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NEWS - March 29, 2008

by Donna Buenaventura / March 28, 2008 10:59 PM PDT
With Vista breached, Linux unbeaten in hacking contest

The MacBook Air went first; a tiny Fujitsu laptop running Vista was hacked on the last day of the contest; but it was Linux, running on a Sony Vaio, that remained undefeated as conference organizers ended a three-way computer hacking challenge Friday at the CanSecWest conference.

On day two, Independent Security Evaluators' Charlie Miller took the Mac after hitting it with a still-undisclosed exploit that targeted the Safari Web browser. After about two minutes work, Thursday, Miller took home $10,000, courtesy of 3Com's TippingPoint division, in addition to his new laptop.

It took two days of work, but Shane Macaulay, finally cracked the Vista box on Friday, with a little help from his friends.

More on the above at http://www.networkworld.com/news/2008/032908-with-vista-breached-linux-unbeaten.html
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IRS warns of new online tax scams; protect yourself
by Donna Buenaventura / March 28, 2008 11:02 PM PDT
In reply to: NEWS - March 29, 2008

Scam artists exploiting tax season have devised a range of new online cons: fake tax documents that contain malicious surprises; mass distribution of keyloggers aimed at snatching the identity of PC-based tax filers; and e-mail messages containing links to Web sites that promise new tax code information but instead push malware onto your PC.

That's not all, according to the Internal Revenue Service. This year, identity thieves are not just trying to gain access to your bank account or to open lines of credit in your name. Scammers are on the prowl for ordinary citizens' identities that they can they can use in filing phony tax returns and fraudulently claiming refunds, as well as to swipe rebates associated with the 2008 federal economic stimulus package.

http://www.networkworld.com/news/2008/032808-irs-warns-of-new-online.html

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Flash flaw leads to Vista laptop's fall
by Donna Buenaventura / March 29, 2008 9:18 AM PDT
In reply to: NEWS - March 29, 2008

It held out as long as possible, but a Windows Vista laptop fell to a determined bunch of hackers Friday evening at the Pwn to Own contest at CanSecWest.

Since it was the third day of the contest, which saw a MacBook Air get hacked on Thursday, the TippingPoint Zero Day Initiative relaxed the rules even further. On the first day of the contest, only the operating system could be targeted, but on the second day that was expanded to include standard applications. An undisclosed Safari flaw led to the MacBook Air's downfall.


TippingPoint's Aaron Portnoy, with Shane Macauley and Alexander Sotirov (left to right) take control of a Windows Vista laptop.
(Credit: TippingPoint)

But on Friday, hackers could target any "popular" piece of application software that you might find on a system. The Fujitsu laptop, running Vista Ultimate, was compromised by a previously undiscovered flaw in Adobe's Flash software.

http://www.news.com/8301-13579_3-9906001-37.html

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