NewsBits for November 24, 2004 ************************************************************ Due to the Thanksgiving holiday in the US, NewsBits will not be produced on Thursday, 11/25 or Friday, 11/26. NewsBits will return on Monday, 11/29. RJL ************************************************************ Lawyer jailed for sex with teen A lawyer at a prestigious Silicon Valley law firm was sentenced today to four months in jail for having sex with a Milpitas teenager he met on the Internet, a punishment that suited prosecutors but not some victim's advocates who viewed the sentence as too merciful. - - - - - - - - - - Former Police Chief Faces Jail over Child Porn A former British Transport Police chief superintendent today admitted a string of child pornography charges after a police raid uncovered 657 images on his computer. David Bruce, 44, who has now quit his job, was told that a prison sentence was a racing certainty after he pleaded guilty to 16 specimen charges of making indecent photographs of a child and one of possession. - - - - - - - - - - Man gets maximum fine for leaking movies to Net A federal judge has imposed the maximum fine of $300,000 against a former member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences who allegedly leaked "screener" copies of movies that were distributed on the Internet. - - - - - - - - - - Student charged with stalking teacher An adult student was arrested Tuesday by Santa Cruz police after she allegedly continued to stalk her private school teacher in violation of a restraining order. Police said Santa Cruz resident Mary Kay, 51, stalked the 60-year-old female victim, who teaches at what police described as an alternative-religion school. The victim's name and the name of the school were withheld to protect the victim's privacy. - - - - - - - - - - Italian Senate hit by hack attack Italian politicians were confronted with gay pornography as hackers took control of the monitors throughout the senate building. The Italian Senate has been the subject of a hack attack by cybercriminals who uploaded images of gay porn onto screens all around the senate building.,39020375,39175012,00.htm - - - - - - - - - - SCO under attack again The main SCO Group web site ( has been intermittently accessible on Tuesday and Wednesday, having been down on Monday, displaying characteristic patterns seen during a protracted Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack. Several related domains have also been off - and on-line over the last 72 hours. - - - - - - - - - - Windows and Linux exposed by Java flaw A flaw in Sun's plug-in for running Java on a variety of browsers and operating systems could allow a virus to spread through Microsoft Windows andLinux PCs. The vulnerability, found by Finnish security researcher Jouko Pynnonen in June, was patched last month by Sun, but its details were not made public until Tuesday. Security information provider Secunia posted information about the flaw in an advisory that rated it a "highly critical" threat.,39024655,39126099,00.htm Millions at risk from Java Virtual Machine flaw Microsoft emphasises security problems,39020375,39174905,00.htm - - - - - - - - - - 'Skulls' Virus Disables Smartphone Apps A malicious code dubbed "Skulls" was launched from Web sites that offered phone users downloads of wallpaper, games and ring tones. The virus targets Nokia model 7610 phones that run on the Symbian operating system. It replaces all the phone's icons with skulls and crossbones, and replaces all the working applications, rendering the phone useless for anything but voice calls. - - - - - - - - - - Poison applet peril affects IE, Opera and Firefox A vulnerability in a Java plug-in from Sun Microsystems used by most web browsers poses a risk for users of IE and alternative browsers alike. Because of the flaw, malicious applets can escape the safe confines of a sandbox and damage vulnerable systems. - - - - - - - - - - Fraudsters recruit phishing middlemen Fraudsters are trying to recruit phishing mules with bogus job offers. Email filtering firm MessageLabs reports more than 20,000 copies of this scam email have been intercepted to date, following the emergence of the fraud over the weekend. The bogus messages pose as offers for regional representative and general assistant positions with ICG Commerce. - - - - - - - - - - Career database 'wide open' to hijacking An on-line database containing the career and contact details of over 22 million business people can be edited by anyone. The database - put together by US company Eliyon - is extracted from information published on the net (press releases, electronic news services, SEC filings and other online sources etc.) and complied into a single searchable archive. - - - - - - - - - - Microsoft proposes piracy amnesty Microsoft has announced what it hopes will be a new attack on piracy. The company has decided to give away software to those who bought machines with fake copies pre-installed. Microsoft will be offering anyone who's "unsure" about whether they've got dodgy software the chance to have it checked out by Microsoft, with the promise that if it does turn out to be counterfeit, they'll replace it. Microsoft gets tough with XP pirates - - - - - - - - - - Security officials to spy on chat rooms The CIA is quietly funding federal research into surveillance of Internet chat rooms as part of an effort to identify possible terrorists, newly released documents reveal. In April 2003, the CIA agreed to fund a series of research projects that the documents indicate were intended to create "new capabilities to combat terrorism through advanced technology." One of those projects is research at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., devoted to automated monitoring and profiling of the behavior of chat-room users. - - - - - - - - - - Home PC users weigh price of protection Criminals hijack consumers' PCs by the thousands every day and use them to do their dirty work. Armies of zombies, for example, are now regularly used to attack Web sites and extort their owners. - - - - - - - - - - DIY fingerprint idea thwarts ID thieves The Home Office is touting ID cards as a solution to ID theft in today's Queen's Speech but a Yorkshire man has taken matters into his own hands. Jamie Jameson, a civil servant from Scarborough in North Yorkshire, insists that credit can only be extended in his name on production of a thumbprint. UK not ready for biometric ID cards Although the Queen's Speech confirmed the government's determination to push forward with national ID cards, industry experts warned that major technological issues could derail the scheme. - - - - - - - - - - Airlines Cough Up Passenger Data U.S. airlines turned over a month's worth of passenger data Tuesday to Homeland Security officials, who want to test a massive, centralized passenger-screening system. The Transportation Security Administration ordered America's 72 airlines to turn over their June 2004 domestic passenger flight records by Tuesday afternoon. The airlines had initially questioned the order because of privacy concerns, but they all complied.,1848,65822,00.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.