Saturday, December 19, 2015

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Hackers trace ISIS Twitter accounts back to internet addresses linked to Department of Work and Pensions

Hackers have claimed that a number of Islamic State supporters' social media accounts are being run from internet addresses linked to the Department of Work and Pensions.
A group of four young computer experts who call themselves VandaSec have unearthed evidence indicating that at least three ISIS-supporting accounts can be traced back to the DWP.
Every computer and mobile phone logs onto the internet using an IP address, which is a type of identification number.
The hacking collective showed Mirror Online details of the IP addresses used by a trio of separate digital jihadis to access Twitter accounts, which have been used to spread extremist propaganda.
At first glance, the IP addresses seem to be based in Saudi Arabia, but upon further inspection using specialist tools they appeared to link back to the DWP.
Getty/ReutersCyberwar: ISIS has been locked in battle with Anonymous hacktivists
Cyberwar: ISIS has been locked in battle with Anonymous hacktivists
"Don't you think that's strange?" one of the hackers asked Mirror Online. "We traced these accounts back to London, the home of the British intelligence services."
VandaSec's work has sparked wild rumours suggesting someone inside the DWP is running ISIS-supporting accounts, or they were created by intelligence services as a honeypot to trap wannabe jihadis.
However, when Mirror Online traced the IP addresses obtained by VandaSec, we found they actually pointed to a series of unpublicised transactions between Britain and Saudi Arabia.
We learned that the British government sold on a large number of IP addresses to two Saudi Arabian firms.
After the sale completed in October of this year, they were used by extremists to spread their message of hate.
Jamie Turner, an expert from a firm called PCA Predict, discovered a record of the sale of IP addresses, and found a large number were transferred to Saudi Arabia in October of this year.
Getty/ReutersiJihad: Is the laptop as mighty as the sword?
iJihad: Is the laptop as mighty as the sword?
He told us it was likely the IP addresses could still be traced back to the DWP because records of the addresses had not yet been fully updated.
The Cabinet Office has now admitted to selling the IP addresses on to Saudi Telecom and the Saudi-based Mobile Telecommunications Company earlier this year as part of a wider drive to get rid of a large number of the DWP's IP addresses.
It said the British government can have no control over how these addresses are used after the sale.
A Cabinet Office spokesperson said: "The government owns millions of unused IP addresses which we are selling to get a good return for hardworking taxpayers.
"We have sold a number of these addresses to telecoms companies both in the UK and internationally to allow their customers to connect to the internet.
"We think carefully about which companies we sell addresses to, but how their customers use this internet connection is beyond our control."
The government did not reveal how much money was made from selling the IP addresses to the pair of Saudi firms, because it regards this information as commercially sensitive.

Can you really be traced from your IP address?

You can get close enough!

Future of Gaming: 5 Exciting Emerging Trends

Technology evolves in amazingly rapid speeds. If you need any real observable proof of the speedy advancement of digital technology over the years, take a look at the gaming industry. From the very early years of black-and-white 2D games like Pong (1972) to the first 3D game, 3D Monster Maze in 1981, and from primitive first-person shooters like Wolfenstein 3D (1992) to complex, life-like shooters like Battlefield 3 (2011), there’s no doubt that the gaming industry has seen its fair share of technological evolution.

It’s has been exciting ride for all of us gamers, both casual or hardcore types. Most of us have a wishlist for how games will turn out in the future. Well, it’s hard to say if they will come true, but we might very well extrapolate from existing trends, which is the whole point of this article. Here are 5 features you can expect in the future of gaming.

1. Immersive Gaming: The Return of Virtual Reality (VR)

Some of you may be surprised to know that 3D films have existed since about a century ago. The technology just didn’t really didn’t take flight since then due to high costs. It is not until In the recent years that we’ve experienced therevival of 3D technology not only in films like Avatar, but also for gaming screens.

We have also seen the evolution of video games in terms of its graphical quality, so much so that one would have difficulty differentiating a video game from a real-life scene today. It appears that there is a movement towards more immersive digital entertainment, from movies to games. The question is, where do we go from real-life 3D graphics and beyond?

A Virtual Reality Comeback

With major leaps in technology that resulted in improved hardware capabilitiesvirtual reality (VR) has started to resurface in the gaming industry. Of particular note is the upcoming Oculus Rift, a VR head-mounted display (HMD) created by Palmer Luckey.

Due to be released early next January for a mere $300, Oculus Rift features amassive field view (107 degrees), quick-response (ultra-low latency) head-tracking system, and incorporates immersive stereoscopic 3D rendering capabilities as well. Its prototype which was showcased in various gaming conventions has already received numerous positive reviews from game developers and internet reviewers alike.

2. Secondary Screens for Gaming

With the booming market for handheld devices like smartphones and tablets, the console war between the three major brands (Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo) has intensified, with a rush to invent a secondary gaming device for players.

Wii U

Consider the newly released Wii U GamePad, which features a built-in touchscreen that can serve as a supplement to games. In first-person shooter games, a second screen lets you access the map or your inventory seamlessly without leaving the game field. What you can do with a secondary screen is not limited to that, it adds to the gaming experience which is demonstrated wonderfully in this ZombiU gameplay trailer out for an inside view (Warning:the video contains gore and violence).


Even Microsoft is catching up with the competition with the advent of Xbox SmartGlass. However, unlike the Wii U, SmartGlass is an app that acts as an additional tool for gamers to interact withIt can be downloaded into and accessed from smartphones and tablets to enhance the gaming experience.

Sony Cross-Play

Sony has taken its first step to integrate their Playstation 3 console with their handheld device, PS Vita via the Cross-Play feature, allowing the gamer to stop playing on one device and resume on another device.

3. Open-Source Gaming

Look at the number of free (or cheap) homemade games available in the mobile market today and you will have an idea where future games may be heading: Open Source! For instance, Ouya is an Android-powered, upcoming video game console (to be released April 2013, pre-order here) that works under the concept that games should be cheap to build and cheap to buy.

Independent developers do not have to purchase an expensive software development kit (SDK) to create games and release them to the market. Ouya offers 1080p gaming experience and contains tons of free-to-play and affordable games at only $99, it’s hard not to see where the attraction lies with Ouya.

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