Anti-Virus Vendors Scramble To Patch Hijacking Exploit Involving Microsoft Tool

Slashdot - 1 hour 10 min ago
"A zero-day attack called Double Agent can take over antivirus software on Windows machines," Network World reported Wednesday. wiredmikey writes: The attack involves the Microsoft Application Verifier, a runtime verification tool for unmanaged code that helps developers find subtle programming errors in their applications... [The exploit] allows a piece of malware executed by a privileged user to register a malicious DLL for a process associated with an antivirus or other endpoint security product, and hijack its agent. Patches were released by Malwarebytes, AVG, and Trend Micro, the security researchers told BleepingComputer earlier this week. Kaspersky Lab told ZDNet "that measures to detect and block the malicious scenario have now been added to all its products," while Norton downplayed the exploit, saying the attack "would require physical access to the machine and admin privileges to be successful," with their spokesperson "adding that it has deployed additional detection and blocking protections in the unlikely event users are targeted." BetaNews reports that the researchers "say that it is very easy for antivirus producers to implement a method of protection against this zero-day, but it is simply not being done. 'Microsoft has provided a new design concept for antivirus vendors called Protected Processes...specially designed for antivirus services...the protected process infrastructure only allows trusted, signed code to load and has built-in defense against code injection attacks.'"

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Categories: Science

After Healthcare Defeat, Can The Trump Administration Fix America's H-1B Visa Program?

Slashdot - 2 hours 10 min ago
Friday the Trump administration suffered a political setback when divisions in the president's party halted a move to repeal healthcare policies passed in 2010. But if Trump hopes to turn his attention to how America's H-1B visa program is affecting technology workers, "time is running out," writes Slashdot reader pteddy. Bloomberg reports: [T]he application deadline for the most controversial visa program is the first week of April, which means new rules have to be in place for that batch of applicants or another year's worth of visas will be handed out under the existing guidelines... There probably isn't enough time to pass legislation on such a contentious issue. But Trump could sign an executive order with some changes. The article points out that under the current system, one outsourcing firm was granted 6.5 times as many U.S. visas as Amazon. There's also an interesting map showing which countries' workers received the most H-1B visas in 2015 -- 69.4% went to workers in India, with another 10.5% going to China -- and a chart showing which positions are most in demand, indicating that two-thirds of the visa applications are for tech workers.

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Categories: Science

Researchers Teach Self-Driving Cars To 'See' Better At Night

Slashdot - 3 hours 10 min ago
Researchers may have developed a way for self-driving cars to continue navigating at night (or on rainy days) by performing an AI analysis to identify traffic signs by their relative reflectiveness. Slashdot reader sciencehabit shares an article from Science: Their approach requires autonomous cars to continuously capture images of their surroundings. Each image is evaluated by a machine learning algorithm...looking for a section of the image that is likely to contain a sign. It's able to simultaneously evaluate multiple sections of the image -- a departure from previous systems that considered parts of an image one by one. At this stage, it's possible it will also detect irrelevant signs placed along roads. The section of the image flagged as a possible sign then passes through what's known as a convolutional neural network [which] picks up on specific features like shapes, symbols, and numbers in the image to decide which type of sign it most likely depicts... In the real world, this should mean that an autonomous car can drive down the street and accurately pinpoint and decipher every single sign it passes.

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Categories: Science

TV’s Best Political Show Might Just Be The Originals. Yeah, the One With the Vampires

Wired News - 3 hours 14 min ago
It might be a 'Vampire Diaries' spinoff on the CW, but it surprisingly—and consistently—explores America's cultural dynamics. The post TV’s Best Political Show Might Just Be The Originals. Yeah, the One With the Vampires appeared first on WIRED.
Categories: Science

Stack Overflow Reveals Results From 'Largest Developer Survey Ever Conducted'

