Former FBI Director Predicts Russian Hackers Will Interfere With More Elections

An anonymous reader quotes the New York Times:
James B. Comey, the former director of the F.B.I., testified that the Russians had not only intervened in last year’s election, but would try to do it again… Russian hackers did not just breach Democratic email accounts; according to Mr. Comey, they orchestrated a “massive effort” targeting hundreds of — and possibly more than 1,000 — American government and private organizations since 2015… As F.B.I. director, he supervised counterintelligence investigations into computer break-ins that harvested emails from the State Department and the White House, and that penetrated deep into the computer systems of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Yet President Barack Obama’s administration did not want to publicize those intrusions, choosing to handle them diplomatically — perhaps because at the time they looked more like classic espionage than an effort to manipulate American politics…
Graham Allison, a longtime Russia scholar at Harvard, said, “Russia’s cyberintrusion into the recent presidential election signals the beginning of what is almost sure to be an intensified cyberwar in which both they — and we — seek to participate in picking the leaders of an adversary.” The difference, he added, is that American elections are generally fair, so “we are much more vulnerable to such manipulation than is Russia,” where results are often preordained… Similar warnings have been issued by others in the intelligence community, led by James R. Clapper Jr., who has sounded the alarm since retiring in January as director of national intelligence. “I don’t think people have their head around the scope of what the Russians are doing,” he said recently.
Daniel Fried, a career diplomat who oversaw sanctions imposed on Russia before retiring this year, told the Times that Comey “was spot-on right that Russia is coming after us, but not just the U.S., but the free world in general. And we need to take this seriously.”

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‘He wanted more than gossip’: NYT reporter on Russian ambassador’s talks with Trump associates

‘He wanted more than gossip’: NYT reporter on Russian ambassador’s talks with Trump associatesA Friday New York Times profile of Sergey Kislyak, the Russian ambassador to the United States, illuminates the longtime diplomat as not only socially savvy and eager to network, but also unwavering in his dedication to his home country and its president, Vladimir Putin. Peter Baker, the New York Times’ chief White House correspondent and co-author of the profile, joined Yahoo News Now on Friday to discuss Kislyak, who has been in the spotlight following revelations of his communications with various members of the Trump campaign and administration. Both Attorney General Jeff Sessions and former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn have come under withering criticism for not disclosing their conversations with Kislyak.



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IBM On Track To Get More Than 7,000 US Patents In 2016

IBM wants to put the patent war in perspective. Big Blue said that it is poised to get the most U.S. patents of any tech company for the 24th year in a row. From a report on VentureBeat: In 2015, IBM received more than 7,355 patents, down slightly from 7,534 in 2014. A spokesperson for IBM said the company is on track to receive well over 7,000 patents in 2016. In 2016, IBM is also hitting another interesting milestone, with more than 1,000 patents for artificial intelligence and cognitive computing. IBM has been at it for more than a century, and it is seeking patents in key strategic areas — such as AI and cognitive computing. In fact, one-third of IBM’s researchers are dedicated to cognitive computing. IBM CEO Ginni Rometty said during the World of Watson conference in October that the company expects to reach more than 1 billion consumers via Watson by the end of 2017. (Watson is the supercomputer that beat the world’s best Jeopardy player in 2011.)

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FBI Finds 14,900 More Documents From Hillary Clinton’s Email Server

An anonymous reader quotes a report from ABC News: The FBI uncovered nearly 15,000 more emails and materials sent to or from Hillary Clinton as part of the agency’s investigation into her use of private email at the State Department. The documents were not among the 30,000 work-related emails turned over to the State Department by her attorneys in December 2014. The State Department confirmed it has received “tens of thousands” of personal and work-related email materials — including the 14,900 emails found by the FBI — that it will review. At a status hearing Monday before federal Judge Emmett Sullivan, who is overseeing that case, the State Department presented a schedule for how it would release the emails found by the FBI. The first group of 14,900 emails was ordered released, and a status hearing on Sept. 23 “will determine the release of the new emails and documents,” Sullivan said. “As we have previously explained, the State Department voluntarily agreed to produce to Judicial Watch any emails sent or received by Secretary Clinton in her official capacity during her tenure as secretary of state which are contained within the material turned over by the FBI and which were not already processed for FOIA by the State Department,” said State Department spokesman Mark Toner in a statement issued Monday. “We can confirm that the FBI material includes tens of thousands of non-record (meaning personal) and record materials that will have to be carefully appraised at State,” it read. “State has not yet had the opportunity to complete a review of the documents to determine whether they are agency records or if they are duplicative of documents State has already produced through the Freedom of Information Act” said Toner, declining further comment.

