Friday, 07 January 2011

Record Fraudulent iTunes Accounts for Sale on a Chinese Website

Around 50,000 accounts linked to stolen credit cards are listed on auction site TaoBao, China's equivalent of eBay. Buyers are promised temporary access to unlimited downloads from the service for as little as 1 Yuan (10p) a time. Apple, which recently stepped up iTunes' security after a series of break-ins, declined to comment. However, Apple has warned users in recent months to safeguard their personal details.

Listings seen by the BBC tell buyers they can "go after anything they like" including "software, games, movies, music and so on". Several listings tell prospective buyers they can only use the accounts for 12 hours before it is likely to be shut down.

Details of the auctions first emerged in the China's Global Times, which reported that one seller had admitted to the theft. "Of course these accounts are hacked, otherwise how could they be so cheap?" they told the newspaper.

While it is not clear whether the accounts themselves were stolen, or whether they were set up with fraudulently obtained information, it is against the terms and conditions of iTunes to resell user identities.

Qualcomm to Buy Atheros for $3.2Billion

Qualcomm Inc, the world's largest maker of mobile phone chips, agreed to buy Atheros Communications Inc for about $3.2 billion in cash, expanding its line up of Wi-Fi networking technology.

Qualcomm will use Atheros's chips in its base-band processors for mobile phones. Both the companies aim in making devices seamlessly pass calls from cellular to Wi-Fi networks.

Qualcomm is seeking new sources of revenue after scrapping an expansion into wireless television. The company plans to shut its wireless Flo TV service in last year March because of slow demand. Qualcomm had $10.3 billion in cash and short-term investments as of the end of September 2010.

iPhone Hacker Publishes Secret Sony PlayStation 3 Key

The PlayStation 3's security has been broken by hackers, potentially allowing anyone to run any software, including pirated games, on the console. A group of hackers recently showed off a method that could force the system to reveal secret keys used to load software on to the machine.

A US hacker, who gained notoriety for unlocking Apple's iPhone, has now used a similar method to extract the PS3's master key and publish it online. However, Sony declined to comment on the hack.

The group, which has previously hacked Nintendo's WiFi and says it is vehemently against games piracy, and said that it had developed the hack so that it could install other operating systems and community-written software, known as homebrew, on the powerful machine.

Following the presentation, US hacker George Hotz, who has previously hacked parts of the console, used a similar technique to extract the master key. He has now published it on his blog.

Lumidigm Showcasing Biometric Authentication that Ensures Meeting HIPPA / HITECH Requirements at HIMSS11

Lumidigm announce that its biometrics products, which provide fingerprint access even when wearing clear surgical gloves, are the solution for hospitals that spend $100 to $200 per employee per year supporting password-based systems - and even more for token- or card-based systems - while trying to ensure the protection and safety of patient information. The Lumidigm fingerprint solution will be featured in Booth #5242 at the HIMSS11 Exhibition to be held February 21-23 at the Orange County Convention Centre in Orlando, Fla.

Lumidigm Mercury multispectral imaging sensors capture fingerprint data beneath the surface of the skin so that dryness or gloves create no problems for reliable reads. Using multiple wavelengths of light and advanced polarization techniques to extract unique fingerprint characteristics from both the surface and subsurface of the skin, Lumidigm's sensors provide results that are more consistent, more inclusive and more tamper resistant than conventional biometric readers.

As a result, healthcare practitioners can more efficiently meet the new demands of secure healthcare IT as they navigate the world of electronic medical records and multiple systems, attempting to protect information for both patients and clinicians. Instead of each employee being issued a password, card or token, the Lumidigm biometric solution lets multiple users access the same workstation or medical device with nothing more than their finger. In most cases, the Lumidigm Mercury fingerprint sensors can be deployed simply as the necessary infrastructure is typically already in place.

The research firm of Frost & Sullivan recently awarded the New Product Innovation of the Year Award, Fingerprint Biometrics, North America, 2010, to Lumidigm. According to Frost & Sullivan, Lumidigm's "innovative technology allows Lumidigm fingerprint sensors to provide highly accurate biometric data even in adverse conditions where traditional fingerprint sensors fail."

PayPoint Rolls Out Contactless Payment across UK

UK-based cash payment network PayPoint has started distributing free contactless pin pads to 1,000 of its nationwide retailers using the PayPoint/Lloyd's TSB Cardnet service. According to PayPoint, this initiative makes it the first cash payments network in the UK to introduce contactless credit and debit card payments in stores within its national network.

PayPoint customers will soon be able to benefit from speedy contactless transactions of GBP 15 or less, while retailers will enjoy a transaction fee that is up to 4 pence lower than debit cards, said the company. PayPoint says it plans to eventually expand the rollout of contactless payment facilities to the nearly 6,000 retailers to which it provides debit or credit services.

INSIDE Secure First to Support Breakthrough Kovio RF Barcodes

Ushering in a new era in mobile consumer brand interaction, INSIDE Secure becomes the first manufacturer of near field communication (NFC) solutions to support ultra-low-cost Kovio RF Barcodes, a new category of affordable radio frequency barcodes that makes it practical to add intelligence to everyday things.

"Kovio has achieved a mobile marketing breakthrough with a technology that enables these RF barcodes to be produced so inexpensively that retailers and major brands can use them on everything they sell, opening the door to a level of mobile brand interaction that has only been dreamed of," said Philippe Martineau, executive vice president of the NFC business line for INSIDE Secure.

According to Martineau, INSIDE Secure plans to support Kovio RF Barcodes in its NFC products, including MicroRead and SecuRead, as well as its open-source Open NFC protocol stack, which recently received a Sesames Innovation Award.

Kovio combines its proprietary high-performance silicon inks with high throughput and low cost graphics printing technologies to print Kovio RF Barcode over large areas, on flexible substrates and at a fraction of the cost of conventional silicon technology. Kovio's printed silicon RF barcodes are currently printed in days, as compared to several months for conventional silicon technology, making them both practical and affordable for mass-market applications and providing an opportunity to serve a market of trillions of products.

Kovio products powered by INSIDE Secure will be on display and demonstrated at the 2011 International CES being held in Las Vegas, January 6-9, in the TazTag booth (35737) on the upper level of the South Hall.

Turkish Passports Invalid After November 2015

Turkish citizens will be able to use their old passports until 24 November 2015. After that all passports will be biometric passports or e-passports.

Replying to inquiries on the newly introduced e-passports, the Turkish Police Department said that citizens with unexpired passports would be able to use their old passports until the year 2015. The department also stated that citizens whose old passports had expired would be able to extend their documents' validity term until 31 January 2011.

Old passports would not be extended as of 1 February 2011 and those applying for an extension after such date would be given new biometric passports. Biometric passports have been designed in line with Turkey's EU adhesion process and their colours have been changed accordingly.

Regular biometric passports are now burgundy red in colour, while diplomatic passports are black. Special and service passports are still green and grey respectively.

Now On Guard Payment Encryption Service for Merchants

Ingenico, a provider of payment devices and services, has announced the release of its new On-Guard payment transaction encryption and tokenisation service for independent software vendors (ISVs) and merchants.

According to Ingenico, On-Guard is built on the industry standards of 3DES DUKPT for point-to-point encryption (P2PE) and host-based tokenisation technology, providing secure transaction processing and stored data security, as well as pre and post-authorisation, by encrypting and tokenising card data at the point-of-sale.

On-Guard is compatible with Ingenico payment devices already in use, and offers an array of key differentiators such as encrypting sensitive cardholder data from swiped, manually keyed, contactless and smart card data transactions.

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