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NEWS - May 19, 2005

Netscape update takes aim at phishing
Published: May 18, 2005, 9:00 PM PDT
By Joris Evers
Staff Writer, CNET News.com

Netscape on Thursday plans to release the final version of Netscape 8, a browser that includes features to protect Web surfers against online scams.

Early test versions of the new browser--so-called alpha and beta releases--have been available since February. As reported, Netscape has made mostly cosmetic changes in the final version, said Jeremy Liew, general manager of Netscape, a division of Time Warner's America Online subsidiary.

Almost a million people participated in the public beta, which started in March, Liew said, and most of the criticism received was about the look and feel of the browser. During the beta process, Netscape improved the stability and speed of the browser by fixing bugs and optimizing the software, he added.

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Is your boss monitoring your e-mail?

In reply to: NEWS - May 19, 2005

: May 18, 2005, 4:21 PM PDT
By Ed Frauenheim
Staff Writer, CNET News.com

If you're working for a U.S. company, there's a good chance you're being watched--and you may get fired for how you use your computer or office phone.

That's the gist of a study on electronic monitoring and surveillance released Wednesday by the American Management Association and the ePolicy Institute.

The report found that companies increasingly are "putting teeth in technology policies." About a quarter of employers have fired workers for misusing the Internet; another 25 percent have terminated employees for e-mail misuse; and 6 percent have fired employees for misusing office telephones, according to the report.

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U.S. taps Entrust for e-passports

In reply to: NEWS - May 19, 2005

Published: May 18, 2005, 1:37 PM PDT
By Alorie Gilbert
Staff Writer, CNET News.com

The U.S. State Department is assembling the technology for the new e-passport, selecting tools from Entrust to help ensure the authenticity of the next-generation document.

The contract, which Entrust announced on Wednesday, calls on the Dallas company to supply a key component in a government plan to introduce new U.S. passports this year. The passports will contain an identification chip, and the State Department will use Entrust software to stamp each ID chip with a tamper-proof digital code, or digital signature, the company said.

"The process and technologies enabled by this system can help enhance the nation's homeland security and serve as the foundation for more secure and efficient management of international travel and identification," Entrust said in a statement.

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Commwarrior spotted in Philippines

In reply to: NEWS - May 19, 2005

It seems that Commwarrior is getting more widespread.

Yesterdays edition of the Philstar has article written by journalist who had got his phone infected with Commwarrior.

And Smart,Philippines' leading wireless service provider, has issued an advisory about the Commwarrior worm. Although one would advice to be cautious about their instructions as, the first thing they advice to do is to reformat your phone is you are infected, which would cause your phone to lose all data.


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Microsoft looks to "monkeys" to find Web threats

In reply to: NEWS - May 19, 2005

Researchers at Microsoft are creating their own version of a million monkeys to crawl the Internet looking for threats in an effort to secure the Web for Windows.

The software giant's Cybersecurity and Systems Management (CSM) research group are building a system of virtual Windows XP computers that crawl the Web looking for sites that use unreported vulnerabilities to compromise customer's PCs. Dubbed "honeymonkeys," the virtual machines run a full version of Windows XP with monitoring software and crawl high-risk areas of the Web looking for trouble.

"Just by visiting a Web site, (if) suddenly an executable is created on your machine outside the Internet Explorer folder, it is an exploit with no false positive -- it's that simple," Yi-Ming Wang, senior researcher with Microsoft Research, said during a presentation at the IEEE Security and Privacy conference in Oakland last week.

The research is part of Microsoft's continuing effort to rein in the potential effects of vulnerabilities in Windows XP. The software giant has already added a host of security measures to the consumer operating system with its August security update, Service Pack 2. This month, Microsoft also announced that it would provide interim guidance on security threats to its users in the form of security advisories. In addition, the company has made several attempts to reach out to vulnerability researchers to limit the release of flaw information before its product groups have had to a chance to fix security problems.

More in http://securityfocus.com/news/11178

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Federal agents search property in LexisNexis case

In reply to: NEWS - May 19, 2005

Published: May 19, 2005, 6:29 PM PDT
By Reuters

United States agents have searched the property of at least 10 suspects as they investigate a security breach at data broker LexisNexis that left thousands vulnerable to identity theft, the FBI said on Thursday.

No charges were filed, but an FBI spokesman said the searches were carried out by federal agents in several states, including California, Minnesota and North Carolina.

The disclosure of the security breach in March further unsettled Americans worried about the privacy of their personal data after a LexisNexis rival, ChoicePoint, revealed a data breach of its own the previous month. Congress is considering greater regulations for the industry.

more here

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