NewsBits for June 18, 2004 ************************************************************ THREE WOMEN CHARGED IN LONG ISLAND IDENTITY THEFT CASE Attorney General Eliot Spitzer today announced the arrest of a nursing home employee and two other individuals on charges of stealing a credit card belonging to a Hempstead nursing home patient and spending thousands of dollars on a three-day shopping spree at such department stores as Macys and Victorias Secret. - - - - - - - - - - SPY ACT Wins U.S. Congressional Subcommittee Approval Consumers who are fed up with being the unwitting recipients of spyware programs may get a break if the SPY ACT becomes U.S. law. The legislation just passed through a House subcommittee on its way to further consideration by Congress. The SPY ACT (Securely Protect Yourself Against Cyber Trespass Act) has been passed by the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee'sSubcommittee on Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection. This represents a significant breakthrough in the effort to make the SPY ACT law. - - - - - - - - - - Senate debates cybercrime treaty A controversial treaty that is the first to focus on computer crime is inching toward ratification in the U.S. Senate. The treaty would require participating nations to update their laws to reflect computer crimes such as unauthorized intrusions into networks, the release of worms and viruses, and copyright infringement. The measure, which has been ratified by Albania, Croatia, Estonia, Hungary, Lithuania and Romania, also includes arrangements for mutual assistance and extradition among participating nations. - - - - - - - - - - Group of AG's told they should be monitoring file-sharing Lobbyists for record companies and Hollywood movie studios laid out a case against online file-sharing before a group of attorneys general, suggesting the state prosecutors should examine whether such companies are breaking state laws. Addressing the National Association of Attorneys General Thursday, the entertainment industry representatives warned that consumers in their states needed to be protected from the impact of online file-sharing over so-called peer-to-peer networks. Piracy increases - - - - - - - - - - Privacy Could Hamper Cell Phone Directory Consumers' passion for privacy in California and other Western states could signal an uphill battle for the proponents of a national cell phone directory. Already, slightly more than a third of Americans nationwide have unlisted home numbers, but in California, Nevada, Arizona, Oregon and Washington, about half the people choose not be listed in phone directories. They pay as much as $2.66 a month to keep their home numbers private. - - - - - - - - - - Survey Finds Enterprises Deploying Strong WLAN Security Large enterprises are aware of -- and are taking action to prevent -- potential security threats to their wireless LANs, according to a survey released Thursday by iGillottResearch. The survey of 804 IT managers working for large enterprises found that 86 percent of the companies have deployed WLANs. Only two percent of those networks are unsecured, the survey found. - - - - - - - - - - IP phones can create network security risk The increasing adoption of Internet telephony may be opening up a significant security risk for companies.While mobile telephone viruses have been the subject of headlines recently, IP-based telephones could represent a more immediate security threat for many businesses. "Attacks on IP phones are actually quite frequent," said Roy Wakim, convergence solutions manager at Avaya South Pacific. "Security is a major issue.",39020375,39158003,00.htm - - - - - - - - - - Stealth wallpaper could keep LANs secure UK defence contractor BAE Systems has developed a stealth wallpaper to beat electronic eavesdropping on company Wi-Fi and wired LANs. The company has produced panels using the technology to produce a screen that will prevent outsiders from listening in on companies' Wi-Fi traffic but let other radio and mobile phone traffic get through.,39024663,39121501,00.htm - - - - - - - - - - Attack of the zombies Almost summertime, and the living is easy--unless you happen to be an IT worker employed in any kind of security-related capacity. In that case, it was just new kinds of trouble this week, as worms, hacker attacks and other threats made life miserable. The biggest of the headaches was Tuesday's attack against Web infrastructure company Akamai, which knocked Yahoo, Google, and various Microsoft and Apple Computer sitesoffline for at least part of the day. - - - - - - - - - - Cisco upgrades to help networks defend themselves Cisco is taking the next step in making its vision of a "self-defending network" a reality. On Monday, the company plans to announce new capabilities in its routers to help protect corporate networks from viruses and worms, two sources close to the company confirmed on Friday. The release is the first phase Network Admission Control (NAC), a collaboration program between Cisco and antivirus companies. - - - - - - - - - - From keeping threats out to keeping data in Qualys, which sells a service that tests network vulnerabilities, is tinkering with ways to expand into regulatory work or even network repair. The Mountain View, Calif.-based company's strategy reflects a larger trend of expansion for security companies. Qualys' servers scan corporate networks for potential security cracks. Qualys then provides a report to customers so that they can repair the flaws. Approximately 90 percent of its 1,400 customers request a scan every two weeks; 60 percent ask for a scan every week. - - - - - - - - - - Wal-Mart Plowing Ahead with RFID Wal-Mart intends to expand its RFID program in mid-2005 to three additional distribution centers that cover 100 more stores than the pilot. In the fourth quarter, seven more distribution centers -- covering 350 stores -- will be added. Compliance lags. Standards disputes abound. Security concerns grow. Still, Wal-Mart has reaffirmed its commitment to its January 2005 deadline for going live with its pilot RFID implementation. - - - - - - - - - - The network strikes back: Experts worry about tech retaliation In war, politics and sports, it's often said that the best defense is a strong offense. But the foot soldiers of computer security work differently: They scramble to build virtual walls that can blunt the impact of attacks. Now, a Texas company wants to bring vigilante justice to cyberspace. - - - - - - - - - - Complacency is a serious security threat Identity theft, phishing and new forms of hacking and virus creation are growth crimes. And the levels of sophisticated encryption available to a very wide range of fraudsters is already presenting huge challenges to crime detection agencies. Business has responded to these fears by spending on software. Computing's annual Image Trak survey has shown that security is the number one spending priority for IT decision-makers year after year. - - - - - - - - - - Asleep at the wheel? When it comes to beating back hackers, too many companies are still asleep at the wheel. Set up to guard against old-style black hats, their defenses have ignored a newer class of sophisticated attackers who take advantage of Internet back alleys and technology loopholes to penetrate corporate networks. Old-style hacking attacks were direct brute-force affairs: I found some information about your network. Then I went poking around and effectively jiggled the doorknobs of various systems to find an entry point and something worth stealing. One in three PCs hosts spyware or Trojans - - - - - - - - - - Q&A: GM security chief says cyberthreats lead to change As the chief information security officer at General Motors Corp., Eric Litt admits that he isn't exactly starved for attention within the company these days. Globalization, regulatory mandates and fast-evolving threats have put him at the front and center of GMs effort to integrate security into every aspect of its vast $186 billion business. Computerworld caught up with him at the recent SecurE-Biz CxO Security Summit, where Litt talked about the need for building security into information infrastructures.,10801,93941,00.html *********************************************************** 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 2000-2004,, Campbell, CA.