Trusting the protectors.

… This is why the recent disclosure of Regin is so disquieting. The first public announcement of Regin was from Symantec, on November 23. The company said that its researchers had been studying it for about a year, and announced its existence because they knew of another source that was going to announce it. That source was a news site, the Intercept, which described Regin and its U.S. connections the following day. Both Kaspersky and F-Secure soon published their own findings. Both stated that they had been tracking Regin for years. All three of the antivirus companies were able to find samples of it in their files since 2008 or 2009.

So why did these companies all keep Regin a secret for so long? And why did they leave us vulnerable for all this time?

To get an answer, we have to disentangle two things. Near as we can tell, all the companies had added signatures for Regin to their detection database long before last month. The VirusTotal website has a signature for Regin as of 2011. Both Microsoft security and F-Secure started detecting and removing it that year as well. Symantec has protected its users against Regin since 2013, although it certainly added the VirusTotal signature in 2011.

Entirely separately and seemingly independently, all of these companies decided not to publicly discuss Regin’s existence until after Symantec and the Intercept did so. Reasons given vary. Mikko Hyponnen of F-Secure said that specific customers asked him not to discuss the malware that had been found on their networks. Fox IT, which was hired to remove Regin from the Belgian phone company Belgacom’s website, didn’t say anything about what it discovered because it “didn’t want to interfere with NSA/GCHQ operations.”

Don’t worry – there’s still plenty left.

Saudi Arabia Arrests 135 Suspected Terrorists

Good idea.

On this day in history.

On this day, Montanan Jeanette Rankin, the first woman elected to Congress and a dedicated lifelong pacifist, casts the sole Congressional vote against the U.S. declaration of war on Japan. She was the only member of Congress to vote against U.S. involvement in both World Wars, having been among those who voted against American entry into World War I nearly a quarter of a century earlier.

Rankin was a committed pacifist, and she cared little about the damage her beliefs caused her political career. Although some male representatives joined her in voting against World War I in 1917, many citizens saw her vote as evidence that a woman could not handle the difficult burdens of national leadership. Perhaps as a result, Montanans voted her out of office two years later. Ironically, Rankin won re-election to the House in 1940, just in time to face another vote on war.

While her commitment to pacifism was politically harmful during World War I, Rankin knew that in the case of World War II, it would be downright suicidal. The surprise Japanese attack on the U.S. military base at Pearl Harbor was devastating, and zeal for revenge was at a fever pitch. The vast majority of Americans supported President Roosevelt’s call for a declaration of war.

Slide show.

Early announcement may mean early dollars.

“I’m in.”

That’s the phrase the political world is waiting to hear from the dozens of Republicans and some Democrats who are considering a run for the White House in 2016.

The starting gun for what could be the most competitive presidential primary in recent memory will be fired once a big-name candidate announces, and political insiders are placing their bets on who will be first out of the gate.

On the Republican side, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal are said to be looking at the calendar — and over their shoulders — in preparation for announcements this spring.


Other GOP contenders, such as Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, are circling the wagons. And a decision is expected soon from former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, which would ripple across the Republican field whether he gets in or stays out of the race.
For Democrats, the spotlight is fixed squarely on former secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

IDF on Syria

Syrian opposition sources told Arab media on Monday that the airstrikes near Damascus that were alleged to have been carried out by Israeli warplanes destroyed a storage facility housing anti-aircraft missiles as well as drones belonging to Hezbollah.

While the Lebanese Shi’ite group has yet to officially comment on the attack, Channel 2 is citing a report in the Hezbollah-affiliated newspaper Al-Akhbar which said that “the Israeli action was intended to preserve the rules of the game.”

The newspaper claimed that the IAF struck weapons caches “that belonged to Hezbollah.” These arms are considered to be “capable of tilting the strategic balance,” namely threaten Israel’s ability to act freely in the skies above Lebanon.

The IAF has struck Syria several times since the start of the three-year conflict, mostly destroying weaponry such as missiles that Israeli officials said were destined for their longtime foe Hezbollah in neighboring Lebanon.

Your tax dollars at work.

From ‘Obama World’

Illinois lawmakers left nearly $300 million in federal money on the table by not moving to approve a state-run health insurance marketplace by the end of their fall veto session, and any remaining hopes to set up such an exchange are dimming.

Only 5? That may not be enough.

5 ways court could thwart Obama

The Supreme Court could have an outsized impact on President Obama’s agenda next year.

The court has been a mixed bag for Obama during his presidency. He’s had big wins, including rulings affirming the Affordable Care Act and striking down the Defense of Marriage Act. But there have been losses too, including a challenge to ObamaCare’s contraceptive mandate and the elimination of part of the Voting Rights Act.

With challenges on issues including ObamaCare, EPA regulations and potentially gay marriage, here are five ways that the Supreme Court could impact Obama’s agenda in the twilight of his presidency.

Is this a desperate stretch to influence elections?

Syria confirms attack, accuses Israel of intervening in order to help terrorists fighting to overthrow the country’s legitimate government

There’s a movie in this.

While Azzopardi sat smirking in a purple sweat suit and handcuffs, an officer with the Canadian Border Security Agency suggested to the adjudicator that the woman’s use of 40 aliases — including Emily Peet, Lindsay Coughlin, Dakota Johnson and Georgia McAuliffe — to commit offences in Australia were also evidence she might disappear before her scheduled removal on Dec. 9.

