can Now Tell You're Not a Robot With Just One Click

When Alan Turing first conceived of the Turing Test in 1947, he suggested that a computer program’s resemblance to a human mind could be gauged by making it answer...

Hackers Gather For Cyberwar in an Intense 48-Hour Sim
From ACM Careers

Hackers Gather For Cyberwar in an Intense 48-Hour Sim

Locked Shields is among the world's preeminent cyber attack simulations.

The ­npatchable Malware That Infects ­sbs Is Now on the Loose
From ACM News

The ­npatchable Malware That Infects ­sbs Is Now on the Loose

It's been just two months since researcher Karsten Nohl demonstrated an attack he called BadUSB to a standing-room-only crowd at the Black Hat security conference...

Meet Monstermind, the Nsa Bot That Could Wage Cyberwar Autonomously
From ACM TechNews

Meet Monstermind, the Nsa Bot That Could Wage Cyberwar Autonomously

Whistleblower Edward Snowden claims the U.S. National Security Agency is developing an autonomous cyberdefense system.

The Most Wanted Man in the World
From ACM News

The Most Wanted Man in the World

The message arrives on my "clean machine," a MacBook Air loaded only with a sophisticated encryption package.

Meet the Puzzle Mastermind Who Designs Def Con's Hackable Badges
From ACM Careers

Meet the Puzzle Mastermind Who Designs Def Con's Hackable Badges

Def Con is one of the world's biggest hacker conventions, an annual gathering of security experts, cryptographers and at least a few people who could surreptitiously...
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