Archive for the ‘Web/Tech’ Category
Searching for an image of Rear Admiral Alan G. Kirk, I get a pressure cooker, a welder’s helmet, a cash counting machine, a handheld radio, a Nazi-looking guy, some sort of flange, a set of mixing bowls, and a few other things that are definitely not Rear Admiral Alan G. Kirk.
On November 28, the Los Angeles Times reported on a “Cyber-Attack” on Defense Department networks caused by a virus named, Agent.btz. The Los Angeles Times story indicated that the attackers were possibly from Russia or China.
It might turn out that the culprits are a bit closer to home than Russia or China. This malware has been around in one form or another for several years, and is not “designed specifically to target military networks.
Agent.btz is a form of the SILLY.FDC which has been around since at least 2007. Agent.btz has the capacity to carry a payload and can execute commands upon infecting a computer.
Did this come from the Russians or the Chinese?
However, consider this possibility – with thousands of military and civilian personnel walking around with thumb drives around their necks, and with CD’s and other memory sticks freely available to stick into networked computers, it just might turn out that the enemy is us and our lax network security practices.
A good number of corporate computer virus infections arise from employees bringing games, software, CD’s and other infected software to work and injecting virus infections into the network. There’s no reason why the same wouldn’t be true for military networks.
The below is from the Symantec Forum for viruses:
There are many policy- and configuration-based mitigations that can be used to adequately limit the propagation of these threats. Network administrators are advised to:• Ensure that antivirus software is up to date.
• Disable AutoRun functionality for removable media, which should be possible using endpoint security systems. For personal computers, there are many detailed tutorials on how to disable AutoRun. Also, holding down the SHIFT key while inserting a USB flash drive can temporarily disable AutoRun.
• If removable drives are not required, endpoint security systems can distribute policies to prevent removable media from being recognized.
• User education should be a priority to educate network users about these threats.”This indicates that Symantec is detecting and removing the infection and its variants…plus provides what is needed to prevent it in the first place.
Another fine example of Google’s context advertising.
At least it’s a ham related site.
Gourmet Ham radio.
As I noted back in December, many of these Google advertisements are placed on pages with completely inappropriate content. They are placed on pages likely to be visited by people with no interest whatsoever in the product. Apparently, people are still paying to have their ads appear in these inappropriate places all over the web.
The good people at the Naval Safety Center want to remind you that it’s a good idea to use only approved replacement parts in your computer.
So what happened here, you ask? Well, it seems the original battery for this laptop died, and was replaced by an after-market battery pack that overheated and burst into flames.
The Navy is recommending that its folks ensure they have the right battery in similar laptops so something like this won’t happen again.
The big lesson here is that if you replace components in a piece of equipment, whether it’s a laptop, your car, or some other appliance, make sure you use parts that are recommended by the manufacturer. Cheaper, third-party or "incorrect but close" parts may end up costing you more.
Now you know.
SpaceDaliy.com has come up with a novel and annoying way to push advertisements on their readers.
On a single page story about the Spirit Mars Rover, there are three highlighted words that link to product websites. Note the word "camera" in the photo caption is linked to a Dell website about digital cameras.
Another example, below is a paragraph about a dust storm covering the Mars Viking Lander. The word, "Vicking" takes you to a website about Viking Office Products.
In addition to Pathfinder’s run-in with a dust devil, previous missions
to Mars have run into very dusty days. For instance, there was a dust
storm covering the Viking
Lander I (VL-1) site on Martian day (1742) or sol 1742 (1 Martian
year=669 Earth days). In 1971, Mariner 9 and 2 USSR missions all
arrived during a dust storm.
The odd thing is these products don’t seem to be contextually linked to the subject matter presented, and they don’t seem to be focused on stuff that one would expect a typical SpaceDaily reader to care about.
Let’s hope this doesn’t catch on and infect other websites.