NewsBits for July 23, 2003 sponsored by, Southeast Cybercrime Institute - ************************************************************ Domain registry claims blackmail threat Owner of suspended website accused of threatening spam campaign in registry's name. A US domain name registry has claimed that a UK website owner tried to blackmail it into reactivating his site by threatening to spam its customers. According to US domain name registry NeuLevel, Mel Goudie, owner of, threatened to send 25,000 spam emails a day to NeuLevel's customers after the registry suspended his website. - - - - - - - - - - Ex-Hazleton Area athlete's sentence reduced in sex-assault case Calling the case an "injustice," a New Jersey judge has refused to impose a three-to-five-year prison sentence on a former Hazleton Area High School tennis standout who pleaded guilty to having sex with a 14-year-old girl he met through the Internet. Superior Court Judge John Pursel on Friday refused to abide by the sentencing range Colin J. Grink agreed to in a plea bargain, saying he believed the sentence should be less because the victim deceived Grink into believing she was a 21 year-old cheerleading coach. - - - - - - - - - - Guilty plea in child porn case A 25-year-old University of Hawaii junior who pleaded guilty last week to possessing child pornography faces up to five years in prison. Lani Hansen admitted on Thursday that she had child pornography on her computer and that she used file-sharing software to make the images available to others. Her attorney, Brook Hart, said Hansen subscribed to Kazaa, a file-sharing service, and had no interest in child pornography. But while she did not actively distribute the pornographic images, she made it available to those interested because as a Kazaa member, the more items you have available to others to trade, the higher your ranking in potential music-sharing possibilities, Hart said. - - - - - - - - - - Sentencing reset after Alford plea in rape case The 25-year-old Seattle man filed an Alford plea of guilty last month to third-degree child rape. The plea means he doesn't admit guilt, but agrees that a jury will likely find him guilty at trial. Prosecutors say he met a 15-year-old Auburn girl over the Internet and persuaded her to have sex with him. - - - - - - - - - - Teacher arrested over child porn A former teacher at a private school for girls has been arrested by police investigating allegations of possession of child pornography. Jonathan Summers was arrested as part of Operation Ore - an international crackdown on internet pornography. South Wales Police also seized computers from his home in Bridgend, south Wales. - - - - - - - - - - MIT, Boston College say subpoenas violate privacy rules Boston College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have moved to quash subpoenas seeking the names of students suspected of Internet music piracy, saying they're illegal because they weren't filed properly. The schools said the subpoenas, issued by the Recording Industry Association of America, didn't allow for adequate time to notify the students, as mandated by the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act.,,t269-s2138031,00.html,1412,59726,00.html - - - - - - - - - - Australia to ban spam Australia's government will ban unsolicited commercial email later this year. The federal government intends to introduce legislation later this year that will ban unsolicited commercial email, the minister for communications and information technology, senator Richard Alston announced today. The legislation is in response to a report by the National Office for the Information Economy, released in April this year, which advocated a multi-layered approach to spam prevention.,,t269-s2138021,00.html Study: Do-not-spam plan winning support Spam clients outed, credit card details published - - - - - - - - - - Lawmakers restrict online game in Asia A Korean game maker has created an online hit that has millions in Asia hooked, and some lawmakers are not amused. Ragnarok Online, a so-called massive multiplayer online role-playing game, has become so popular that it prompted Thai authorities to prohibit players from enjoying the game past bedtime. The game, created by Korea-based Gravity Interactive, is played over the Internet and can support millions of users globally. In countries like Thailand, where computer ownership is relatively low, Internet cafes and gaming centers have sprouted up and operators and are seeing a jump in revenue from the game's popularity. - - - - - - - - - - Commons rejects security standard The House of Commons has turned its back on implementing IT security standard BS7799. Earlier this year, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said it was considering ways of improving corporate IT security, hinting that the security standard could be a mandatory part of meeting data protection requirements. - - - - - - - - - - Security adviser warns of cyberthreats Officials must still figure out how to fully secure the nation's critical infrastructure against cyber attacks, a top homeland security adviser said Tuesday. General John Gordon, retired lieutenant general from the U.S. Air Force, presidential assistant and adviser to the Homeland Security Council, said attacks over electronic networks might become a threat as great as weapons of mass destruction. - - - - - - - - - - Fighting Internet Fraud Continuing its crusade against Internet fraud, the Federal Trade Commission has turned its attention to the relatively new