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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.


Elite CIA Unit that Developed Hacking Tools Failed to Secure its Own Systems, Allowing Massive Leak
From ACM News

Elite CIA Unit that Developed Hacking Tools Failed to Secure its Own Systems, Allowing Massive Leak

The breach came nearly three years after Edward Snowden stole and disclosed classified information about NSA surveillance operations.

KingMiner Botnet Brute-Forces MSSQL Databases to Install Cryptocurrency Miner
From ACM TechNews

KingMiner Botnet Brute-Forces MSSQL Databases to Install Cryptocurrency Miner

U.K. cybersecurity firm Sophos is advising MSSQL database owners to fortify their servers against botnet-orchestrated brute-force attacks.

Who’s a Bot? Who’s Not?
From ACM News

Who’s a Bot? Who’s Not?

It sometimes seems automated bots are taking over social media and driving human discourse. But some (real) researchers aren't so sure.

Researchers Turn to Wearable Tech in Race to Track Covid-19
From ACM TechNews

Researchers Turn to Wearable Tech in Race to Track Covid-19

Researchers are using wearable technologies that monitor fluctuations in biomarkers to collect real-time patient data, to try to track the spread of Covid-19.

Exit From the Covid-19 Lockdown: There's an App for That
From ACM News

Exit From the Covid-19 Lockdown: There's an App for That

The Dutch government wants every citizen to download an app for tracking and tracing potential Covid-19 infections, but the app does not yet exist.  

DARPA Invites Hackers to Break Hardware to Make It More Secure
From ACM TechNews

DARPA Invites Hackers to Break Hardware to Make It More Secure

The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is inviting white-hat hackers to identify vulnerabilities in computer chips prior to their deployment.

Signal Downloads Are Way Up Since the Protests Began
From ACM News

Signal Downloads Are Way Up Since the Protests Began

Organizers and demonstrators say they feel safer communicating with end-to-end encryption.

Farewell to Gummy Bear Jars: Tech Offices Get a Virus Safety Makeover
From ACM News

Farewell to Gummy Bear Jars: Tech Offices Get a Virus Safety Makeover

Companies like Salesforce created workplaces with all the comforts of home, but now they may feel more like hospitals.

U.S. Voting Data from Millions of People is Being Traded on the Dark Web
From ACM TechNews

U.S. Voting Data from Millions of People is Being Traded on the Dark Web

Researchers have found that data on millions of U.S. voters is being illegally traded on parts of the Internet not searchable using normal means.

NYU Report Calls On Social Media Titans to Stop Outsourcing Content Moderation
From ACM TechNews

NYU Report Calls On Social Media Titans to Stop Outsourcing Content Moderation

A New York University report urges social media companies to stop outsourcing the moderation of their content.

Evidence Suggests The U.S. Loses Hundreds of Billions to Cybercrime
From ACM TechNews

Evidence Suggests The U.S. Loses Hundreds of Billions to Cybercrime

The U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology estimates 2016 losses due to cybercrime exceeded $160 billion.

The Epic Battle Against Coronavirus Misinformation and Conspiracy Theories
From ACM TechNews

The Epic Battle Against Coronavirus Misinformation and Conspiracy Theories

Scientists worldwide are scrambling to track and counter the spread of misinformation and conspiracy theories about the coronavirus pandemic.

Encrypted Messaging App Signal Adds Facial Recognition Protection for Protesters
From ACM TechNews

Encrypted Messaging App Signal Adds Facial Recognition Protection for Protesters

The Signal encrypted messaging app is introducing a blur tool to hide faces in photos before sharing them.

NYU Report Calls on Social Media Titans to Stop Outsourcing Content Moderation
From ACM News

NYU Report Calls on Social Media Titans to Stop Outsourcing Content Moderation

The report says big social media companies need to use more of their own employees to make calls about which posts and photos should be removed.

In Virus-Hit South Korea, AI Monitors Lonely Elders
From ACM TechNews

In Virus-Hit South Korea, AI Monitors Lonely Elders

SK Telecom operates an artificial intelligence-powered network of voice-enabled "smart" speakers to monitor thousands of seniors during the coronavirus pandemic...

Fake News Gets Shared More When It is Angry, Anxiety-Inducing
From ACM TechNews

Fake News Gets Shared More When It is Angry, Anxiety-Inducing

Researchers in China have found that fake news may go viral more quickly when it uses words associated with anger.

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.

National Security Agency Exposes Tool Used by Russian Hackers
From ACM TechNews

National Security Agency Exposes Tool Used by Russian Hackers

The U.S. National Security Agency last week accused Russian hackers of exploiting a software vulnerability in Linux computers.

States Plead for Cybersecurity Funds as Hacking Threat Surges
From ACM TechNews

States Plead for Cybersecurity Funds as Hacking Threat Surges

Cash-strapped state and local governments are looking to Congress for funds to improve cybersecurity.

Arizona Sues Google Over Allegations It Illegally Tracked Android Smartphone Users' Locations
From ACM TechNews

Arizona Sues Google Over Allegations It Illegally Tracked Android Smartphone Users' Locations

Arizona has filed a lawsuit against Google for allegedly monitoring the locations of Android smartphone users even when such features purportedly were disabled,...
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