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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FBI Apple Encryption

The FBI ups the ante in its boneheaded war on encryption

By on June 5, 2015 at 3:20 PM.

The FBI ups the ante in its boneheaded war on encryption

The FBI is worried that stronger encryption from tech companies like Apple is making it more difficult for law enforcement agencies to effectively keep tabs on terrorists. As a result, some in the FBI believe that we are sacrificing safety at the altar of privacy.

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Malware Software

Almost anyone can make ransomware with this horrifying new program

By on May 28, 2015 at 11:44 AM.

Almost anyone can make ransomware with this horrifying new program

We might be entering a whole new era of malware, one where even those who lack any semblance of deep technical expertise will be able to acquire and disseminate viruses and the like on the fly.

Speaking to this point, security researchers at McAfee recently discovered a new piece of software which makes it exceedingly easy for anyone to create their own ransomware. The online software, which runs on TOR, is called Tox and, believe it or not, is completely free to use. The developers of the software aim to make money on the back end by taking a cut of any successful ransomware campaigns its users run.

Here’s how it all works.

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Google Security Questions

Google study finds website security questions are even less secure than passwords

By on May 22, 2015 at 6:20 PM.

Google study finds website security questions are even less secure than passwords

A new in-depth study from Google reveals that the security questions most individuals use as an additional layer of security are often less secure and easier to guess than user-chosen passwords. This is especially problematic given that security questions are often the only line of defense when a password is forgotten and needs to be resent or reset.

Interestingly enough, Google found that security questions tend to be weak because many individuals lie when answering them. Specifically, Google discovered that many people who provide fake answers to security questions do so to make them harder to guess. But as it turns out, “on aggregate this behavior had the opposite effect as people harden their answers in a predictable way.” Compounding the problem is that many users, as a result, also have a difficult time remembering their security question answers in the first place. This is especially true when the questions chosen are exceedingly specific.

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Android Factory Reset

500 million Android devices at risk: Researchers find that factory reset doesn’t completely wipe data

By on May 22, 2015 at 3:02 PM.

500 million Android devices at risk: Researchers find that factory reset doesn’t completely wipe data

One of the most important things to do before selling or giving away a used smartphone is to wipe the device clean. After all, the last thing anyone wants is for a complete stranger to have access to all of their personal data. Unfortunately for Android users, researchers from Cambridge University recently discovered that performing a data wipe on Android devices doesn’t clear the device as one would expect.

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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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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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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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