NewsBits for February 1, 2005 ************************************************************ Child Molester Held in Illegal Use of Database A convicted child molester was arrested for allegedly using California's new database of registered sex offenders to troll for dates, San Mateo County officials said. Glen Westberg of Cupertino was accused of illegally using the online Megan's Law site after police set up a sting operation with help from another sex offender whom Westberg allegedly contacted. (LA Times article, free registration required),1,7540144.story - - - - - - - - - - Woman struggling with music downloading lawsuit Renee Elderd never thought to ask her husband about the music he downloaded and listened to on their computer. Turns out she should have. Last September, a few months after Elderd's husband moved out, a police officer showed up at her Nashua home with a lawsuit from the recording industry. She was accused of copyright infringement. - - - - - - - - - - UK targets scammers in month-long campaign UK consumers lose an estimated PS1bn a year on cons and scams, according to figures released today by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT). Launching a month-long campaign warning about the perils of dodgy dealings, the OFT said punters need to do more to protect themselves from being ripped off. - - - - - - - - - - Law barring spam allows a flood instead A year after a sweeping federal antispam law went into effect, there is more junk e-mail on the Internet than ever, and Levon Gillespie, according to Microsoft, is one reason. Lawyers for the company seemed well on the way to shutting down Gillespie in September after he agreed to meet them at a Starbucks in Los Angeles near the University of Southern California. - - - - - - - - - - Singing worm abuses victims A worm that sings abuse as it infects a PC was discovered late last week by Panda Software, an antivirus firm. Once the worm, dubbed Cisum.A, infects a computer, it displays the message, "You are an idiot" accompanied by chorus of people singing the words.,39020375,39186086,00.htm - - - - - - - - - - Virus top 10: Zafi still clinging onto Xmas January was the second consecutive month Zafi.D topped the virus charts, as it took advantage of a seasonal dip in user vigilance, masquerading as a Christmas greeting to trick users into thinking they were receiving an e-card from a friend.,3800003100,39127499,00.htm Undead worms infest Windows PCs (again) - - - - - - - - - - ID theft, online auctions top list of consumer complaints The number of complaints filed with the Federal Trade Commission over Internet auctions has nearly doubled over the last two years, the agency said Tuesday. More than 98,000 grievances about online auction transactions were filed with the FTC in 2004, up from 51,000 in 2002, according to the agency's annual report on consumer fraud and identity theft complaints. Net scams driving rise in ID theft - - - - - - - - - - Cost of malware soars to $166bn in 2004 Malware, including viruses, worms and Trojans, cost global businesses between $169bn and $204bn last year, making it the worst year on record by a wide margin, newly published research has claimed. - - - - - - - - - - Porn spam triples Volumes of pornographic spam have tripled during the past month, newly published research has revealed. According to data from email management company Email Systems, pornographic spam has rocketed from seven per cent of all unsolicited mail in December to 21 per cent in January. - - - - - - - - - - Nine out of 10 VPNs 'not secure' A three-year research project by security firm NTA Monitor has concluded that nine out of 10 virtual private networks have exploitable vulnerabilities. Most of the companies that had their VPNs tested as part of the project thought that they were invulnerable to hackers, but researchers found the same types of flaw repeated across the whole product range. - - - - - - - - - - Microsoft: SP2 shimmy's not a flaw Microsoft downplayed the significance of a reported flaw in its latest update to Windows XP on Tuesday. Responding to a Russian security company's claim that it found a way to beat a protective element of Microsoft's Windows XP Service Pack 2, the software giant said it does not believe the issue represents a vulnerability. - - - - - - - - - - For kids, danger lurks a click away Internet activities are easier than ever to hide from parents. How can you keep out predators and pornography? It's as simple as literally pressing the space bar, and up will pop graphic pornography on my 11-year-old's screen," said one mother. "It's infuriating because even though we keep putting the filters on, it still filters in." - - - - - - - - - - MSN Belgium to use eID cards for online checking Microsoft will integrate the Belgian eID Card with MSN Messenger. Microsoft's Bill Gates and Belgian State Secretary for e-government Peter Vanvelthoven announced the alliance today in Brussels. "We're working to ensure that our technologies support e-ID, to help make online transactions and communications more secure," Gates said. eID stands for Electronic Identity Card. "How would you like to pay - credit card or fingerprint?",39024673,39127506,00.htm - - - - - - - - - - ITAA favors current smart card specs Members of the Information Technology Association of America say they hope to persuade federal officials to modify a proposed biometric smart card specification being developed in response to Homeland Security Presidential Directive 12. Federal officials are rushing to ratify the new standard by the end of February. - - - - - - - - - - Army arsenal uses IntruShield McAfee officials announced yesterday that personnel at the Army's Redstone Arsenal in Alabama will use the company's IntruShield system to protect the installation's computer infrastructure. - - - - - - - - - - Passenger Screening, Take 10 A controversial and much-delayed upgrade of the current airline passenger-screening system has gained new momentum, as officials have started testing the newly centralized computer system using real passenger data and are looking to see if commercial databases can help verify passengers' identification.,1848,66433,00.html - - - - - - - - - - Software flaw leads to taxing problems Americans have been having a different kind of problem with their electronic tax returns, after an unfortunate error in an upgrade message found in Intuit's tax preparation software. "Hi, sexy. Welcome to Intimate Encounters." Not exactly the kind of message you expect to hear in the middle of doing your taxes, but that's just what some TurboTax customers are getting as they try to set up their state returns.,39020384,39186329,00.htm *********************************************************** 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 2000-2005,, Campbell, CA.