Tag Archives: cyber security

FBI capable of watching suspects through webcam

The Washington Post has recently reported that the FBI is capable of watching suspects through their webcams without activating the indicator light. Citing the case of an elusive suspect in a series of bomb threats to high profile locations throughout the United States, they have suggested that the FBI can remotely collect evidence from a suspect’s home through their webcam.

FBI hackers can exploit weaknesses in computer programs downloading malware onto the target computer. This is typically done with a phishing scam where the suspect will unknowingly open a link in an email that will download the malware onto their computer. The malware will then activate the webcam without triggering the indicator light and begin sending information to the FBI.

Along with new techniques for digitally tracking suspects and collecting hard-drive data, this practice has raised concerns as it may violate the United States Constitution in certain cases. The 4th Amendment grants freedom from unlawful search and seizure. Without even entering a suspect’s home the FBI is capable of digitally searching and seizing their home, their hard-drives and possessions. Some are concerned that the method of obtaining this information could cause innocent individuals’ computers to be compromised.

The method of collection is hardly perfect, requiring the individual in question to unknowingly access a malicious link. It has not proven to be a very effective means of tracking suspects.

Via The Washington Post

Anonymouth: Open Software built to Anonymize Documents

In a year where cyber security and privacy has been a mainstay in the public eye, prop software allowing for added security online has been in increasingly high demand. Anonymous search engine Duck Duck Go recently completed it’s biggest year of growth and traffic ever reported. As revelations continue to emerge of the NSA’s unencumbered tracking of all cyber traffic and information avenues, more and more people are switching to secure alternatives to manage communication.

Although storing and hiding information online has proven fruitless, the new generation of privacy tech focuses on Anonymizing information so it can’t be traced back to the user. Using avenues like the Tor network, VPN and proxy networks, documents can typically be published free of any evidence tracing back to the root. To combat this, however, law enforcement officials use pattern recognition and machine learning to analyze and trace back the idiosyncrasies of a document to it’s author.

Enter Anonymouth.

A free, open-source project, Anonymouth uses pattern fuzzing and scrambling techniques to eliminate those idiosyncrasies and stylometric patterns to, in theory, make it impossible to trace back to an author based purely on writing style. The project is still a work in project, however for the security-conscious it adds another layer of protection in the quest for authentic privacy.

Anonymouth is currently looking for contributors to fork the project.