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FalseCONNECT Vulnerability Affects Software From Apple, Microsoft, Oracle, More

An anonymous reader writes from a report via Softpedia: “Researcher Jerry Decime revealed details about a security vulnerability that allows an attacker to gain a Man-in-the-Middle position and intercept HTTPS traffic thanks to flaws in the implementation of proxy authentication procedures in various products,” reports Softpedia. The flaw can be used to collect user credentials by tricking victims into re-authenticating, sending data to a third-party. Multiple software vendors deploy applications that can handle proxy connections. Until now, Apple, Microsoft, Oracle, and Opera have acknowledged their products are affected. Lenovo said this bug does not impact its software. Other software vendors that are still evaluating the FalseCONNECT bug and may be affected include multiple Linux distros, Cisco, Google, HP, IBM, Juniper, Mozilla, Nokia, OpenBSD, SAP, Sony, and others.

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Trump’s foreign policy: ‘new visions’ and ‘more unpredictable’ attacks on ISIS

Trump’s foreign policy: ‘new visions’ and ‘more unpredictable’ attacks on ISISDonald Trump takes the stage to deliver a foreign policy speech on Aprii 27 at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington. In the first of a projected series of policy speeches, Trump trashed Obama for weakening the country by failing to present a “coherent” foreign policy and for allowing rivals such as China to “take advantage” of the United States.



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Bill Gates Calls On the US Government To Invest More In Research and Development

An anonymous reader cites an article on Fortune: On Monday, Bill Gates attempted a commendable feat: to get politicians to focus on something other than the current election cycle and its partisan bickering. In an op-ed published by Reuters, the billionaire co-founder of Microsoft called on the United States to spur technological innovation by increasing its investment in research and development. “Government funding for our world-class research institutions produces the new technologies that American entrepreneurs take to market,” he wrote. But while other nations like South Korea and China have drastically upped their R and D spending, the United States’ has “essentially flatlined.” He said that the rest of the world’s commitment to research and development is great, “but if the United States is going to maintain its leading role, it needs to up its game.” His call for more government-sponsored R&D also comes as corporations pull back on their commitment to discovery and innovation. With more government investment, he said, U.S. scientists could completely eradicate polio and further decrease the number of deaths from malaria. More funding could also “develop the technologies that will power the world — while also fighting climate change, promoting energy independence, and providing affordable energy for the 1.3 billion poor people who don’t have it today.”

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U.S. officials believe more terrorists tied to Brussels attack are at large, plotting new strikes

U.S. officials believe more terrorists tied to Brussels attack are at large, plotting new strikesA warning that Belgium remains under threat of “serious and imminent attack” came as U.S. and Western intelligence officials investigate a coordinated attack they believe was likely triggered by the Friday arrest of Salah Abdeslam.



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Star Wars Fans and Video Game Geeks ‘More Likely To Be Narcissists,’ Study Finds

schwit1 writes: Those who take part in “geeky events” are more likely to have an “elevated grandiose” level of narcissism, according to a study conducted by the University of Georgia. Psychologists examined the personality traits of those who turn to “geek culture,” developing a Geek Culture Engagement Scale and a Geek Identity Scale to help quantify the figures. It was found that those who scored highly on both scales were more likely to narcissists. Subjects are scored on a scale of one to five, depending on how often they take part in activities such as live action role playing games, Dungeons and Dragons, cosplaying, puppetry, robotics — and enjoying things such as video games and Star Wars.

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Wyndham Settlement: No Fine, But More Power To the FTC

itwbennett writes: Earlier this month, Wyndham settled a lawsuit with the FTC over weak security practices that resulted in 3 major data breaches in 2008 and 2009 that compromised the credit card information of more than 619,000 customers and led to more than $ 10.6 million in fraudulent charges. But all the settlement requires Wyndham to do ‘is what any company that handles credit card data is supposed to have been doing for more than a decade, under the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS),’ writes Taylor Armerding. There was no fine and it seemed as though Wyndham had ‘dodged a bullet’, says Armerding, But things are not always as they seem. Because the PCI DSS is not a government standard and is not a law ‘the case was not about fines for noncompliance, which the FTC doesn’t even have the authority to impose,’ says Armerding. ‘It was instead about power – the authority of the FTC to charge Wyndham with ‘unfair and deceptive’ practices because of its security flaws.’

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