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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.


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...

Watch This Wireless Hack Pop a Car's Locks in Minutes
From ACM News

Watch This Wireless Hack Pop a Car's Locks in Minutes

Shims and coat hangers are the clumsy tools of last century's car burglars.

Why the Security of ­sb Is Fundamentally Broken
From ACM TechNews

Why the Security of ­sb Is Fundamentally Broken

At this week’s Black Hat security conference, security researchers will present a new proof-of-concept malware that exploits a fundamental flaw in the USB format...

The Weird Reasons Why People Make ­p False Identities on the Internet
From ACM Opinion

The Weird Reasons Why People Make ­p False Identities on the Internet

Sockpuppetry—using false identities for deception—is centuries old, but the advent of the web has made creating sockpuppets, and falling for their tricks, easier...

How Hackers Hid a Money-Mining Botnet in Amazon's Cloud
From ACM News

How Hackers Hid a Money-Mining Botnet in Amazon's Cloud

Hackers have long used malware to enslave armies of unwitting PCs, but security researchers Rob Ragan and Oscar Salazar had a different thought: Why steal computing...

The Moral Hazards and Legal Conundrums of Our Robot-Filled Future
From ACM Opinion

The Moral Hazards and Legal Conundrums of Our Robot-Filled Future

The robots are coming, and they're getting smarter.

How Google Map Hackers Can Destroy a Business at Will
From ACM Careers

How Google Map Hackers Can Destroy a Business at Will

Washington DC-area residents with a hankering for lion meat lost a valuable source of the (yes, legal) delicacy last year when a restaurant called the Serbian Crown...

The ­ltra-Simple App That Lets Anyone Encrypt Anything
From ACM News

The ­ltra-Simple App That Lets Anyone Encrypt Anything

Encryption is hard.

Could Color Wheels Make For Easier, More Secure Passwords?
From ACM News

Could Color Wheels Make For Easier, More Secure Passwords?

The password as we know it is in critical condition.

Researchers Find and Decode the Spy Tools Governments ­se to Hijack Phones
From ACM TechNews

Researchers Find and Decode the Spy Tools Governments ­se to Hijack Phones

A study of tools used by law enforcment and intelligence agencies to conduct surveillance on computer and mobile phone users revealed a wide range of functions. ...

Google Glass Snoopers Can Steal Your Passcode With a Glance
From ACM TechNews

Google Glass Snoopers Can Steal Your Passcode With a Glance

Newly developed software uses video from wearable devices such as Google Glass and smartwatches to read PIN codes typed onto an iPad from almost 10 feet away.

Researchers Find and Decode the Spy Tools Governments ­se to Hijack Phones
From ACM News

Researchers Find and Decode the Spy Tools Governments ­se to Hijack Phones

Newly uncovered components of a digital surveillance tool used by more than 60 governments worldwide provide a rare glimpse at the extensive ways law enforcement...

Google Embraces Docker, the Next Big Thing in Cloud Computing
From ACM News

Google Embraces Docker, the Next Big Thing in Cloud Computing

Google is putting its considerable weight behind an open source technology that’s already one of the hottest new ideas in the world of cloud computing.

B-52 Bomber Gets Its First New Communications System Since the 1960s
From ACM News

B-52 Bomber Gets Its First New Communications System Since the 1960s

The B-52 bomber, one of the great stalwarts of America's military arsenal, is getting its first major communications system upgrade since the Kennedy administration...

Mark Zuckerberg on Facebook's Future, From Virtual Reality to Anonymity
From ACM Opinion

Mark Zuckerberg on Facebook's Future, From Virtual Reality to Anonymity

No one ever accused Mark Zuckerberg of standing pat.

Hackers Can Mess With Traffic Lights to Jam Roads and Reroute Cars
From ACM News

Hackers Can Mess With Traffic Lights to Jam Roads and Reroute Cars

The hacker in the Italian Job did it spectacularly.

Inside the New Arms Race to Control Bandwidth on the Battlefield
From ACM News

Inside the New Arms Race to Control Bandwidth on the Battlefield

An electromagnetic mystery in northern Iraq changed the course of Jesse Potter's life.
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