“Ms Azzopardi has a long history of impersonating others, lying and committing fraud,” hearing officer Rhonda Macklin said.

“She’s been unco-operative with CBSA, refusing to answer our questions about how she obtained the travel documents needed to gain entry to Canada.”

Investigators and health care workers in Calgary spent countless hours working with Azzopardi after she walked into a city clinic on Sept. 16 claiming that her name was Aurora Hepburn, that she was 14 and that she had been a victim of an abduction, sexual assault and torture.

You have to wonder if the voters weren’t … trying to say something.

Half of the Senators who voted for Obamacare won’t be part of new Senate

Slide show.

You can’t tell the players without a program.

Interpol issues over 40 arrest warrants for senior Muslim Brotherhood members

Interpol issued arrest warrants for more than 40 senior Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated figures, including head of the Doha-based International Union of Muslim Scholars Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi.

“Egyptian authorities succeeded in persuading Interpol that these figures are fugitives and terrorists who are inciting violence and crimes,” a high-level Egyptian security official informed Asharq Al-Awsat on Saturday.

He revealed that Interpol had issued “red notices” for Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, Sheikh Wagdy Ghoneim and 40 other “senior members” of the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood organization.

The Egyptian official said that the figures included on the list are wanted on a number of terror-related crimes.

As for Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, who is often described as the “spiritual godfather” of the Muslim Brotherhood, the Egyptian official said: “He has issued statements aiming to confuse relations between Qatar and its Gulf neighbors, in addition to inciting violence in Egypt and Syria.”


Meet the first lady of graphene, turning harmful gases into the wonder stuff

Catharina Paukner is building a supersized graphene factory in Cambridge that can turn methane from landfill – or even cows – into modern-day black gold

Ghost ship.

Researchers from the University of Hawai’i (UH) and NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries today announced the discovery of an intact “ghost ship” in 2,000 feet of water nearly 20 miles off the coast of Oahu. Sitting upright, its solitary mast still standing and the ship’s wheel still in place, the hulk of the former cable ship Dickenson, later the USS Kailua, was found on the seabed last year on a maritime heritage submersible mission with the UH Hawai’i Undersea Research Laboratory’s (HURL) Terry Kerby and Drs. James Delgado and Hans Van Tilburg of the maritime heritage program in NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries.


We all know that emails just don’t “disappear.”

Lois Lerner, former IRS Exempt Organizations director, and her Obama administration allies will now have to face that fact, as thousands of her “missing” emails have been found by the IRS inspector general.

Here’s what we know: Beginning in 2010, in the run up to the midterm congressional election, a number of Democratic officials denounced the Citizens United decision and political speech by conservative groups. As President Obama and other national Democrats attacked the political speech of these organizations as a “threat to our democracy,” the IRS began to systematically scrutinize the tax exempt applications filed by these conservative groups. This effort seems to have been spearheaded by Ms. Lerner, who made it her mission to “fix the problem” posed by Citizens United.

Those who do not know history …

The world is changing and becoming even more dangerous — in a way we’ve seen before.

In the decade before World War I, the near-hundred-year European peace that had followed the fall of Napoleon was taken for granted. Yet it abruptly imploded in 1914. Prior little wars in the Balkans had seemed to predict a much larger one on the horizon — and were ignored.

Arrests in the UK

Counter-terrorism police have arrested three men on suspicion of supplying forged documents, Scotland Yard said late Saturday.

The men arrested are aged 28, 33 and 30 and are in custody at a central London police station.

Officers are still searching two residential addresses in London and have finished searching another location in the East Midlands.

Police facing a rising tide of Islamic radicalisation fuelled by the conflict in Syria and Iraq have made a string of arrests in recent days.

On this day in history.

This makes sense.

They could easily carry a raspberry pi.

Dronecode Project by Linux Foundation

The Linux Foundation announced on October 13 at LinuxCon Europe the founding of the Dronecode Project.
The goal of this project is to unify existing open-source drone projects and assets under a non-profit structure. Eventually, there will be a Linux based platform for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs).

It really doesn’t sound like the Prince has his heart in it.

Bahrain has urged the international community to combat “evil theocrats” in a bid to eradicate the spread of jihadist ideologies in the region. His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander and First Deputy Premier was speaking during the opening of the 10th International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) Regional Security Summit: The Manama Dialogue 2014, which was held at the Ritz-Carlton Bahrain, Hotel and Spa last night.

“I call on you to disregard the term ‘war on terror’ and focus on the real threat which is the rise of these evil theocrats,” said HRH the Crown Prince.

“If we look at the strategic situation our war on terror is a little bit older than 10 years, but not by much, and I think the time has come for us to get rid of that name.

“It is a bit misleading.

“Terrorism is merely a tool used by people.”

Canada taking one step too far.

More than 60 organizations and agencies from across the country are calling for the non-enforcement and repeal of new prostitution laws that came into force on Saturday.

The groups — which include the Canadian AIDS Society, John Howard Society, and Native Women’s Resource Centre — want the new law repealed and the full decriminalization of sex work in Canada.

The sweeping new changes to the way prostitution is regulated in Canada follow a Supreme Court decision last year that found the old laws violated the rights of prostitutes.

The groups say the law will recriminalize sex work while recreating the harms and violence experienced by sex workers under the previous laws criminalizing prostitution.

The groups are calling for sex work to be legal in Canada and say sex workers should have legal and labour rights.