LastPass Security

Leading password security company gets hacked; customers advised to change their master passwords

By on June 15, 2015 at 6:12 PM.

Leading password security company gets hacked; customers advised to change their master passwords

These days, it appears as if no one is safe from hackers. Just a week after the security firm Kaspersky announced that they had been hacked comes word that LastPass, a password security company, has been hacked as well.

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Snowden Password Tips: Pass-Phrases

Do this now: Set up all your passwords the Snowden way

By on April 21, 2015 at 1:12 PM.

Do this now: Set up all your passwords the Snowden way

A few weeks ago, Last Week Tonight’s John Oliver travelled all the way to Russia to interview Edward Snowden. Snowden, of course is responsible for numerous leaks that revealed the advanced surveillance operations intelligence agencies are capable of nowadays. The interview was particularly enjoyable thanks ti the fact that Oliver’s team was able to present serious matters in very entertaining ways. One of the gems in that episode is related to password security, PopularMechanics points out, with Snowden revealing one key tip that you absolutely should consider when setting up online passwords.

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Dashlane Inbox Scan Security Tool

Do this now: Secure your email account with a simple one-time scan

By on April 7, 2015 at 2:49 PM.

Do this now: Secure your email account with a simple one-time scan

Email accounts often contain many personal details that owners think are safe from prying eyes, including login credentials for other websites written in plain text. However, hackers who might get access to email accounts could then quickly harvest those user name and password combinations for additional malicious activities. To prevent such accidents, password manager Dashlane has created an online tool that can quickly scan your inbox for such details, and alert you whether there’s any action to be taken. More →

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Password Strength Security

Why your password isn’t as safe or secure as you think

By on March 27, 2015 at 3:51 PM.

Why your password isn’t as safe or secure as you think

Because people are generally unable to come up with rock-solid passwords on their own, many websites that require user-generated passwords employ “password strength meters” which inform users how secure their chosen password is.

If you choose “Puppy” as a password, you’re liable to be told your password is weak and encouraged, if not downright forced, to pick a new one. On the other hand, picking something like “24DoYz@93mU” will likely see you pass with a “strong password” blessing.

Now, new research has discovered that the reliability of many password strength meters themselves may not be all its cracked up to be.

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OS X Lion security flaw allows anyone to change your password

By on September 19, 2011 at 3:25 PM.

OS X Lion security flaw allows anyone to change your password

Security blog Defense in Depth has found a glaring security flaw in OS X Lion that enables hackers to change the password of any user on a machine running Lion. “[While] non-root users are unable to access the shadow files directly, Lion actually provides non-root users the ability to still view password hash data,” Patrick Dunstan from Defense in Depth explained in a recent blog post. The result is that anyone could use a simple Python script, created by Dunstan himself, to discover a user’s password. It gets worse. Reportedly, OS X Lion does not require its users to enter a password to change the login credentials of the current user. That means typing the command: “dscl localhost -passwd /Search/Users/Roger” will actually prompt you to set a new password for Roger. As CNET points out, a hacker could only take advantage of the known bug if he or she has local access to the computer and Directory Service access. CNET suggests disabling automatic log-in, enabling sleep and screensaver passwords and disabling guest accounts as some preventative measures to keep your Mac secure. More →

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Apple to patch iPhone, iPad security hole

By on July 7, 2011 at 9:40 AM.

Apple to patch iPhone, iPad security hole

Apple has promised to patch a security hole found in the iPhone and iPad following a report published by Germany’s Federal Office for Information Security. Reportedly, a PDF security hole could allow hackers to gain unauthorized access to personal data — such as messages and passwords — stored on an iPhone or iPad and could “infect the mobile device with malware without the user’s knowledge.” Apple’s PR team was quick to respond to the allegations. “[Apple is] aware of this reported issue and developing a fix that will be available to customers in an upcoming software update,” Bethan Lloyd, an Apple spokesperson told AFP on Thursday. Apple has not yet confirmed when it will push out the security update. More →

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Passcode-stealing iPhone app banned by Apple

By on June 15, 2011 at 9:45 AM.

