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Software Glitch Caused 911 Outage For 11 Million People

Slashdot - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 3:05pm
HughPickens.com writes: Brian Fung reports at the Washington Post that earlier this year emergency services went dark for over six hours for more than 11 million people across seven states. "The outage may have gone unnoticed by some, but for the more than 6,000 people trying to reach help, April 9 may well have been the scariest time of their lives." In a 40-page report (PDF), the FCC found that an entirely preventable software error was responsible for causing 911 service to drop. "It could have been prevented. But it was not," the FCC's report reads. "The causes of this outage highlight vulnerabilities of networks as they transition from the long-familiar methods of reaching 911 to [Internet Protocol]-supported technologies." On April 9, the software responsible for assigning the identifying code to each incoming 911 call maxed out at a pre-set limit; the counter literally stopped counting at 40 million calls. As a result, the routing system stopped accepting new calls, leading to a bottleneck and a series of cascading failures elsewhere in the 911 infrastructure. Adm. David Simpson, the FCC's chief of public safety and homeland security, says having a single backup does not provide the kind of reliability that is ideal for 911. "Miami is kind of prone to hurricanes. Had a hurricane come at the same time [as the multi-state outage], we would not have had that failover, perhaps. So I think there needs to be more [distribution of 911 capabilities]."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Microsoft promises Windows 10 will mean two-factor auth for all

El Reg - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 3:00pm
Sneak peek at security features Redmond's baking into new OS

Windows doesn't have the best reputation for security, but Microsoft has been outlining a series of improvements in the new operating system that it believes will stymie hackers and leave corporate data more secure.…

Btrfs RAID HDD Testing On Ubuntu Linux 14.10

Phoronix - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 3:00pm
With the Btrfs file-system continuing to stabilize while still adding more functionality and is generating continued interest from more Linux distributions and other open-source projects, I've found it time to run some fresh Btrfs RAID benchmarks to see how the next-generation Linux file-system is performing with its built-in RAID handling.

Chromebook sales grow 67 percent in Q3 with Acer leading the way

L'Inq - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 2:50pm

Comes amid continued PC market decline

EMC profits flatline as VCE joins the storage-tastic federation

El Reg - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 2:43pm
Just gotta hope the Fed holds out against activist investors

For its third quarter EMC reported good numbers but the news is overshadowed by the expected VCE announcement and the activist investor pressure on the Hopkinton firm.…

Google and Qualcomm lead funding for mystery startup Magic Leap

L'Inq - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 2:27pm

Perhaps to revive buzz for Google Glass

Windows 0-Day Exploited In Ongoing Attacks

Slashdot - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 2:23pm
An anonymous reader writes: Microsoft is warning users about a new Windows zero-day vulnerability that is being actively exploited in the wild and is primarily a risk to users on servers and workstations that open documents with embedded OLE objects. The vulnerability is currently being exploited via PowerPoint files. These specially crafted files contain a malicious OLE (Object Linking and Embedding) object. This is not the first time a vulnerability in OLE has been exploited by cybercriminals, however most previous OLE vulnerabilities have been limited to specific older versions of the Windows operating system. What makes this vulnerability dangerous is that it affects the latest fully patched versions of Windows.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

DEATH by PowerPoint: Microsoft warns of 0-day attack hidden in slides

El Reg - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 2:16pm
Might put out patch in update, might chuck it out sooner

Hackers are exploiting a zero-day vulnerability in Windows using malicious PowerPoint documents, Microsoft and security firms warn.…

Microsoft warns of PowerPoint zero-day bug affecting nearly all Windows users

L'Inq - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 2:06pm

Could allow attackers to act as legitimate users

Trips to Mars may be OFF: The SUN has changed in a way we've NEVER SEEN

El Reg - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 1:46pm
Only nuke power can save us from radiation

+Comment  A drop in the solar wind of a kind never yet seen in the space age has made travel beyond Earth orbit a lot more dangerous, according to boffins – so much so that a manned mission to Mars may not be feasible for many decades.…

iPad Mini 3 release date, specs and price

L'Inq - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 1:45pm

Everything you need to know about Apple's third-generation tablet

DHS Investigates 24 Potentially Lethal IoT Medical Devices

Slashdot - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 1:39pm
An anonymous reader writes: In the wake of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's recent recommendations to strengthen security on net-connected medical devices, the Department of Homeland Security is launching an investigation into 24 cases of potential cybersecurity vulnerabilities in hospital equipment and personal medical devices. Independent security researcher Billy Rios submitted proof-of-concept evidence to the FDA indicating that it would be possible for a hacker to force infusion pumps to fatally overdose a patient. Though the complete range of devices under investigation has not been disclosed, it is reported that one of them is an "implantable heart device." William Maisel, chief scientist at the FDA's Center for Devices and Radiological Health, said, "The conventional wisdom in the past was that products only had to be protected from unintentional threats. Now they also have to be protected from intentional threats too."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

The Top Contributors To Mir Ahead Of Ubuntu 14.10

Phoronix - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 1:29pm
With Ubuntu 14.10 due for release tomorrow and the development branch of Mir at nearly 2,000 revisions, here's some quick Bazaar stats...

Hungary intends to charge tax on data transfers

L'Inq - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 1:22pm

At least the ones it knows about

VMware, Cisco, EMC lovechild to live in Big Daddy EMC's house

El Reg - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 1:18pm
EMC absorption rumours confirmed

As rumoured, VCE, the three-way love child of VMware, Cisco and EMC, is to be absorbed into the EMC Federation this quarter.…

Hungary To Tax Internet Traffic

Slashdot - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 12:57pm
An anonymous reader writes: The Hungarian government has announced a new tax on internet traffic: 150 HUF ($0.62 USD) per gigabyte. In Hungary, a monthly internet subscription costs around 4,000-10,000 HUF ($17-$41), so it could really put a constraint on different service providers, especially for streaming media. This kind of tax could set back the country's technological development by some 20 years — to the pre-internet age. As a side note, the Hungarian government's budget is running at a serious deficit. The internet tax is officially expected to bring in about 20 billion HUF in income, though a quick look at the BIX (Budapest Internet Exchange) and a bit of math suggests a better estimate of the income would probably be an order of magnitude higher.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Galaxy Note 4 will see Android 5.0 Lollipop update, Samsung teases

L'Inq - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 12:56pm

But firm hasn't said when it will arrive

Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012

El Reg - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 12:42pm
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not

Facebook has responded to critics who attacked the free content ad network for contributing exactly zero bucks to UK corporation tax in 2012, by dishing up a a tiny sum of just £3,000 to HM Revenue & Customs last year.…

Windows 10 Technical Preview gets its first build update

L'Inq - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 12:27pm

You lucky people

Nouveau Now Supports DRI3 Without GLAMOR

Phoronix - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 12:26pm
The Nouveau DDX driver now supports the Direct Rendering Infrastructure 3 when using its traditional EXA-based acceleration rather than only with GLAMOR...
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