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Report on Possibly the Largest Data Breach Ever

Amidst all the recent reports of data breaches, Gunter Ollmann of IBM Internet Security Systems, has reported today about one particular case which may be the largest data breach to date. Ollmann wirtes: "The media has been full of analysis concerning data breaches over the last couple of weeks, mostly related to the uptick in 2008 reports. While much of this increase can be accounted for by the wider adoption of state legislation that mandates companies to publicly disclose their data breaches, I think it is worth pointing out today's latest disclosure -- which is quite probably the largest breach ever." more»

UPDATEDComcast Accused of Degrading VoIP Sound Quality of Competitors, Under FCC Investigation

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) raises the possibility of further network neutrality violations by Comcast. The agency is investigating concerns that Comcast's new network management practices degrade the sound quality of VOIP services such as Vonage and Skype that compete with Comcast's own VOIP service. more»

UPDATEDInternet Into Overdrive on Obama Inauguration Day

Millions around the world commented, twittered and prayed as they watched Barack Obama's inauguration live on Tuesday on the Internet, pinning their hopes on a new world order and era in American politics. The frenzy saw the likes of social networking forum Facebook, CNN and the New York Times streaming the inauguration live via websites with millions scrambling to sign in, watch the trailblazing proceedings live from their homes and offices... and air their views for all the world. more»

Geoff Huston on Securing the Internet Routing System

Excerpts of a recent interview by Network World's Carolyn Duffy Marsan with Geoff Huston, one of the foremost authorities on Internet routing and scaling issues, has been published on the site. Questions include: "Can you explain in plain English what RPKI is trying to do and how it relates to improving the security of the Internet's routing system?" Huston's response follows... more»

UPDATEDWhiteHouse.gov Root Password Handed Over to Obama Administration, Website Relaunched

To the keys to the nuclear arsenal, we now add one more technological weapon that is handed over to the incoming president at exactly noon every Inauguration Day: the root password to WhiteHouse.gov. Before Barack Obama even finished taking the oath of office, the White House site switched over to the Obama administration's version. Macon Phillips, who identified himself as the director of new media for the White House, wrote a post describing the features of the new site. more»

Obama CTO Choice for US Narrowed Down to Two

Two Indian-born technology executives are the leading candidates for the incoming Obama Administration's newly created position of federal chief technology officer, according to two sources with knowledge of the situation. They are Padmasree Warrior, the chief technology officer of Silicon Valley networking giant Cisco Systems, and Vivek Kundra, who holds the same title in the government of Washington, D.C., the sources say. The two candidates offer President-elect Obama a clear choice of skills... more»

Spending on Mobile Phone Surpasses Residential Phone Services

Recent statistics from the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Consumer Expenditure Survey has shown that American have been increasingly spending on mobile phones from 2001 through 2007. BLS data indicates cellular phone expenditures surpassed spending on residential landline phone services beginning in 2007. From the report: "In 2001, the ratio of spending on residential phone services to spending on cellular phone services was greater than 3 to 1. In 2007, cellular phone expenditures accounted for 55 percent of total telephone expenditures compared to 43 percent for residential phone expenditures. The distribution of telephone service expenditures between residential telephone/pay phone services and cellular phone services changed significantly in all age groups since 2001." more»

Phishers Using New Web-Based Technique 'In-Session Phishing' to Steal User Data, Researchers Warn

Security researchers have identified a new phishing attack method designed to trick users into surrendering confidential information after they have logged on to an online banking, brokerage, or other sensitive website. The technique, called In Session Phishing, can be used to inject into all major browsers legitimate looking Pop Up messages using malicious JavaScript that request passwords, account numbers, etc., on behalf of the trusted website. more»

UPDATEDFCC Chair Kevin Martin Makes His Departure Official, Announces Resignation

In his last meeting today, Federal Communication Commission (FCC) chairman Kevin J. Martin, announced that he will be leaving the commission and will not be staying in the Obama administration. While the chairman had previously declined commenting on his future plans, the departure did not come unexpected. In the statement after announcing his departure at the FCC meeting, Martin also mentioned that he would depart Jan. 20 to become a Senior Fellow at the Aspen Institute in Washington, D.C. This announcement follows reports that President-elect Barack Obama will nominate Julius Genachowski to be the next FCC chairman. more»

UPDATEDObama's $6 Billion Broadband Proposal Under Scrutiny

Don't expect to find a comprehensive national broadband policy in the so-called economic stimulus package that President-elect Barack Obama hopes to sign in his first days in office, Blair Levin, a top technology adviser for Obama, said Wednesday. While funds for broadband deployment will be a part of the stimulus package, Blair cautioned groups interested in seeing more federal investment in broadband from expecting too much right away. more»

Businesses Discuss Splitting ICANN and Upcoming Changes

Some Internet-based businesses in the U.S. would support the splitting of the domain-name governance system instead of allowing an agreement between the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and the U.S. government to end later this year, the leader of a U.S. trade association said Wednesday. When a ten-year-old agreement between ICANN and the U.S. Department of Commerce expires in September, the organization will be vulnerable to outside takeover by other governments, said Steve DelBianco, executive director of NetChoice, a trade group of online companies. more»

UPDATEDNortel Bankrupt, Will Likely Be Divided Up and Sold to Foreign Rivals

Former technology titan Nortel Networks Corp. filed for bankruptcy protection Wednesday, a move that will likely see what was once Canada's great corporate success story broken up and sold to foreign rivals. Nortel's board of directors was meeting last night to deal with a financial crisis, as the economic downturn translates into a sharp drop in orders from phone company clients. The telecom-hardware manufacturer failed to find buyers for a number of divisions that were put up for sale in September, and faces the prospect of paying $107-million (U.S.) of interest on its debts tomorrow. more»

China's Online Population Reaching 300 Million, Same as Entire US Population

China's online population, already the world's largest, rose to 298 million by the end of 2008, almost the same as the entire population of the United States, an industry survey said Tuesday. The figure is up 41.9 percent from a year ago and is still growing fast, the government-linked China Internet Network Information Centre (CNNIC) said in a report published on its website. more»

New Scientist: Mediterranean the Achilles' Heel of the Web

Internet users in the Middle East and India might be glad to see the back of 2008 -- it was bookended by cable breaks under the Mediterranean Sea that disrupted access across the region. Repairs to damage caused in the most recent incident, in December, were completed last week and normal service finally restored. But more incidents are likely in what can arguably be called the internet's Achilles' heel. The world's oceans are criss-crossed with cables to carry data... more»

UPDATEDObama Names Julius Genachowski as FCC Chair

President-elect Barack Obama intends to tap his technology adviser Julius Genachowski to head the Federal Communications Commission, according to reports. You may not have heard of Genachowski, but you've certainly seen his handiwork. Genachowski was a major contributor to Obama's online campaign strategy and played a leading role in shaping the president-elect's technology strategy during the campaign. Key components of that plan include a call for greater media diversity, support for so-called net neutrality, greater broadband access across the country, and a national wireless system for emergency responders. more»

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