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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Pwn2Own web browser

No one is safe: All 4 major web browsers hacked at Pwn2Own

By on March 23, 2015 at 8:55 AM.

No one is safe: All 4 major web browsers hacked at Pwn2Own

Given the myriad of security mechanisms and technologies tech companies have developed, it’s easy to fall into a sense of complacency and think that what you’re doing is safe from prying eyes.

Truth be told, if skilled attackers really want to see what you’re up to online, there’s not really much you can do to stop them.

Case in point: Last week at the annual Pwn2Own hacking competition, all 4 major browsers were exploited.Safari, Firefox, IE, Google Chrome — none of these browsers can provide safe refuge from hackers.

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NSA Vs. Cisco

How Cisco customers avoid NSA tampering

By on March 20, 2015 at 9:00 PM.

How Cisco customers avoid NSA tampering

While the NSA certainly has the technical chops to eavesdrop, monitor, and intercept all types of electronic communications, they’re also not afraid to employ more straightforward and simpler spycraft methods when it comes to keeping an eye on enemies of the state.

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Jimmy Kimmel Stealing Passwords

Video: Jimmy Kimmel shows how easy it is to trick people into telling you their passwords

By on January 16, 2015 at 4:50 PM.

Video: Jimmy Kimmel shows how easy it is to trick people into telling you their passwords

Here at BGR, we’ve done our best over the years to give you everything you need to keep your private information safe, but we never got around to covering what you should do if you’re approached by a camera crew on the streets of Los Angeles.

Step 1: Don’t willingly tell them your password.

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NSA's Keith Alexander Private Online Security

Want to make $1 million per month? Retire from the NSA

By on July 30, 2014 at 9:15 PM.

Want to make $1 million per month? Retire from the NSA

Former NSA director Keith Alexander will charge companies up to $1 million a month to keep them safe from online hackers, Foreign Policy reports. Apparently Alexander and business partners from IronNet Cybersecurity have founded a new firm after leaving the government and military in March. The company supposedly offers a new technology that has a “unique” approach when it comes to detecting hackers online. More →

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NSA, GCHQ YouTube Facebook Spying

There may be a ‘Squeaky Dolphin’ permanently snooping on your YouTube, Facebook habits

By on January 28, 2014 at 11:59 PM.

There may be a ‘Squeaky Dolphin’ permanently snooping on your YouTube, Facebook habits

More documents released by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden detail another bulk data collection spying initiative that consists of monitoring services like Facebook and Google’s YouTube and Blogger in order to accurately observe trends with the general, worldwide population, and even predict certain events. NBC News has obtained a copy of a presentation delivered by GCHQ to the NSA in 2012 that details a “Squeaky Dolphin” mass surveillance program – a real-time user and data collection initiative that monitors YouTube views, Facebook likes and Blogspot or Blogger visits for analysis. More →

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Stop Mobile Location Tracking

App looks to block mobile location tracking, but it won’t stop the NSA

By on December 10, 2013 at 10:45 AM.

App looks to block mobile location tracking, but it won’t stop the NSA

Security firm AVG on Tuesday updated its PrivacyFix security app for Android devices to include mobile location tracking features that would prevent stores and advertisers to track users by monitoring their Wi-Fi connectivity habits. According to Forbes, the app, which also allows users to manage privacy settings across websites, will henceforward block Android devices from transmitting their MAC address when their owners are out and about, by blocking Wi-Fi access to untrusted hotspots. More →

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NSA Reform

Apple, Google and others demand NSA spying reform

By on December 9, 2013 at 8:30 AM.

Apple, Google and others demand NSA spying reform

Eight tech giants have joined forces demanding NSA reform in a “Global Government Surveillance Reform” campaign, including AOL, Apple, Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Microsoft, Twitter and Yahoo, The Hill reports. The companies have expressed their requests in an open letter to Obama and members of Congress, and listed five governing principles that should be used for surveillance reform on the campaign’s website. More →

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Audio Malware

Terrifying new malware uses sound to spread, doesn’t need networks

By on December 3, 2013 at 1:25 PM.

Terrifying new malware uses sound to spread, doesn’t need networks

Computer scientists have developed an audio malware prototype that’s capable of establishing communication between devices that do not have an active network connection, Ars Technica reports. Instead, the lab-created malware uses the built-in microphones and speakers to send out a high-frequency signal from an infected computer to a different source. While it has limited use and can only send 20 bits of data per second to up to 65 feet the audio malware concept can still be used to send out significant data, including user and passwords for certain systems. Additionally, the distance can be increased by adding more attacker-controlled devices to repeat the audio signal.

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NSA PRISM Europe Lawsuits

Europeans plan to fight back against PRISM

By on June 11, 2013 at 1:50 PM.

Europeans plan to fight back against PRISM

Finnish communications minister Pia Viitanen has stated bluntly that the NSA may be breaking the laws of Finland. According to the Finnish Constitution, capturing and reading emails or text messages without privileges is illegal. Viitanen plans to take up the issue with the European Comission. Several European countries are apparently considering unleashing Neelie Kroes, the feared European Commissioner for Digital Agenda, in an effort to fight back against the NSA’s PRISM program. More →

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Featured
PRISM NSA Spying

How to avoid NSA spying

By on June 6, 2013 at 7:00 PM.

How to avoid NSA spying

The latest Guardian bombshell reveals that NSA has gained access to several leading U.S. tech giants in a massive dragnet hoovering email, photo, filesharing and chat info from Yahoo, Google, Skype, Apple, AOL and YouTube services. According to Guardian, DropBox will follow soon. However, the government spying program seems to have a fatal flaw: It’s really unhip. More →

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Former Google engineer builds service to stop companies from tracking people online

Former Google engineer builds service to stop companies from tracking people online

By on April 17, 2013 at 9:50 AM.

Former Google engineer builds service to stop companies from tracking people online

As advertising companies continue to push the boundaries of online tracking in an effort to woo clients with eerily accurate ad targeting techniques, online privacy is seemingly becoming a thing of the past. One startup is looking to stop third-parties from tracking users on the web, however, and one of the company’s co-founders may be in a better position than most to accomplish this lofty goal. More →

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Samsung Smart TV Hack

Samsung Smart TVs: The next frontier for data theft and hacking [video]

By on December 14, 2012 at 12:40 PM.

Samsung Smart TVs: The next frontier for data theft and hacking [video]

Smart TVs, particularly Samsung’s (005930) last few generations of flat screens, can be hacked to give attackers remote access according to a security startup called ReVuln. The company says it discovered a “zero-day exploit” that hackers could potentially use to perform malicious activities that range from stealing accounts linked through apps to using built-in webcams and microphones to spy on unsuspecting couch potatoes. Don’t panic just yet, though. In order for the exploit to be activated, a hacker needs to plug a USB drive loaded with malicious software into the actual TV to bypass the Linux-based OS/firmware on Samsung’s Smart TVs. But, if a hacker were to pull that off, every piece of data stored on a Smart TV could theoretically be retrieved.

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