National / International News

Will clubs follow West Ham's example?

BBC - Wed, 2015-04-22 08:57
West Ham are to offer the cheapest adult Premier League season ticket - BBC Sport asks the other clubs whether they will follow suit.

Morgan backs Polish language A-levels

BBC - Wed, 2015-04-22 08:44
Education Secretary Nicky Morgan tells exam boards to reverse their decision not to offer A-levels and GCSEs in minority languages such as Polish and Bengali.

At RSA, desperate for data to help understand threats

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2015-04-22 08:39

The annual RSA Conference is the largest security trade show in the world, and this year, there’s an extra level of desperation in the air. Security vendors and IT chiefs are looking to big data to help them understand how to protect companies from the ever-increasing tide of hackers looking to break in.

 The RSA Conference is, at its heart, a show where the makers of security products come to pitch their wares to big enterprise buyers. Those buyers, of course, are more interested than ever, since big companies and consumers are both reeling from a string of high-profile breaches at <a href="http://www.marketplace.org/topics/tech/sony-hack-dissected">Sony</a>, JP Morgan, Home Depot, <a href="https://soundcloud.com/marketplace/target-credit-hack-relied-on">Target</a> and others.

 Insiders say there’s a palpable shift in tone from how the security industry used to treat breached companies. They used to be pariahs: companies that had failed and obviously had inferior infrastructure.

 Now, though, the incoming president of RSA tells Fortune magazine flatly that <a href="https://fortune.com/2015/04/21/rsa-conference-amit-yoran-keynote/">"security has failed."</a>

Security products used to promise prevention and protection. At past conferences, a security company might terrify IT officers with tales of potential security flaws and then tout an ironclad fix.

More recently, as breaches got more common and ironclad fixes less believable, the focus shifted to "intrusion detection." Security experts started telling companies that they shouldn’t wonder if a breach might happen — only when.

 So, the next wave of products promised to detect those inevitable breaches sooner, before they got out of control and compromised mass amounts of data (remember, the Target and JP Morgan hackers were roaming around inside the company’s networks for months before anyone noticed). 

So this year, the product focus is something more like troubleshooting.

 "Half the vendors here are talking about some app that can provide intelligence or 'threat intelligence,'" says Chris McClean, a risk and security analyst at Forrester Research. "That’s the buzzword of the year here."

From what I can tell, "threat intelligence" is really just a dramatic way of saying "figure out what’s happening and hopefully what might work to stop the bad guys."

For example, I interviewed Vikram Phatak, CEO of a company called NSS Labs, which is a security research and advisory company that just launched a new product to help companies gather data about where they’re vulnerable to attack and how well their security products are working.

NSS Labs <a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/04/14/idUSnMKWr1G6wa+1c8+MKW20150414">just raised $7 million in funding</a> to grow its spectacularly named Cyber Advanced Warning System. It’s basically a subscription service with a web dashboard that offers analytics about a company’s security.

There are lots of points of possible failures. Most companies layer on multiple products, like an intrusion detection service, a firewall and a so-called "endpoint solution" (basically an antivirus or antimalware product like McAfee). And then there’s all the potentially vulnerable software the company runs, like Windows, Java, Flash, Internet Explorer and so on.

The Cyber Advanced Warning System dashboard might show, for example, that lots of attacks are getting through the firewall but being stopped by the antivirus software, but that the company is running an outdated version of Java and needs to update it before someone exploits it and takes over company systems.

 The goal, says Phatak, is to help security pros understand how to better use the software they have, deploy the right settings on their company networks and get "situational awareness" about their overall security systems.  

 McClean says that approach — looking to the data — is a big theme at RSA this year.

 "The message is right," he says. "If you are telling an enterprise, we can take all of the disparate sources of information, we can tell you where you risks are and help you make better business decisions, how to allocate and where to prioritize and whether to use certain vendors in certain regions, then as a vendor, you’re in great shape." 

Still, he says there could be a whole new approach to security by next year, because cybersecurity threats are going to keep increasing for the foreseeable future — that is, there's always something to be afraid of. 

