NewsBits for March 17, 2005 ************************************************************ London police foil high-tech theft attempt at Japanese bank Police foiled a high-tech attempt to steal hundreds of millions of dollars from a Japanese bank's London offices by accessing its computer system and making money transfers, British and Israeli authorities said Thursday. Israeli police, working with British officers, arrested a man Wednesday in connection with the attempt to rob Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc., police in Israel said in a statement. - - - - - - - - - - DrinkorDie pair convicted of software piracy Two men accused of taking part in a massive global software piracy ring were convicted in a British High Court this week. Alex Bell, 32, of Grays, Essex, and Steven Dowd, 42, of Newton-le-Willows, Merseyside, were both found guilty of conspiracy to defraud. They will be sentenced in May, along with two other men who had pleaded guilty to similar charges. - - - - - - - - - - Boston College, Calif. State University computers hacked A computer used for fund-raising activities at Boston College was hacked into last week, initially raising concerns that personal information, including Social Security numbers, of some 120,000 alumni might have been compromised. Although BC alerted the affected alumni to the breach, the college is now sure that no personal data was stolen, said BC spokesman Jack Dunn.,10801,100439,00.html - - - - - - - - - - Thieves raid BT exchange BT has tightened security at its telephone exchange in St Albans after thieves nicked PS100,000 of computer and IT gear. Three laptops, a load of chips and a "large computer" were filched, reports The Herts Advertiser. The crooks used a ladder to get into the first floor of the exchange, but cops are still scratching their heads as to how they made off with all the clobber. - - - - - - - - - - Report: IRS employees vulnerable to hackers More than one-third of Internal Revenue Service (IRS) employees and managers who were contacted by Treasury Department inspectors posing as computer technicians provided their computer login and changed their password, a government report said Wednesday. The report by the Treasury Department's inspector general for tax administration reveals a human flaw in the security system that protects taxpayer data. - - - - - - - - - - Dartmouth says nosy applicants were judged case-by-case Applicants to Dartmouth's Tuck School of Business who tried to get unauthorized early looks at admissions decisions were judged case-by-case, and an undisclosed number were admitted, a dean said Thursday. Tuck will monitor those who were accepted, and those who were rejected can reapply, Dean Paul Danos said in a telephone interview from Hanover. - - - - - - - - - - Westlaw agrees to restrict access to Social Security numbers A legal research company said Thursday it will greatly restrict customer access to Social Security numbers in response to complaints from Congress that its previous policy of limited sales of the numbers invited identity theft. Westlaw, a Minnesota-based legal research firm, said private companies and many government offices no longer will be able to obtain such information from the company. - - - - - - - - - - VoIP could provoke 'electronic Pearl Harbor The head of information security for the United Kingdom's Royal Mail has warned that Internet telephone applications will expose companies to hackers and malicious code if not implemented correctly. - - - - - - - - - - MS: Phishing Bad, Users Complicit, Education Best Defense Microsoft, along with Trust-e and RSA Security, summarized the plague of phishing attacks as the "fastest-growing form of online fraud," but offered little new in terms of advice or technology. Microsoft Tuesday summarized the plague of phishing attacks as the "fastest- growing form of online fraud in the world today," but offered little new in the form of either advice or technology. - - - - - - - - - - Why power plants need anti-virus Utility companies are been urged to review cyber security risks as the industry moves over from proprietary technologies to cheaper Windows-based systems. Attendees at an Industrial Cyber Security Conference in London on Tuesday 15 March were told that the control systems of utilities are becoming open to the kinds of attacks that bedevil corporate systems, such as computer worms and DDoS attacks, as power and water companies embrace the net. - - - - - - - - - - Know your Enemy: Tracking Botnets In their paper, The Honeynet Project & Research Alliance, have attempted to demonstrate how honeynets can help us understand how botnets work, the threat they pose, and how attackers control them. The research shows that some attackers are highly skilled and organized, potentially belonging to well organized crime structures. Leveraging the power of several thousand bots, it is able to take down almost any website or network instantly. - - - - - - - - - - Will biometric security harm users? Microsoft's fingerprint access device could bring science fiction a step closer. Science fiction movies took a wrong turn in 1991. Previously, sci-fi customarily warned about the dangers of allowing technology to overtake humanity. It also warned us about bogeymen who usually turned out to be "commies from outer space", but that is probably best forgotten. - - - - - - - - - - Officials criticize system for tracking foreign students A system intended to track foreign students has been improved since its 2003 inception, but personnel issues are causing delays and potentially deterring students from pursuing degrees in the United States, witnesses at a joint hearing of two House subcommittees warned Thursday. *********************************************************** 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.