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Friday Cyber News, July 29 2016

Cyber technology-related news and links from around the web, for the week of 7/23 - 7/29:

1. Hacked emails from the DNC, released by Wikileaks to coincide with the convention, led to the resignation of its chairwoman, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, although the content of the emails wasn't particularly alarming, and the hack may have been the work of Russian intelligence. Others are worried Russians will also target voting machines in November. As journalist Olivia Nuzzi wrote on Twitter, "Dance like no one is watching; email like it may one day be read aloud in a deposition." [Wired; New Yorker; Motherboard; NY Times; Washington Post]

2. The White House released PPD-41 this week, a presidential directive closing the gap on the question of who private companies should contact, and when, in the event of a cyber incident (a data breach or hack, basically). Both the FBI and DHS will provide first-line responses, and will maintain fact sheets on how to get in touch. [Inside Privacy]

3. A virtual reality company is filming the refugee experience, actually meeting refugees on boats as aid workers help them to shore, in the hope that being able to see what they see will make people more empathetic, and more welcoming. VR has long been treated as an empathy engine, and does have effects measurable in labs, but primarily for situations that are novel (people spend more time helping a fictitious marine conservancy organization after spending some time virtually scuba diving) but whether a VR experience translates to more empathetic behavior days and weeks later, without the headset on--in actual R--has yet to be seen. [Wired]

4. NIST is nearing the end of the comment period for the public preview of its revised guidelines for digital authentication, and published the guidelines on GitHub. Changes include phasing out text-based two-factor authentication, more support for biometrics, and new suggestions for passwords. [NIST.gov]

5. The US uses submarines as underwater hacking platforms, both for their proximity to undersea fiber cables, and because their powerful antennas can intercept communications. [Washington Post]

6. Senator Gary Peters is advocating for a national lab focusing on automotive cybersecurity, and wants it located in Detroit. Currently the NHTSA investigates automobile security and replicates vehicle hacks, but has a workforce shortage. [Wards Auto]

7. A ransomware distributor claims a Fortune 500 company hired them to disrupt operations at a competitor, a novel accusation in the realm of corporate competition. [Motherboard]

8. China will soon launch a satellite to enable quantum communication experiments, the first step in creating a network of quantum computers...the quantum internet. [Nature]

9. What could hackers do with your genetic information? Not much in aggregate; mean-spirited privacy leaks if you're individually targeted. [Motherboard]

10. "When two persons in search of a pokémon clash at the corner of Sunset and San Vicente is there violence? Is there murder?" If you came to our screening of "Lo and Behold" and Q&A with Werner Herzog this past spring, you'll love Herzog on Pokemon Go. [The Verge]

Thanks for reading,

Allison
Stanford Cyber Initiative

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