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07.31.15

Links 31/7/2015: Lennart Poettering as ‘Linux Hero’ and systemd Conference Coming

Posted in News Roundup at 5:41 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • Accuvant researchers to release open source RFID access tool

    Security researchers have long known about the vulnerabilities of the RFID readers that many buildings use instead of door locks, but facilities managers have been slow to upgrade to more secure systems.

    To draw attention to the problem, at next week’s Black Hat conference, Accuvant researchers will be releasing an open source piece of hardware that can be used to circumvent these readers.

  • VA Secretary: Open source is the only way to operate

    Veterans Affairs Department Secretary Bob McDonald voiced his support for open source technology July 30, as he outlined a broad reform plan that includes streamlining information technology and taking a more “holistic” look at customer service.

    “We have over 200 databases with customer information. That means if you want to change your address, you have to go to at least nine places to change your address at VA,” said McDonald during a morning keynote July 30 at a conference in Bethesda, Md.

  • OpenDaylight Project Picks Up Steam
  • Kim Dotcom to create Wikimedia-style open source Mega 3.0

    Dotcom’s first file locker, Megaupload, saw him accused of knowingly hosting, and indeed encouraging the upload and distribution of, stolen films and music. From his new home in New Zealand, he’s fought a long legal battle on numerous fronts, fending off extradition attempts, accusing kiwi authorities of working without warrants end even trying, and failing miserably, to promote a political part .

  • Databases

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • CMS

    • Dummy projects for new Drupal hires

      Lakhani’s current role involves promoting the use of applications like Drupal, WordPress, Magento, and Redline through free tools and services. But, this Denver-based executive’s experience shows most in forming the global, distributed team of developers and support staff inherent to success.

  • BSD

    • from distribution to project

      OpenBSD is going through something of a minimalist phase right now, but that wasn’t always the case. There was definitely an era of aggressive importation as well. Times change, priorities change, projects change. I wasn’t involved with OpenBSD during the early years, but I think I can explain the shift in attitudes. This is part three of an apparently ongoing series that started with Pruning and Polishing and out with the old, in with the less.

    • sashan@ on SMP pf progress

      One of our new developers, Alexandr Nedvedicky (sashan@), writes in to tell us about his trip to the lovely locale of Calgary for c2k15.

  • Public Services/Government

    • Open source part of Bulgarian eGovernment tender requirements

      The Bulgarian government has added open source as a requirement to its ‘Preliminary criteria for the eligibility of eGovernment projects’.

    • IT trade groups protest Slovak licence deal

      Two IT trade associations in the Slovak Republic are objecting the renewal of a proprietary software licence contract negotiated by the country’s Ministry of Finance for all government organisations. Instead of continuing to rely on proprietary office suites, the groups want the Slovakian government to explore a transition to open source alternatives.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • WEBINAR – A standard that is not managed is not a standard

      Through their brief webinar Marijke and Marco will share with the audience how the Dutch Government is promoting the adoption of open standards through BOMOS, a method (initiated by Dr. Erwin Folmer, TNO with contribution from Marijke) which describes how to maintain and manage open standards.

Leftovers

  • Security

    • Tuesday’s security updates
    • Security updates for Wednesday
    • Security updates for Thursday
    • Remote code execution via serialized data

      Serialization and, more importantly, deserialization of data is unsafe due to the simple fact that the data being processed is trusted implicitly as being “correct.” So if you’re taking data such as program variables from a non trusted source you’re making it possible for an attacker to control program flow. Additionally many programming languages now support serialization of not just data (e.g. strings, arrays, etc.) but also of code objects. For example with Python pickle() you can actually serialize user defined classes, you can take a section of code, ship it to a remote system, and it is executed there.

    • To exec or transition that is the question…
    • CIL – Part1: Faster SELinux policy (re)build
    • FCC Rules Block use of Open Source

      The United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has introduced ‘software security requirements’ obliging WiFi device manufacturers to “ensure that only properly authenticated software is loaded and operating the device”. The document specifically calls out the DD-WRT open source router project, but clearly also applies to other popular distributions such as OpenWRT. This could become an early battle in ‘The war on general purpose computing’ as many smartphones and Internet of Things devices contain WiFi router capabilities that would be covered by the same rules.

    • Hacked Jeep Cherokee Exposes Weak Underbelly of High-Tech Cars

      The Jeep Cherokee brought to a halt by hackers last week exposed wireless networks as the weakest link in high-tech vehicles, underscoring the need to find fast over-the-air fixes to block malicious intrusions.

      Features that buyers now expect in most modern automobiles, such as driving directions and restaurant guides, count on a constant connection to a telecommunications network. But that link also makes cars vulnerable to security invasions like those that threaten computers in homes and businesses.

  • Censorship

    • David Cameron wants to block non-age verifiying porn sites

      PRIME MINISTER David Cameron is looking to ensure that adult websites, the sort that MPs like, will abide by age verification standards and make sure that fumbling punters are of adult age.

      Cameron has a thing about these sites, as does a huge chunk of Westminster, and would like to see adult content subjected to bondage and inspection. He would like to give it a firm political going over and a good legislative seeing to. He wants to take it in hand.

  • Civil Rights

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • FCC has already gotten 2,000 “net neutrality” complaints

      The Federal Communications Commission received about 2,000 net neutrality complaints from consumers over a one-month period, according to a National Journal article today. The overarching theme of the complaints is that customers are fed up with their Internet service providers, often due to slow speeds, high prices, and data caps. In a sampling of 60 complaints, the most frequent targets were AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon.

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