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  • Wisconsin Republican Party Says Hackers Stole $2.3 Million
    Hackers stole $2.3 million from the Wisconsin Republican Party's account that was being used to help reelect President Donald Trump in the key battleground state, the party's chairman told The Associated Press on Thursday. From a report: The party noticed the suspicious activity on Oct. 22 and contacted the FBI on Friday, said Republican Party Chairman Andrew Hitt. Hitt said the FBI is investigating. The attack was discovered less than two weeks before Election Day as both Trump and Democratic rival Joe Biden made their final push to win Wisconsin and its 10 electoral votes. Trump won the state by fewer than 23,000 votes in 2016 and planned his third visit in seven days on Friday. Biden also planned to campaign in Wisconsin on Friday. Polls have consistently shown a tight race in the state, usually with Biden ahead by single digits and within the margin of error.

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  • FBI, DHS Warn Hospitals of 'Credible Threat' from Hackers
    Several federal agencies on Wednesday warned hospitals and cyber-researchers about "credible" information "of an increased and imminent cybercrime threat to U.S. hospitals and health-care providers." From a report: The FBI, the Department of Health and Human Services and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, part of the Department of Homeland Security and known as CISA, said hackers were targeting the sector, "often leading to ransomware attacks, data theft and the disruption of health-care services," according to an advisory. The advisory warned that hackers might use Ryuk ransomware "for financial gain." The warning comes as Covid-19 cases and hospitalizations surge across the country. The cybersecurity company FireEye said multiple U.S hospitals had been hit by a "coordinated" ransomware attack, with at least three publicly confirming being struck this week. [...] The attack was carried out by a financially motivated cybercrime group dubbed UNC1878 by computer security researchers, according to Charles Carmakal, FireEye's strategic services chief technology officer. At least three hospitals were severely affected by ransomware on Tuesday, he said, and multiple hospitals have been hit over the past several weeks. UNC1878 intends to target and deploy ransomware to hundreds of other hospitals, Carmakal said.

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  • Amazon, Apple Probed by Germany Over Online Sales Curbs
    Amazon and Apple face German antitrust scrutiny over a policy that excludes independent sellers of brand products on the online market place. From a report: Germany's Federal Cartel Office, the country's antitrust regulator, is probing both companies over a policy at Amazon called "brandgating," the authority said in an emailed statement. The policy allows makers of branded products such as iPhones to have independent sellers removed from the platform as long as Amazon can sell the items, according to the statement. "Brandgating agreements can help to protect against product piracy," the Cartel Office said. "But such measures must be proportionate to be in line with antitrust rules and may not result in eliminating competition." Amazon and Apple are among the tech giants under intense scrutiny by regulators across the world, including in the European Union, which is poised to propose sweeping new laws to rein in Silicon Valley. Authorities are wrestling with how to act against companies that critics say run a rigged game when they set the rules for platforms that also host their rivals.

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  • Facebook Targeted In UK Legal Action Over Cambridge Analytica Scandal
    An anonymous reader shares a report from the BBC: Facebook is being sued for failing to protect users' personal data in the Cambridge Analytica breach. The scandal involved harvested Facebook data of 87 million people being used for advertising during elections. Mass legal action is being launched against Facebook for misuse of information from almost one million users in England and Wales. Facebook said it has not received any documents regarding this claim. The group taking action -- Facebook You Owe Us -- follows a similar mass action law suit against Google. Google You Owe Us, led by former Which? director Richard Lloyd, is also active for another alleged mass data breach. Both represented by law firm Millberg London, the Google case is being heard in the Supreme Court in April next year. The Facebook case will argue that by taking data without consent, the firm failed to meet their legal obligations under the Data Protection Act 1998. Representative claimant in the case Alvin Carpio said: "When we use Facebook, we expect that our personal data is being used responsibly, transparently, and legally. By failing to protect our personal information from abuse, we believe that Facebook broke the law. Paying less than 0.01% of your annual revenue in fines -- pocket change to Facebook -- is clearly a punishment that does not fit the crime. Apologizing for breaking the law is simply not enough. Facebook, you owe us honesty, responsibility and redress. We will fight to hold Facebook to account."

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  • iOS 14's Upcoming Anti-Tracking Prompt Sparks Antitrust Complaint In France
    tsa shares a report from MacRumors: Starting early next year, iOS 14 will require apps to get opt-in permission from users to collect their random advertising identifier, which advertisers use to deliver personalized ads and track how effective their campaigns were. Ahead of this change, The Wall Street Journal reports that advertising companies and publishers have filed a complaint against Apple with France's competition authority, arguing that the enhanced privacy measures would be anticompetitive. According to the report, the complaint alleges that the wording of Apple's permission prompt will lead most users to decline tracking of their device's advertising identifier, which could result in lost revenue. In August, Facebook warned advertisers that the prompt could lead to a more than 50 percent drop in Audience Network publisher revenue. In a statement, Apple reiterated its belief that "privacy is a fundamental right," adding that "a user's data belongs to them and they should get to decide whether to share their data and with whom." Apple said that its own data collection doesn't count as tracking because it doesn't share the data with other companies.

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  • NASA Discovers a Rare Metal Asteroid That's Worth $10,000 Quadrillion
    Iwastheone shares a report from Observer: NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has discovered a rare, heavy and immensely valuable asteroid called "16 Psyche" in the Solar System's main asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. Asteroid Psyche is located at roughly 230 million miles (370 million kilometers) from Earth and measures 140 miles (226 kilometers) across, about the size of West Virginia. What makes it special is that, unlike most asteroids that are either rocky or icy, Psyche is made almost entirely of metals, just like the core of Earth, according to a study published in the Planetary Science Journal on Monday. Given the asteroid's size, its metal content could be worth $10,000 quadrillion ($10,000,000,000,000,000,000), or about 10,000 times the global economy as of 2019. Using ultraviolet spectrum data collected by the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph on the Hubble Space Telescope during two observations in 2017, researchers deduced that Psyche's surface could be mostly pure iron. However, they recognized that the presence of an iron composition of as small as 10 percent could dominate ultraviolet observations. Psyche is the target of the NASA Discovery Mission Psyche, expected to launch in 2022 atop a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket. Further facts about the asteroid, including its exact metal content, will hopefully be uncovered when an orbiting probe arrives in early 2026. The asteroid is believed to be the dead core left by a planet that failed during its formation early in the Solar System's life or the result of many violent collisions in its distant past.

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  • Scientists Discover Coral Reef Taller Than the Empire State Building
    An anonymous reader quotes a report from the BBC: An enormous coral reef has been found at the northern tip of Australia's Great Barrier Reef, the first such discovery in 120 years, scientists say. At 500m (1,640ft) high, the reef is taller than New York's Empire State Building and the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Scientists on a 12-month mission found the structure, detached from the Great Barrier Reef off Cape York, last week. They were conducting 3D mapping of the sea floor in the area. A team aboard a research vessel owned by the Schmidt Ocean Institute (SOI), a non-profit group based in California, used an underwater robot to explore the reef. The reef is the first of its kind to be found in the region since the late 1800s, scientists said. There are known to be seven other tall reefs in the region, including the one at Raine Island -- the world's most important green sea turtle nesting area. While the reef is bedded to the ocean floor off North Queensland, it is detached, meaning it is not part of the main body of the Great Barrier Reef. Described as "blade-like," the reef is 1.5km wide (one mile), then rises 500m to its shallowest depth of only 40m below the sea surface. Researchers are expected to continue surveying the northern Great Barrier Reef until 17 November.

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