practice of "phishing," wherein Internet con artists steal consumers' personal data using forged e-mail and Web sites. - - - - - - - - - - Identity theft rockets 80 per cent And the danger isn't only on the internet, warns analyst. Identity theft in the US has leapt by 79 per cent over the last year, with only a one in 700 chance of thieves being caught, industry watchers have warned. According to analyst firm Gartner, seven million American adults - 3.4 per cent of all US consumers - were victims of identity theft during the 12 months ending June 2003. urged to crack down on ID theft - - - - - - - - - - 'Online banking in SA was a time-bomb waiting to go off' South African bank Absa has been criticised for its handling of a series of raids its Internet banking service that have seen hundreds of thousands of rand disappearing from its customers' accounts. - - - - - - - - - - FBI teams locally to fight cyber crime Unit set up to battle fraud, child porn. It's the fastest growing crime in the world. Local departments are doing what they can to pull the plug on computer crime with the Mid-Michigan Area Cyber Crimes Task Force. ABC12's Courtney Chamberlin had more on how slowly, major changes are making their way into Bay City's FBI office. More desks will be set up, they'll have more supplies, and there will be two computers at each station. - - - - - - - - - - Movie Firms to Run Ads Targeting Internet Pirates The movie industry announced a broad anti-piracy campaign today, with commercials set to appear on all six broadcast television networks, more than two dozen cable channels and in 5,000 movie theaters nationwide. - - - - - - - - - - Windows Passwords Cracked in Record Time With the advances detailed in Oechslin's paper, a hacker with even modest resources can compromise alphanumeric Windows passwords quickly. Exposing a weakness in Windows encryption Latest News about encryption technology, Swiss researchers have published a paper detailing how to crack Windows computers protected by alphanumeric passwords in an average of 13.6 seconds. The paper's lead author, Philippe Oechslin, told NewsFactor that his research is not specifically about Windows software. "I'm looking for encryption systems where there is no random information for security encryption," he said. - - - - - - - - - - NDU prof: Digital control systems can weaken security The growing integration of digital control systems with traditional computer networks is opening a new avenue of attack against the nations physical infrastructure, John H. Saunders, a professor at the National Defense University, said today. Controls for operating utilities, buildings and campuses are being turned over to cost-effective digital systems with remote access capabilities. - - - - - - - - - - US passports to carry digitally signed images US citizens will be issued with "smart" passports carrying a digitally signed photograph by late 2004. Frank Moss, deputy assistant secretary for Passport Services at the US Department of State, says the first digital passports will be issued in the US by 26 October 2004. Moss announced details of the plans at the Smart Card Alliance Government Conference and Expo in Virginia last Tuesday. - - - - - - - - - - Don't Break E-Mail To Save It Spammers aren't superhuman: they have to operate under some pretty severe constraints. There's no need for radical measures that would undermine the vitality of the medium. - - - - - - - - - - Privacy: For Every Attack, a Defense Yes, it's a grueling battle. However, as threats pop up constantly on fronts old and new, concerned citizens and like-minded legislators quickly parry Chris Larsen may seem like an unlikely privacy advocate. But then, as the CEO of online lending firm E-Loan (EELN ), Larsen has seen the murky underworld of personal data collection. As a player in a business that thrives on information, Larsen knows how easy it would be to use a consumer's credit score to manipulate the auto insurance rate the person pays or to track a consumer's buying trends to concoct a risk profile that could be used to justify a less-favorable mortgage rate. - - - - - - - - - - Turning cars into crime stoppers When Oscar Salazar of Kingsville, Texas, bought his 2002 Chevrolet TrailBlazer, he figured the OnStar communication system would help if his vehicle broke down in the remote areas where he often worked for Union Pacific Railroad. California-based Directed Electronics sells several stolen vehicle recovery devices, including Viper. But when the sport-utility vehicle was snatched from his mother's house in nearby Robstown, Texas, last New Year's Day, Salazar found another use for OnStar: Working with police, OnStar employees tracked the vehicle. Stolen at 5:30 a.m., it was back with Salazar by noon. *********************************************************** Computer Forensics Training - Online. An intense, 150 hour, instructor lead program that teaches you computer forensics and helps prepare you for the Certified Computer Examiner exam. For more information see; *********************************************************** Search the Archive at: *********************************************************** The source material may be copyrighted and all rights are retained by the original author/publisher. The information is provided to you for non-profit research and educational purposes. Reproduction of this text is encouraged; however copies may not be sold, and NewsBits ( should be cited as the source of the information. Copyright 2000-2003,, Campbell, CA.