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Must-read articles on computer security, including virus alerts and much more!

Security News Headlines - Yahoo! News

  • Sony trying to find alternatives to release 'The Interview' - LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Sony Pictures said on Friday it is looking for alternatives to release "The Interview" after it scrapped the Christmas Day theatrical opening of the screwball comedy at the center of a cyber attack on the studio blamed on North Korea.
  • Theater shooter's parents plead for his life - DENVER (AP) — The parents of Colorado theater shooter James Holmes begged Friday for his life to be spared through a plea bargain — a move that rekindled the long-running, emotional debate about whether the horrific details of the mass killing should be played out at his upcoming trial.
  • Top Asian News at 12:30 a.m. GMT - WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama declared Friday that Sony "made a mistake" in shelving a satirical film about a plot to assassinate North Korea's leader and pledged the U.S. would respond "in a place and manner and time that we choose" to the hack attack on Sony that the FBI blamed on the communist government. Speaking of executives at Sony Pictures Entertainment, Obama said at a year-end news conference, "I wish they had spoken to me first. ... We cannot have a society in which some dictatorship someplace can start imposing censorship."
  • AP Interview: Coelho says Sony hack threatens all - GENEVA (AP) — Brazilian author Paulo Coelho says the Sony hack threatens us all if society doesn't enforce important values: our individual and collective freedom of expression and an unwavering refusal to negotiate with anonymous terrorists.
  • 2012 movie massacre hung over 'Interview' decision - LOS ANGELES (AP) — When a group claiming credit for the hacking of Sony Pictures Entertainment threated violence against theaters showing "The Interview" earlier this week, the fate of the movie's big-screen life was all but sealed.
  • Obama vows U.S. response to North Korea over Sony cyber attack - By Steve Holland and Matt Spetalnick WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama vowed on Friday to respond to a devastating cyber attack on Sony Pictures that he blamed on North Korea, and scolded the Hollywood studio for caving in to what he described as a foreign dictator imposing censorship in America. Obama said the cyber attack caused a lot of damage to Sony but that the company should not have let itself be intimidated into halting the public release of "The Interview," a lampoon portraying the assassination of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. ...
  • Staples: Customer data exposed in security breach - PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Staples Inc. says nearly 1.2 million customer payment cards may have been exposed during a security breach earlier this year.
  • Business Highlights - ___ Obama says North Korea hacked Sony, vows response President Barack Obama declared Friday that Sony "made a mistake" in shelving a satirical film about a plot to assassinate North Korea's ...
  • Sony on shelving 'The Interview': 'We had no choice' - NEW YORK (AP) — Following pointed criticism from President Barack Obama for shelving "The Interview," Sony Pictures Entertainment on Friday defended its decision, claiming it had no choice but to cancel the film's Christmas Day theatrical release.
  • Obama says North Korea hacked Sony, vows response - WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama declared Friday that Sony "made a mistake" in shelving a satirical film about a plot to assassinate North Korea's leader, and he pledged the U.S. would respond "in a place and manner and time that we choose" to the hacking attack on Sony that led to the withdrawal. The FBI blamed the hack on the communist government.
  • North Korea denies connection with Sony hacking - UNITED NATIONS (AP) — North Korea on Friday denied the FBI's accusation that it was behind a devastating hacking attack on Sony but it said the now-shelved film "The Interview" mocked the impoverished but nuclear-armed country.
  • Sony Pictures CEO says had no choice but to pull 'The Interview' - LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Sony Pictures Entertainment chief executive and chairman Michael Lynton said on Friday that the Hollywood studio did not make a mistake in pulling satirical film "The Interview" after a cyber attack blamed on North Korea.
  • Sony faces 4th ex-employee lawsuit over hack - LOS ANGELES (AP) — A former director of technology for Sony Pictures Entertainment has sued the company over the data breach that resulted in the online posting of his private financial and personal information.
  • US officially accuses North Korea of Sony hacking - WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration on Friday formally accused North Korea's government of being responsible for the dramatic hacker break-in at Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc. but offered few hints about how or whether it would retaliate. Its proof: The U.S. detected communications between computer Internet addresses known to be operated by North Korea and hacking tools left behind at the crime scene, which the FBI also said contained subtle clues linking them to that country's government.
