GeekSpeak for 2011-08-06

Face Matching Hacking Body Scanning

Face-matching with Facebook profiles, Non-naked airport passengers in Germany, Hackers Wireless Medical Devices Susceptible to Attacks, DARPA and the hazard of hacked hardware and 5/8ths inch head radiation.

NASA spacecraft spots evidence for flowing water on Mars

A NASA spacecraft in orbit around Mars has detected signs of what appear to be seasonal flows of salty water on the surface of the red planet during warmer summer months, an “eye-opening” finding that could help scientists target future missions to look for signs of microbial life in the frigid soil, researchers said today.

Can Darpa Fix the Cybersecurity Problem of Hacked Hardware?

The Defense Department has been worried about foreign adversaries tampering with its hardware for a while now. The Pentagon now buys 1 percent of all the world’s integrated circuit production; America’s defense community simply uses too many to monitor them all. In 2005, a Defense Science Board report warned that foreign adversaries could slip back doors into chips(.pdf) destined for installation in important military gear.

Wireless Medical Devices Susceptible to Attacks

Concerned about the security guarding certain wireless-enabled medical devices, researcher Jerome Radcliffe attempted to hack into the insulin pump he wears on his body to keep his Type 1 diabetes in check. He succeeded. His presentation on the matter at the Black Hat Security Conference has called into question the safety of medical devices and implants that can be controlled via wireless networks.

Face-matching with Facebook profiles

A Carnegie Mellon University researcher today described how he assembled a database of about 25,000 photographs taken from students’ Facebook profiles. Then he set up a desk in one of the campus buildings and asked willing volunteers to peer into Webcams.
The results: facial recognition software put a name to the face of 31 percent of the students after, on average, less than three seconds of rapid-fire comparisons.

US Internet Providers Hijacking Users' Search Queries

“Searches made by millions of internet users are being hijacked and redirected by some internet service providers in the US. Patents filed by Paxfire, the company involved in the hijacking, suggest that it may be part of a larger plan to allow ISPs to generate revenue by tracking the sites their customers visit. It may also be illegal.”

Format Shifting May Be Legalized in UK

“The Government is set to announce plans to legalise format shifting and ditch web-blocking plans.”

US internet Providers Hijacking Users' Search Queries

“Searches made by millions of internet users are being hijacked and redirected by some internet service providers in the US.”

New Airport Body Scanner Doesn't Like Perspiration

“Sweaty armpits had alarm bells ringing at Sydney Airport yesterday with controversial full-body scanners baulking at perspiring passengers.”