New SMB Worm Uses Seven NSA Hacking Tools. WannaCry Used Just Two

An anonymous reader writes: Researchers have detected a new worm that is spreading via SMB, but unlike the worm component of the WannaCry ransomware, this one is using seven NSA tools instead of two. Named EternalRocks, the worm seems to be in a phase where it is infecting victims and building its botnet, but not delivering any malware payload. EternalRocks is far more complex than WannaCry’s SMB worm. For starters, it uses a delayed installation process that waits 24 hours before completing the install, as a way to evade sandbox environments. Further, the worm also uses the exact same filenames as WannaCry in an attempt to fool researchers of its true origin, a reason why the worm has evaded researchers almost all week, despite the attention WannaCry payloads have received. Last but not least, the worm does not have a killswitch domain, which means the worm can’t be stopped unless its author desires so. Because of the way it was designed, it is trivial for the worm’s owner to deliver any type of malware to any of the infected computers. Unfortunately, because of the way he used the DOUBLEPULSAR implant, one of the seven NSA hacking tools, other attackers can hijack its botnet and deliver their own malware as well. IOCs are available in a GitHub repo. Ars Technica quotes security researchers who say “there are at least three different groups that have been leveraging the NSA exploit to infect enterprise networks since late April… These attacks demonstrate that many endpoints may still be compromised despite having installed the latest security patch.”

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How Satya Nadella Brought Microsoft Back To Life In Just Three Years

At a time when Apple could do no wrong, Facebook was changing the world of communication and Amazon was blowing everyone away in cloud computing, Microsoft was the uncoolest 40-year-old imaginable.
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Why Apple Just Invested in Wind Turbines In China

An anonymous reader quotes CNN Money:
Apple’s latest deal in China doesn’t have anything to do with smartphones. The tech giant is investing in the Chinese wind power industry, turning to the world’s most populous country to help it achieve its goal of getting 100% of its energy from renewable sources. The iPhone maker struck a deal this week to buy a 30% stake in three subsidiaries of Goldwind, China’s biggest wind-turbine manufacturer… it’s Apple’s largest clean energy project to date and the first of its kind in the wind power sector, Lisa Jackson, vice president of Apple’s environment initiatives, told state-run newspaper China Daily…

Environmental group Greenpeace has warned that electronics manufacturing uses a lot of energy in China, drawing on the country’s high number of polluting coal power stations. Apple’s moves into renewable energy are an attempt to compensate for this… The new wind project will add 285 megawatts of clean energy to China’s grid, which Apple says will offset some of the other sources used by its operations and those of its immediate suppliers Foxconn, Lens, Catcher and Solvay.

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For a Missouri Cassette Tape Factory, Obsolesence is Just a 12-Letter Word

The Missouri-based National Audio Company, reports Ars Technica, is sweeping up in a category that our future-looking selves might twenty years ago have imagined would be dead and buried in the year 2015: making and selling audiocassettes. There are fewer and fewer competitors in the tape-making business, but NAC still has a healthy market for cassettes — in October, the company noted “a 31 percent increase in order volume over the previous year.” From the article: [Company president Steve Stepp] said that as his competitors began bailing out of the cassette business once CDs came to prominence, NAC started buying up their machinery. “It would have been incredibly expensive 30 to 35 years ago when [cassette manufacturing machines] were new on the market, but when our competitors bailed out of the business and started making CDs, we went round the country and bought [them] out,” he said. Some artists are still releasing music on tape, but about 70 percent of what the company sells is blank cassettes; there are an awful lot of tape decks out there; my father alone still buys a few hundred blanks each year.

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Tesla Will Have Self-driving Cars In Just Two Years, Elon Musk Boldly Declares

An anonymous reader writes: In a new interview with Fortune, outspoken Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the electric automaker is just two years away from developing fully autonomous vehicles that can operate ably and safely in any type of environment. While Musk has long championed an automotive age filled with self-driving cars, this is the most optimistic timeline for their deployment we’ve seen Musk make yet. In fact, Musk in 2014 said the requisite technology to manufacture a self-driving car was still about five to six years away. “I think we have all the pieces,” Musk said, “and it’s just about refining those pieces, putting them in place, and making sure they work across a huge number of environments—and then we’re done. It’s a much easier problem than people think it is.”

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Porting Ubuntu For Raspberry Pi 2 Just Got a Lot Easier

prisoninmate writes: Ubuntu Pi Flavour Maker is an open source tool, a shell script that lets anyone port any of the official or unofficial Ubuntu Linux flavors for the Raspberry Pi 2. Ubuntu Pi Flavour Maker is officially supported on the Ubuntu, Ubuntu MATE, Kubuntu, Lubuntu, Xubuntu and Ubuntu GNOME flavors, and uses the traditional apt and dpkg package management systems from Debian GNU/Linux.

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