OUR PICKSUSAF Calls Killer-AI Report ‘Anecdotal’ | Challenges to US Security Posed by 'Salad Bar' Extremism | Millions of PC Motherboards Sold with a Firmware Backdoor

Published 2 June 2023

·  Arizona Limits Construction Around Phoenix as Its Water Supply Dwindles 
In what could be a glimpse of future as climate change batters the West, officials ruled there’s not enough groundwater for projects already approved

·  Millions of PC Motherboards Were Sold with a Firmware Backdoor
Hidden code in hundreds of models of Gigabyte motherboards invisibly and insecurely downloads programs—a feature ripe for abuse, researchers say

·  DOE Announces New Funding Recipient to Fortify Energy Delivery Systems
Enable transmission systems to survive a cyber incident while sustaining critical functions

·  USAF Calls Killer-AI Report ‘Anecdotal’
Chief of AI test and operations says he “misspoke” about a “thought experiment” in which a drone killed its operator

·  The Challenges to US Security Posed by ‘Salad Bar’ Extremism
The FBI refers to them as :Salad Bar”; in the UL, they call them MUU, for mixed, unstable or unclear

·  Misogyny Is Often the Connection Between Overlapping Far-Right Ideologies
A holistic approach to addressing violent extremism starts with confronting deep-seated societal issue

Arizona Limits Construction Around Phoenix as Its Water Supply Dwindles  (Christopher Flavelle and Jack Healy, New York Times)
Arizona has determined that there is not enough groundwater for all of the housing construction that has already been approved in the Phoenix area, and will stop developers from building some new subdivisions, a sign of looming trouble in the West and other places where overuse, drought and climate change are straining water supplies.
The decision by state officials very likely means the beginning of the end to the explosive development that has made the Phoenix area the fastest growing metropolitan region in the country.
The state said it would not revoke building permits that have already been issued and is instead counting on new water conservation measures and alternative sources to produce the water necessary for housing developments that have already been approved.

Millions of PC Motherboards Were Sold with a Firmware Backdoor  (Andy Greenberg, Wired)
Hiding malicious programs in a computer’s UEFI firmware, the deep-seated code that tells a PC how to load its operating system, has become an insidious trick in the toolkit of stealthy hackers. But when a motherboard manufacturer installs its own hidden backdoor in the firmware of millions of computers—and doesn’t even put a proper lock on that hidden back entrance—they’re practically doing hackers’ work for them.
Researchers at firmware-focused cybersecurity company Eclypsium revealed today that they’ve discovered a hidden mechanism in the firmware of motherboards sold by the Taiwanese manufacturer Gigabyte, whose components are commonly used in gaming PCs and other high-performance computers. Whenever a computer with the affected Gigabyte motherboard restarts, Eclypsium found, code within the motherboard’s firmware invisibly initiates an updater program that runs on the computer and in turn downloads and executes another piece of software.