Shaun Nichols

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WW2 Enigma machine to be seized from shamed pharma bro Shkreli

A World War II German Enigma machine will be among the valuables a US court plans to seize from convicted felon and shamed former pharmaceuticals exec Martin Shkreli. The Enigma box is listed among the valuable assets American prosecutors plan to take to help cover the $7.4m in forfeiture the New York Eastern District ordered …
Shaun Nichols, 2 Dec 2017
NSA

Guilty: NSA bloke who took home exploits at the heart of Kaspersky antivirus slurp row

An NSA hacker has admitted taking home copies of classified software exploits – understood to be the cyber-weapons slurped from an agency worker's home Windows PC by Kaspersky Labs' antivirus. Nghia Hoang Pho, 67, pleaded guilty in a US district court in Baltimore on Friday to one count of willful retention of national defense …
Shaun Nichols, 2 Dec 2017

Expert gives Congress solution to vote machine cyber-security fears: Keep a paper backup

Video With too many electronic voting systems buggy, insecure and vulnerable to attacks, US election officials would be well advised to keep paper trails handy. This is according to Dr Matt Blaze, a University of Pennsylvania computer science professor and top cryptographer, who spoke to Congress this week about cyber-threats facing …
Shaun Nichols, 1 Dec 2017
jail

Stop us if you've heard this one: Russian hacker thrown in US slammer for $59m bank fraud

A Russian hacker already facing a lengthy prison stay in the US has been sent down for another 14 years for heading up an "organized cybercrime ring" that racked up $59m in damages across America. Roman Valeryevich Seleznev, aka Track2, the 33-year-old son of a Russian MP, was sentenced after being convicted of one count each …
Shaun Nichols, 1 Dec 2017
No, just stop. Nope. photo by shutterstock

Google Chrome vows to carpet bomb meddling Windows antivirus tools

By mid-2018 Google Chrome will no longer allow outside applications – cough, cough, antivirus packages – to run code within the browser on Windows. This is according to a post today on the Chromium blog that laid out the July release of Chrome 68 for Windows as the target for new rules that will block all third-party apps from …
Shaun Nichols, 30 Nov 2017
Bitcoin

Crypto-cash souk Coinbase forced to rat out its high rollers to probing US taxmen

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase will be turning over information on 14,000 of its users to the IRS – Uncle Sam's tax collectors – thanks to an order from a US court. Judge Jacqueline Corley of the San Francisco district court ruled on Wednesday the Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin trading website will be required to hand over …
Shaun Nichols, 30 Nov 2017
Coal miners

Hey girl, what's that behind your Windows task bar? Looks like a hidden crypto-miner...

Miscreants have found a way to continue running cryptocurrency-crafting JavaScript on Windows PCs even after netizens browse away from the webpage hosting the code. Researcher Jerome Segura of Malwarebytes said on Wednesday his team discovered scumbags had written some custom code to keep Coin Hive's freely available in- …
Shaun Nichols, 30 Nov 2017

Night before Xmas and all through American Airlines, not a pilot was flying, thanks to this bug

Updated A bug in American Airlines' pilot scheduling software has left the US airline woefully understaffed for the coming month, particularly around Christmas week. Due to a gremlin in the code, all pilots who requested time off for the holidays were granted leave, whereas the system should have approved some and rejected others to …
Shaun Nichols, 29 Nov 2017

As Apple fixes macOS root password hole, here's what went wrong

Code dive Apple has emitted an emergency software patch to address the trivial to exploit vulnerability in macOS High Sierra, version 10.13.1, that allowed miscreants to log into Macs as administrators without passwords and let any app gain root privileges. The Cupertino iPhone giant kicked out the fix, Security Update 2017-001, today …
Shaun Nichols, 29 Nov 2017
Poster for the movie Cable Guy. Copyright:  Columbia Pictures Corporation,

High-freq trade biz sues transatlantic ISP for alleged spiteful cable cut

A New York investment firm is suing its ISP to retain its access to a high-speed international internet link – after the firm was acquired by a company that has a beef with the broadband provider. KCG Holdings, a high-frequency trading specialist, claimed in a lawsuit filed this month in a southern NY district court that …
Shaun Nichols, 29 Nov 2017

Pro tip: You can log into macOS High Sierra as root with no password

Updated A trivial-to-exploit flaw in macOS High Sierra, aka macOS 10.13, allows users to gain admin rights, or log in as root, without a password. The security bug can be triggered via the authentication dialog box in Apple's operating system, which prompts you for an administrator's username and password when you need to do stuff …
Shaun Nichols, 28 Nov 2017
Maurice Moss IT crowd

Apple embraces El Reg! iOS 11 is now biting the hand that types IT

Call it a bug, call it a spellcheck quirk, or call it a wonderful bit of wishful thinking; iPhone owners are all about the IT department these days. Thanks to an apparent error in the latest version of iOS, some Apple fans see the word "it" autocorrect to "I.T." when typing messages. Similarly, "is" is autocorrected to "I.S." …
Shaun Nichols, 28 Nov 2017

Bulletproof Coffee lacks bulletproof security: Nerd brain juice biz hacked, cards gulped

