Week in Review: Stuxnet Redux and The Wire’s D.C. Edition

Stuxnet Redux and The
Wire: United States

Governments, the Internet and security were the theme as Internet wiretapping, trans national cyber laws and the further
proliferation of Stuxnet – a computer virus believed to have state backing – topped this week’s news.

The Folly of Internet Wiretapping

The last 10 years have seen a great number of advancements in the sophistication and usability of strong encryption programs, and many people now use encrypted messaging services by default. This has made it much simpler for people to keep their private thoughts and data private and secure, and now the government is working diligently to roll back all of that progress with a naive, ill-conceived effort to cripple secure communications networks in the name of national security.

Federal law enforcement and national security officials are preparing to
seek sweeping new regulations for the Internet, arguing that their
ability to wiretap criminal and terrorism suspects is “going dark” as
people increasingly communicate online instead of by telephone. Read the full article. [The New York Times]

Google is using automated warnings to alert users of its GMAIL messaging service about wide spread attempts to access personal mail accounts from Internet addresses in China. The warnings may indicate wholesale spying by the Chinese government a year after the Google Aurora attacks or simply random attacks. Victims include one leading privacy activist. 

The Senate Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Insurance heard testimony on from several witnesses yesterday regarding the proposed national data breach legislation, including Maneesha Mithal of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and Mark Bregman, CTO of Symantec. Read the full article. [Infosecurity]

By Alex RothackerSince 2008, higher education institutions have experienced a staggering 158 data breaches resulting in over 2.3 million reported records compromised. In 2009 alone there were 57 reported data breaches, and year to date through July of 2010, there have already been 32 breaches.   

Long Beach, California man who helped funnel stolen cash to a global network of
hackers and carders was sentenced Thursday to 6 years in prison for
conspiracy to launder money.
 Cesar Carranza, 38, sold MSR-206’s to carders to encode stolen bank card
data onto blank cards, and he served as a conduit to transmit stolen
money between mules and carders. Read the full article. [Wired]

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