  • Risk modelers look to clarify cyber risk costs - By Luciana Lopez NEW YORK (Reuters) - Even as the Sony Corp cyber attack laid bare the kinds of vulnerabilities that typically drive companies to buy insurance policies, the lack of a risk model for insurers means such protection is not always easy to get. Unlike earthquakes, tornadoes or even terrorism, there are no existing models to calculate how much a so-called "cyber hurricane," cutting across a swath of companies, could cost. Without that, insurers cannot be sure how much risk they can afford to underwrite. ...
  • Staples says security breach may have affected 1.16 million cards - (Reuters) - Office-supply retailer Staples Inc said about 1.16 million payment cards might have been affected by the data breach announced in October. An investigation by external data security experts showed that criminals deployed malware to some point-of-sales systems at 115 U.S. stores, Staples said. The company said it has since eradicated the malware. Staples, which has more than 1,400 stores in the country, said the malware might have allowed access to some transaction data, including cardholder names, payment card numbers, expiration dates, and card verification codes. ...
  • 5 ways to make your email safer in case of a hack attack - LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Sony hack, the latest in a wave of company security breaches, exposed months of employee emails. Other hacks have given attackers access to sensitive information about a company and its customers, such as credit-card numbers and email addresses. One way hackers can sneak into a company is by sending fake emails with malicious links to employee inboxes. Here are five simple steps to make your email more secure and limit the harm a hacker can have:
  • Kim Jong Un game spoof 'Glorious Leader!' moving forward - LOS ANGELES (AP) — The creator of a satirical video game that depicts Kim Jong Un as a gun-toting, unicorn-riding hero has no plans to cancel his zany creation following a cyberattack and threats of violence against Sony Pictures that the FBI has attributed to North Korea.
  • Celebrities react to latest Sony hack developments - Latest reaction from Hollywood and beyond to the Sony hacking scandal and President Obama's remarks Friday that the studio "made a mistake" in not releasing its embattled film "The Interview":
  • The Audacity of Scolding Sony - The accepted story of President Obama in the six weeks since the November elections is that he's been liberated. No longer tied down by the political prospects of Democrats in Congress, he has upended the low expectations placed on a lame-duck president and moved in rapid succession on immigration, climate change, net neutrality, and just this week, to normalize relations with Cuba after a 50-year freeze. "Yes, I think they made a mistake."
  • Hackers warn not to release 'The Interview' in any form - NEW YORK (AP) — Hackers sent a new email Friday to Sony Pictures Entertainment, gloating over the studio's "wise" decision to cancel the release of "The Interview" and warning not to distribute the film "in any form."
  • Obama says Sony 'made a mistake' in pulling 'The Interview' - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Barack Obama on Friday said Sony Pictures "made a mistake" in pulling the satirical film "The Interview" after suffering a devastating cyber attack blamed on North Korea. "I wish they (Sony) would have spoken to me first," Obama said at a news conference. "I would have told them, 'Do not get into a pattern in which you're intimidated by these kinds of criminal attacks.'"
  • George Clooney criticizes Hollywood in Sony cyber attack - NEW YORK (Reuters) - Oscar winner George Clooney slammed Hollywood power players for not supporting Sony Pictures following the cyber attack on the company over the satirical comedy "The Interview" about North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Sony on Wednesday pulled the Christmas Day release of the film depicting a fictional assassination of Kim after major theater chains said they would not show it due to unspecified threats made by the hackers. Clooney, in an interview Friday with online trade publication Deadline. ...
  • Security flaws allow global cellular eavesdropping - BERLIN (AP) — Security flaws in a system used by cellphone carriers around the world could open the door to wide-ranging surveillance of mobile phone traffic, according to a German researcher who discovered the problem.
  • Full text of U.S. FBI statement on Sony cyberattack - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Following is the full text of the FBI's statement on Friday on the recent cyberattack against the Hollywood movie studio Sony Pictures, a unit of Sony Corp. : "Today, the FBI would like to provide an update on the status of our investigation into the cyber attack targeting Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE).  In late November, SPE confirmed that it was the victim of a cyber attack that destroyed systems and stole large quantities of personal and commercial data. ...
  • Hackers tell Sony wise to cancel film, don't make more trouble: CNN - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The hackers who launched a cyberattack on Sony Pictures praised the company's decision to cancel the release of "The Interview" and said its data will be secure if they continue to comply, CNN reported on Friday, quoting the message.
  • Sony hack adds to security pressure on companies - BEIJING (AP) — Faced with rising cybercrime like the attack on Sony Pictures Entertainment, companies worldwide are under pressure to tighten security but are hampered by cost and, for some, reluctance to believe they are in danger.
