Zack Whittaker

Zack Whittaker is the security editor for ZDNet, covering cyber and national security. He is based in New York newsroom, and is also found on sister-sites CNET and CBS News. You can reach him with his PGP key: EB6CEEA5.

Charlie Osborne

Charlie Osborne, a medical anthropologist who studied at the University of Kent, UK, is a journalist, freelance photographer and former teacher. She has spent years travelling and working across Europe and the Middle East as a teacher, and has been involved in the running of businesses ranging from media and events to B2B sales. Charlie currently works as a journalist and photographer -- with the occasional design piece -- and writes for ZDNet, CNET and SmartPlanet. She has particular interests in social media, IP law, social engineering and security.

Latest Posts

Commercial vendor of spyware under legal fire

Commercial vendor of spyware under legal fire

Just like every decent marketer out there, vendors of commercial malware tools are very good at positioning their tools. However, their pitches often contradict with themselves in a way that what's promoted as a Remote Administration Tool, has in fact built-in antivirus software evading capabilities, rootkit functionality and tutorials on how to remotely infect users over email.

November 18, 2008 by in Security

What really happened to the candidates' computers?

What really happened to the candidates' computers?

Now that two weeks have passed since the end of the presidential campaigns, it is worthwhile to take a look at what I think should have one of the biggest cybercrime stories of the year. As Ryan blogged the day after the election, both the McCain and the Obama campaigns' systems were compromised by an external party, and this compromise lead to a massive data exfiltration.

November 18, 2008 by in Enterprise Software

Microsoft kills OneCare, replaces it with freebie 'Morro'

Microsoft kills OneCare, replaces it with freebie 'Morro'

Microsoft today announced plans to kill its Windows Live OneCare PC care and security suite and replace it with a free anti-malware utility.The new product, code-named "Morro," will be designed for a smaller footprint that will use fewer computing resources, making it ideal for low-bandwidth scenarios or less powerful PCs, Microsoft said its surprise announcement.

November 18, 2008 by in Security

Anti fraud site hit by a DDoS attack

Anti fraud site hit by a DDoS attack

The popular British anti-fraud site Bobbear.co.uk is currently under a DDoS attack (distributed denial of service attack) , originally launched last Wednesday, and is continuing to hit the site with 3/4 million hits daily from hundreds of thousands of malware infected hosts mostly based in Asia and Eastern Europe, according to the site's owner.

November 17, 2008 by in Security

VoIP vulnerabilities in Microsoft Communicator

VoIP vulnerabilities in Microsoft Communicator

Researchers at VoIPshield Labs have pinpointed a wide range of denial-of-service vulnerabilities in Microsoft Communicator, the unified communications that features business-grade instant messaging , voice, and video tools.The flaws, rated "high severity," could cripple VoIP-powered communications on Office Communications Server 2007, Office Communicator and Windows Live Messenger.

November 17, 2008 by in Security

Sun plugs holes in StarOffice

Sun plugs holes in StarOffice

Two weeks after the OpenOffice.org team shipped patches for code execution flaws in office suite, Sun Micrososystems has followed up with a high-priority update for StarOffice, which is based on the open-source code.

November 14, 2008 by in Oracle

Google Chrome vulnerable to data theft flaw

Google Chrome vulnerable to data theft flaw

Google has seeded a new version of its Chrome browser to developers with fixes for a pair of security issues that could expose users to data theft.The issue, rated as a "moderate" risk could allow hackers to use HTML files to steal arbitrary files from a victim's machine.

November 12, 2008 by in Security

$10k hacking contest announced

$10k hacking contest announced

Israeli software developer Gizmox is challenging hackers to try hacking into the company's Visual WebGui Platform, by offering a $10,000 incentive to those who manage to achieve the objectives of their contest launched at the beginning of the month. What's particularly interesting about the contest is the fact that the company is running the contest as an investigation into the identity of their secret agent, the data for whom resides on their unhackable platform.

November 12, 2008 by in Security

Google fixes critical XSS vulnerability

Google fixes critical XSS vulnerability

All your accounting data are not belong to us. Hours after a proof of concept example detailing a XSS vulnerability at Google's account login page was posted at the XSS Project's clearing house, the company quickly took notice and fixed it.

November 12, 2008 by in Security

Spam rates massively down on shutdown of rogue ISP

Spam rates massively down on shutdown of rogue ISP

Several major news outlets are reporting that the shutdown of a rogue ISP in the Bay Area has lead to a massive drop in the global amount of spam. While this is "good thing", this event is not an end of spam, nor is it even the beginning of the end of spam; it is merely a temporary lull.

November 12, 2008 by in Security

Why did Microsoft wait 7 years to fix SMBRelay attack flaw?

Why did Microsoft wait 7 years to fix SMBRelay attack flaw?

One of the code execution vulnerabilities fixed in this month's Microsoft Patch Tuesday release dates back to 2001 when it was first disclosed by Cult of the Dead Cow hacker Sir Dystic (pictured left).If that wasn't cause for worry, get this:  An exploit for the bug -- in the way that Microsoft Server Message Block (SMB) Protocol handles NTLM credentials -- has been part of the Metasploit hacking tool since July 2007.

November 12, 2008 by in Security

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