National Security

Gene Parmesan of Cybersecurity Wears Costumes and Tricks People Into Falling for Cyberattacks

(Photo: Facebook)

If you’ve recently received an email–not sent by your kooky aunt–with the subject line “Check out these kitties! :-),” you may have been the victim of a fake cyberattack. The Wall Street Journal reports that companies are hiring “ethical hackers” to build fake phishing scam emails to test which employees are dumb enough–or big enough cat lovers–to fall for them. Read More

Linkages

Booting Up: ‘Hey, the U.S. Totally Cyberattacked Us Too’ – North Korea

Happy Friday. (Photo: Sodahead)

Perhaps feeling jealous of China, North Korea is now accusing the U.S. of committing cyberattacks against it. [Tech in Asia]

We’ve reached the point where online programming could actually make a significant dent at the Emmy’s. House of Cards, anyone? [The Daily Dot]

Google Reader’s demise as a wake up call: what do we lose when we become so wholly reliant on a cloud-based app? [Slate]

More techies have stepped up to the plate to fight gun violence. Big name Silicon Valley investors have launched an “innovation and investment” campaign called Sandy Hook Promise. [TechCrunch]

Guns aren’t the only political issue techies are taking up. Zuck and others are working for high-skilled immigration reform. [Hillicon Valley]

Things About Which We Are Unsure

We’ve Got One Year Before The Internet Kills Us All

(flickr/mjtmail)

Firms specializing in technology security make it their business to scare potential customers, but that doesn’t make an Internet Identity (IID) report predicting cyber doom in 2014, highlighted today by Ray Kurzweil’s Accelerating Intelligence, any less spooky.

According to IID, looming cybersecurity threats in 2013–more mobile malware, increasingly aggressive hacktivism, attacks on the cloud–are “well-anticipated and mundane.”

Those “mundane” threats are nothing next to the bleak wasteland of death and destruction IID expects in 2014: Read More

National Security

President Obama Authorizes Secret Directive to Fight Cyber-Attacks

President Barack Obama does not want Wikipedia to shut down again. (Photo: Wikimedia)

At some point in October this year, President Obama signed the slightly creepy-sounding and secret Presidential Policy Directive 20, a source tells The Washington Post. According to the Post, the directive gives the military license to “act more aggressively” when combating cyber-attacks directed at major U.S. networks.

In essence, anyone waging war on the country via the internet is on notice: Read More

Hack Hack Hack Hack It Apart

In Which Defense Secretary Leon Panetta Freaks Everyone Out About Cyberattacks

Secretary Panetta. (Photo: flickr.com/usnavy)

Earlier this week, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta took a little trip to the Intrepid Air and Space Museum, where he gave a speech. The New York Times reports that in that speech, he proceeded to do what appears to have been his damnedest to scare the ever-loving crap out of everyone, everywhere about the prospect of cyberattacks on our precious bodily fluids American infrastructure.

Painting a picture that sounds an awful lot like a Michael Bay film, Secretary Panetta warnedRead More

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Booting Up: Zynga’s Sketchy Stock Dumpers Edition

Who, me? [Inside IPO]

Zynga insiders dumped a whole bunch of their stock just before it crashed. That doesn’t sound sketchy at all! [Yahoo]

More and more cyberattacks are being launched against U.S. infrastructure. Okay, but does the malware play AC/DC? [New York Times]

Amazon saw a 96 percent drop in Q2 profits. We’re guessing you’re not reading this on a Kindle, then. [Wall Street Journal]

The Verge uncovered top secret old Apple product prototypes. [The Verge]

How will Google fiber make money, and what does it mean for already-established broadband companies? [GigaOm]