Passcode-stealing iPhone app banned by Apple

In a move that should surprise no one, Apple has banned the “Big Brother Camera Security” app that developer Daniel Amity used to swipe his customers’ passcodes. BGR reported on Tuesday about an application that attempted to trick users into setting a passcode identical to the pin used to lock their iPhones. The app then transmitted the PIN numbers in the background to the developer — albeit anonymously — who used them to publish a report covering the most commonly used iPhone passcodes. While the developer’s intentions hardly seemed malicious, there was no way Apple was going to sit back and watch while a developer published data about private PINs, even if they could not be directly tied to individual iPhone users. As such, the app has been banned from the App Store. “As of today at 4:58pm EST, Big Brother has been removed from the App Store,” Amity wrote in a blog post. “I’m certainly not happy about it, but considering the concerns a few people have expressed regarding the transfer of data from app to my server, it is understandable.” More →

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Sly developer reveals most common iPhone passcodes

By on June 14, 2011 at 5:45 PM.

Sly developer reveals most common iPhone passcodes

Daniel Amitay, the iPhone developer who created “Big Brother Camera Security” application, has released a list of the top 10 iPhone passcodes. Amity implemented code into his last software update that allowed the application to record passwords entered in by its users. Since his app’s lock and passcode screens look identical to the iPhone’s, he argues that his data reflects an iPhone user’s actual password. Of the 204,508 recorded passcodes collected, the most popular was, not surprisingly, 1234. That’s followed by 0000, 2580, 1111, 5555, 5683, 0852, 2222, 1212, and 1998. Amity says those codes represent 15% of all passwords in use. As you might expect, many of them follow simple patterns on the keyboard. “iloveyou” has always been a popular password and 5683, the No. 6 passcode on the list, can be translated into ‘LOVE’ on a standard alphanumeric keypad. Amitay also found that the numbers 1990-2000 were all in the top 50 passcodes, and 1980 – 1989 were all in the top 100, suggesting that many users may be entering in the year of their birth or graduation. Hit the jump for another chart. More →

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New website answers the question on all our minds: Has Sony been hacked this week?

By on June 13, 2011 at 11:45 AM.

New website answers the question on all our minds: Has Sony been hacked this week?

BGR has provided extensive coverage of an ongoing saga that has seen numerous digital properties belonging to Sony fall under attack. To date, personal information belonging to well over 100 million Sony customers has been compromised, and nearly 13 million credit card numbers have been stolen. For IT professionals or other tech enthusiasts with weak stomachs, we can understand if reading one story after another about Sony’s security woes might make you a bit queasy. As such, a new site launched recently that has you covered. Hassonybeenhackedthisweek.com answers a single question for those who simply want to cut to the chase: Has Sony been hacked this week? The answer right now, by the way, is “yes.” More →

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Sony’s PlayStation Network password reset page compromised

By on May 18, 2011 at 12:06 PM.

Sony’s PlayStation Network password reset page compromised

According to reports from numerous gaming sites, the password reset page for Sony’s PlayStation Network has been exploited. Sony built the page in an effort to allow users, whose accounts were already compromised during a major security breach last month, to reset their security credentials. However, hackers who stole the information from Sony can reset users’ passwords by knowing and account holder’s email address and birthday — information they’ve already stolen. Forum members on Nyleveia have suggested that PSN users create a new email address specifically for use with PSN. Sony has taken the website offline, and said: “Unfortunately this also means that those who are still trying to change their password via PlayStation.com or Qriocity.com will still be unable to do so for the time being.” Sounds like Sony really needs to get those new security measures in place, stat. More →

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Firefox 4 leaked a day early, download it now

By on March 21, 2011 at 10:43 PM.

Firefox 4 leaked a day early, download it now

Firefox 4 has been leaked for Mac and PC a day before the company said it would be officially available. Mozilla promises the user interface in Firefox 4 is sleeker and easier to use, and it enables users to keep open tabs, bookmarks, history, and passwords in sync with other devices running a Firefox browser. Firefox 4 also has a new feature that allow you to drag and drop open tabs into groups that can be arranged and named. The leaked downloads aren’t available direct from Mozilla, so we suppose there’s still a chance the team could pull the launch date tomorrow and issue an RC2 release, but we doubt it. We won’t keep you waiting, though, so hit the jump for a link to download Firefox 4 for PC or Mac. More →

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