Archive for category Comms

Android App Warns When You’re Being Watched

From: MIT

Researchers find a way to give Android users prominent warnings when apps are tracking their location.

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CRYPTO Author Speaks with the NSA

CRYPTO author Steven Levy met with Gen. Keith Alexander, the Director of the NSA, and others to discuss the Snowden leaks .

From: Threat Level

The NSA is clearly, madly, deeply furious at the man whose actions triggered the biggest crisis in its history. Even while contending they welcome the debate that now engages the nation, they say that they hate the way it was triggered. The NSA has an admittedly insular culture — the officials described it as almost like a family. Morale suffers when friends and neighbors think that NSA employees are sitting around reading grandma’s email. Also, the agency believes that the Snowden leaks have seriously hurt national security

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BitTorrent Creates More Secure Chat Program

From BitTorrent:

First, a few words on Chat’s origins. Here at BitTorrent, we value privacy. With the news this year reminding us all of the susceptibility of the communications platforms we rely on to snooping, we found ourselves wanting something new, something secure, something private. We ultimately realized that we were uniquely qualified to build this platform.

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NSA “CO-TRAVELER” Program Revealed

From EFF:

With neither public debate nor court authorization, CO-TRAVELER collects billions of records daily of cell phone user location information. It maps the relationships of cell phone users across global mobile network cables, gathering data about who you are physically with and how often your movements intersect with other cell phone users. The program even tracks when your phone is turned on or off.

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RSA Paid $10 Million By NSA To Keep Backdoor In Crypto

From Ars Technica:

Security company RSA was paid $10 million to use the flawed Dual_EC_DRBG pseudorandom number generating algorithm as the default algorithm in its BSafe crypto library, according to sources speaking to Reuters.

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Military To Add Mobile Devices To Networks

From FierceMobileIT:

For the first time in U.S. military history, foot soldiers and company support teams in Afghanistan are using specialized handheld mobile devices to access digital maps, exchange information with other troops and store mission-critical information. What began in 2011 as a way to supply soldiers with high-resolution maps on a PDA-type device eventually morphed into a suite of over 50 apps on something that now more closely resembles a mobile phone.

From Military.com:

In May, the Defense Department approved government-issued Apple devices using the iOS 6 operating system to connect to its networks, so long as they are operated within the confines of mobility pilots or a mobile device management (MDM) solution, once that is in place.

Likewise, the Samsung Knox version of Android was approved for use on DoD networks, pending the rollout of an MDM solution, said DoD spokesman Lt. Col. Damien Pickart.

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Repeated attacks hijack huge chunks of Internet traffic.

From: Ars Technica

Man-in-the-middle attacks divert data on scale never before seen in the wild.

The hacks, which exploit implicit trust placed in the border gateway protocol used to exchange data between large service providers, affected “major financial institutions, governments, and network service providers” in the US, South Korea, Germany, the Czech Republic, Lithuania, Libya, and Iran.

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Spy Apps For the Individual

Silent Circle – Secure Communications

Photo Trap – Tamper Detection

Life360 – Safety and Tracking

1Password – Secure Password Management

iDiscreet – Data Encryption

Norton Mobile Security – Firewall for Phones

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Operation Mountain Roundup 2013

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Press Release: Dark Mail Alliance

Today at the Inbox Love conference in Mountain View, CA, Silent Circle along with Ladar Levision, Founder of Lavabit officially announced the creation of the Dark Mail Alliance.

Silent Circle and Lavabit, as privacy innovators have partnered to lead the charge to replace email as we know it today – fundamentally broken from a privacy perspective – we have collaborated in developing a private, next-generation, end-to-end encrypted alternative. Read the rest of this entry »

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Head of NSA Out in 2014

From The Guardian:

Alexander has formalized plans to leave by next March or April, while his civilian deputy, Chris Inglis, is due to retire by year’s end, according to US officials who spoke on condition of anonymity.

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Ham Radios – James Yeager

James Yeager talks about his Ham Radios

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Did the NSA Build a Backdoor into U.S. Crypto?

From: Threat Level

… The talk was only nine slides long (.pdf). But those nine slides were potentially dynamite. They laid out a case showing that a new encryption standard, given a stamp of approval by the U.S. government, possessed a glaring weakness that made an algorithm in it susceptible to cracking. But the weakness they described wasn’t just an average vulnerability, it had the kind of properties one would want if one were intentionally inserting a backdoor to make the algorithm susceptible to cracking by design.

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Senate to Approve “Real” Journalists, Drudge Explodes

Matt Drudge was none too happy about Democrats determining who is and who is not a journalist:

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NSA May Have Impersonated Google

From Cnet.com:

Earlier this week, Techdirt picked up on a passing mention in a Brazilian news story and a Slate article to point out that the US National Security Agency had apparently impersonated Google on at least one occasion to gather data on people. (Mother Jones subsequently pointed out Techdirt’s point-out.)

A technique commonly used by hackers, a MITM attack involves using a fake security certificate to pose as a legitimate Web service, bypass browser security settings, and then intercept data that an unsuspecting person is sending to that service. Hackers could, for example, pose as a banking Web site and steal passwords.

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