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‘Internet Cannibal’ Sentenced to Prison

File this under the downside of computer dating: a German computer technician was sentenced to life in prison Tuesday for dissecting and eating a victim he met on the Internet.

The bizarre case of the “Rotenburg Cannibal” initially came to light after an Austrian student found another posting by the defendant who was trolling the Internet. Armin Meiwes claimed he was only following the wishes of Bernd Juergen Amando Brandes, who was a willing victim, according to Meiwes. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/3286721.stm

Read more: ‘Internet Cannibal’ Sentenced To Prison

Users Report Glitches With Microsoft’s Flash Patch

If, as an analyst suggested Tuesday, plans to begin patching more than its own software, its first effort got off to a rocky start. By Wednesday, Windows users were complaining of glitches in updating Adobe’s Flash Player through the Windows Update service.

Microsoft took the unusual step Tuesday of feeding an updated edition of Flash Player to Windows XP, Windows 98, and Windows Millennium users. It was the first time the Redmond, Wash. developer took an active role in pushing a third-party product update to users.

Read more: Users Report Glitches With Microsoft’s Flash Patch

Hackers Slam McKinnon Extradition Ruling

The prosecution of alleged Pentagon uber-hacker Gary McKinnon shows that the US is failing to take even basic precautions to protect its military systems, according to a reformed computer hacker accused of similar crimes 10 years ago.

Mathew Bevan, whose hacker handle is Kuji, was accused of breaking into US military computer systems but escaped without punishment when a 1997 case at Woolwich Crown Court was dropped after a long-running legal battle.

Read more: Hackers slam McKinnon extradition ruling

Vista Bad News for Anti-Spyware Market?

The extra features in ’s upcoming Vista operating system could negatively affect smaller firms, according to a new report.

The report, from the Yankee Group, suggests that as Microsoft users get a welcome security boost when the new Vista operating system is finally available, aftermarkets for anti- and desktop firewall applications will be hit dramatically.

Read more: Vista bad news for anti-spyware market?

Why Phishers Don’t Fear SSL Toolbars

Do anti-phishing toolbars in web browsers stop phishing attacks? No. Can they reduce them, even for savvy users? Yes. Are they all equally effective? No.

MIT researchers found that users are highly likely to ignore anti-phishing toolbars… especially those designed to verify SSL certificates.

Min Wu, Robert Miller and Simson Garfinkel tested three types of toolbars:

1. Neutral info: Lists website domain name, hostname, host country, etc.
2. SSL-verifying: Displays SSL certificate logos, warning for non-SSL sites.
3. System decision: Shows a stoplight, red = bad, yellow = ?, green = good.

Read more: Why Phishers Don’t Fear SSL Toolbars

Study Finds Sharp Rise in Mac OS X Flaws

May 08, 2006 (Computerworld) — Just because you use a Mac, don’t think you’re any more secure than a Wintel user.

A sharp increase in the number of flaws discovered in Mac OS X suggests that the operating system from Apple Computer Inc. may soon be every bit as prone to malicious attacks as Windows, according to a report released last week by the SANS Institute, a Bethesda, Md.-based training and research firm.

Mac OS X is still safer than Windows because its smaller installed base makes it a less attractive target for hackers. But the number of flaws discovered in OS X is leaving its reputation as a secure alternative to Windows “in tatters,” according to the SANS semiannual update to its list of top Internet vulnerabilities.

Read more: Study Finds Sharp Rise in Mac OS X Flaws

Security Watch: Flash! Microsoft Patches Adobe Software Along With Windows, Exchange

had a small surprise in this week’s security patches, but it was no surprise to find two critical vulnerabilities. Learn what was different this month in the Security Alerts and Updates section.

Everybody wants a better Internet, but look carefully before you install the program that promises it. Go to our alert in this week’s Top Threat section to see why.

Fortinet, a popular vendor of Unified Threat Management appliances, reports in detail on what their devices find out in the real world. We pass some of that info along to you in this week’s Top 10 Threats section.

Read more: Security Watch: Flash! Microsoft Patches Adobe Software Along With Windows, Exchange

Exchange Flaw Poses ‘Worm Risk’

released three patches – two of which it deems critical – on Tuesday in the May edition of its regular Tuesday update cycle.

Most seriously there’s a critical vulnerability in Microsoft Exchange which allows remote code execution (MS06-019). This bug in Microsoft Exchange’s calendar function could lead to a worm, tools firm ISS warns.

Read more: Exchange flaw poses ‘worm risk’

Doom for Anti-Spyware Software?

UPDATED: A Yankee Group report published today predicts imminent doom for anti- makers with the release of Windows Vista. But don’t plan a funeral for WebRoot and Ad-Aware just yet. First, has to sell the darned operating system.

Microsoft (Quote, Chart)still has not spelled out the system requirements for Windows Vista, with less than a year to go before its release.

But Andrew Jaquith, program manager for solutions and services at The Yankee Group, and author of the report, said he expects Vista will require 1GB of memory or more, a Pentium 4 processor and a 128MB video card.

Read more: Doom For Anti-Spyware Software?

Security, the Microsoft Way

NEW YORK — has every intention of working with networking giant Cisco on network access control protocols in its next version of Windows, the head of ’s technology unit said at an event here Monday.

“The notion of making sure these two technologies complement each other is a goal,” said Mike Nash, corporate vice president of Microsoft’s Security Technology unit. Speaking during a press briefing as part of Microsoft’s Security Summit road show here, Nash said the two companies bring complementary expertise to the security challenge.

Read more: Security, The Microsoft Way

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