Security

Your daily briefing on security, freedom, and privacy in the technology world.

Three weeks ago, House Republicans publicly released a much-hyped memo written by representative Devin Nunes of California. It alleged, through a series of allusions, tangential facts, and seeming misdirections, that law enforcement officials had abused their power in obtaining a surveillance warrant against former Trump campaign advisor Carter Page. Now, in a 10-page memo of
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In the four or so years since it launched, end-to-end encrypted messaging app Signal has become the security community’s gold standard for surveillance-resistant communications. Its creators have built an encryption protocol that companies from WhatsApp to Facebook Messenger to Skype have all added to their own products to offer truly private conversations to billions of
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Cryptojacking only really coalesced as a class of attack about six months ago, but already the approach has evolved and matured into a ubiquitous threat. Hacks that co-opt computing power for illicit cryptocurrency mining now target a diverse array of victims, from individual consumers to massive institutions—even industrial control systems. But the latest victim isn’t
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Special counsel Robert Mueller’s indictment against Russia’s Internet Research Agency contains a number of striking moments, from the inflammatory ads bought by the so-called “troll factory” to the rampant identity theft against US citizens. But what stands out most may be the reminder that for Russia, subverting the foundations of US democracy was just another
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For some time, there has been a conflation of issues—the hacking and leaking of illegally obtained information versus propaganda and disinformation; cyber-security issues and the hacking of elections systems versus information operations and information warfare; paid advertising versus coercive messaging or psychological operations—when discussing “Russian meddling” in the 2016 US elections. The refrain has become:
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Robert Mueller’s special counsel investigation into Russia’s impact on the 2016 election entered a new phase Friday, as his team indicted 13 Russian nationals and three Russian organizations for their “conspiracy” to illegally influence the US presidential campaign. It was an indictment unprecedented in American history—a direct and public charge that America’s main foreign adversary
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Facebook has always nudged truant users back to its platform though emails and notifications. But recently, those prods have evolved beyond comments related to activity on your own profile. Now Facebook will nag you when an acquaintance comments on someone else’s photo, or when a distant family member updates their status. The spamming has even
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Each new breaking news situation is an opportunity for trolls to grab attention, provoke emotions, and spread propaganda. The Russian government knows this. Fake-news manufacturing teenagers in Macedonia know this. Twitter bot creators know this. And thanks to data-gathering operations from groups like the Alliance for Securing Democracy and RoBhat Labs, the world knows this.
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