Tag: USA

Hacked: 5.6 million fingerprints stolen in U.S. personnel data cyber heist

Cyber Security
Hackers who stole security clearance data on millions of Defense Department and other U.S. government employees got away with about 5.6 million fingerprint records, some 4.5 million more than initially reported, the government said on Wednesday. Reports David Alexander on Reuters The additional stolen fingerprint records were identified as part of an ongoing analysis of the data breach by the Office of Personnel Management and the Department of Defense, OPM said in a statement. The data breach was discovered this spring and affected security clearance records dating back many years. The news came just ahead of a state visit to Washington by Chinese President Xi Jinping. U.S. officials have privately blamed the breach on Chinese government hackers, but they have avoided saying so public

The McFadden Files: How Geo Panel contractor bungled .Africa evaluation to favour ICANN’s preferred candidate

Domains, Governance, Internet
ICANN’s new gTLD guidebook clearly specified how its contractors were supposed to act with competence, and also independently to assure best quality performance in the evaluation of the 1930 new gTLD applications that were submitted under the new gTLD program. The outcome of an  Independent Review Panel however indicates otherwise in one of the most controversial applications under the ICANN new gTLD program. The discovery process of the .Africa IRP which pitted DCA Trust against ICANN showed a wide array of underhand dealings between InterConnnect Communications, the independent firm that was contracted to review geographic names and ICANN staff that were guided to ensure that ICANN’s choice, ZACR got the string and not DCA Trust. Here is an excerpt from the new gTLD Applicant Guideb

Hacker Claims 7 Million Dropbox Accounts Compromised, Dropbox Denies Hack

Cyber Security, Internet
Dropbox is at the centre of a leak scandal, following the releasing of 400 usernames and passwords by an anonymous user on Pastebin. Reports Mashable The hacker claims the initial dump is just a portion of the 6,937,081 Dropbox accounts he claims to have compromised on Tuesday. He then requested Bitcoins in payment before he would allow access to more accounts. In a statement to The Next Web Dropbox said the service had not been hacked and these passwords were expired. Dropbox has not been hacked. These usernames and passwords were unfortunately stolen from other services and used in attempts to log in to Dropbox accounts. We’d previously detected these attacks and the vast majority of the passwords posted have been expired for some time now. All other remaining passwords have been exp

Allowing ICANN oversight transfer puts Internet freedom at risk, critics say

Governance, Internet
The freedom and openness of the Internet are at stake after the U.S. government announced plans to end its contractual oversight of ICANN, some critics said Thursday. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s announcement last month that it will end its contract with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers to operate key domain-name functions could embolden other nations to attempt to seize control, some Republican members of the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee said. “All hyperbole aside, this hearing is about nothing less than the future of the Internet and, significantly, who has the right, the ability and the authority to determine it,” said Representative Bob Goodlatte, a Virginia Republican. “Should it be decided by a few peop

U.S. Set to Cede Oversight of Web Domain Manager

Domains, Governance, Internet
The US is reported to be preparing to release its last control of the Internet. Move Seen in Response to International Concern About Country's Control Over Internet Structure WASHINGTON—The U.S. government plans to give up control over the body that manages Internet names and addresses, a move that could bring more international cooperation over management of the Web, but will make some U.S. businesses nervous. The Commerce Department said on Friday it plans to relinquish its oversight of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or Icann, which manages a number of technical functions that serve as signposts to help computers locate the correct servers and websites. The action is viewed as a response to increasing international concern about U.S. control over the Internet'

Is the Powerful Intelligence World on the Verge of Making People Digitally Disappear?

Governance
George Orwell's dystopian "memory hole" isn't just the stuff of science fiction novels. December 6, 2013  | To stay on top of important articles like these, sign up to receive the latest updates from TomDispatch.com here. What if Edward Snowden was made to disappear? No, I’m not suggesting some future CIA rendition effort or a who-killed-Snowden conspiracy theory of a disappearance, but a more ominous kind. What if everything a whistleblower had ever exposed could simply be made to go away? What if every National Security Agency (NSA) document Snowden released, every interview he gave, every documented trace of a national security state careening out of control could be made to disappear in real-time? What if the very posting of such revelations could be turned into a fruitless, record-l

Internet Society Expresses Concern over Impact of IPRs Provisions in Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) Draft

Business, Governance, Internet
18 November 2013 The Internet Society is concerned that the global Internet may be harmed if countries adopt Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) provisions contained in the recently leaked Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) draft.  We do not believe that these provisions are consistent with basic principles of transparency, due process, accountability, proportionality and the rule of law. The leaked TPP Agreement is a complex set of rights and principles related to IPR and we believe that the current draft reflects a disproportionate balance of rights in favor of intellectual property owners.  In addition to other issues, these provisions could also have important consequences for online privacy, a critical dimension in light of heightened awareness worldwide about the importance

What is Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP)?

Business, Governance, Internet
What is the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP)? The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a secretive, multi-national trade agreement that threatens to extend restrictive intellectual property (IP) laws across the globe and rewrite international rules on its enforcement. The main problems are two-fold: (1) IP chapter: Leaked draft texts of the agreement show that the IP chapter would have extensive negative ramifications for users’ freedom of speech, right to privacy and due process, and hinder peoples' abilities to innovate. (2) Lack of transparency: The entire process has shut out multi-stakeholder participation and is shrouded in secrecy. The twelve nations currently negotiating the TPP are the US, Japan, Australia, Peru, Malaysia, Vietnam, New Zealand, Chile, Singapore, Canada,

The United States is isolated in the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations

Broadband, Governance
Here’s another, more quantitative perspective on the Trans Pacific Partnership from Gabriel Michael, a 5th year Ph.D. candidate at George Washington University. Last Thursday, WikiLeaks released a draft text of the intellectual property (IP) chapter of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement. The TPP is a free-trade agreement currently being negotiated between 12 countries: the United States, Canada, Mexico, Peru, Chile, New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, Brunei, Vietnam, and Japan. Like many such trade agreements, the TPP has been negotiated secretly, with access to draft texts provided only to lobbyists and the like. Even Congress feels like it’s been left out. WikiLeaks’s release thus provides an opportunity for academics, public interest groups, and citizens to exa

Australian Government: Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement negotiations

Broadband, Governance, Internet
Leaders of TPP member states and prospective member states on the sidelines of the APEC summit in Yokohama, Japan, 11 November 2010. Photo credit: Gobierno de Chile TPP market snapshot (including Australia) GDP: US$28,136.0 billion (2012) GDP per capita: US$35,488 (2012) Population: 792.8 million (2012) Trade with Australia: AU$214,224 million (2012) TPP % of world GDP: 39.0% (2012) TPP % of world population: 11.3% (2012) TPP % of world trade: 25.8% (2012) About the TPP negotiations The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) is a viable pathway for realising the vision of a free trade area of the Asia-Pacific. This agreement will build on the Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership Agreement (P4) between Brunei Darussalam, Chile, New Zealand and Singapore, which ente