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Even in our polarized and right vs. left political paradigm, there is one thing both republicans and democrats can agree on: The federal government should have vast snooping powers and conduct mass surveillance on everyone. They simply disagree over who should be in charge of abusing those excessive powers. The impeachment circus did one thing successfully. It took attention from the government’s mass surveillance programs that are constantly expanded. As Reason proposed: If Democrats really feared Donald Trump’s exercise of the powers of the presidency, why would they propose extending the surveillance powers of the controversial Patriot Act?
House Democrats have successfully slipped an unqualified renewal of the draconian PATRIOT Act into an emergency funding bill – voting near-unanimously for sweeping surveillance carte blanche that was the basis for the notorious NSA program.
Via theduran http://www.shtfplan.com/headline-news/republicans-democrats-agree-give-vast-snooping-powers-to-the-u-s-government_11212019

The FCC has stripped away federal subsidies from Huawei and ZTE, two Chinese telecoms giants that have been deemed as national security threats in recent years due to their ties to the Chinese government. “Both Huawei and ZTE have close ties to the Chinese government and military apparatus and are subject to Chinese laws requiring them to assist with espionage, a threat recognized by other federal agencies and the governments of other nations,” The FCC said on Friday. “The public funds in the FCC’s USF, which subsidizes U.S. broadband deployment and service through four separate programs, must not endanger national security through the purchase of equipment from companies posing a national security risk.” For Huawei especially, this move comes as just one more blow from the US. While the firm has begun to resume trade with US firms like Microsoft, the relationship is still far from stable at the moment. Huawei says that it hasn’t been employed for espionage, but its pleas continue to fall on deaf ears. It’s not like the firm is squeaky clean either. “We take these actions based on evidence in the record as well as longstanding concerns from the executive and legislative branches about the national security threats posed by certain foreign communications equipment manufacturers, most particularly Huawei and ZTE. Both companies have close ties to China’s Communist government and military apparatus. Both companies are subject to Chinese laws broadly obligating them to cooperate with any request from the country’s intelligence services and to keep those requests secret. Both companies have engaged in conduct like intellectual property theft, bribery, and corruption,” FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said. “Given the threats posed by Huawei and ZTE to America’s security and our 5G future, this FCC will not sit idly by and hope for the best.” It appears that daily the current administration continues to restrict Huawei from doing business in the United States without producing any evidence substantiating their claim, or the Attorney's General filing charges of espionage against the communication giant. If the United States Government can destroy an Internationally acclaimed mega-corporation without due process imagine what they could do to a smaller company or an individual citizen without offering proof of a crime or them having their day in court to face their accuser. Follow this and everything Huawei by visiting OUR FORUM.

Profiles and contact info found on unsecured Google Cloud server. A massive four-terabyte trove of sensitive personal data belonging to over a billion profiles has been found on an unsecured Google Cloud server - its owner still a mystery - in one of the largest single-source data leaks ever. The mountain of data, including phone numbers, email addresses, and social media profiles, was sitting unprotected on an anonymous server hosted on the Google Cloud when security researchers Vinny Troia and Bob Diachenko found it while scanning for vulnerabilities last month. After they reported the massive exposure to the FBI, it disappeared within hours. It’s not clear who accessed it before Troia and Diachenko, and what they did with the data, but the sheer enormity of the leak, with 1.2 billion unique data profiles potentially slurped up by malicious actors, is enough to cause alarm. The information was likely obtained in four chunks from so-called “data enrichment” companies, Troia suggested in a blog post on Friday announcing his discovery. These entities allow a customer to use a single piece of information on a person, even just their name, to access potentially hundreds more data points - anything from email address to preferred social activities. Two data enrichers - People Data Labs and OxyData.io - were discovered to be the sources for the data on the rogue server. However, after communicating with both companies, Troia was satisfied that the server did not belong to either. Its owner could have bought the data from them and just left it lying around unsecured - without any further information about the server’s owner, there was little that could legally be done.

