STOP SOPA! | TechSNAP 32

STOP SOPA! | TechSNAP 32

The Internet is facing its greatest challenge yet, we explain why the fight against online piracy has taken a turn towards Internet censorship.

PLUS – Steam and NASA were hacked this week, find out how bad the fallout is, and why Private browsing mode, might not be that private!

All that and more, on this week’s episode of TechSNAP!

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Show Notes:

Romanian hacker accused of breaking into NASA

  • Authorities of the Romania Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT) have arrested a 26 year old who is accused to breaking in to multiple servers at NASA
  • The authorities claim that the attacker destroyed protected data and restricted access to it, resulting in a loss of over $500,000
  • Charges against Robert Butyka include:
  • obtaining unauthorized access and causing severe disruptions to a computer system
  • modifying, damaging and restricting access to data without authorization
  • possession of hacking programs
  • “Through criminal activity, the accused severely affected the operation of computer servers by introducing, modifying and damaging electronic data and restricting access to it,” DIICOT said in a statement.
  • He is to be tried in Romania, as there has been no extradition request.

Valve: Hackers Accessed Steam Users’ Encrypted Passwords, Credit Cards

  • Attackers managed to gain access to the user database
  • The database contained: username, email address, hashed and salted password, game purchase history, billing address, and encrypted credit card data.
  • Valve had not yet determined if the database had been copied or viewed
  • Valve originally believed that only the user forums had been compromised, but during the investigation it was determined that the compromised extended to all user data
  • Valve reports that they have not noticed an increase in login attempts and have not received any reports of misused credit cards. This suggests that the data was either not taken, or is sufficiently protected to delay its use.
  • If the database was taken, I would expect to see a spear phishing attack, using the name, username and email address of the users to ask them to ‘reset’ their steam password.
  • All forum accounts will require a password reset, however valve is not forcing a password reset on all steam accounts.

Private Browsing may not be as private as advertised

  • Private Browsing mode stops the browser from recording history, and isolates your cookies, not sending cookies from regular browsing mode, and removing the new cookies when you leave private mode.
  • Research has found that many plugins do not respect private mode, especially Adobe Flash, which has its own separate cookie system. This means a site that you visited in private mode, could read those cookies even in regular mode, and vice versa . Flash has since been fixed, make sure you upgrade.
  • Chrome and Internet Explorer have taken to automatically disabling plugins in private mode

Feedback:

  • Roger Writes… 3 Questions for you guys…
  • Allan does use windows, for gaming, and for doing the podcast
  • For a list of the advantages of ZFS, you should watch the ZFS episode of TechSNAP. For the other file systems, really you can only compare them against another file system. UFS has advantages over ext2/3, specifically with its ability to store millions of files in a single directory.
  • For checking your email over 3G/4G, you should still use SSL in your phone’s mail client.
  • Arturo writes… Degree or Certs?

Round Up:

SOPA Box:

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