Slashdot - 4 hours 10 min ago
More than 64,000 developers from 213 countries participated in this year's annual survey by Stack Overflow -- the largest number ever -- giving a glimpse into the collective psyche of programmers around the world. An anonymous reader quotes their announcement: A majority of developers -- 56.5% -- said they were underpaid. Developers who work in government and non-profits feel the most underpaid, while those who work in finance feel the most overpaid... While only 13.1% of developers are actively looking for a job, 75.2% of developers are interested in hearing about new job opportunities... When asked what they valued most when considering a new job, 53.3% of respondents said remote options were a top priority. 65% of developers reported working remotely at least one day a month, and 11.1% say they're full-time remote or almost all the time. Also, the highest job satisfaction ratings came from developers who work remotely full-time. 62.5% of the respondents reported using JavaScript, while 51.2% reported SQL, with 39.7% using Java and 34.1% using C# -- but for the #5 slot, "the use of Python [32.0%] overtook PHP [28.1%] for the first time in five years." Yet as far as which languages developers wanted to continue using, "For the second year in a row, Rust was the most loved programming language... Swift, last year's second most popular language, ranked as fourth. For the second year in a row, Visual Basic (for 2017, Visual Basic 6, specifically) ranked as the most dreaded language; 88.3% of developers currently using Visual Basic said they did not want to continue using it."

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Categories: Science

Steve Wozniak Invests In Robot-Powered Paper-Digitizing Startup

Slashdot - 5 hours 10 min ago
Steve Wozniak -- along with Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byer -- have invested in an automated paper-digitization company named Ripcord, which formally launched on Thursday. An anonymous reader quotes VentureBeat: Based in Hayward, California, Ripcord has machines that can scan, index, and categorize paper records to make them searchable through companies' existing systems, via the cloud... Upon receipt, Ripcord unboxes the files and passes them to its machines, which scan, upload, and convert the content into searchable PDFs. Ripcord says that the conversion and classification process is around 80 percent automated and covers handling, the removal of fasteners (e.g. staples), and scanning. "It sounds silly at first, but a really big part of the reason why this has never been done before are staples," explains Business Insider. "Existing scanner systems require humans to pull staples, separate three-ring binders, unclip paper clips, and occasionally even unstrip duct tape before they can go through the system -- otherwise they jam up the works." "Our robots work their magic," explains Ripcord's web site. They're charging .004 cents per page -- for every month that it's stored in the cloud.

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Categories: Science

Indiana's Inmates Could Soon Have Access To Tablets

Slashdot - 6 hours 14 min ago
An anonymous reader quotes a report from ABC57 News in South Bend, Indiana: Indiana is looking to help offenders who are behind bars. Soon, each inmate in the Hoosier state could have their own tablet. The Indiana Department of Correction says the tablet will help inmates stay connected with their families and improve their education. Offenders will be able to use the tablets to access any classwork, self-help materials or entertainment. Officials expect to use entertainment, like music or movies, to reward good behavior. The proposal was first filed in January. Apple iPad's or kindles won't be used. Instead, a company that makes tablets specifically for prisons or jails will be hired. One San Francisco based-company they may consider, Telmate, has a device that is used in more than 20 states, including some jails in Marshall County. INDOC is hoping a vendor will front the costs of the entertainment apps so taxpayers won't have to. INDOC also says it wants to avoid charging inmate fees because charging fees that they can't afford would defeat the purpose of the system. If the company selected pays, the vendor would be reimbursed and still earn a profit.

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Categories: Science

Only You Can Stop The Expanse From Becoming the Next Canceled Sci-Fi Classic

Wired News - 6 hours 43 min ago
Fans love the Syfy space drama-but they might not love it enough to keep it on the air. The post Only You Can Stop The Expanse From Becoming the Next Canceled Sci-Fi Classic appeared first on WIRED.
Categories: Science

Tesla’s Model 3 Is Coming. Here’s What We Know Now

Wired News - 8 hours 13 min ago
The latest news comes from a six second video on Elon Musk's Twitter feed. The post Tesla’s Model 3 Is Coming. Here’s What We Know Now appeared first on WIRED.
Categories: Science

YouTube’s Ad Problems Finally Blow Up in Google’s Face

Wired News - 8 hours 43 min ago
Brands boycotted Google this past week when they learned their ads were appearing on hateful videos. The pressure could finally force the company to change. The post YouTube’s Ad Problems Finally Blow Up in Google’s Face appeared first on WIRED.
Categories: Science

