Infrastructure

  • U.S. under growing cyber attacks

    The number of cyber attacks on U.S. government computers and networks grow; there were 5,488 tracked incidents of unauthorized access to U.S. government computers and installations of hostile programs in 2008, compared to 3,928 such incidents in 2007, and 2,172 in 2006

  • DHS receives IT money in stimulus package

    DHS receives a $2.8 billion boost from the new stimulus package; largest single item is for TSA’s installation of checked baggage explosive detection systems

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  • Microsoft offers reward for catching worm creator

    Microsoft offered a reward of $250,000 to find who is behind the Downadup/Conficker virus; since it started circulating in October 2008 the Conficker worm has managed to infect millions of Windows computers

  • Researchers spoof, bypass face-recognition authentication systems

    Vietnamese researchers have cracked facial recognition technology in Lenovo, Asus, and Toshiba laptops; the researchers demonstrated feat at this week’s Black Hat DC event

  • NSA may offer "billions" for a solution allowing eavesdropping on Skype

    Skype continues to be a major problem for government listening agencies, whether intelligence agencies tracking terrorists or the police trying to listen in on criminals; rumor has it that NSA is willing to pay handsomely for a Skype-code-breaking solution

  • Fraudsters set cyber traps on Digg

    Spanish security company PandaLabs is reporting that cyber-crooks are setting traps on popular news-sharing Web site Digg

  • Obama orders U.S. cybersecurity review

    The threat of cyber attacks on official U.S. systems has been laid bare in recent years with a spate of hacking incidents, including several blamed on China; new administration wants to take stock

  • Public support for infrastructure investment grows

    University of Chicago NORC survey finds growing public support for investment in mass transit and infrastructure; support remains high for expenditures on education and health care

  • New cyberattack technique inflicts major damage with modest means

    Technique works by sending hundreds of thousands of DNS a steady stream of packets that contain little more than the character “.”; the queries prompt the DNS servers to respond to the targets with a list of the Internet’s root servers, responses that contain about eight times more data than the initial request

  • Better detection with self-healing wireless sensor network

    New self-forming, self-healing wireless mesh sensor network can detect railway embankment landslides, humidity in art museums, water quality in water treatment facilities — and has military and security applications such as a perimeter network that can detect intrusion through breaking a light beam, or triggering a tripwire, or proximity sensor

  • Ocean water rising unevenly; Washington, D.C. may be submerged

    Rather than spreading out evenly across all the oceans, water from melted Antarctic ice sheets will gather around North America and the Indian Ocean;this is bad news for the U.S. East Coast, which could bear the brunt of one of these oceanic bulges

  • Sweden: Mid-course correction on nuclear power

    Sweden had planned to phase out its nuclear energy capacity, ending it in about twenty to thirty years’ time or when the installations came to the end of their lives; government announced that “The phase-out law will be abolished. The ban in the nuclear technology law on new construction will also be abolished”

  • IT security jobs largely untouched by economic slowdown

    New reports describe a surprising stability in the information security job market amid all the cost-cutting and layoffs that are taking place; regulatory compliance demands, increasing data protection requirements stemming from wireless deployments and rollouts of virtualization technology, and growing consumer angst over data breaches combine to blunt the toll recession takes on information security jobs, salaries

  • Scientists: weight of water in reservoir may have triggered China quake

    The May 2007 magnitude-7.9 quake in Sichuan province killed 70,000 and forced 5 million to be relocated; Just 550 yards from the fault line and 3.5 miles from the epicenter stands the 511-foot-high Zipingpu dam; scientists say that the immense weight of Zipingpu reservoir’s waters — 315 million tons — likely affected the timing and magnitude of the quake

  • Bolstering cyber defense

    Against the backdrop of tens of thousands of reported attacks and breaches of government and private computer systems each year, Cobham’s subsidiary awarded a $8.6 million contract to develop cybersecurity test and evaluation technology