  • For North Korea's cyber army, long-term target may be telecoms, utility grids - By Ju-min Park and Jack Kim SEOUL (Reuters) - The hacking attack on Sony Pictures may have been a practice run for North Korea's elite cyber-army in a long-term goal of being able to cripple telecoms and energy grids in rival nations, defectors from the isolated state said. Non-conventional capabilities like cyber-warfare and nuclear technology are the weapons of choice for the impoverished North to match its main enemies, they said. ...
  • Hack attack spurs call for more NKorea sanctions - WASHINGTON (AP) — Suspicions that North Korea was behind a destructive hacking attack against Sony Pictures and a threat against movie theaters are intensifying calls for tougher U.S. steps to cut that country's access to hard currency and declare it once more as a state sponsor of terrorism.
  • Companies' data security in question after Sony hack - ATLANTA (AP) — Companies across the globe are on high alert to tighten up network security to avoid being the next company brought to its knees by hackers like those that executed the dramatic cyberattack against Sony Pictures Entertainment.
  • Forget the politics, Sony executives say North Korea comedy 'desperately unfunny' - By James Pearson SEOUL (Reuters) - The comedy on the fictional assassination of North Korea's leader is "desperately unfunny" and would have flopped overseas if it had not been canceled, according to leaked e-mails of international executives of Sony Pictures. Sony Corp scrapped its Christmas Day release of "The Interview," following threats by hackers who have leaked internal company documents and emails, as well as unreleased movies, on the internet. U.S. ...
  • Top Asian News at 2:30 a.m. GMT - TOKYO (AP) — If the U.S. government's claim is correct that North Korea was involved in the unprecedented hack attack on Sony Pictures that scuttled Seth Rogen's latest comedy, no one can say they weren't warned. The movie, "The Interview," pushed all of North Korea's buttons. No country would welcome a movie portraying the glib and graphic assassination of its leader.
  • 10 Things to Know for Friday - Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Friday:
  • Washington tries to tackle hackers behind Sony attack - By David Brunnstrom and Piya Sinha-Roy WASHINGTON/LOS ANGELES, (Reuters) - Washington made the woes of cyberattack victim Sony Pictures its own on Thursday as the White House acknowledged that the devastating strike against the big Hollywood studio was a matter of national security that would be met by a forceful government response. But the White House was not ready to put the blame on North Korea, despite a U.S. official's indication on Wednesday that Washington may soon formally announce the involvement of the Pyongyang government. ...
  • Security experts fear Sony attack to fuel more company extortion - By Jennifer Saba NEW YORK (Reuters) - Sony Pictures' decision to shelve the film "The Interview" in the face of cyber attacks has set a worrying precedent and is sending companies scrambling to guard sensitive data, security experts said on Thursday. Sony's capitulation could mean that more businesses will be targeted for cyber warfare and extortion, they said. ...
  • Review: 'The Interview' deserves to be seen - That I was one of the relative few to see "The Interview" is not a boast I take any pleasure in.
  • U.S. considers 'proportional' response to Sony hacking attack - By David Brunnstrom and Jim Finkle WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States said on Thursday a cyber attack on Sony Pictures was a serious national security matter and the Obama administration was considering a proportional response, although the White House stopped short of blaming North Korea. U.S. government sources said on Wednesday that investigators had determined the attack was "state sponsored" and that North Korea was the government involved. White House spokesman Josh Earnest said he was not in a position to say that North Korea was responsible, but the investigation was ...
  • Sony hacking fallout puts all companies on alert - ATLANTA (AP) — Companies across the globe are on high alert to tighten up network security to avoid being the next company brought to its knees by hackers like those that executed the dramatic cyberattack against Sony Pictures Entertainment.
  • Files of more than 40,000 federal workers breached - The computer files of more than 40,000 federal workers may have been compromised by a cyberattack at federal contractor KeyPoint Government Solutions, the second breach this year at a major firm handling ...
  • Washington weighs response to Sony hack; options limited - By David Brunnstrom and Piya Sinha-Roy WASHINGTON/LOS ANGELES, (Reuters) - The U.S. government on Thursday said it was weighing the proportional response to the sophisticated perpetrator of a cyberattack that crippled Sony Pictures, exposed its executives and led to the cancellation of the film "The Interview." Spokesman Josh Earnest said the White House is not in a position to confirm that North Korea is responsible for the hack at Sony, after a U.S. official said Wednesday that Washington may soon formally announce the involvement of the Pyongyang government. ...