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Cellphone 'kill switch' leads to sharp declines in theft

It was announced Tuesday that international efforts to implement “kill switches” in all smart phones, which allow mobiles to be turned off remotely, have led to major declines in the crime in three major cities.

“Kill switches” in smart phones, which allow mobile devices to be locked down remotely, have led to a sharp decline in theft in three major cities, according to authorities.

After Apple added the metaphorical switch in 2013, iPhone thefts dropped by 50 percent in London, 40 percent in San Francisco, and 25 percent in New York. More...

02-13-2015 19:47

White House renews effort on cybersecurity bill with new proposal

In the wake of the hack at Sony Pictures Entertainment and other prominent data breaches, the White House tried Tuesday to jump-start the effort to pass cybersecurity legislation by unveiling an updated proposal aimed at ironing out major sticking points in a long-stalled effort.

The new push is part of a week of White House announcements highlighting new technology and security policy initiatives for the new year. With announcements on data security, information sharing and broadband access, President Obama is trying to strike some contrast with the new Republican leadership on Capitol Hill — while also suggesting a few areas of compromise.

"Cyberthreats are an urgent and growing danger," Obama said Tuesday in remarks in suburban Washington at the National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center, which helps coordinate electronic communications among the government, the intelligence community and law enforcement.

He said that the move toward putting the nation's infrastructure online makes the issue of cybersecruity "a growing public safety and public health" concern. More...

01-13-2015 21:33

Sony malware may be linked to other damaging attacks: researchers

(Reuters) - Cybersecurity researchers have uncovered what they say is technical evidence linking the massive breach at Sony Corp's Hollywood studio with attacks in South Korea and the Middle East.

Moscow-based security software maker Kaspersky Lab said on Thursday it uncovered evidence that all three campaigns might have been launched by the same group, or facilitated by a single organization skilled in working with destructive malware.

In 2012, cyber attackers damaged tens of thousands of computers at Saudi Arabia's national oil company and Qatar's RasGas with a virus known as Shamoon, one of the most destructive campaigns to date. Some U.S. officials blamed Iran.

Last year, more than 30,000 PCs at South Korean banks and broadcasting companies were hit by a similar attack that cybersecurity researchers widely believe was launched from North Korea.

Kaspersky researcher Kurt Baumgartner told Reuters there are "unusually striking similarities" related to the malicious software and techniques in the two campaigns and the Nov. 24 Sony attack in which a malware dubbed "Destover" was used. More...

12-05-2014 07:44