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Communications of the ACM

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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.


Woman Becomes First Healthcare Cyberattack Death
From ACM TechNews

Woman Becomes First Healthcare Cyberattack Death

A woman in Germany suffering a life-threatening illness was the first person to die from a cyberattack on a healthcare system.

The Phish Scale: NIST-Developed Method Helps IT Staff See Why Users Click on Fraudulent Emails
From ACM TechNews

The Phish Scale: NIST-Developed Method Helps IT Staff See Why Users Click on Fraudulent Emails

The Phish Scale could help organizations better train their employees to avoid being deceived by seemingly trustworthy emails.

Most Cybersecurity Reports Only Focus on the Cool Threats
From ACM TechNews

Most Cybersecurity Reports Only Focus on the Cool Threats

A study found just 82 of 629 commercial cybersecurity reports published in the last decade discuss threats to civil society, with the rest devoted to cybercrime...

Millions of WordPress Sites Are Being Probed, Attacked With Recent Plugin Bug
From ACM TechNews

Millions of WordPress Sites Are Being Probed, Attacked With Recent Plugin Bug

Defiant Inc. reports millions of WordPress sites have been attacked by hackers exploiting a zero-day vulnerability in the "File Manager" WordPress plugin.

Malware Gang Uses .NET Library to Generate Excel Docs That Bypass Security Checks
From ACM TechNews

Malware Gang Uses .NET Library to Generate Excel Docs That Bypass Security Checks

Security researchers at NVISO Labs discovered a malware gang is using a .NET library to create malicious Excel files.

Privacy, Blockchain, and IoT--Can We Keep Control of Our Own Identities?
From ACM TechNews

Privacy, Blockchain, and IoT--Can We Keep Control of Our Own Identities?

Research has found privacy issues innate to current blockchain platforms, suggesting the technology requires further refinement for consideration of privacy rights...

With Election Cybersecurity Experts in Short Supply, Some States Call In the National Guard
From ACM TechNews

With Election Cybersecurity Experts in Short Supply, Some States Call In the National Guard

Some U.S. states are asking the National Guard to dispatch cybersecurity experts to fortify their voting systems ahead of the general election in November.

China Launches Initiative to Set Global Data Security Rules
From ACM TechNews

China Launches Initiative to Set Global Data Security Rules

China this week launched the Global Initiative on Data Security, in a bid to establish international data-security standards.

Portland Adopts Landmark Facial Recognition Ordinances
From ACM TechNews

Portland Adopts Landmark Facial Recognition Ordinances

The City Council of Portland, OR, on Wednesday adopted two landmark ordinances barring city and private usage of facial recognition technology.

Kids' Smartwatches a Security Nightmare, Despite Years of Warnings
From ACM TechNews

Kids' Smartwatches a Security Nightmare, Despite Years of Warnings

Researchers at Germany's Münster University of Applied Sciences found smartwatch brands marketed for children are exploitable, based on years of similar findings...

Helping Companies Prioritize Their Cybersecurity Investments
From ACM TechNews

Helping Companies Prioritize Their Cybersecurity Investments

A platform developed by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology can quantify security risks for companies without requiring them to disclose sensitive...

Computers Can't Cut Red Tape
From ACM News

Computers Can't Cut Red Tape

Modernizing government technology can be helpful during a crisis. To a point.

26-Year-Old is First Woman to Win Africa Prize for Innovation
From ACM TechNews

26-Year-Old is First Woman to Win Africa Prize for Innovation

BACE Group CEO Charlette N'Guessan, 26, is the first woman named to receive the 2020 Royal Academy of Engineering's Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation.

Apple Mistakenly Approved Widely Used Malware to Run on Macs
From ACM TechNews

Apple Mistakenly Approved Widely Used Malware to Run on Macs

Security researchers found that Apple inadvertently passed a well-known form of malware for use on Mac systems through its notarization process.

Apple's Move to Make Advertising Harder on iOS 14 is Part of a Trend
From ACM News

Apple's Move to Make Advertising Harder on iOS 14 is Part of a Trend

Facebook is only the latest developer to feel the squeeze.

Microsoft Launches Deepfake Detector Tool Ahead of U.S. Election
From ACM News

Microsoft Launches Deepfake Detector Tool Ahead of U.S. Election

Microsoft says its Video Authenticator tool was created using a public dataset from Face Forensic++ and tested on the DeepFake Detection Challenge Dataset.

The Enigma of Family Secrets
From ACM News

The Enigma of Family Secrets

In 53 years of marriage, Goldman never reveals being a member of Alan Turing and Gordon Welchsman's team that built and perfected the machine called the Bombe that...

Windows Computers Targets of 83% of Malware Attacks in Q1
From ACM TechNews

Windows Computers Targets of 83% of Malware Attacks in Q1

Microsoft Windows and Android security evaluator AV Test's 2019/2020 Security Report found malware targeting Windows computers constituted 83.45% of all malware...

QUT Algorithm Could Quash Twitter Abuse of Women
From ACM TechNews

QUT Algorithm Could Quash Twitter Abuse of Women

An algorithm developed at the Queensland University of Technology in Australia can identify misogynistic content on Twitter with 75% accuracy.

NSA and Cyber Command chief pledges muscular defense of November election
From ACM News

NSA and Cyber Command chief pledges muscular defense of November election

The preparations include sharing information with the Department of Homeland Security to help harden election systems against hacking, and with the FBI to help...
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