Space Photos of the Week: Codependent Spiral Galaxies Dunno Who They Are Anymore

Wired News - 8 hours 43 min ago
An up-close of Mars dunes, dwarf planets, and a massive protostar from this week in space. The post Space Photos of the Week: Codependent Spiral Galaxies Dunno Who They Are Anymore appeared first on WIRED.
Categories: Science

Security News This Week: FedEx Offered Customers Five Bucks to Re-Install Flash

Wired News - 8 hours 43 min ago
Each weekend we round up the news stories that we didn't break or cover in depth but that still deserve your attention. The post Security News This Week: FedEx Offered Customers Five Bucks to Re-Install Flash appeared first on WIRED.
Categories: Science

Meet the Woman Who Can See With Her Ears

Wired News - 8 hours 43 min ago
Nearly three decades after losing her sight, Pat discovers a new way to see. The post Meet the Woman Who Can See With Her Ears appeared first on WIRED.
Categories: Science

Planet or Dwarf Planet: All Worlds are Worth Investigating

Space.com - 9 hours 14 min ago
Pluto's status as a "dwarf planet" is once again stirring debate. This comes as some planetary scientists are trying to have Pluto reclassified as a planet – a wish that's not likely to come true.
Categories: Science

Air Force's Mysterious X-37B Space Plane Breaks Orbital Record

Space.com - 9 hours 14 min ago
The current mission of the U.S. Air Force's robotic X-37B space plane is now the longest in the clandestine program's history.
Categories: Science

Planet Again? Pluto, Most Moons Count Under Proposed Definition

Space.com - 9 hours 14 min ago
A group of planetary scientists is making the case for a new definition of a planet; this one would include Pluto and most moons. Here's why these researchers think the new definition is better.
Categories: Science

3 Cool Ways to Protect Your Eyes During the Total Solar Eclipse

Space.com - 9 hours 14 min ago
Never look directly at the sun, even during a total solar eclipse, like the one that will occur on Aug. 21. Instead, use these tips for how to safely observe the cosmic event.
Categories: Science

Crumbling Comet? The Great Debate About Whether Rosetta Rock 67P is Breaking Apart

Space.com - 9 hours 14 min ago
It is almost six months since the Rosetta spacecraft completed its operations at comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimanko. The landing may have marked the end of data collection from the comet – but not the end of news about 67P.
Categories: Science

Scientists Name 11 New Cloud Types

Slashdot - 9 hours 44 min ago
The increased use of technology capable of photographing and sharing images has prompted the World Meteorological Organization to add 11 new cloud classifications to their International Cloud Atlas. "A far cry from simple white puffs, these 11 new cloud types roll, dip, and menace their way across the skies," reports National Geographic. From the report: These 11 additions are the first updates that the atlas has received in 30 years, and much of the change can be attributed to citizen scientists who can share and discuss clouds by uploading photos to the Atlas's site. 2017 is the first year that the renowned atlas will be published entirely online, but a hardbound version will follow later this year. Asperitas, Latin for roughness, is the cloud type that has citizen scientists most excited and has been a special victory for the UK-based Cloud Appreciation Society. This photo, first spotted in 2006, captured their attention for its inability to be described by existing cloud types. Marked by small divot-like features that create chaotic ripples across the sky, asperitas were championed by enthusiasts who noticed they did not accurately fall under existing categories. Other clouds that formerly went by more colloquial names, such as the wave-like Kelvin-Helmoltz cloud, and fallstreak holes, will now be recognized with the Latin names fluctus and cavum, respectively. You can watch a time-lapse of the newly classified asperitas here.

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Categories: Science

Supermassive Black Hole Rocketing Out of Distant Galaxy At 5 Million MPH

Slashdot - 12 hours 44 min ago
The Bad Astronomer writes: Astronomers have found a supermassive black hole barreling out of its home galaxy at 5 million miles per hour. The 3 billion solar mass behemoth formed from the merger of two slightly smaller black holes after two galaxies collided and themselves merged. The resulting blast of gravitational waves is thought to have been asymmetric, causing a rocket effect which launched the resulting black hole away. It's currently 40,000 light years from the galaxy's core. Source: ESA/Hubble

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Categories: Science