A hacker who broke into Microsoft and Nintendo's networks has dodged jail. Zammis Clark, 24, was out on bail accused of hacking into Microsoft servers and accessing unreleased versions of Windows when he accessed Nintendo's game-development servers. The two companies estimated that his hacks had cost them £2.9 million, but confirmed that no customer data had been compromised. He was handed a 15-month jail term, suspended for 18 months, after admitting five counts of computer hacking, the South East regional organised crime unit said. The judge ruled that Clark's autism as well as his "face blindness" -- a condition that makes it significantly more difficult for a person to recognise others from their facial features -- meant he would "suffer disproportionality if he went to prison," according to The Verge. Judge Alexander Milne also commended Clark's parents, who submitted a letter detailing plans for his supervision and rehabilitation. Detective Sergeant Gary Hooks, from … [Read more...] about Hacker who broke into Nintendo while on bail for Microsoft attack dodges jail
Online cyber security programs
HACKERS could make up to £80,000 breaking into key EU computer software. The eye-watering prize is part of a new European Commission 'bug bounty' project which rewards cyber whizzes for finding potentially dangerous security flaws. The Commission is funding 15 'bug bounties' in total, with the total prize fund topping £800,000. EU officials are looking to paper over the cracks in open source programmes – software available for free online – that the Union uses in its computer systems. The full list of programs includes 7-zip, Apache Tomcat, Drupal, Filezilla, VLC, KeePass, Notepad++ and other popular tools used in systems across the globe. Rewards for 'ethical hackers' who get involved range from £22,000 to £80,000 per bug found, depending on how serious the flaw is. Ethical hackers are cyber geeks who use their ability to hack for good, helping companies find issues with their software before a more malicious party gets there first. The EC project … [Read more...] about ‘Ethical’ hackers could make up to £80,000 breaking into EU computer software as part of new European Commission security project
FACEBOOK has suffered yet another massive data breach that allowed anyone to snatch the info of 120 million users. Just months after the historic Cambridge Analytica scandal that engulfed the social network, a security researcher has revealed that a personality quiz app dubbed "NameTests" was exposing the details it had amassed to third-parties online since 2016. What's more, the data – which included names, date of births, posts, statuses, photos and friend lists – kept getting leaked even after users deleted the app. The only way to prevent the rogue quiz from serving up your info was to manually delete the cookies on your device, explained cyber-security buff (and self-professed ethical hacker) Inti De Ceukelaire in a blog post. “I would imagine you wouldn’t want any website to know who you are, let alone steal your information or photos," he wrote. "Abusing this flaw, advertisers could have targeted (political) ads based on your Facebook posts and friends. … [Read more...] about Facebook suffers another massive data breach that exposed the details of 120 million users
ARTIFICIAL Intelligence is an inevitable part of our future, but that doesn't stop some of the world's leading experts worrying about the potential risks of the technology. Here's what you need to know about the AI, and why it can be controversial... What is Artificial Intelligence? AI is an area of computer science focused on creating intelligent machines - which think and work like humans. These machines could be programmed to recognise speech, learn, plan, problem solve, and move objects around. Scientists have been training computers to learn like humans since the 1970s, and many of us are already using AI in our everyday lives. Voice assistants like Apple's Siri and Amazon's Alexa are one example of AI. Self-driving cars are another. While Microsoft has unveiled plans to install AI into ALL its products - allowing computers to recognise what they 'see', and understand human speech. According to an independent government report, published on October 15, AI could add £630bn to … [Read more...] about What is Artificial intelligence, what are Google’s AI experiments and what’s Elon Musk said about machine learning?
AROUND 50,000 Minecraft players have been exposed to a computer virus that wipes a machine's hard drive and deletes backup data and programs. The malicious software is attached to the downloadable "skins" that can change the look of a player's character in the game. These add-ons are available on the Minecraft website, potentially putting the game's entire user base of 74million players in harm's way. Cyber-security software-maker Avast told The Sun that it's been in touch with Minecraft developer Mojang, and is working to fix the exploit. The company says it blocked 14,500 infection attempts in the last ten days alone. Avast notes that Minecraft's largest demographic of 15 to 21-year-old players (who account for 43 per cent of its user base) are particularly susceptible to the hack. "The bad actors may have looked to capitalize on a more vulnerable group of unsuspecting users that play a game trusted by parents and guardians," said the company. We've reached out to Mojang with … [Read more...] about Minecraft players warned over terrifying hack that could wipe your computer