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IP Video Market Info Reviews the Security Management Digital Edition

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Plymouth County lab digs for digital clues

Know what is on your kid’s cell phone? Tara Cruza does.

Cruza’s job involves scanning hard drives, dumping call logs and text messages from cell phones – all manner of high-tech wizardry that is increasingly an important part of police work.

Cruza, a deputy and chief computer specialist at the Plymouth County Sheriff’s Department, runs a forensic computer lab. The program is called HEAT, which stands for High Tech Evidence Analysis Team.

She first worked with the sheriff as an intern at Bridgewater State College in 1999, then in the school’s IT department before taking over the HEAT lab last July.

Every day, Cruza does computer work as part of police investigations for the many communities in Plymouth County. She also recently participated in Operation Corral, a statewide police child pornography sting that resulted in the arrests of 32 men, including two from Brockton, one from Taunton and one from Middleboro. The HEAT lab, which was started in 2003, also participated in 2006 in the statewide “Operation Trenchcoat,” an online sex sting netted 11 men, including a sitting Plymouth selectman.

Cruza went out with police during the Operation Corral raids, telling police which pieces of technology were important to confiscate. Corral was a large-scale operation in which state police and the attorney general’s office coordinated with local police and sheriff’s departments. However, Cruza said people like the 32 accused pedophiles picked up during the Corral sting are on the Internet constantly.

“Literally, you could do that every day,” she said. “These networks are so extensive and they’re all over the world … They know where to go, they know the keywords.”

Looking through the hard drives confiscated from alleged child pornographers is some of the toughest work Cruza has to do.

“It’s awful,” she said. “Some days I need a break.”

A typical day in the HEAT lab can vary greatly depending on the nature of the cases Cruza is working. For example, if she’s been asked to look into a hard drive, that can take hours simply to copy over the data. Because any interaction with the hard drive could be considered tampering with evidence, Cruza copies the data using a computer named the Forensics Recovery of Evidence Device, or FRED.

“It takes a long time,” she said. “You’re not just booting up a computer and looking at it.”

The type of crime can also vary greatly.

“It seems to come in waves,” Cruza said.

For example, in March she was mostly working on drug cases – before that, a group of sexting issues.

Sexting is another difficult issue, Cruza said, because of how much parents seem to be oblivious to the technology.

“If the parents took the time to look at their kids’ cell phone they would see all that,” she said. “They had it written out for you and you didn’t see it.”

Cruza said she’s always been fascinated by the technology side of law enforcement – her internship coincided with the introduction of the department’s AFIS fingerprint database.

“I think I filed 30,000 fingerprint cards,” she joked.

“It’s kind of like a puzzle,” she added. “I love that it’s detective work and it makes a difference.”

Justin Graeber may be reached at jgraeber@enterprisenews.com or follow him on Twitter @justingraeber

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Article source: http://www.wickedlocal.com/bridgewater/news/x513712895/Plymouth-County-lab-digs-for-digital-clues

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Can the U.S. prevent a digital sneak attack?

How vulnerable is America's tech infrastructure? Security experts gathered in New York City to discuss cyber threats — and how to stop them.

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BSc (Hons) Digital Forensics

Award formally known as BSc Forensic Computing. This award provides a solid grounding in the skills you would need to follow a career in forensic investigation of computer systems and related areas of security. The same skills that enable you to track down evidence also equips you with the skills necessary to help organisations and individuals recover data/information that may have been lost or corrupted as a result of accidental or malicious activity. To find out more about studying at Staffordshire University visit: www.staffs.ac.uk

Article source: http://video.hackerjournals.com/?p=7045&utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=bsc-hons-digital-forensics

View full post on National Cyber Security » Announcements

Digital forensic report finished for Plunkett case

Although no one has talked about the reason why Nacogdoches County commissioners requested an investigation of Exposition Center Manager Bill Plunkett eight months ago, at least the matter has moved one small step closer to a resolution.

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Digital River Hosts Leading Cyber Security Experts at Globalocity 2012

Digital River, Inc. , the revenue growth experts in global cloud commerce, will host leading cyber security experts at the Digital River® Globalocity™ commerce conference.

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FTC’s Digital Privacy Report Has Welcome Recommendations

This article first appeared in the San Jose Mercury News

by Larry Magid

The Federal Trade Commission’s final report on digital privacy contains some very welcome recommendations.

The recently released report, title “Protecting Consumer Privacy in an Era of Rapid Change,” looks at challenges consumers face in “today’s world of smart phones, smart grids, and smart cars,” as “companies are collecting, storing, and sharing more information about consumers than ever before.” It sets out a framework that would allow consumers to control whether they are tracked online, have better visibility into how information is used by mobile apps and have access to their information being held by data brokers.

