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EU to demand 2-factor for online payments by August 2015?
DEC 22nd 2014

The European Banking Authority (EBA), the EU body tasked with supervising and regulating the banking sector, has issued a new set of guidelines on the security of internet payments.

Among much else, the new instructions [PDF] seem to require payment service providers (PSPs) to ensure two-factor authentication (2FA) is used to verify the identity and intentions of all customers in online transactions.

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Bitcoin-based messaging could slip past censors
DEC 19th 2014

A computer science student in the Netherlands has built a way to weave messaging into the underpinnings of Bitcoin that's both cheap and resistant to censorship.

And, because messages would be baked into the Bitcoin structure itself, they would be unerasable, meaning that countries would have to keep the messaging service if they wanted to use the virtual currency, and therefore would have to potentially put up with dissidents.

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US Congress OKs 'unprecedented' codification of warrantless surveillance
DEC 15th 2014

Congress last week quietly passed a bill to reauthorize funding for intelligence agencies, over objections that it gives the government "virtually unlimited access to the communications of every American", without warrant, and allows for indefinite storage of some intercepted material, including anything that's "enciphered".

That's how it was summed up by Rep. Justin Amash, a Republican from Michigan, who pitched and lost a last-minute battle to kill the bill.

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Ofcom mulls selling UK govt's IPv4 cache amid IPv6 rollout flak
DEC 15th 2014

The UK is in danger of falling behind the rest of the world in rolling out IPv6 networking, while Ofcom sees pound signs and focuses on workarounds, it's claimed.

In a thought-provoking blog post, internet policy expert Emily Taylor digs into the UK's adoption of IPv6 - an upgrade to internet infrastructure that experts have been pushing for more than a decade.

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As leaks continue, Sony's legal team tells media to destroy 'stolen info'
DEC 15th 2014

As Sony Pictures fights an uphill battle, working to minimize the post-breach damage while leaks continue to surface, the company's legal team has delivered a stern message to media covering the developments.

So far, a number of major publications, including The New York Times and The Hollywood Reporter, along with security journalist Brian Krebs, have received a three-page letter from Sony's attorney David Boies requesting that they destroy “stolen information” being disseminated in the Sony attack.

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Online medical bill site tricked people to hand over health records
DEC 8th 2014

How do you populate a new website with existing consumers' medical records?

One way is to tuck away the authorization text where consumers don't even realize they're signing it, though the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) might well come a-knocking if you do!

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Sony Pictures feels the pain as megabreach claims expand
DEC 8th 2014

The aftermath of the Sony Pictures breach that we first reported on two weeks ago continues to make headlines.

As the days pass it looks increasingly like the wound inflicted on the media giant was larger and more grievous than was initially assumed, but facts are still thin on the ground.

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Wearable technology to be looked at for handling e-health data in the mainstream
DEC 3rd 2014

If wearable technology were to have the proper security and privacy protections, doctors could someday remotely monitor patients' health in their homes.

That's a big "if", given the current state of wearables, whose privacy and security are enough to give alarm-triggering heart palpitations.

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Supreme Court quotes rap as it mulls Facebook free-speech case
DEC 3rd 2014

The US Supreme Court on Monday began to wrestle with violent rap lyrics, internet trolling, and the notion that posting bomb and homicide threats is a form of therapy in which a now-jailed ranter could vent his frustration and thereby not really intend to kill anybody.

The ranter in question is Anthony Elonis, a Pennsylvania man who had adopted the rap persona Tone Dougie.

In 2010, his wife left him and took their two kids with her. He responded by writing death threats - or rap lyrics, as his defense contends - on Facebook.

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Dirt-cheap PS4 Amazon listings in Walmart price-match scam
NOV 24tH 2014

Every day is Black Friday when you defraud store price-matching policies!

That's exactly what some people were doing after Walmart announced on 13 November that it would price-match select online retailers, including Amazon.

Walmart says that if you find a lower advertised price on an identical product, just speak up, and the store will match the price - right at the register.

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16 webcam hijacking suspects arrested in wake of bedroom-peeping
NOV 24tH 2014

An international bust of people illegally using remote-access Trojans (RATs) to hijack people's webcams last week led to the arrest of 16 people across Europe.

The UK National Crime Agency said on Friday that five people had been arrested in the UK, and another man was brought in for voluntary questioning.

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