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Week in Security: Tor in turmoil, USB ports in a storm, Android app attack

This week in security news saw the world’s researchers discover a whole new range of Achilles Heels for PCs, the online privacy service Tor, and even ‘connected’ gadgets such as internet fridges.

Facebook privacy – the 20,000 who just logged out (and why)

Set up in the wake of Facebook’s controversial ‘experiment’, the 99 Days project aims to work out a more profound question: does the site make us happy?

‘Sextortion’ blackmail attacks on the rise, Police warn

‘Sextortion’ attacks where cybercriminals blackmail victims with the threat of exposing explicit photographs or messages are increasingly common, according to a report by Bloomberg News.

Facebook scams target grieving families of Flight MH17

Callous cybercriminals have used the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 tragedy as a lure for Facebook scams – creating fake profiles for victims of the crash.

‘Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 found’ Facebook hoax

A link showing the nose of an airliner jutting above the waves, with the headline, ‘Malaysian Air Flight MH370 found by sailor’ has been circulating on Facebook this week, according to a report by Hoax-Slayer – but the link is a new scam.

F1 star Michael Schumacher dead? It’s the latest sick Facebook scam

Scammers and fraudsters think nothing of scraping the barrel of taste, if they believe it will help them earn a few dollars.

Biometrics pioneer now “wary” of monster he has created

Dr Joseph Atick, a pioneer in biometrics, who co-founded early facial recognition companies such as Visionics, now fears that large companies could use new versions of his technologies for electronic surveillance,- and warned of “unexpected consequences” unless the industry changed its habits.

Rolling Stones 14 On Fire Free Tickets Giveaway? It’s a Facebook scam

Beware the latest scam spreading on Facebook, claiming to offer free tickets to a Rolling Stones concert.

Facebook roller coaster accident video scam spreads fast – but don’t click

Posts promising gruesome footage of a roller coaster accident at Universal Studios in Florida in which 16 people supposedly died are spreading fast on the social network – with victims fooled into spreading the scam to their friends.

Fake Facebook app attack can lead to your Android being spied upon, and your bank account being hacked

Hackers are using a notorious banking Trojan horse to display a bogus message from Facebook, in an aggressive attempt to infect Android smartphones.

Two-thirds of parents spy “regularly” on children’s social media accounts

Two-thirds of the respondents to the survey admitted to using various methods to check on children “without their knowledge” – and one-fifth had found “incriminating” posts which they confronted children about.

Sniffing earwax could offer icky new frontier in biometrics

For most of us, earwax is a bodily product we prefer not to think about, but a team of scientists have discovered that the substance reveals a huge amount about its creator – and could even be used to identify people.

Facebook’s ‘Deepface’ photo-matching is nearly as good as human brains

Facebook’s ‘Deepface’ photo-matching software can now ‘recognize’ human faces with an accuracy just a fraction of a percentage point behind human beings – a huge leap forward in the technology, with some potentially alarming implications for privacy.

Whatsapp security fears over rogue apps ‘reading’ user chats

Hit messaging app Whatsapp may not be as secure as its 450 million users believe – after an independent security consultant revealed a loophole which rogue app developers could use to steal Android users’ entire Whatsapp history.

Five ‘new friends’ to avoid like the plague on social networks

Befriending the wrong person on Facebook can hand a criminal the tools for an identity theft attack – and on LinkedIn, talking to the wrong ‘recruiter’ can lead to disaster.

Facebook and Whatsapp: Security and privacy after the $19B deal

The acquisition of chat service Whatsapp for $19 billion has been the technology story of the week – but serious privacy and security questions remain over Facebook’s new messaging service.

Two-thirds of couples ‘share passwords to online accounts’, Pew research finds

Couples who have been in a long-term relationship indulge in risky online behaviour, such as sharing passwords for online accounts, with two-thirds of married couples sharing at least one password, a new study by Pew Internet has found.

Facebook’s ‘A Look Back’ video used as bait for malware, report claims

A fake version of Facebook’s 10th anniversary celebration video page, ‘A Look Back’ is spreading via the social network, with users directed instead to another website, where they are prompted to download files.

Facebook pays record sum to hacker who exposed login bug

Facebook has given out a record fee for bug discovery, after a Brazilian security researcher exposed a vulnerability that could have been used to deliver malware to millions of Facebook users.

Giant snake swallows zookeeper! Facebook scam spreads via offer of gruesome video

A video purportedly showing a gigantic snake swallowing a zookeeper is the latest viral scam on Facebook – tricking thousands of users into sharing a video which instead takes victims outside Facebook to a scam site.

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01 Aug 2014
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