The commission isn’t calling for “do not track” legislation similar to the “do not call” law that, in theory, protects us against unwanted marketing calls. Rather, it calls for voluntary industry compliance, which it says is starting to happen through browser-based tools and cooperation from the Digital Advertising Alliance and other players.

Ironically, this voluntary approach may actually work better than the “do not call” law, which makes it a crime for businesses to cold call phone numbers registered at DoNotCall.gov. I’ve registered all my phone numbers, but I still get annoying robocalls trying to sell me carpet cleaning, car insurance and a new mortgage.

The commission’s focus on mobile apps is right on target. Between Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS there are now about a million smartphone apps capable of doing virtually anything with your phone, including tracking who you know (your contact list), where you go (your geolocation) and even who you’re calling and what you’re texting. There have already been several reported cases of both deliberate and accidental disclosure, so government attention to this is certainly warranted.

One area where the commission did call for “targeted legislation” is to address consumers’ lack of control over how data brokers collect and use our information. The amount of information floating around about each of us is staggering. Anyone with a phone, a bank account or a “loyalty” card, such as the one I use to get fairer prices when I shop at Safeway, is giving up information every time they shop, make a call or get on an airplane.

Many years ago — even before the explosion of the Internet — I made a quick and unexpected trip to Los Angeles and realized that I hadn’t told anyone, not even my wife, where I was. But I realized that my cellular company, the car rental company, my credit card companies and the airline knew exactly where I was, as did all the networks and clearinghouses that transmitted and stored data. My credit and debit card companies even knew what I bought and where I was staying and my bank and the bank whose ATM I used had a pretty good idea of how much cash I had in my wallet.

Much of the information from our lives is stored in computers, and some of that is for sale to marketers, insurance companies, employers and even law enforcement — anyone with the money.

The FTC wants Congress to pass a law that would “provide consumers with access to information about them held by a data broker.” The agency is calling for a “centralized website where data brokers could identify themselves to consumers and describe how they collect and use consumer data,” as well as to “detail the access rights and other choices they provide with respect to the consumer data they maintain.”

That strikes me as more than reasonable. Some data brokers (along with all credit bureaus) will sell you access to your own information, but that feels a bit like extortion to me. If it’s my information, it should be available to me at any time, as often as I want, for no cost and without any strings, gimmicks or sales pitches.

I hope the law is more consumer friendly than the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FRCA), which gives consumers the right to an annual free copy of their credit reports from the three major bureaus: Experian, Equifax and TransUnion. It’s a great law but when you ask for your annual report, you’re likely to get a sales pitch, such as the one I got with my free TransUnion report. It offered me “instant access to my FREE credit score” that would cost me $29.95 a month after my “free trial.”

It seems to me that a government mandated program should be devoid of any commercial offers, especially deceptive ones that claim to be “free” but actually cost money if you fail to cancel in time. And why should I have to pay for my “credit score,” which in some ways is more important than the report itself? It’s about me, so it should be completely free and available at any time — not just one report per year per bureau.

So, thank you FTC for outlining a broad approach to transparency when it comes to accessing our own data. Now it’s time for Congress to enact legislation that truly benefits consumers, not just those who profit from our information.

Article source: http://www.safekids.com/2012/03/30/ftcs-digital-privacy-report-has-welcome-recommendations/

View full post on National Cyber Security

FTC’s Digital Privacy Report Has Welcome Recommendations

This article first appeared in the San Jose Mercury News

by Larry Magid

The Federal Trade Commission’s final report on digital privacy contains some very welcome recommendations.

The recently released report, title “Protecting Consumer Privacy in an Era of Rapid Change,” looks at challenges consumers face in “today’s world of smart phones, smart grids, and smart cars,” as “companies are collecting, storing, and sharing more information about consumers than ever before.” It sets out a framework that would allow consumers to control whether they are tracked online, have better visibility into how information is used by mobile apps and have access to their information being held by data brokers.

The commission isn’t calling for “do not track” legislation similar to the “do not call” law that, in theory, protects us against unwanted marketing calls. Rather, it calls for voluntary industry compliance, which it says is starting to happen through browser-based tools and cooperation from the Digital Advertising Alliance and other players.

Ironically, this voluntary approach may actually work better than the “do not call” law, which makes it a crime for businesses to cold call phone numbers registered at DoNotCall.gov. I’ve registered all my phone numbers, but I still get annoying robocalls trying to sell me carpet cleaning, car insurance and a new mortgage.

The commission’s focus on mobile apps is right on target. Between Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS there are now about a million smartphone apps capable of doing virtually anything with your phone, including tracking who you know (your contact list), where you go (your geolocation) and even who you’re calling and what you’re texting. There have already been several reported cases of both deliberate and accidental disclosure, so government attention to this is certainly warranted.