WhatsApp is a “Trojan horse” exploited to snoop on millions of users naive enough to believe that the Facebook-owned messenger differs from its parent company, long beset by privacy scandals, Telegram founder Pavel Durov said. In a lengthy post on his Telegram channel on Wednesday, Durov took aim at one of his brainchild’s biggest rivals – WhatsApp, the world’s leading messaging app, which became a Facebook subsidiary in 2014 and boasts some 1.5 billion monthly active users. “Regardless of the underlying intentions of WhatsApp’s parent company, the advice for their end-users is the same: Unless you are cool with all your photos and messages becoming public one day, you should delete WhatsApp from your phone." The Russian-born entrepreneur pulled no punches, citing a long record of privacy-related violations by Facebook to back up his case.  “WhatsApp doesn’t only fail to protect your WhatsApp messages – this app is being consistently used as a Trojan horse to spy on your non-WhatsApp photos and messages. Why would they do it? Facebook has been part of surveillance programs long before it acquired WhatsApp." In his stinging attack on the messenger, Durov also recounted a recent discovery of yet another system vulnerability in WhatsApp, which allowed hackers to send a specially crafted MP3 file to Android and iOS users and thereby obtain access to all their data.

Fortune's annual Businessperson of the Year list features 20 business leaders "who tackled audacious goals, overcame impossible odds, found creative solutions". The list is topped by Nadella, who has been at the helm of the technology giant since 2014. Microsoft’s India-born Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella has occupied the top spot in Fortune’s Businessperson of the Year 2019 list, an annual compilation that also includes Mastercard CEO Ajay Banga and Arista head Jayshree Ullal. Fortune’s annual Businessperson of the Year list features 20 business leaders “who tackled audacious goals, overcame impossible odds, found creative solutions”. The list is topped by Nadella, who has been at the helm of the technology giant since 2014. “In a year dominated by political chaos and bluster, it was a rare brand of steady — even quiet — leadership that won the day in the business world. And no one epitomizes that brand of obsessively results-driven, team-based leadership more than our new No. 1 Businessperson of the Year,” Fortune said. Banga is ranked 8th, while Ullal comes in at the 18th spot in the list for which Fortune looked at 10 financial factors ranging from a total return to shareholders to return on capital. Both Banga and Ullal are of Indian-origin. Fortune said Nadella, a computer scientist, was “neither a founder like Bill Gates nor a big-personality sales leader like his predecessor, Steve Ballmer when he was named the “surprise choice” to lead Microsoft in 2014. “He’d never worked in finance, another training ground for CEOs. And his stature on the global stage was non-existent. What’s more, having joined Microsoft in 1992, he was thoroughly steeped in a dog-eat-dog Microsoft culture that had contributed to the company’s stagnation,” Fortune said. Today, Nadella “wears the gaps in his resume as comfortably as the jeans and blazers that are his corporate uniform”, it said. “Key to his leadership style is a willingness to delegate,” particularly to three members of his management team — president Brad Smith, who runs policy and legal affairs; Microsoft’s chief financial officer Amy Hood and chief people officer Kathleen Hogan. “I am wired to be fairly confident in myself and to let others shine,” Fortune quotes Nadella as saying. “CEOs can only do what they do if they have an amazing team. I am blessed to have that. Want to know more visit Our Forum.

An executable file disguised as a .jpg leads not only to ransomware but also its builder, which can be used to create variants. A malicious spam campaign that informs victims it contains a “critical Windows update” instead leads to the installation of Cyborg ransomware, researchers have found. Further, they were able to access its builder, which can be used to create malware variants. The email-based threat, discovered recently by researchers at Trustwave, is unique in a few ways, researchers unveiled in a blog post on Tuesday. For instance, the attached file purports to be in .jpg format, even though it opens an .exe file. Another unique aspect is that the emails contain a two-sentence subject, “Install Latest Microsoft Windows Update now! Critical Microsoft Windows Update!”— but it has just one sentence in its email body, researchers said. Typically, malicious emails include a longer, socially engineered message intended to lure victims into clicking malicious files. But perhaps the most crucial element of the analysis is that the Cyborg ransomware creators also left a trail from the executable that led researchers to discover the malware builder hosted on the Github developer platform. “The 7Zip file ‘Cyborg Builder Ransomware V 1.0.7z’ from Cyborg-Builder-Ransomware repository was uploaded two days before the Github account misterbtc2020 hosted the Cyborg ransomware executable,” according to the post. “It contains the ransomware builder ‘Cyborg Builder Ransomware V 1.0.exe.'” This adds a new dimension to the attack, Karl Sigler, threat intelligence manager for Trustwave SpiderLabs, told Threatpost in an email interview. “Ransomware has been widely used to attack different organizations and governments and having it and its builder hosted on a software development platform Github is significant,” he told us. “Anyone can grab a hold of it and create their own Cyborg ransomware executable.”  For more turn your browser to OUR FORUM.

 

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