Linux Security Week: August 13th, 2012
Source: LinuxSecurity Contributors - Posted by Benjamin D. Thomas   
Linux Security Week Thank you for reading the weekly security newsletter. The purpose of this document is to provide our readers with a quick summary of each week's most relevant Linux security headlines. Feature Extras:

Password guessing with Medusa 2.0 - Medusa was created by the fine folks at, in fact the much awaited Medusa 2.0 update was released in February of 2010. For a complete change log please visit

Password guessing as an attack vector - Using password guessing as an attack vector. Over the years we've been taught a strong password must be long and complex to be considered secure. Some of us have taken that notion to heart and always ensure our passwords are strong. But some don't give a second thought to the complexity or length of our password.

  Car-hacking: Bluetooth and other security issues (Aug 6)

A disgruntled former employee of Texas Auto Center chose a creative way to get back at the Austin-based dealership: He hacked into the company's computers and remotely activated the vehicle-immobilization system, which triggered the horn and disabled the ignition system in more than 100 of the vehicles.

  Canadian hacker dupes Walmart to win Def Con prize (Aug 9)

It was an elaborate yarn, weeks in the making."Gary Darnell" from Walmart's home office in Bentonville, Ark., called a store in Western Canada. He lamented having to work the weekend.

  How Not to Become Mat Honan: A Short Primer on Online Security (Aug 8)

By now, you've probably read or heard about Wired staff writer Mat Honan's journey through digital hell, in which hackers social-engineered Apple into giving them the keys to his digital life, allowing them to scrub his laptop, iPhone and iPad, hijack his and Gizmodo's Twitter accounts and delete eight-years-worth of email from his Gmail account.

  How Apple and Amazon Security Flaws Led to My Epic Hacking (Aug 7)

In the space of one hour, my entire digital life was destroyed. First my Google account was taken over, then deleted. Next my Twitter account was compromised, and used as a platform to broadcast racist and homophobic messages. And worst of all, my AppleID account was broken into, and my hackers used it to remotely erase all of the data on my iPhone, iPad, and MacBook.

  Week in security: hackers and government working together (Aug 6)

Governments and hackers may not have always seen eye-to-eye, but NSA head Keith Alexander bridged that gap by asking hackers at the Defcon conference for their help in securing the Internet. As he should: with Defcon over and another Black Hat conference now concluded , new idiot-proof hacking tools on the market; new malware that can compromise your BIOS without leaving a trace;

  Saving throw: securing democracy with stats, spreadsheets, and 10-sided dice (Aug 7)

Armed with a set of 10-sided dice (we'll get to those in a moment), an online Web tool, and a stack of hundreds of ballots, University of California-Berkeley statistics professor Philip Stark spent last Friday unleashing both science and technology upon a recent California election.

  Amazon Quietly Closes Security Hole After Journalist's Devastating Hack (Aug 8)

Amazon changed its customer privacy policies on Monday, closing security gaps that were exploited in the identity hacking of Wired reporter Mat Honan on Friday.

  Gizmodo sees Twitter account hacked (Aug 6)

Gizmodo's Twitter account was hacked on Friday by a group called Clan VV3. The breach didn't last long, but it was enough to send racist and offensive messages to the account's 415,000 followers.

  Infamous hacker's grim warning for Australia (Aug 9)

Notorious hacker Kevin Mitnick went to jail for five years for breaking into US companies, and he says Australian government inaction means scores of privacy disasters are going under the radar.

  Hacker succeeds, forces Apple, Amazon to change security policies (Aug 8)

The big news this week was the hijacking of Wired reporter Mat Honan's iCloud account. Honan was hacked via a security flaw in Apple and Amazon's security policies, which allowed the hacker to pretend to be him and obtain access to his email account and AppleID.

  When passwords fail: How to make yourself hack-proof (Aug 13)

A moderately skilled hacker can get into your online accounts and wreak havoc - and changing your passwords will barely slow them down. Here are four steps to protect yourself and your data.

  NSA chief seeks help from hackers (Aug 13)

Gen. Keith B. Alexander, the director of the National Security Agency, asked hackers for help securing cyberspace when he spoke at the Defcon conference late last month.

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