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2 years ago

US and UK 'hacked Sim card firm'





20 February 2015

Last updated at 11:13



US and British intelligence agencies hacked into a major manufacturer of Sim cards in order to steal codes that facilitate eavesdropping on mobiles, a US news website says.





The Intercept says the revelations came via former US intelligence contractor and whistleblower Edward Snowden.

The company allegedly targeted - Gemalto - says it is taking the allegations "very seriously".

It operates in 85 countries and has more than 40 manufacturing facilities.



The Intercept says that "the great Sim heist" gave US and British surveillance agencies "the potential to secretly monitor a large portion of the world's cellular communications, including both voice and data".



It says that among the clients of the Netherlands-based company are ATT, T-Mobile, Verizon, Sprint and "some 450 wireless network providers around the world".

Highly embarrassing



The Intercept claims that the hack organised by Britain's GCHQ and America's National Security Agency took place in 2010. Neither agency has commented on the allegations.

The stolen encryption allowed the agencies to decode data that passes between mobile phones and cell towers. They were able to un-garble calls, texts or emails intercepted out of the air.

A Gemalto spokeswoman said that while the company was not targeted "per se", there was "an attempt to try and cast the widest net possible to reach as many mobile phones as possible".



"We take this publication very seriously and will devote all resources necessary to fully investigate and understand the scope of such highly sophisticated techniques to try to obtain Sim card data," she added.



Correspondents say that the revelations are highly embarrassing for the agencies, because they give the impression that they will do whatever is required to improve their surveillance powers, even if that means stealing data from law-abiding Western firms.



Gemalto makes Sim cards for mobile phones and furnishes service providers with encryption codes to keep the data on each phone private.

The Intercept claims that by first cyber-stalking employees at Gemalto and then penetrating their emails, the spy agencies were able to steal thousands of encryption keys at source.

The BBC's Naomi Grimley in Washington says that this would allow them to eavesdrop easily on phone calls and texts without seeking permission from telecoms companies or foreign governments, and without leaving a trace.





The Intercept cites as its source documents leaked by Edward Snowden, the former NSA contractor who is currently living in Russia.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-31545050#sa-ns_mchannel=rss&ns_source=PublicRSS20-sa

2 years ago

Password Safety









Over the years, as the Internet usage has grown, and cyber-threats have increased, so has the need for more stringent passwords. Are your password habits out of date? Here are the basic rules of password safety: never reuse a password, never put personal info in a password, make them long, don't use words you can find in a dictionary, use a variety of character types and cases, keep them secure, and don't share them. For more tips on teaching password safety to kids, here is this week's crop of website recommendations.





http://www.surfnetkids.com/resources/password-safety/

2 years ago

Password Safety











Over the years, as the Internet usage has grown, and cyber-threats have increased, so has the need for more stringent passwords. Are your password habits out of date? Here are the basic rules of password safety: never reuse a password, never put personal info in a password, make them long, don't use words you can find in a dictionary, use a variety of character types and cases, keep them secure, and don't share them. For more tips on teaching password safety to kids, here is this week's crop of website recommendations.





http://www.surfnetkids.com/resources/password-safety/

2 years ago

10 Android apps you need for a flawless Valentine's Day





Running out to grab a bottle of wine kind of kills the mood, but what if you underestimated your alcohol needs? Minibar Delivery is an app that offers free alcohol delivery (wine, spirits, beer, and mixers) to your door ASAP. The app currently works in select parts of NYC, San Francisco, Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas, Brooklyn, Queens, Miami, Palm Beach, Ithaca, Westchester, and the Hamptons, though same-hour delivery is only guaranteed in Manhattan.

Minibar Delivery (Free)



http://www.greenbot.com/article/2882750/10-android-apps-you-need-for-a-flawless-valentine-s-day.html#tk.rss_all