"Every year we say that in the last year we’ve seen breaches that are unprecedented and this totally changes the game," he says. "Next year we’ll say there are new breaches that have changed the game; in three years there will be more breaches that change the game. The game will always have changed."

Bail For Alleged 'Flash Crash' Trader Set At More Than $7M

NPR News - Wed, 2015-04-22 08:35

U.S. prosecutors say the U.K. man contributed to the 2010 "flash crash" that wiped about $800 billion from the value of shares. He told a London court that he opposes extradition to the U.S.

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Disney makes people speak gibberish

BBC - Wed, 2015-04-22 08:33
Disney's research arm develops a program that can automatically dub a video with alternative speech that fits a speaker's lip movements.

Trains 'had to queue' at Auschwitz

BBC - Wed, 2015-04-22 08:32
So many trains full of Jews used to arrive at Auschwitz that often two would have to wait while people from the first were "processed", a former Nazi SS guard says at his trial.

Pipe bombs 'meant to kill or maim'

BBC - Wed, 2015-04-22 08:29
Three pipe bombs are made safe by Army bomb experts in County Londonderry.

Young backs England selection policy

BBC - Wed, 2015-04-22 08:27
Wasps' Dai Young backs England policy on overseas Test players, and says failing to do the same has "wrecked" Welsh regions.

Court orders asylum seekers' return

BBC - Wed, 2015-04-22 08:21
The home secretary must return an asylum seeker and her son to the UK just months after ordering their removal, the Court of Appeal rules.

Debate: Is It Time To Abolish The Death Penalty?

NPR News - Wed, 2015-04-22 08:15

The practice is under renewed scrutiny after a series of botched executions in several states last year. The emotionally charged issue is at the center of the latest Intelligence Squared U.S. debate.

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Why Many Doctors Don't Follow 'Best Practices'

NPR News - Wed, 2015-04-22 08:14

Doctors, it turns out, often don't follow evidence-based guidelines in their practice of medicine. Scientists who study this contrariness think they know why.

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Candidate may sue UKIP for libel

BBC - Wed, 2015-04-22 08:03
A UKIP general election candidate tells BBC Wales she is planning legal action against her own party.

Could It Be? Researchers Find A Hiring Bias That Favors Women

NPR News - Wed, 2015-04-22 08:03

A new study shows that universities have a 2:1 preference for hiring women for STEM tenure-track positions.

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'People' Names Sandra Bullock, 50, World's Most Beautiful Woman

NPR News - Wed, 2015-04-22 07:57

The actress is the oldest person to head the annual list. But as Clinton and Bush race for the White House, the news seems seems like deja vu — a vision from 1992.

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Salmond 'joke' over Labour Budget

BBC - Wed, 2015-04-22 07:42
Ex-SNP leader Alex Salmond says he was making a "light-hearted" point after David Cameron tweeted a video of him saying he would write Labour's Budget.

Deadly IS-rebel clashes in Syria

BBC - Wed, 2015-04-22 07:38
More than 40 people are reported to have been killed in clashes between Syrian Islamist rebels and Islamic State militants north of Damascus.

£700k mortgage cheat may face jail

BBC - Wed, 2015-04-22 07:36
An award-winning mortgage broker involved in almost £700,000 worth of fraud and deception could face jail, a court hears.

Tiernan-Locke: I want to race again

BBC - Wed, 2015-04-22 07:25
Former Team Sky rider Jonathan Tiernan-Locke wants to return to cycling in 2016 after serving a two-year doping ban.

The 'Folk Feminism' Roots Of The Latina 'Chola' Look

NPR News - Wed, 2015-04-22 07:24

Celebrities like Rihanna, Selena Gomez and Sandra Bullock have appropriated this "tough girl" aesthetic from the cholas of the 90s. But the look actually has some really radical roots.

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Aerobatics pilot dies in plane crash

BBC - Wed, 2015-04-22 07:13
A aerobatics pilot has died in a plane crash at an airfield in Norfolk.

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