The Silicon Valley-backed nutrition upstart specializing in butter-infused coffee says evil code injected into its website was covertly gulping customers' payment card details for months. Bulletproof 360 Inc., purveyors of the fatty coffee touted as a wonder-treatment for mental clarity and weight loss, admitted that from May …
Shaun Nichols, 27 Nov 2017
A utility pole

AT&T, Comcast trash, kill Nashville's Googley broadband cable rules

An American city's efforts to make it easier for Google and upstart ISPs to compete against cable giants has been unceremoniously unplugged. Middle Tennessee District Court judge Victoria Roberts decided [PDF] last week that Nashville overstepped its authority when it streamlined the process for carriers' engineers to lawfully …
Shaun Nichols, 27 Nov 2017

HP Inc – the no-drama one – is actually doing fine with PCs, printers

On a day when Meg Whitman, CEO of its sibling HPE, announced her departure from the biz, HP Inc revealed its slow and steady progress in two tough markets. The printers and PCs half of the Hewlett-Packard split closed out a $52bn fiscal year that saw revenues climb by eight per cent on the previous 12 months. For the fourth …
Shaun Nichols, 22 Nov 2017
Smartphone showing Chinese flag

Apple: Sure, we banned VPN iOS apps in China, but, um, er, art!

Apple has told the US government it cooperated with China's demands to block VPN services so it could get other concessions from the Middle Kingdom on human rights. The Cupertino watchmaker said in a letter [PDF] to Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Ted Cruz (R-Zodiac) that while it did cave to China's demands it axe VPN apps …
Shaun Nichols, 22 Nov 2017

HPE CEO Meg Whitman QUITS, MAN! Neri to replace chief exec in Feb

Hewlett Packard Enterprise boss Meg Whitman is stepping down, and will be replaced on February 1 by company president Antonio Neri. Neri, a 50-year-old engineer turned executive who we described as a CEO-in-waiting, will take the chief exec throne while remaining HPE president. As of right now, the US tech goliath's stock is …

While you're preparing to carve Thanksgiving turkey, the FCC will be slicing into net neutrality

Analysis Ajit Pai, chairman of America's broadband watchdog, today confirmed what we all knew was coming for months now: a move to tear up the Obama-era's rules on network neutrality in the US. Essentially, under Pai's latest proposals, ISPs and cablecos can charge subscribers extra if they want packages optimized for video streaming, …
Shaun Nichols, 21 Nov 2017
Woman sweats... looks worried

AT&T insists it's not sweating US govt block of Time-Warner gobble

AT&T says it is not worried about the possibility of a US government lawsuit derailing its attempts to acquire Time-Warner. Shortly after news broke on Monday that Uncle Sam's Department of Justice was filing suit in Washington DC to block the proposed $85bn merger, the American telecoms giant issued a statement saying it …
Shaun Nichols, 21 Nov 2017
Police officers in bodu armour mill around in field

Cops jam a warrant into Apple to make it cough up Texas mass killer's iPhone, iCloud files

Texas Rangers have obtained a search warrant for the contents of a blood-splattered iPhone SE belonging to gunman Devin Kelley who killed 26 people in a murder-suicide at a church. Over the weekend, the US state's cops served the Cupertino phone-flinger a warrant demanding photos, messages and other potential evidence on …
Shaun Nichols, 20 Nov 2017
vulture tv reporter

It was El Reg wot won it: Bing banishes bogus Brit bank banner ad

Microsoft has axed a Bing search result advert that masqueraded as a legit online banking website – but was in fact a sophisticated phishing operation. Searching for "TSB" – as in the UK's TSB Bank – on the Great Britain edition of Bing would bring up, right at the top of the page, a search ad for a phishing website described …
Shaun Nichols, 20 Nov 2017
Arecibo observatory

Arecibo spared the axe: Iconic observatory vital to science lives on

The US National Science Foundation (NSF) has approved a plan to keep the famous Arecibo Observatory running after it was severely damaged by Hurricane Maria. The NSF this week signed off [PDF] on a proposal to continue funding work at the Puerto Rican radio observatory, and seek out a partner to help cover operational costs. …
Shaun Nichols, 18 Nov 2017
Apple HomePod

Aww: Apple won't be HomePod for Christmas

Apple will fail to deliver its HomePod internet-connected speakers in time for the Christmas shopping season. The Cupertino idiot-tax racket handed out statements to friendly journos on Friday admitting that fans will have to wait until some time next year to get their hands on the gizmo. "We need a little more time before it …
Shaun Nichols, 18 Nov 2017
Sky-drawing of a phallus

Dick move: Navy flyboy flings firmament phallus for flabbergasted folk

A US navy pilot in an EA-18G GROWLER is facing stiff action – after crafting a novel flight pattern that left much of central Washington state staring up at an anatomy lesson. The offending artist flew out of the Whidbey Island air station Thursday morning and deliberately painted the sky over the city of Okanogan with the ol …
Shaun Nichols, 17 Nov 2017
printer

Windows Update borks elderly printers in typical Patch Tuesday style

Updated Microsoft's latest batch of software updates for Windows has been blamed for a mysterious ailment befalling some poor old Epson dot-matrix printers. Reg readers let us know that, after installing this week's Patch Tuesday payload from Redmond, their Windows boxes no longer work with Epson's dot matrix printers (which are still …
Shaun Nichols, 17 Nov 2017

Biting the hand that feeds IT ? 1998–2017