One area where the commission did call for “targeted legislation” is to address consumers’ lack of control over how data brokers collect and use our information. The amount of information floating around about each of us is staggering. Anyone with a phone, a bank account or a “loyalty” card, such as the one I use to get fairer prices when I shop at Safeway, is giving up information every time they shop, make a call or get on an airplane.

Many years ago — even before the explosion of the Internet — I made a quick and unexpected trip to Los Angeles and realized that I hadn’t told anyone, not even my wife, where I was. But I realized that my cellular company, the car rental company, my credit card companies and the airline knew exactly where I was, as did all the networks and clearinghouses that transmitted and stored data. My credit and debit card companies even knew what I bought and where I was staying and my bank and the bank whose ATM I used had a pretty good idea of how much cash I had in my wallet.

Much of the information from our lives is stored in computers, and some of that is for sale to marketers, insurance companies, employers and even law enforcement — anyone with the money.

The FTC wants Congress to pass a law that would “provide consumers with access to information about them held by a data broker.” The agency is calling for a “centralized website where data brokers could identify themselves to consumers and describe how they collect and use consumer data,” as well as to “detail the access rights and other choices they provide with respect to the consumer data they maintain.”

That strikes me as more than reasonable. Some data brokers (along with all credit bureaus) will sell you access to your own information, but that feels a bit like extortion to me. If it’s my information, it should be available to me at any time, as often as I want, for no cost and without any strings, gimmicks or sales pitches.

I hope the law is more consumer friendly than the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FRCA), which gives consumers the right to an annual free copy of their credit reports from the three major bureaus: Experian, Equifax and TransUnion. It’s a great law but when you ask for your annual report, you’re likely to get a sales pitch, such as the one I got with my free TransUnion report. It offered me “instant access to my FREE credit score” that would cost me $29.95 a month after my “free trial.”

It seems to me that a government mandated program should be devoid of any commercial offers, especially deceptive ones that claim to be “free” but actually cost money if you fail to cancel in time. And why should I have to pay for my “credit score,” which in some ways is more important than the report itself? It’s about me, so it should be completely free and available at any time — not just one report per year per bureau.

So, thank you FTC for outlining a broad approach to transparency when it comes to accessing our own data. Now it’s time for Congress to enact legislation that truly benefits consumers, not just those who profit from our information.

Article source: http://www.safekids.com/2012/03/30/ftcs-digital-privacy-report-has-welcome-recommendations/

View full post on National Cyber Security

Fake YouTube site targeted Syrian activists, digital watchdog EFF says

A fake YouTube site purporting to show videos supporting the opposition in Syria has been taken down after it tried to infect visitors with malicious software, according to digital watchdog Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF).

The EFF is “deeply concerned about this pattern of pro-government malware targeting online activists in authoritarian regimes,” wrote Eva Galperin and Morgan Marquis-Boire.

Syria, which has been sternly criticised for its brutal treatment of anti-government protestors since an uprising began about a year ago, is known to heavily censor the internet and monitor users.

The fraudulent YouTube page tried to get users to enter their username and password, which in some cases is linked with a person’s Gmail account. The site also tried to get the victim to download a bogus update for Adobe Flash, which was actually Windows malware, the EFF wrote.

The malware then “connects back to an address in Syrian IP space and downloads additional malware, which gives the attacker administrative access to your computer,” the EFF wrote.

The EFF detailed how a user can tell if he has been infected. The organisation recommended reinstalling the operating system if the computer has been infected, since an attacker could have installed other kinds of malware on the machine as well. The EFF said all passwords should also be changed for services accessed while the machine was infected.

Last week, the EFF blogged about a remote access tool called “XTreme RAT,” which was spreading through email and chat programs. The malware could take screenshots and log keystrokes on a victim’s computer, sending the data to a Syrian IP address.

The organisation also noted another remote access tool, Darkcomet RAT, which was reportedly infecting the computers of Syrian activists a few weeks before. That tool could disable antivirus programs, record keystrokes and steal passwords, also sending the data to the same IP address in Syria as “XTreme RAT,” the EFF explained.

Article source: http://rss.feedsportal.com/c/270/f/3551/s/1d76e3a6/l/0Lnews0Btechworld0N0Csecurity0C33446650Cfake0Eyoutube0Esite0Etargeted0Esyrian0Eactivists0Edigital0Ewatchdog0Eeff0Esays0C0Dolo0Frss/story01.htm

View full post on National Cyber Security » Computer Hacking

Digital Forensics Leader AccessData Cites Industry Report Underscoring Dramatic Rise in Forensics Service Demand

On the heels of an industry report detailing a nearly 14% annualized increase in demand for digital forensics services over the past five years, AccessData Group, one of the largest computer forensic technology companies in the U.S., today affirmed the unprecedented growth in digital forensics as a key component of enterprise security.

View full post on computer forensic – Yahoo! News Search Results

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